Jessica Bell, NDP MPP for University—Rosedale, is calling on Doug Ford’s Conservatives to review the protections for seniors living in retirement homes after the abrupt closure of Davenhill Senior Living has left 150 senior residents with nowhere to go.
In a public letter released today, Bell urged Minister for Seniors and Accessibility Raymond Cho to launch a review of the Retirement Homes Act and work with the Ministry of Municipal Affairs and Housing to ensure seniors living in retirement homes have access to full protections under the Residential Tenancies Act.
“The decision by Davenhill Senior Living to suddenly close its doors has meant that many aging seniors are now desperately searching for a place to live,” said Bell. “Family members of residents have told me their loved ones have been suffering from mental and physical health issues caused by the unreasonable notice to leave period that Davenhill provided.”
“The search for alternative accommodation is further exacerbated by our city’s affordable housing crisis, resulting in skyrocketing housing costs that are difficult for many elderly people to afford on a fixed income.”
In the letter, Bell also pointed out that existing provisions in the Retirement Homes Act and the Residential Tenancies Act can place vulnerable seniors at risk. For example, there are measures that allow retirement homes to dramatically increase the cost of critical services, such as meals and nursing, well above the level of cost recovery.
“Seniors in Ontario deserve access to secure housing and services, and shouldn’t be forced out of their homes due to arbitrary decisions by private retirement homes,” said Bell. “That’s why I’m calling on this government to review the current legislation, in order to ensure seniors have the protections they deserve to live with dignity and respect.”
Letter to Minister Cho regarding Davenhill Senior Living