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Local MPPs want more help for long-term care home outbreak

Posted: December 18, 2020

(December 17, 2020)

By: Alana Hadadean, CTV News Windsor

The Village at St. Clair

The Village at St. Clair in Windsor, Ont. (Courtesy The Village at St. Clair / Facebook)

WINDSOR, ONT — Windsor NDP MPPs are sounding the alarm for the provincial government to step in and take action to protect residents and healthcare workers.

“This is a crisis and our region is on the verge of collapse when it comes to supporting our elders,” says Essex MPP Taras Natyshak.

MPPs Taras Natyshak and Lisa Gretzky are calling on the government for emergency measures to be implemented locally and provincially to help with the outbreak at a long-term care home owned by Schlegel Villages.

“This outbreak is out of control, and the for-profit owners Schlegel Villages have failed to protect residents and staff, Doug Ford’s government has the power to intervene, but they’re sitting on their hands while more staff and residents get infected,” said Gretzky.

In a virtual press conference Wednesday hosted by the Ontario Health Coalition, concerns are being raised about residents at the Village at St. Clair.

Natyshak says the province should be stepping in to help deal with the outbreak.

“You have 12 billion dollars of public tax payer dollar that are needed desperately right now to support communities all across this province, no more acutely then right here in Windsor Essex county. Ensure we have proper personal protective equipment for those healthcare heroes that are on the front line doing that work so they can protect themselves, protect the residents and protects the broader community,” says Natyshak.

In a statement to CTV news late Wednesday, Schlegel Village confirmed they have received a shipment of additional PPE, including universal fit N-95 masks which are being provided to staff.

“Our Village has a full stock of all necessary PPE required to safely support our residents, which includes N-95 masks. We also received a large shipment of universal-fit N-95 masks yesterday which are being provided to staff, in addition to the N-95 masks that were already in the home. Staff are not required to sign any sort of waiver to receive a mask,” says Tammy Roberts, the general manager at The Village at St. Clair.

Meantime MPP for Chatham-Kent Leamington Rick Nicholls is defending the Ford government.

“The NDP as well as the Health Care Coalition in my opinion, they are being very disingenuous about this entire situation,” says Nicholls.

Nicholls says the province has provided support since the start of the pandemic.

“The truth is Doug Ford government has provided over three quarters of a billion dollars directly into long-term care homes since the beginning of Covid-19.” Nicholls adds, “And we’ve also provided over 465 million dollars in wage enhancements for healthcare workers, which includes those in hospitals, long term care homes and those in home and community care places. That’s just to name a few.”

The Ontario Health Coalition is hosting a virtual press conference Thursday to release a new report on the COVID-19 crisis in Ontario’s long-term care homes.

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