Hospital Fundraiser- Lancaster Ball May 31st.

With all the doom and gloom around, Hospital issues and GM , here is something positive for a change.

Saturday May 31st is the Lancaster Ball, a fundraiser for the hospital. Brian Johnson is the organizer of this event. $200.00 per ticket , a worthy cause.

I am not sure of contact info so if you want to be contacted regarding tickets, email me and I will forward it on.

The Hospital rally had a good turnout then I read about the incident of the Sr. Parish not letting Joe Dickson speak. Petty to bring possible personal issues into something that affects a lot of people. Mr. Dickson while on local council was never known to be a Jr. Parish foot soldier.

I still think Lottery payouts should be reduced and more money for the hospitals from Ontario Lottery money.

Unrelated note: With the nice weather here I have seen so many kids out riding bikes with no helmuts, all ages. Please remember it is the law for kids under 18 to wear a helmut. My kid never rides his bike without it and neither do I.

With all this hospital trouble we need to do everything we can to stay out of it!

10 Responses to “Hospital Fundraiser- Lancaster Ball May 31st.”

  1. ShaunM Says:

    I hope the fundraiser goes well…

    In regards to the situation at the hospital between Mr.Parish Sr. and Joe Dickson, I didn’t see anything wrong with not allowing Dickson the opportunity to speak. Dickson needs to do MORE talking with his colleagues at Queens Park instead of showing up for a photo-op at the hospital rally. If Dickson REALLY cares about this hospital, he will pressure Smitherman and McGuinty into helping. Otherwise, Dickson should resign his seat and sit as an independent!.

  2. Kurtis McAleer Says:

    I think it was a good thing they didnt let Joe speak at the event… what has he really done to help with the hospital? a petition? anyone can make a petition. He can speak whens hes done something for the hospitial. dont get me wrong i really like joe but please feel free to tell me what hes done for the hospital? he shouldve stayed on Council instead of making the jump.

  3. Brian Johnson Says:


    Thanks so much for putting this note about the Lancaster Ball up here. I just thought I’d offer a couple of quick notes.

    First, I’m not the organizer. Although I’m the chair of the Lancaster Ball Committee, the gala couldn’t be possible without the help of a ton of people. Our committee consists of myself, Lindsay August who is rallying all of the volunteers to help out, Pat Brooks of Brooks creative who has graciously volunteered her marketing expertise, Shaun Collier who is our sponsorship chair, Anita Keogh who has done an exceptional job with the silent auction and finally, Crystal McBride and Tom Mantis of Magwyers’ Pub in Ajax who ALWAYS come to the table and help to make our community a better place.

    The host and MC this year will be Bill Carroll of CFRB 1010’s Bill Carroll show and Chef Neal Noble has put together another outstanding five course menu with wine pairings. There is also a regular bar and specialty martini bar included in the price.

    Tickets are $200 and the event is formal black tie. All proceeds will stay in Ajax and be used for our local hospital.

    For those interested in tickets, I can be reached at 416-458-3044.

    Now…on to the hospital rally. Unfortunately, I couldn’t be there as I actually had a business meeting downtown that Saturday but, unlike Shaun and Kurtis, I think that it was a travesty that Joe was not allowed to speak. If any politicians are allowed to speak at a rally then ALL politicians who wish to speak should be allowed to.

    Joe is a rookie MPP with limited power right now. If ANYONE for a moment believes that Joe isn’t doing his utmost both in and out of government to act as an advocate for our hospital then they just don’t know Joe. I consider Joe to be a good personal friend. I trust him and have never met a man as honorable as Joe. Although it’s not up right now due to construction, one need only look at the Donor Wall at the hospital to see the evidence of Joe’s personal and professional dedication to our local hospital. If I know Joe I believe that he is deeply hurt by people suggesting that he is doing nothing and doesn’t care. I assure you, no one cares more than Joe but there is only so much he can do. Still, despite what I think was a great insult to him, Joe handled the personal slight with his typical grace and class.

    I found it interesting that our Mayor was allowed to speak. Kurtis, if you wonder what Joe has done for our hospital, I’d suggest you do some real digging and ask what Steve Parish has done for our hospital. True, he shows up for the photo opps and he makes his appearances and gives lip service then dissappears, but, unlike his father and Joe Dickson, Steve has, in my estimation done NOTHING.

    I think that it is incredibly unfortunate that Bill Parish seems to have diminished himself to the level of his son Steve by taking a long standing personal gripe and allowing it to enter into this. The acrimony from the Parish family toward Joe is long standing and legendary. I have personally been a witness to it. I asked Joe what the source of it was once and he confessed that he really didn’t know.

    I’m by nature a Conservative but I think we’re lucky to have an MP like Joe. When we look at the alternative (Kevin Ashe) who, while on Pickering Council, advocated the movement of services to Centenary I thank my lucky stars that this Conservative both supported and voted for Joe in the last provincial election. He is truly Mr. Ajax and you will find NO greater advocate for our hospital. It’s just a shame that he wasn’t allowed to voice his concerns due to pettiness and stupidity.

    Karem: Thanks for the info on the fundraiser. I wonder if our rep had been Christine Elliot would she been allowed to speak ? I also believe there is a certain amount of personal politics here that the average citizen is not aware of and that’s a shame.

  4. ShaunM Says:

    All politics aside, there’s no doubt that Dickson has been very involved in this town for many years. He’s probably done more for the people than anyone else. I’m not sure how much volunteer work Parish Jr. has done for this town but I’m not really sure that it matters. We should not judge whether or not they are “good people” based on the number of events they’ve volunteered at. They were elected to do a job and if they choose to volunteer on their own time, that’s fine. There’s no doubt that Dickson means well by doing volunteer work, but some may question whether or not it’s just another opportunity to take pictures and have them printed his his yearly newsletter.

    I don’t know anything about this dispute that Brian is talking about between Parish and Dickson. They should try to put their differences aside for the sake of the town.

    Dickson may be a rookie MPP with limited power, but he may find himself out of a job by the next election if the voters get their way. This hospital situation is a very sensitive issue and the people won’t forget which government (ie: Liberal) was unwilling to help. Dickson might want to consider running as an independant MPP next election.

  5. Brian Johnson Says:


    It’s not a question of whether Joe is a good person or not. It’s a matter of both your’s and Kurtis’ previous posts questioning Joe’s dedication to this community and to the hospital. You stated “If Joe really cares he’ll pressure Smitherman and McGuinty…”. Kurtis asked “what has he really done to help with the hospital?”

    Again, to suggest that Joe just shows up for photo-ops says that you just don’t know Joe. This man has made himself physically ill in his dedication to making this town a better place. Nothing and I mean NOTHING stops this man from doing his utmost to do what is in the best interests of this town. I sat with Joe in council after he was first elected to his MPP position. I commented to him that he really didn’t look well. What I didn’t realize until then was that there was an IV bottle strapped under his sport coat.

    Joe had suffered a serious injury to his leg and ankle at the start of his election campaign but still walked door to door for the length of the campaign. Now, many would argue that he did this simply to get elected and they probably wouldn’t be entirely wrong. However, after getting elected he still made sure that he fulfilled his duties and appeared at council when a lesser man in his condition would not have. Two or three weeks after that, despite his illness, there was Joe in a clown suit walking the length of our Santa Claus Parade. He wasn’t wearing Liberal Colours. He wasn’t waving his MPP title around. He was just Joe.

    If you ever get a chance to go to the Dickson, where I’m sure virtually any person in Ajax would be welcome with open arms by Donna and Joe, I’d suggest you head to Joe’s basement and see the letters of thanks and awards that Joe has received over the years for his absolute devotion to making our home a better place.

    When it is up again you should take a look at the donor wall at the hospital and see how many times Joe is there personally, professionally and as a member of community groups.

    I’m curious what people would have Joe do. There is no doubt in my mind that he is vigorously lobbying Smitherman and McGuinty on this issue but it does the people of Ajax no service to have Joe embarrass a senior cabinet minister and the premier by publicly speaking out against them. I wonder how much that would silence any representation for Ajax for the next 3.5 years.

    Likewise, a rookie MPP quitting a the ruling party to sit as an independent would pretty much make Ajax’s representation in the house non existent and get about as much press as a kitten caught in a tree rescued by firefighters.

    If Joe is voted out of office due to this issue then I ask what you would replace him with. Kevin Ashe doesn’t live in our community and who has a record of, at least in my opinion, obfuscating the truth about his dedication to our local hospital and a record of advocating that RVAP be a satellite site for Centerary? Or maybe an NDPer who will yell a lot but do nothing. Maybe we could pick another local Conservative like Rene Soetens who is so lost in the Mulroney era and devoid any form of leadership that he has led The Ajax Conservative Riding Association into being the laughing stock of the Provincial Party (Trust me I know, I used to be on the executive until I quit in disgust).

    If one really wants to put politics aside than Joe should have been allowed to stand up inform the people at the rally what he was doing and face either the thanks or derision of the crowd. To allow Mark Holland and Parish Jr. to speak and then forbid Joe was just childish on Bill Parish’s part and reflected very poorly on the Friends of the Ajax Pickering Hospital.

    The whole hospital issue is so much bigger than a few mental health beds. Frankly, having been exposed to the mental health services at RVAP I’m not conviced that they should stay there when we have a world class mental health facility 15 minutes to the east in Whitby.

    The real issue is about the RVH Board and management and how our money has been mismanaged and how they continue to route as many services as possible to a hospital (Centenary) that was built in what many would argue was an over serviced area and now has a need to justify its existance. We need to understand that RVAP is the only full service hospital between Oshawa and Toronto and the board in this relationship has to be made accountable and frankly, has to stop relying on the provincial government to bail them out. They need to show where our money has gone. What it has been wasted on and the REAL demand for services at Centenary. They need to stop justifying the existance of Centenary just by moving services there to FORCE people to use it.

  6. ShaunM Says:


    Joe would probably get 101% of the community’s support if he sat as an independant MPP. He would get my vote if that happened. You believe that Ajax’s representation at Queen’s Park would be non-existent if Joe ran as an independant. Are we any better off by having him represent us under the Liberal banner?. Ajax isn’t even on the Liberal’s radar screen right now. They’d rather pump money into helping GM instead of our hospital.

    You stated,

    “Nothing and I mean NOTHING stops this man from doing his utmost to do what is in the best interests of this town”.

    That might be true and I agree that he’s done lots for this town. However, he wasn’t thinking about the town’s best interests (financially) when he left his job as Ward2 councillor and became our MPP. It cost the taxpayers $40,000 for a by-election. He never even finished his term!.

    As for the hospital, I hope we can come up with a solution and stop those beds from being moved to Scarborough.

  7. Kurtis McAleer Says:

    I agree Brian that Joe is “Mr. Ajax” their is no doubt about that…. i can understand you to attack kevin because he is who would be MPP if joe didnt win but for you to attack Rene and basically say he’s a failure as the President of the Ajax- Pickering PC Riding Assocaition is completley FALSE! and if you didnt leave you would relize that…

  8. Kurtis McAleer Says:

    also.. i will somewhat agree that the Conservative riding assocaition is in shambles but the provincial PC assocaition is stronger than ever..

  9. ShaunM Says:


    Brian is entitled to his opinions, but I disagree with his comments about Kevin Ashe & Rene Sotens. Brian says that Sotens is lost in the Mulroney era. Maybe that was Brian’s impression at the time, but I didn’t feel the same way. That’s why it’s important that voters get to know their local candidates and find out what they’re all about. Just because one person dislikes a candidate doesn’t mean that the rest of us should too.

    The same goes with Dickson. I like Joe as a person and appreciate what he’s done for this town over the years. I don’t like the fact that his jump to Provincial politics cost this town $40,000. I think that was in poor taste and wasn’t in our best interest. The fact he was running as a Liberal was another reason for me not to vote for him.

    Back to the hospital….

    Think about all the money our government has pumped into keeping General Motors afloat. Some of that money could have been used here!. Our community is growing, our hospital is in debt, and nurses are getting laid off while patients have to travel to Scarborough.

  10. Brian Johnson Says:


    With regard to the hospital, I couldn’t agree with you more. I’m a firm believer that the provincial government has NO business throwing good money after bad in the whole GM situation. GM has shown time and time again that it is a company that makes bad business choices and cannot keep its own financial house in order. I’d also submit that the City of Toronto is also not worthy of any additional provincial funding until it cleans up it’s financial act.

    However, why is our hospital any different? How can we adequately provide funding to RVH when the board has shown that it is not fiscally responsible? Time and time again they have shown they are not so how is it that pumping more money into a ship that is leaking cash from fiscal mismanagement will help?

    What needs to happen is that the board needs to be evaluated and, where necessary, members need to be replaced. The funding model for RVH needs to be reassessed to provide a more equitable arrangement between the two sites and then and only then should the provincial government begin looking at additional funding.

    I’d agree that the reassessment of the financial model is the province’s responsibility but throwing money at a bad situation typically does not make it better. In this case most of that money would end up at Centenary.

    WRT Kevin Ashe and his views on the hospital. He made his feelings on RVAP VERY clear as a member of Pickering Council and no amount of obfuscation of his opinions and use of tricky semantics can change what is on the record at Pickering Council.

    As per the town spending $40,000 on an election I think that when push comes to shove $0.40 one time charge on your tax bill is really peanuts to pay to have an MPP like Joe represent us. If you look at the colossal wastes of money on pet projects at our town hall like the St Francis DeSales debacle, the 10s of thousands of dollars spent on an OMB appeal to oppose the development of a property on Salem Rd near Boston pizza that SHOULD be developed commercially the 40 cents is nothing.

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