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Ontario Hansard - 14-July2020

PETITIONS

LONG-TERM CARE


Mr. Percy Hatfield: Good afternoon, Speaker. This is a petition entitled, “Support Bill 153, the Till Death Do Us Part act.

“To the Legislative Assembly of Ontario:

“Whereas there are 35,000 people on the wait-list for long-term care; and

“Whereas the median wait time for a long-term-care bed has risen from 99 days in 2011-12 to 152 days in 2018-19; and

“Whereas according to Home Care Ontario, the cost of a hospital bed is $842 a day, while the cost of a long-term-care bed is $126 a day; and

“Whereas couples should have the right to live together as they age; and

“Whereas Ontario seniors have worked hard to build this province and deserve dignity in care; and

“Whereas Bill 153 amends the Residents’ Bill of Rights in the Long-Term Care Homes Act to provide the resident with the right upon admission to continue to live with their spouse or partner;

“Therefore we, the undersigned, petition the Legislative Assembly of Ontario to direct the Minister of Long-Term Care to pass Bill 153 and provide seniors with the right to live together as they age.”

I fully agree with this petition. I will sign it and pass it down to the desk.

ECONOMIC RECOVERY


Ms. Goldie Ghamari: This petition is entitled “Framework for Reopening the Economy.

“To the Legislative Assembly of Ontario:

“Whereas Ontarians have been working relentlessly to adhere to physical distancing guidelines, limiting themselves to necessary travel and protecting their loved ones; and

“Whereas our health care professionals are working long hours in our long-term-care homes, doctors’ offices, community care, and hospitals; and

“Whereas other essential workers such as grocery store clerks, farmers, meat and produce processors and transport workers keep our shelves stocked and food on the table; and

“Whereas the province has made significant progress in the fight against COVID-19 with decreasing infection and hospitalization rates, domestic production of personal protective equipment, and crucial financial investments in health and social services;

“Therefore we, the undersigned, petition the Legislative Assembly of Ontario as follows:

“That the government continues its methodical, cautious approach to reopen the economy so that people can get back to work, businesses can recover and people can regain a hopeful optimism for the future of this great province.”

I proudly affix my signature and will pass it down to the desk.

ARTS AND CULTURAL FUNDING


Ms. Jill Andrew: This is a petition to recognize comedy as an art form in Ontario, on behalf of Sandra Battaglini, co-founder of the Canadian Association of Stand-up Comedians:

“To the Legislative Assembly of Ontario:

“In Ontario, comedy is not recognized as an art form. In fact, comedy is not recognized as an art form in all of Canada. It is not included within our culture sector. This oversight ignores the cultural necessity, the sharing of characters, storytelling, and diverse narratives that is at the heart of comedy. Provincial recognition of comedy as part of our culture sector would give comedians access to grants and other funding opportunities other art forms receive to help create, disseminate and promote their art.

“Whereas Canada is known internationally as an exporter of some of the world’s best-known comedians, such as Jim Carrey,” John Candy, “Russell Peters, Andrea Martin, Arthur Simeon, Catherine O’Hara, and,” of course, “Sandra Battaglini;

“Whereas comedians must often cobble together many precarious ‘gig economy’ jobs to make ends meet and are invaluable members of the live entertainment and cultural worker community which was first hit, hardest hit, and will likely take the longest to recover from COVID-19;

“Whereas in Ontario, comedians do not have access to arts grants that are available to peers in theatre, music, circus, dance, sports, literature and the visual arts. Access to these grants will immediately create career opportunities for comedians in stand-up, sketch and improvisation as well as Canadian television and film;

“Whereas the lack of recognition has not only left comedians out of professional advancement and development opportunities offered by these grants, but most recently the lack of recognition has left comedy as an arts form and profession out of consideration for culture COVID-19 relief and recovery funding;

“We, the undersigned, petition the Legislative Assembly of Ontario to recognize comedy as an art form in our province of Ontario and to include comedy within our province’s culture sector and strategy.”

I couldn’t be more proud of this petition, and I’m going to sign it and hand it to the page.

JUSTICES OF THE PEACE


Ms. Christine Hogarth: This petition is “Proposed Changes to Justices of the Peace Act Petition.

“To the Legislative Assembly of Ontario:

“Whereas the government of Ontario remains committed to pressing forward towards a more accessible, responsive and resilient justice system; and

“Whereas the current process to appoint justices of the peace is outdated and slow. This has created obstacles to filling vacancies, resulting in delays for people wanting their day in court; and

“Whereas there is a need for greater transparency and the promotion of more diversity throughout the recruitment and appointment process; and

“Whereas maintaining the integrity of Ontario’s appointment process for justices of the peace is vital to the administration of a strong justice system;

“Therefore we, the undersigned, petition the Legislative Assembly of Ontario as follows, so that:

“(1) The act is amended with respect to the composition and processes of the Justices of the Peace Appointments Advisory Committee;

“(2) The composition of the committee is changed to be leaner and more efficient while continuing to ensure local voices are present. The importance of committees representing the diversity of the communities they serve shall be recognized;

“(3) The committee may hold its meetings and conduct interviews in person or through electronic means, including telephone conferencing and video conferencing.”

I’ve already signed my name to this. I agree with this petition and I will hand it to the Clerk.

OPTOMETRY SERVICES


Ms. Bhutila Karpoche: This petition is titled “Save Eye Care in Ontario.” It was sent to me by my constituent Dr. Majewski from Owl Optometry on Roncesvalles. It reads:

“To the Legislative Assembly of Ontario:

“Whereas the Ontario government has underfunded optometric eye care for 30 years; and

“Whereas optometrists now subsidize the delivery of OHIP-covered eye care by $173 million a year; and

“Whereas COVID-19 forced optometrists to close their doors, resulting in a 75% ... drop in revenue; and

“Whereas optometrists will see patient volumes reduced between 40% and 60%, resulting in more than two million comprehensive eye exams being wiped out over the next 12 months; and

“Whereas communities across Ontario are in danger of losing access to optometric care;

“We, the undersigned, petition the Legislative Assembly of Ontario as follows:

“To instruct the Ontario government to immediately establish a timetable and a process for renewed negotiations concerning optometry fees.”

I fully support this petition. The optometrists are at the table waiting for a conversation with this government, and I urge action.

AFFORDABLE HOUSING


Mr. Faisal Hassan: I have a petition entitled “Affordable Housing.

“To the Legislative Assembly of Ontario:

“Whereas, for families throughout much of Ontario, owning a home they can afford remains a dream, while renting is painfully expensive;

“Whereas consecutive Conservative and Liberal governments have sat idle while housing costs spiralled out of control, speculators made fortunes, and too many families had to put their hopes on hold;

“Whereas every Ontarian should have access to safe, affordable housing. Whether a family wants to rent or own, live in a house, an apartment, a condominium or a co-op, they should have affordable options;

“We, the undersigned, petition the Legislative Assembly of Ontario to immediately prioritize the repair of Ontario’s social housing stock, commit to building new affordable homes, crack down on housing speculators, and make rentals more affordable through rent controls and updated legislation.”

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I fully support this petition, and I’ll be adding my signature and taking it down to the table.

LONG-TERM CARE


Ms. Catherine Fife: I’d like to thank Frances Ranger for collecting these signatures.

“To the Legislative Assembly of Ontario:

“Whereas there are 35,000 people on the wait-list for long-term care; and

“Whereas the median wait time for a long-term-care bed has risen from 99 days in 2011-12 to 152 days in 2018-19; and

“Whereas according to Home Care Ontario, the cost of a hospital bed is $842 a day, while the cost of a long-term-care bed is $126 a day; and

“Whereas couples should have the right to live together as they age; and

“Whereas Ontario seniors have worked hard to build this province and deserve dignity in care; and

“Whereas Bill 153 amends the Residents’ Bill of Rights in the Long-Term Care Homes Act to provide the resident with the right upon admission to continue to live with their spouse or partner;

“Therefore we, the undersigned, petition the Legislative Assembly of Ontario to direct the Minister of Long-Term Care to pass Bill 153 and provide seniors with the right to live together as they age.”

It is my pleasure, of course, to affix my signature to this petition, and I will be giving it to the page.

TENANT PROTECTION


Ms. Bhutila Karpoche: This petition is titled “Protect Tenants from Illegal Air Conditioning Fees.

“To the Legislative Assembly of Ontario:

“Whereas air conditioners are important for health and safety of members of our community...;

“Whereas air conditioning fees are being charged by landlords without justification and in contravention to the Residential Tenancies Act, 2006;

“Whereas landlords charging these fees illegally rarely face any punishment for their actions;

“Whereas tenants are often paying these fees that landlords are not entitled to out of fear;

“We, the undersigned, petition the Legislative Assembly of Ontario to call on the Rental Housing Enforcement Unit to proactively engage with the community to determine where landlords are charging such fees, and take corrective action against any landlord found to be in violation of the Residential Tenancies Act, 2006.”

Speaker, it’s a hot summer. Tenants need their air conditioning units without fees, so I fully support this petition, and I hope that the government will take action.

PALLIATIVE CARE


Ms. Sandy Shaw: I have a petition entitled “Support the Nancy Rose Act—Paediatric Hospice Palliative Care.

“To the Legislative Assembly of Ontario:

“Whereas for children with serious or life-limiting illness, a palliative approach to care can increase quality of life and decrease their pain and suffering;

“Whereas there is currently no comprehensive, coordinated and funded provincial strategy to address paediatric palliative and hospice care;

“Whereas the Nancy Rose Act would require the province to develop a strategy with the goal of increasing access to paediatric palliative and hospice care across Ontario;

“Whereas the strategy contained in the Nancy Rose Act would include targeted supports for families of children receiving palliative care, including mental health supports and respite;

“Therefore we, the undersigned, petition the Legislative Assembly of Ontario to pass the Nancy Rose Act and call for all-party support.”

I support this petition; I will be affixing my name. And I would like to remind all of the members in the House that this goes on during COVID—the struggle for parents who have children who are suffering life-limiting illnesses. This will only be made worse by the COVID condition, so I thank you for your support.


The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): I would ask the members simply to read the petition without the additional political commentary.

STUDENT WORK EXPERIENCE


Mr. Faisal Hassan: I have a petition entitled “Invest in Work-Integrated Learning.

“To the Legislative Assembly of Ontario:

“Whereas Ontario’s youth unemployment rate is consistently higher than the national average;

“Whereas it is increasingly common for even entry-level positions to require relevant work experience;

“Whereas work-integrated learning serves to develop the practical skills and professional networks that young people need to transition into the workforce;

“Therefore we, the undersigned, petition the Legislative Assembly of Ontario as follows:

“That the government of Ontario should create 27,000 new, paid work opportunities for students, recent graduates and unemployed youth in the public and private sector and the skilled trades so they can move into the workforce with real-world experience and a path to full-time employment.”

I fully support this petition. I’ll be affixing my signature to it and providing it to the usher to deliver to the table.

TENANT PROTECTION


Ms. Bhutila Karpoche: I have hundreds of signatures on this petition titled, “Stop” the “Eviction Bill.

“To the Legislative Assembly of Ontario:

“Whereas the Ontario government’s Bill 184 would make it easier for landlords to evict tenants by taking away tenants’ right to defend themselves at eviction hearings;

“Whereas Bill 184 would be taking away tenants’ right to a hearing following a repayment agreement;

“Whereas there is an affordable housing and rental crisis in Ontario;

“We, the undersigned, petition the Legislative Assembly of Ontario to act to reject any proposed changes that give landlords the power to evict honest tenants more quickly; and commit to immediate action to provide real protections from eviction so tenants can keep their homes even if they can’t afford to pay rent during the pandemic; and provide protection from illegal evictions by bringing in real fines for landlords who illegally evict, and proper enforcement of the law.”

I support this petition and I will affix my signature to it.

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