I was absolutely fixated with question period on Wednesday, April 19th at the Ontario Legislative Assembly at Queen’s Park in Toronto. Lise Vaugeois, MPP/NDP for Thunder Bay-Superior North directed a simple question to Premier Ford. The question asked by Ms. Vaugeois was regarding Premier Ford fulfilling our government’s commitment, by providing clear direction to owners and operators of long-term care, senior retirement homes and group homes for the disabled, with the unlawful use of the Trespass to Property Act.
For decades pre-pandemic, post pandemic, and daily across Ontario, families are given trespass orders banning them from visiting their loved when asking too many questions about the care of their family member. On behalf of Premier Ford, the question was commented by the Minister of Long-Term Care the Honourable MPP Paul Calandra. I say commented because Mr. Calandra did not effectively respond to this very simple request. Rather, Mr. Calandra ‘side stepped’ and deflected the question so well, Fred Astaire would have been proud.
Even a die-hard progressive conservative, watching Mr. Calandra’s performance, needs to wonder if this is the type of shameful leadership they want to reelect. The unlawful use of the Trespass to Property Act banning family members who speak out about the care and living conditions of loved ones was presented and passed unanimously, as Motion 129-Voula’s Law, in the legislature two years prior, in March 2021.
So much for having an “iron ring” around our loved ones. Two years of inaction by our provincial government to ignore a unanimous vote in the legislature begs the question: Could our provincial government be in breach of the Charter of Rights by not fulfilling its commitment?