Next step is to develop business plans
The Friends of the Shriners welcomed today the decision by delegates to the Imperial Sessions to keep the Canadian Shriners Hospital in Montreal. The hospital would be adjacent to the Montreal Children’s Hospital of the McGill University Health Centre (MUHC), in the same city in which it has thrived for more than 80 years.
“The vote was massively in our favour with close to 75% of delegates choosing Montreal,” explained Natalie Cinman, Co-Chair of the Friends of the Shriners. “By confirming the decision made two years ago in Baltimore, this issue has been put finally to bed. It is time to move forward with detailed plans for the new hospital.”
The Friends of the Shriners brings together the Government of Quebec, the City of Montreal, McGill University, the MUHC, the Montreal Children’s Hospital Foundation of the MUHC and Karnak Temple. In addition to Natalie Cinman and close to 30 members of Karnak, the Montreal delegation included Russell Copeman, Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Health and Social Services, Eric Maldoff, member of the Board of Directors of the MUHC, Arthur T. Porter, Director General and Chief Executive Officer of the MUHC, and Gary Morrison, Chair of the Board of Governors of the Canadian Shriners Hospital.
“Shriners from across North America and particularly Canada and the northeastern United States agree that it is in the best interest of children and their families and the advancement of medical research to keep the hospital in Montreal,” explained John McDonald, Potentate of the Karnak Temple. “Most importantly, they now appreciate that the site is ready and that we are ready to build.”
“Our challenge as Shriners,” added Gary Morrison, “is to move forward with our business plan and ensure that the construction of our hospital becomes a priority for our organization. This process began in the spring, and we now need to do our best to accelerate it.”
“We have wind in our sails,” noted Dr. Arthur T. Porter. “The Government of Quebec is fully committed, the Request for Qualification for private-sector partners has been issued and more than 100 developers from around the world are coming for a site visit on July 11.
“The Shriners have visited this issue three times,” added Dr. Porter. “The time has come to begin planning in earnest, and we are ready to sit down with the Shriner leadership tomorrow.”
Delegates to the Imperial Sessions have voted in favour of keeping the Canadian Shriners Hospital in Montreal at their meetings in Baltimore in 2005 and Anaheim in 2007.
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