Factsheet – Proposed Regulations Under the Connecting People to Home and Community Care Act 2020
On February 25, 2020, the government introduced Bill 175, Connecting People to Home and Community Care Act, 2020. This Bill was described as part of Ontario’s efforts to modernize the delivery of home and community attendant services.
On June 15, 2020, ARCH made oral submissions to the Standing Committee on the Legislative Assembly outlining major problems with Bill 175, and our recommendations to improve it. ARCH also provided written submissions to the Committee which can be found here: www.archdisabilitylaw.ca/resource/submissions-on-bill-175
These submissions also refer to problems with the Regulations under the Bill.
On July 8, 2020, Bill 175 received Royal Assent and became law. The government ignored the recommendations and concerns expressed by a number of persons with disabilities, and the organizations that support them, in both their oral and written submissions.
The government has proposed two Regulations under the new law. The government was originally seeking feedback on these proposed Regulations until April 14, 2020. However, on July 14, 2020, ARCH learned that the government is open to additional written feedback on the proposed Regulations until July 24, 2020.
The Regulations contain details about issues of major concern to persons with disabilities. The Regulations address topics that include: eligibility for attendant services; what those services are; how and who will deliver those services; where the services will be delivered; and the content of the Bill of Rights.
8 days is clearly not long enough to meaningfully consult with affected disability communities and organizations. The proposed Regulations require the full participation of persons with disabilities, with their experience and expertise, to make sure the Regulations include their concerns and issues. Below are two of ARCH’s major concerns about the two proposed Regulations.
Concerns with the Proposed Regulations
ARCH has two fundamental concerns regarding the proposed Regulations.
First, the proposed Regulations do not contain the actual language that will be in the final version of the Regulations. Instead, the government provides short and vague summaries about what the Regulations could include. Without the actual wording of the Regulations, they cannot be properly analyzed. For example, words like “may”, “should” and “shall” have very different meanings and could lead to confusion about the meaning of the Regulations. ARCH is concerned that without the ability to review the actual words used in the proposed Regulations, the government is not providing a real opportunity for public input.
Second, there has been minimal consultation with persons with disabilities and the organizations that support them. Bill 175 was speedily pushed through the legislature, with sudden announcements about the opportunity to provide oral and written submissions. Of the organizations that were able to make submissions to the Standing Committee, many presenters expressed serious problems with the Bill. These concerns were ignored. It is critical that broad, open and well published consultations in a variety of formats be held on the Regulations because they contain the details that will have the most impact on persons with disabilities who use attendant services.
ARCH calls on the government to:
- Provide the actual language to be used in the Regulations, and
- Provide enough time to hold meaningful consultations in a variety of ways and formats to ensure the participation of persons with disabilities.
* The information provided in these materials is not intended to be legal advice. Consult a lawyer or legal worker if you need legal advice on a specific matter. This information is current as of July 17, 2020.