Archive for the ‘Child & Family’ Category

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Ontario government apologizes for autism program changes; needs-based model won’t launch until next April

Tuesday, July 30th, 2019

Todd Smith, Minister of Children, Community and Social Services, acknowledged for the first time on Monday that changes to the autism program announced earlier this year were poorly conceived. “It’s clear to me that we didn’t get the redesign right the first time. I’m here to tell you we will now”… He added: “We are certainly sorry for the anxiety this has caused parents across Ontario.”

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Cuts to legal clinics a sinister plan to harm the most vulnerable

Monday, July 29th, 2019

Band-aid solutions are not the answer to address systemic issues, so the clinics saw their work as demolishing systemic barriers. Changes in ODSP, housing, employment insurance, and employment equity are directly correlated to the significance of legal clinic organizers building power… Legal clinic boards are not stewards of austerity or executioners of their already pared-down budgets: they should pride themselves of their role as defenders of the public good and of the welfare of their communities.

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Do prisons perpetuate problems they are supposed to solve?

Monday, July 29th, 2019

Bill C-83 continues to segregate prisoners in rebranded “structured intervention units.” The bill also allows prisoners to be held in solitary indefinitely, though their health will be subject to “ongoing monitoring.” … “Prolonged administrative segregation causes foreseeable and expected harm which may be permanent,” the Court of Appeal for Ontario said in a March decision declaring that solitary confinement in excess of 15 days is unconstitutional.

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Ontario must not leave accused people high and dry

Monday, July 29th, 2019

In yet another display of indifference by the Ford government towards those who can’t afford a lawyer, the province has failed to close a legal loophole so that paralegals and student-staffed legal clinics can continue to serve clients in certain criminal cases… The Ford government has already stripped funds from legal aid… there’s no reason to further restrict access to the current level of affordable or free legal representation

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We must take better care of our caregivers — paid or unpaid

Saturday, July 27th, 2019

… PSWs look after the sick, disabled and elderly at a fraction of the cost of institutional care by keeping them at home, where they want to be… the work of PSWs is undervalued through poor wages, non-existent benefits and untenable working conditions that make half of them leave their line of work for greener pastures. The problem, in a nutshell, is that the work of caregivers, paid or not, is undervalued and held in low esteem.

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Expanding small claims court will not increase access to justice

Friday, July 26th, 2019

Small claims court lacks any strong disincentive for parties to proceed to trial, since the amounts one can collect as compensation for legal fees are minimal. The Superior Court of Justice forces litigants to make realistic offers to settle, or face consequences after judgment by way of a high costs award.

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The Ontario government is wrong to offload autism services onto families

Monday, June 24th, 2019

If the health and well-being of children with autism are really the priority here, then the government should build a needs-based autism service program; invest in the human capital of experts and families with lived experience; utilize available public infrastructure and capacity at regional centres; coordinate services and supports across systems; and bring all of these pieces together by helping guide children and families along their journey toward the best life possible

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Gender politics has no place in the classroom

Saturday, June 22nd, 2019

… now we’re going to find out — courtesy of the Ontario Human Rights Tribunal… whether little girls have the right to maintain their normative, common, practical and realistic world-view and opinion of their own bodies, or whether that is trumped administratively and legally by the existence of the incoherent set of rights inexcusably and forcibly granted to the tiny minority of people who insist that their “identities” are entirely self-generated and absolutely inviolate socially and legally.

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Misspeaking childcare: The Ford government’s evidence vacuum

Friday, May 31st, 2019

Taken together, this brew of rapid-fire cuts, chipping away, and misrepresentation of Ontario childcare add up to a picture of a childcare future that isn’t good for anyone — not children, parents, educators — but could be great for investors. Fortunately, the childcare community, together with supporters and political allies from across parties are speaking up to set the record straight on what accessible, affordable, high quality child care actually is, what’s needed to get it, and why Ontario families today recognize, need, want and demand it.

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Bedlam over beds: We can no longer ignore our long-term-care crisis

Tuesday, May 28th, 2019

In Ontario … the wait list for long-term care is a staggering 34,000 people… Long-term care is a $70-billion-a-year business but consumers – and government in particular – can be parsimonious in what they are willing to pay to care for individuals… Far too many Canadians learn the hard way that long-term care is not only costly, but there isn’t much government support… most long-term care is paid out-of-pocket.

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