Press Release For January 20, 2020  
2018-2019 Hospital Parking Lot Violation Statistics – Island Health

A first in Canadian history; revenue figures and parking violation statistics reveal how hospital patients and their supporters are further exploited for private enterprise profits.

[DELTA] Hospital stay, why pay? That’s what every British Columbian who attends a hospital this year should be asking themselves following the revelation that almost two-thirds of all parking tickets handed out at Island Health hospital facilities in the previous fiscal year were either cancelled or never paid.

The documents provided to the activist group by way of a Freedom Of Information request are the latest contribution to the mounting pile of evidence showing the BC Ministry of Health and their private sector partners cannot break the addiction to this reliable revenue source despite years of pushback by victims of the exploitative money-grab.

Some of the notable findings from the April 1, 2018 – March 31, 2019 period for all Island Health hospitals:

  • 13,105 parking tickets were issued, only 4,660 tickets were paid.
  • 13 staff members had their vehicles towed, but not a single vehicle belonging to a patient or supporter was removed from a hospital parking facility.
  • According to the parking lot operator, 67% of all tickets were issued to hospital staff members.
  • A total of $327,625 in parking fines were handed out, with only $92,428 actually collected.

Previously released hospital parking management contracts for Fraser and Vancouver Coastal health authorities confirm 100% of all violation revenue is retained by the parking lot management company. It’s expected the parking lot management companies contracted with the province’s other health authorities have similar arrangements in place along with the challenge of violation revenue collection.

A person’s need to access a healthcare facility should never cross paths with private enterprise seeking financial gain by exploiting urgency and poor health. Such intentions and motivations are grossly inconsistent with the tenets of the Canada Health Act and are morally reprehensible in this context. Unfortunately most British Columbians remain in the dark as to why they’re forced into a contractual obligation that entails immediate financial responsibilities with the risk of penalty when attending a public hospital by private vehicle. It’s about time the public knows the facts about how this exploitative operation works.

  • Canadian healthcare is a state monopoly. This monopoly is entirely funded by the proceeds of taxation and in some cases donations.
  • Hospital pay parking is not a tax, it is a user fee. If it was a tax, it would be aptly defined as a tax on illness.
  • BC hospitals are built on crown land, contrary to the parking lot operators claim of private property.
  • Parking tickets issued at public hospitals are just invoices. Only tax authorities and their agents can issue legal fines for violations.
  • Several credit rating organizations have publicly stated unpaid parking tickets do not affect a credit rating.
  • Not a single patient or supporter at Island Health hospitals had their vehicle towed in fiscal 2018, even with very high levels of parking ticket collection delinquency.

Hospital stay, why pay?

A summary of violation statistics that have been disclosed to date can be viewer here

(a PDF will open/download in your browser)

2018-2019 Hospital Parking Lot Violation Statistics – Island Health