TORONTO, Jan. 13, 2014 /CNW/ - 50 OPSEU Developmental Services locals
will serve a Notice to Bargain to their respective employers on
Wednesday, January 15, 2014. All of these locals' contracts are set to
expire on March 31 of this year.
More than 10,000 OPSEU developmental services workers want to know how
the government plans to fix the crisis in services for people with
"It is time for a serious commitment to properly funding developmental
services," said OPSEU President Warren (Smokey) Thomas. "Ontario
families are stressed and pushed to the limit waiting for access to
services. Lack of adequate funding means that there are not enough
staff to meet the needs of people waiting for services."
There are 24,000 Ontarians with developmental disabilities on the
waitlist for services. Of those, 12,000 are waiting for residential
opportunities. Meanwhile, some people with developmental disabilities
are receiving the wrong kind of care. Many reside in long-term care
facilities, psychiatric facilities, nursing homes and even in jails.
"Families cannot and should not wait 10 years and more to receive the
care they need for their loved ones. It breaks my heart to see families
struggling to get access to the specialized care their loved ones
require for a decent quality of life. There are too many people who are
growing old and worrying about who will care for their family member
when they are gone," said Patti Markland, OPSEU Developmental Services
"Developmental services workers are deeply committed to the people we
serve. However too many of us have to juggle multiple jobs just to make
ends meet. This leads to a high turnover rate and a lack of service
continuity for the people we support," said Markland.
A developmental services select committee, including MPPs from all three
Ontario parties, is currently holding meetings at five different
Ontario communities. OPSEU is preparing a report to coincide with the
provincial report coming out of these meetings.
For further information:
Patti Markland, OPSEU Developmental Services Sector Chair: 613-848-6016
Emily Visser, OPSEU Communications: 416-557-7936