Says reports will go to police to lay charges if possible
Premier Doug Ford says Ontario’s Chief Coroner will be investigating the conditions at five nursing homes in the province.
The Canadian military moved into the homes in the Greater Toronto area as COVID-19 struck and overwhelmed them. A report on what those members of the military have seen was handed to the premier yesterday. It included reports of residents being left in their own waste, force fed until the point of choking and left alone crying for help for hours.
Ford says the report was heartbreaking, horrific and it is “shocking to think this could happen in Canada.
“What we’re feeling is little comparison to the hardship of what the families have had to endure.”
Ford plans to release the report to the public and says the chief coroner will investigate and his investigation will be “shared with police to look into possible criminal charges because we all want answers, we need answers, we must change the system…it is up to us to face the hard truths.”
The Minister of Long Term Care, Dr. Merrilee Fullerton, says the province knew there were problems in long term care – that’s why her ministry was created. And she says they knew there were some homes in bad shape. “COVID tipped the homes that were having troubles right over the edge.”
The premier says there will be an independent commission into long term care. Critics say there should be a full public inquiry.
Ford added he’d talked to Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and they have agreed they have to work together to improve long term care because it is too expensive for the provinces to bear the burden of the cost of long term care on its own.