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ADVISORY: Memorial Draws Attention to Violence in Long-Term Care

Posted: September 30, 2015

(September 30, 2015)

Memorial Draws Attention to Violence in Long-Term Care: Health Coalition, Seniors Call for Minimum Care Standards

On October 1, seniors, families of long-term care residents, advocates and care workers of all stripes will gather to remember those who have died due to homicide in Ontario’s long-term care homes and to highlight the need for Ontario’s government to take action to meet the care needs of long-term care residents and to protect against harm.

This year marks the 10-year anniversary of the Casa Verde Inquest into violence in Ontario’s long-term care homes. The inquest was called after the deaths of two residents at the hands of another in the Casa Verde home. A coroner’s jury recommended sweeping changes in the operation of Ontario’s long-term care homes after the deaths. The recommendations included minimum care standards, improved staffing levels, mandatory specialized units for residents who pose a risk to themselves and others and better admission and assessment protocols. Yet today, ten years later, Ontario’s government still has not implemented these recommendations. In fact, since 2001, more than 24 long-term care residents in Ontario have died as a result of violence from other residents and thousands have been attacked by other residents.

People entering nursing homes today are often older, more frail and subject to dementia and behavioural problems. But care levels in long-term care homes have not increased to meet the heavier and more complex care needs of these residents, placing residents and staff at higher risk.

Visual: Family members of long-term care residents and representatives from seniors and care workers’ organizations will march in a procession, accompanied by bagpipes, from Gerrard St. W. & University Ave. up along University Ave. to the south lawn of Queen’s Park, where hundreds will be gathered. Participants in the procession will carry wreaths in honour of the victims of violence.

Where: Queen’s Park (south lawn) Toronto, Ontario.

When: Thursday October 1, 11 a.m. – 12 p.m.

What: Ceremony of Remembrance for those impacted by violence and inadequate care in Ontario’s long-term care homes, marking the 10th anniversary of the Casa Verde Inquest.

Who: The Ontario Health Coalition is hosting the event, which is co-sponsored by: Alliance of Seniors/Older Canadians’ Network, Canadian Association of Retired Persons Toronto, Canadian Doctors for Medicare, Canadian Labour Congress, Canadian Union of Public Employees, Concerned Friends, Congress of Union Retirees of Canada, Council of Canadians, Family Council Network 4, Ontario Federation of Labour, Ontario Nurses’ Association, Ontario Public Service Employees Union, Ontario Secondary School Teachers’ Federation & its Association of Retired Members, Seniors Vote/Le Vote Des Aines, SEIU Health Care, Toronto Retirees Network, Unifor & Unifor Retirees, United Food & Commercial Workers, United Steelworkers/Steelworkers Organization of Active Retirees.

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For more information: Natalie Mehra, Executive Director, Ontario Health Coalition, 416-441-2502 (office); Kim Johnston, Campaign Director, Ontario Health Coalition, 416-441-2502 (office).

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