Toronto, Ont. – WoodGreen Community Services applauds the Ontario government for committing $100 million in additional funding over three years to expand community care programs such as adult day programs, meal services, transportation, assisted living services and caregiver supports in this year’s budget.
This investment can help WoodGreen’s Community Care, Seniors and Wellness department continue to provide and expand its personal support and social programs that enable seniors to remain independent as long as possible and age in place.
We look forward to receiving further details on how this investment will help WoodGreen expand our residential assisted living programs, enhance our cluster care models and help improve integrated care and transitions for seniors in the community.
The government has also proposed to invest an additional $5.5 million in the Ontario Community Support Program to continue to deliver medicines, meals and essential items to seniors and adults living with disabilities, an initiative in which WoodGreen participates through our Meals on Wheels program. Through this expansion, WoodGreen will continue to address food insecurity for many Toronto clients.
The government is also launching a new, refundable Ontario Seniors Care at Home Tax Credit to help seniors aged 70 and older with eligible medical expenses, including expenses that support aging at home, estimated to support about 200,000 low to moderate-income senior families.
These commitments to support community and senior care are welcomed. Throughout the pandemic, WoodGreen’s Community Care, Seniors and Wellness services and personal support workers have travelled the city supporting our most vulnerable community members. Their incredible work has kept Toronto seniors and people with disabilities safe at home and out of the hospital.
We appreciate the government’s effort to propose investments into home and community care and the most recent announcement of $2.8 billion over three years to make the personal support worker (PSW) wage enhancement permanent.
We, however, continue to call on the government to support further recruitment and retention of frontline community staff, which continues to be an ongoing challenge for our sector. It is crucial that the province have a workforce plan that ensures home and community care can continue to keep vulnerable clients in the community, alleviating pressure off of long-term care and hospital settings.
ABOUT WOODGREEN COMMUNITY SERVICES (woodgreen.org): WoodGreen is one of the largest social service agencies in Toronto, serving 37,000 people each year. We offer over 75 programs and services tackling the social determinants that affect the health and well-being of individuals in our community.
For more information or to arrange an interview, please contact: Jen Mayville, Marketing & Communications Manager; [email protected]; (437) 226-8091 (cell)