A Message from Robert Gadsby,
Chair Family Council Network 4
As you may know, our FCN-4 Advocacy Committee has been pushing for a minimum care standard to provide an average of 4 hours of direct hands-on care per resident per day. This initiative received all-party support in the previous Ontario Parliament ... and it has been reintroduced as Bill 13 in this Parliament by Teresa Armstrong (MPP for London – Fanshawe).
Thank-you to the many Family Councils that have already submitted hundreds of signatures in support of Bill 13, but our efforts are not over. Your Petition submissions will continue to be very useful in supporting Bill 13, as it proceeds through Committee to Second and Third Readings in the future.
How can you help?
On the Home Page, you will find our Petition (both and English version and a separate French version) in support of Bill 13. Since this is a new Bill, we need new signatures to support this initiative. Click on the Petition Bill 13 final English .pdf or Petition Bill 13 Final French.pdf to download the Petition for printing.
Please circulate this Petition at your LTC home, church, synagogue, gym, neighbourhood meetings, etc. and invite all of your family and friends (including LTC staff and residents) to sign it.
EVERYONE can sign our Petition which is to be returned by regular mail to Teresa Armstrong (see address at the bottom of the form). Original signatures are required for the Petition to be tabled in the Legislature.
Carol Dueck, Chair Advocacy Committee met with Teresa Armstrong in August, 2018 at Queens Park and with Teresa’s office staff again in February, 2020.
Teresa Armstrong NDP MMP London / Fanshaw, is the champion for The Time to Care Act (now labeled as Bill 13). Since 2012, this bill (with various numbers attached as the parliament changed) has been presented and debated 63 times in the legislature! It has reached second reading twice before with all three parties supporting it. When a parliament is dissolved, all bills die; as happened when the election was called in 2018.
A Time For You to Act in Support of
Bill 13 - Time to Care Act
Brenda Cowan at Simcoe Wellness Fair on Leap Saturday. Able to collect many signatures for the petition for Bill 13 - Time to Care Act.
Help Support Improvement to Long Term Care!
Buy Your Copy of A Slice of Life.
A Slice of Life, by Nikkie Rottenberg, is a collection of short stories of twenty-six older adults living in Burlington, Ontario. They are stories of overcoming hardships, refusing to give up, finding romance and realizing dreams. All of them full of hope.
All proceeds from the sale of this book will go to Family Council Network 4 Advocacy Committee to help them continue to push for policies that ensure dignity and high quality care for those living in long-term-care homes.
To purchase a copy of A Slice of Life, email:
Tom Carrothers at
Click here to read more about the book.
Teresa will lead the debate again May 28th, 2020. The aim is for a successful debate and support by MPPs. The bill is then directed to a committee for research to explore the impact of accepting this standard of care - the biggest impact being funding. The committee then recommends whether to forward the bill for Third and Final debate in the legislature.
To address the chronic conditions experienced in all long term care homes, private or government run, the bill demands a legislated standard of care to provide an average of 4 hours per resident per day, adjusted for acuity level and case mix.
Residents and Families see the issues every day:
PSWs workload that is unmanageable as they try to assist residents with daily activities such as of hygiene, meals, mobilization. There is simply inadequate time to complete the necessary care, leaving residents waiting and waiting. Volunteers with minimal training are coaxed into helping with feeding to reduce the incidents of cold meals.
If a infectious outbreak occurs, the staff are further challenged to manage the increased activity within the regular expected care.
Quality scores are falling with increased reports of falls with harm, medication errors, skin breakdown
Symptoms of staff suffering burnout are demonstrated with increased injury and sick time.
High vacancy rates of PSWs is an urgent issue across the province
What can you do to help achieve an acceptable Standard of Care in Long Term Care?
Petitions and sharing stories of the care problems that families encounter with their loved ones in a LTC home are two effective tools that MPPs use to influence the vote for a cause. MPPS need to hear from their constituents!
Local Family Councils are urged to sign the petition for The Time to Care Act. Mail it to the MPPs office (address is on the form). before mid May so it will be tabled at the May 28th debate.
Pick up the phone or email YOUR MPP. to urge them to support the TIme to Care Act . The Advocacy Committee sent emails to all regional MPPS in the fall of 2019. They need to hear again that this is still an urgent matter and to prepare for the vote on May 28 The more calls / letters they get, the more they pay attention to what is important to the folks in their riding.
Write a letter, signed and dated, with your address. Share a story about the concern of care issues that you or your family member have encountered in a LTC home. REAL stories make an impression when discussed in Question Period in the House.
Long Term Care
The Goal: Maintaining dignity and respect as we age
In general, Long-Term Care Homes offer higher levels of personal care and support than those typically offered by either retirement homes or supportive housing. They are licensed or approved by the Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care and are governed by the Long-Term Care Homes Act, 2007 (LTCHA). The requirements in the LTCHA ensure that residents of these homes receive safe, consistent and high-quality resident-centred care in settings where residents feel at home, are treated with respectand have the supports and services they need for their health and well-being.
The Ontario Ministry of Health publication related to Programs and Services for Seniors in Ontario states "Long-Term Care Homes are designed for people who need help with daily activities, supervision in a secure setting and/or access to 24-hour nursing care." Furthermore, the publication, Every Resident, outlines the Bill of Rights for people who live in Ontario Long-Term care homes.
The first two items in the Bill of Rights state:
"Every resident has the right to be treated with courtesy and respect and in a way that fully recognizes the resident's individualtiy and respects the resident's dignity.
Every resident has the right to be protected from abuse."
The purpose our committee is to ensure that these mandates are met along with the 25 other items in the Bill of Rights. To see the entire document check out this website:
Long Term Care in Ontario is in Danger
Need something to do while staying at home? Print the petition for The Time to Care Act found on this web page, ask your adult family members confined in the house with you to sign it and then mail it to MPP Teresa Armstrong (address is on the form).
Then, help us spread the word in this time of social distancing. Forward a copy of the petition to your contacts, friends and family and ask them to sign it , mail that petition to Queens Park and then ask them to distribute the blank petition to more people. Remember, petitions going to the legislature, must have the original signature; emailed / photocopied documents are not accepted.
We appreciate your assistance to achieve a standard of care for residents in long term care (LTC). Staff are currently under increased workloads and stress with all LTC homes now restricting family visits - their work must be recognized and supported.
Despite numerous reports and studies provided to the government, a significant gap between the care and service needs of residents in Long Term Care remains. Almost 15% of seniors depend on others to assist them with their activities of daily living and the number is expected to triple over the next 50 years.
Presently, there are more than 80,000 people who receive care in a long-term care home and there are more than 34,000 people on the waitlist. Studies suggest that this number go up to 48,000 over the next few years without a change in the current capacity.
More than half of the residents in long-term care homes today have dementia, a third show aggressive behaviours and one in ten is considered severly aggressive. Over 30,000 residents are in older and outdated facilities, many of which do not meet current design or safety standards.
Action is needed, now!
Long term care in Ontario no longer provides a minimum standard of living adequate for the health and well-being of residents who require hands-on care. The current situation is critical. Wait lists for long term care facilities have grown longer and demographics indicate that demand for beds and complex care will continue to increase. Staff who provide direct care are experiencing increased workloads and challenges as a result of these increased acuity needs without receiving any additional support.
The situation will not get better without strong intervention. The safety and well-being of the residents and staff in our long-term care homes needs to be a priority. Staff education and training needs to keep pace with the changing needs of the resident population. More direct care staff to meet the increasingly challenging resident population with a high level of dementia is a must. View for yourself why we feel there is a need for a Call for Action!
You Can Make a Difference
Call and encourage your MPP to vote in support of Bill 13 - Time to Care Act. Click here to see who your new representative is and how to get in touch with him or her.
Get involved in our Letter Writing campaign - again go to our You can make a difference tab for information on the campaign and access to an example of a letter you can use to draft yours.
If you have a loved one or friend in a long-term care home, become a member of your local Family Council and encourage the group to become vocal on the issues. If there is no Family Council in the home, work to have one established. Learn how to get involved with a Family Council at a Long Term Care home.
Consider joining the Ontario Health Coalition (OHC), a non-partisan organization that works to maintain a strong Public Medicare system in Ontario. Check out their website: www.ontariohealthcoaltion.ca.