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Kawartha Lakes long-term care advocate’s efforts recognized with Ontario Health Coalition award

Posted: October 30, 2022

(October 29, 2022)

By: Catherine Whitnall, The Peterborough Examiner

Haliburton-Kawartha Lakes Long-Term Care Coalition co-founder Bonnie Roe is one of three individuals to be presented with the Ontario Health Coalition's Orville Thacker Award for her commitment to safeguarding public health care in the Kawarthas.
Bonnie Roe has once again been recognized for her outstanding commitment to safeguarding public health care and advocacy for long-term care residents and their families in Kawartha Lakes.

“This year we have faced enormous challenges in public health care. Each of our award winners have given extraordinarily of their time and effort in the public interest. They are beacons of hope. It is our honour to have worked with them and supported their efforts,” stated Natalie Mehra, executive director of the Ontario Health Coalition, who helped announce the advocacy agency’s top awards recently.

Roe is one of three individuals to be presented with this year’s Orville Thacker Award by the Ontario Health Coalition for making a remarkable contribution in public health care.

Orville Thacker was deeply committed to social issues affecting Canadian families, and in particular, seniors. A member of the Ontario Health Coalition and a founder and co-chair of Kitchener Waterloo Regional Health Coalition, Thacker was also an active Royal Canadian Legion member, a tireless political campaigner and a stalwart advocate for social justice.

The Orville Thacker award is awarded to a person or organization whose voluntary contribution supports the fundamental principles in the Canada Health Act — principles of fairness, equity and compassion — that underlie public medicare in Canada.

Roe has been a formidable force in protecting public health care and in particular, long-term care residents in her community, organizing and attending countless events to highlight the care crisis in long-term care.

In January 2021, Roe and Mike Perry launched the Long-Term Care Coalition after hearing of horrific incidents taking place in nursing homes and retirement facilities during the COVID-19 pandemic. The group launched a Call to Action Plan that included a petition signed by more than 5,000 people.

That November, Roe accepted the Strategic Win for Change Award from the Institute for Change Leaders on behalf of all Coalition members.

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