Ontario Expanding Mobile Crisis Response Teams, Excess Soil Regulation Implementation Postponed, Increasing Long-Term Care Staffing
Ontario Expanding Mobile Crisis Response Teams
On March 11, 2022, the province announced $4 million in funding over two years to police services in 28 Ontario communities. The funding for Mobile Crisis Response Teams will help increase their capacity to respond to calls from individuals experiencing a mental health or addictions crisis. It will enable police services to add mental health and addictions crisis workers to existing Mobile Crisis Response Teams and help ensure these specialized resources are available where and when needed. Maximum funding for each project is $120,000 per fiscal year for a total of $240,000 over two years.
In November 2020, the government provided $6.5 million for Mobile Crisis Response Teams in 33 communities. AMO welcomes this new intake of funding.
Proposed One-Year Implementation Delay of Excess Soil Requirements to January 1, 2023
The Ministry of the Environment, Conservation and Parks (MECP) is proposing to pause the implementation of the excess soil requirements under O. Reg. 406/19: On-Site and Excess Soil Regulation (“Excess Soil Regulation”) that came into effect on January 1, 2022, until January 1, 2023.
The proposed pause would provide more time for gradual implementation and understanding of responsibilities for developers and municipal governments under the regulation. Feedback on the proposal will be received until April 10, 2022, on the Environmental Registry. In the meantime, the Ministry’s regulatory framework as it was in effect before January 1, 2022, continues to apply.
Ontario Further Increasing Staffing in Long-Term Care
The Ontario government has committed to provide $673 million to long-term care homes this year to hire and retain up to 10,000 long-term care staff across the province. This is part of the province’s $4.9 billion commitment to hire more than 27,000 long-term care staff over four years and ensure that residents receive on average four hours of direct care per day by 2024-25.
This funding increase is to raise the daily provincial average from two hours and 45 minutes of direct care to three hours and 15 minutes per resident, per day by the end of the 2022-23 fiscal year. The funding also includes $106.76 million for homes to increase direct care provided by allied health care professionals by 10% by the end of this fiscal year. In addition to this increase and the $270 million increase in 2021-22, the following annual increases are also expected:
- $1.25 billion in 2023-24
- $1.82 billion in 2024-25.