On November 5, 2012, the Government of Ontario launched the province’s first immigration strategy. With the strategy, the provincial government seeks to increase its role in making immigration decisions that impact the province socially and economically.
The human rights system needs better coordination states the findings from the Ontario Human Rights Review 2012, released on November 8, 2012.
In August 2011, the Government of Ontario appointed Andrew Pinto to conduct a review of the new human rights system in Ontario. A website and a consultation paper were released that detailed the process of the review. Ontarians, especially individuals who have used the services of the Human Rights Legal Support Centre, Human Rights Tribunal of Ontario and Ontario Human Rights Commission, were encouraged to participate in the review process through written submissions, oral remarks at public meetings, and oral remarks at stakeholder meetings.
Elections Ontario (EO) is asking the public for feedback on internet and phone voting. The deadline for responses is December 2, 2012. To participate, visit the Elections Ontario website to download a summary of research on the topic and/or complete a survey online (alternative formats also available).
The final report by the Commission for the Review of Social Assistance in Ontario was recently released. Entitled, “Brighter Prospects: Transforming Social Assistance in Ontario,” the report contains 108 recommendations for a more simplified, integrated system of income and employment supports. It was guided by six key principles and has three objectives:
As part of Ontario’s Action Plan for Health Care, the role of pharmacists in Ontario has now been expanded. Pharmacists in Ontario can now:
Ontario has become the first jurisdiction in Canada to allow trans people to change the sex designation on their birth registration and certificate without surgery. While provincial policy previously required proof of “transsexual surgery” to make changes, an individual can now request the change with a letter from a physician or psychologist.
“Opening Eyes, Opening Minds: The Ontario Burden of Mental Illness and Addictions” report is the final issue in a three-part series, produced in partnership between the Institute for Clinical Evaluative Sciences (ICES) and Public Health Ontario (PHO). The report finds that the burden of mental illness is one and a half times that of all cancers, and seven times that of infectious diseases.
The Central East Local Health Integration Network (CE LHIN) recently released a Performance Summary report mapping actual performance against 2012/13 Ministry LHIN Performance Agreement targets, over a timeline of fiscal 2009/2010 to July 2012.
At a special meeting held September 27, 2012 in Toronto, the memberships of the Ontario Federation of Community Mental Health and Addiction Programs and Addictions Ontario voted unanimously to amalgamate and form a new provincial organization called “Addictions and Mental Health Ontario.”
The Ontario Ministry of Training, Colleges and Universities (MTCU) recently announced the creation of the Mental Health Innovation Fund for new projects that improve mental health services and outcomes for Ontario’s postsecondary students. Projects can potentially be funded for up to three years. Overall allocation of funds has been set at $7 million per year, up to the year 2015.