In November, we paused to pay our respects to the men and women who served and continued to serve and to the 117,000 who made the ultimate sacrifice for our freedom. I was honoured to support the Highway of Heroes project as 500 trees were planted along Highway 401 (behind Chief Dan George Public School). A total of two million trees will be planted between Trenton and Toronto. I was also pleased to recognize the Tony Stacey Centre as two Vimy Oak saplings were planted. These Vimy Oaks are descendants of the mighty oaks that once stood on Vimy Ridge. May the trees planted serve as a visual reminder of service and sacrifice.
This month our government responded to the changing and diverse communities of Ontario seniors by introducing Aging with Confidence: An Action Plan for Seniors. This builds on the highly successful 2013 action plan and will support seniors at all stages of their lives so they can live independent, healthy, active, safe and socially connected lives.
Some of the highlights of the new plan are:
- Introducing the Ontario Senior’s Public Transit Tax Credit to provide better community transportation
- Expanding the Age-Friendly Community Planning grant program by providing $7 million over three years and by including a new implementation stream to make communities more accessible and inclusive for seniors of all ages and abilities
- Offering free high-dose flu vaccine starting in the 2018-19 flu season
- Creating 40 more Seniors Active Living Centres and engaging seniors through the arts
- Supporting more naturally occurring retirement communities and increasing in-home health care
- Increasing access to geriatric care by reducing the wait for long-term care (LTC) by creating 5,000 new long-term care beds by 2022 and an additional 30,000 over the next decade
- Increasing staffing and support in LTC to increase the provincial average to four hours of direct care per resident per day and offering culturally appropriate LTC to meet the language and dietary needs of our diverse senior population
- Expanding the compassionate palliative and end-of-life care closer to home for more than 2,000 additional people and their families each year, and increasing food allowances in LTC facilities by 6 per cent or $15 million for improved menus
- Launching Ontario’s Dementia Strategy with more than $100 million over three years, improving and better coordinating services for Ontarians living with dementia and their caregivers
- Enhancing LTC by investing an additional $58 million in 2017 to grow funding by 2 per cent for improved resident care and encouraging LTC operators to accelerate redevelopment of 30,000 beds by 2025
For more information: https://www.ontario.ca/page/aging-confidence-ontario-action-plan-seniors
Ontario is now accepting applications for the 2018-19 Ontario Sport and Recreation Communities Fund from not-for-profit organizations, with a new stream this year geared toward projects for seniors that boost physical activity and healthy living. For 2018, the fund will expand support for seniors programming as part of the Aging with Confidence action plan. This new funding stream will help give seniors more opportunities to stay fit and connected to their communities. The deadline to apply is January 16, and recipients will be announced during the winter..
Please do not hesitate to contact my Constituency Office either in person at 300 Kingston Road, Pickering, Unit 7, call us at 905-509-0336, or send me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org.