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Thursday, 25 September 2014

Finally a new Public Health leader for Canada - Greg Taylor

Congratulations Greg - you deserve the position.

It only took how long for the sluggish Harper government to move on the announcement?  16 months.  The question is - Outside of a few public health observers, did anybody even notice?

And, while we have every respect for Greg Taylor, and he may well be the right person for the job, it is as conservative and non-controversial a selection as any government could make.

Greg has been in the public service of Canada for so many years, most Canadians in and out of public health probably have heard of him but can't place him.  Somewhat crassly put, and we do respect Dr. Taylor, he has done his job so well he has been there when we needed him, and invisible when we don't, and few save a other than close colleagues will have marvelled at his work and his accomplishments.

His selection is an assurance that the status quo will persist.  For Harperites that is reassuring as PHAC has been a thorn in a government that tries to distance from health, but really has not done much that is embarrassing to the conservatives.   For the public health community, Dr. Taylor is a know commodity, he has been president of the specialty society, is active in CPHA and is not afraid of the camera  while certainly not seeking the limelight either.

The lethargy in announcing the position is just one more black mark on Minster Ambrose who continues the very Harper agenda that this site predicted over a year ago (keep health off the federal agenda and stay off the front pages of the paper).

So Greg comes into the position with little fanfare, after acting for innumerable months with no significant 'mistakes' and without an agenda of fresh thinking or direction for PHAC.  With all respect to the person and the position, the announcement is one more step in Harper's alienation of health in general and public health specifically.

By the way, best wishes to another dear colleague David Butler-Jones who quietly slipped away from the role due to health reasons.  We did note that Dr P did not receive an invite to his retirement party, assuming one was held.

Good luck Greg, please reach out and ask how we can help you.  

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