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OTTAWA, Ont. Frontline developmental service workers in eastern Ontario have launched a campaign calling on Premier Dalton McGuinty and Finance Minister Dwight Duncan to keep their government’s funding promise to persons with developmental disabilities.
In their 2007 budget, the Liberal government committed four years of increased funding to developmental services, said Marcel Walsh, a frontline developmental services worker and president of CUPE 3826. With McGuinty warning that not all commitments may be kept, we want him to know that this is not the time to be hitting some of the most vulnerable members of our community with another setback.
Hard times are nothing new to thousands of individuals with a developmental disability and their families, Walsh said. They welcomed the four-year funding commitment after decades of underfunding that saw thousands of people lingering on waiting lists for support while others experienced the stress and setbacks that come with high staff turnover.
The issues of long waiting lists and staff recruitment and retention are just beginning to be addressed with the new funding, said Eric St. Jean, president of CUPE 3691. Consistent, quality supports mean that individuals and their families are able to expand the boundaries of their abilities, to live active, visible lives and even work in our communities.
Walsh and St. Jean said they are asking other staff at their agencies as well as parents and family members of supported individuals and the community at large to join them in sending a message to the Premier and finance minister.
Supporters can visit http://www.cupe.ca/action/keepyourpromise to fill out an email form and automatically send a message.
For more information, contact:
Pat Daley, CUPE Communications, 416-616-6142