I am truly saddened that our Premiere Doug Ford and the current government are moving ahead very quickly to pass the Bill 175, Connecting People to Home and Community Care Act. I had sincerely hoped that there would be many lessons learned from COVID-19 and the issues that became so heightened as we as a society tried to deal with the problems in terms of human cost in this pandemic.
One of the huge issues across Canada that came to light, was the glaring shortcomings to be found in our long-term, for-profit care facilities.
We really do need to adopt another mindset in terms of care and think about the whole person’s physical and mental health in these very challenging times. This is one of those times for me that instead of a pandemic prison I want people to consider very carefully the age old Golden Rule. It is time to ask, “Is this how I would want to live so that the owners of these homes are able to continue to accumulate great wealth at the expense of our seniors in their care?”
Instead of a major change or correction to this for-profit model of care, we have a government pushing through Bill 175, which provides for very little, if any, oversight from the provincial government. I feel it is all part of the slippery slope to remove health care from the village common. And as we rush to enhance those private profits, there will be more and more very vulnerable people falling through the cracks, especially if they do not have the private resources to pay for much needed care.
I am very, very concerned that so many of my friends have not heard that Bill 175 is almost a reality. I am very concerned that health teams are going to be overseen by Ontario Health, a super agency which it seems will further remove health care away from the community.
I do hope that Bill 175 will be stopped in its tracks and that we as the paying public will be able to say, “Thankfully, our elected officials learned a valuable lesson from the tragic loss of lives and the very difficult working conditions that the front line workers experienced during this pandemic in our long-term care facilities. This is a model of care that must be changed not expanded to another sector of health care.”
Bill 175, if passed, will have lasting impacts for years to come. I hope that there will be many more people able to find the energy to make written submissions to the government on this huge threat to our village common in the public health sector.
Written submissions and guidelines for those submissions can be found at https://www.ola.org/en/legislative-business/committees/legislative-assembly/parliament-42/notice-hearings/2020-jun-03-notice-hearings-standing-committee-legislative-assembly.