During the daily provincial address, Premier Doug Ford addressed the public reports made by the Canadian Armed Forces whistleblower regarding the observations made at five long-term care homes located in Ontario.
In April, Canadian soldiers were sent out to facilities located in Ontario to help the staff that was struggling with the COVID-19 outbreaks that caused the deaths of several residents.
These were the homes that soldiers were deployed to:
Orchard Villa, Pickering
Altamont Care Community, Scarborough
Eatonville Care Centre, Etobicoke
Hawthorne Place, North York
Holland Christain Homes’ Grace Manor, Brampton
In a two-week observation, the CAF identified and reported a series of issues that were present at all the homes the soldiers were sent to.
In that report, CAF found that these homes were dealing with bug infestations, inedible food, patients with severe health issues being bedridden, and staff wearing contaminated gear when tending to patients.
The military has also reported forced feeding, negligence of COVID-19 positive residents, and residents “crying out for help” and having to wait up to two hours for someone to come help.
When addressing what was found in the report, Ford stated that his government did not know the “full extent of what these homes, these residents were dealing with” until Monday morning.
Ford went on to call what was happening in these homes “heartbreaking, saying he was shocked that this was happening in the country.
“It’s gut-wrenching and reading those reports was the hardest thing I’ve done as premier,” Ford said to the media.
“What I am feeling, what we all are feeling is little in comparison to the hardship that these residents and their families have had to endure”.
Ford went on to promise “justice for these residents and their families” and has announced that the government will be launching a full investigation into the reports made about these homes and their living conditions and practices.
The investigation will be led by Ontario’s Chief Coroner, and according to Ford, the results of this investigation are to be shared with the police so that they can look into any possible criminal charges. The investigation results will be made public when it is complete.
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau also spoke with reporters about this report during his daily address to the country, saying the report was “deeply disturbing” and angered him.
“There are things on in there that are extremely troubling and we need to take action,” Trudeau said about what was reported.
“I spoke with the premier this morning to ensure him that. Of course, the federal government would be there to support them as they deal with this situation”.
In Ontario, more than 1,500 long-term care residents have died due to COVID-19, and six health-care workers are reported to have died from the virus as well.
Ontario COVID-19 Stats
Confirmed cases: 26,191
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