QUEEN’S PARK – Leader of the Official Opposition, Marit Stiles (Davenport), and MPP Terence Kernaghan (London North Centre) joined MPPs in using today’s Question Period to propose meaningful solutions to build stronger, more caring communities, across the province. They called on the government to include these fixes in the upcoming Ontario budget, set to be tabled on March 23.
“We know that people are counting on us, because things are far from normal right now,” Stiles said. “And while this government want you to settle for less, our team wants to you expect more. We have ideas – big and small – to get people the support they need immediately.”
These proposed solutions came from communities across the province and were heard during the pre-budget consultations earlier this year, and include:
Community Support Services investments. Increase funding for programs which are at risk of cuts, including Meals on Wheels, Developmental Services, hospices, and the Alzheimer Society who provide vital services to keep people and their caregivers healthy and in their homes.
Faster access to health care for Indigenous communities. The Southwest Ontario Aboriginal Health Access Centre in Owen Sound has just one part-time physician and as a result, a 100-person, up to 24-month waitlist for care. They are requesting one-and-a-half doctors to increase capacity.
Additional administrative support in Ontario’s public health care system. The Ontario College of Family Physicians says funding 19 hours per week of admin help would add capacity equivalent to 2,000 new family doctors.
OHIP coverage for take-home life-saving cancer drugs. The Canadian Cancer Society says this would free up valuable hospital resources and better support patients with cancer.
Mental health support for schools to help children succeed. Fewer than one in 10 schools across the province have access to a regularly-scheduled health specialist of nurse.
“As we travelled the province for Pre-Budget Consultations, we heard in every region how publicly funded health care is a priority for Ontarians,” said Kernaghan. “I am determined that Community Support Services organizations such as the Alzheimer Society, St. Joe’s Hospice, Meals on Wheels, and Developmental Service providers are listened to, and their achievable calls for improved funding are implemented in the budget. People in London depend on these vital providers.”
Stiles and the Official Opposition are determined to push for fresh solutions in the upcoming budget that will immediately provide relief to people and organizations across the province.