CUPE Ontario recognizes the important role workers in developmental services play in supporting individuals with developmental disabilities, their families, and more broadly, our communities. Frontline workers ensure that Ontarians with developmental disabilities can live meaningful lives. They support these individuals’ daily needs, provide care, and lead day programming in the community.

Workers in developmental services and the people they support are often ignored by decision makers, particularly the government and especially now during the COVID-19 pandemic. For years, cuts to the sector have been made worse by growing societal barriers that prevent the full participation of people with disabilities. These factors have reinforced our history of social exclusion. Workers in developmental services are truly the bridge between an inaccessible world and people with developmental disabilities that they support. Yet, workers in developmental services too often work low-paid, precarious, and part-time jobs. Staffing is astonishingly under-resourced, leading to above average turnover rates for those in this field. Theirs is precarious labour, and many must work two or three jobs just to get by.

Please add your name to our letter to Premier Ford and the Minister of Children, Community and Social Services the following message:

Dear Premier Ford,

Workers in developmental services and the people they support are often ignored by decision makers, particularly the government and especially now during the COVID-19 pandemic. For years, cuts to the sector have been made worse by growing societal barriers that prevent the full participation of people with disabilities. These factors have reinforced our history of social exclusion.

Workers in developmental services are truly the bridge between an inaccessible world and people with developmental disabilities that they support. Yet, workers in developmental services too often work low-paid, precarious, and part-time jobs. Staffing is astonishingly and under-resourced, leading to above average turnover rates for those in this field. Theirs is precarious labour, and many must work two or three jobs just to get by.

While COVID-19 has quickly created a new world for us all, it also presents organizers, politicians, and decision-makers with the possibility of great social reform. This reform begins with the inclusion of those most often pushed to the margins of our society as we collectively usher in a new world that is accessible and inclusive to all. We encourage you to support people with developmental disabilities and the people who support them by proving adequate funding to this sector. We must act now to improve working conditions for workers in developmental services, and in turn, improve the support people with developmental disabilities receive.

Sincerely,

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