BY FRANCES MACLURE
What was meant to help people with hospital issues, i.e. appointments, tests, treatments, visiting, etc. have free parking, has backfired drastically.
Free parking has no restrictions as to who parks in the hospital parking lots. Apparently, people are car-pooling from there or taking the bus from there. A lot of hospital staff are parking in the visitor parking lot even though there is staff parking out back.
Some people leave their cars there overnight, even in the handicapped parking area. I have gone to the hospital before 8 a.m. and there were three cars in the handicapped area that had obviously been there overnight as they were snow covered and it was quite obvious they had not been moved for hours.
I talked to the security men at the entrance and they told me that free parking was free parking and they couldn’t do anything about it. I do not think it is very fair that people can park in the handicapped area over night, right in front of the area that people having treatment, i.e. cancer patients need be able to park in.
Anyone trying to get a parking spot any time after 8 or 8:30 a.m. in that parking lot at the QEH, best of luck to you. This has all come to pass since the free parking came in to effect.
I have a suggestion. Why not put the gate back up and have anyone using the hospital for treatments, tests, visits etc., get a token from the front desk at the entrance to the hospital or the cancer treatment section etc. to get back out again at the gate. Similar to what people used to do at the emergency dept. of the hospital before the free parking took place.
That should free up a lot of parking places for the people whom the parking lot is meant for. Anyone agree? There is a complaint box on the wall just as you enter the hospital before the inquiry desk to the left. Write your complaint, ask any of the security guys or the people at the front desk to show you where to deposit it.
This problem is not going to go away unless we make our voices heard.
- Frances MacLure is a Charlottetown resident who has issues with people abusing free parking at the QEH