QUEEN’S PARK – Waterloo MPP Catherine Fife tabled a private member’s bill Wednesday to ensure that couples have a right to live together in long-term care as they age. The bill provides couples with the right upon admission to continue to live with their spouse or partner.
The bill was inspired by couples across the province who have been separated by Ontario's long-term care system.
“Over the last several years, we’ve seen couples who have been together 40, 50, even 60 years who are separated due to the challenges in our long-term care system,” Fife said. “In Waterloo, I worked with two couples who were separated. It breaks your heart to see that after spending every day of their lives together, these couples are forced to live apart during their final years.”
The Financial Accountability Officer of Ontario (FAO) recently showed that under the Liberals, government investments in long-term care did not keep pace with our aging population. The Conservatives have not promised anywhere near enough beds to meet the growing demand, according to the FAO’s figures — and they’ve fell far short of their promises, so far, having only built 21 beds in 15 months in office.
“The NDP has consistently advocated for improvements to long-term care. We’ve called for a comprehensive review of the system; a minimum standard of care for patients; and today, the right for couples to live together,” Fife said.
Seniors should be at the centre of our long-term care system and should have the right to live together as they age.”