No dates, no details yet on Ford government's commission into long-term care
Crosses are displayed outside the Camilla Care Community centre marking the deaths of multiple people that occurred during the COVID-19 pandemic in Mississauga, Ont., on Tuesday, May 26, 2020. (THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette)
TORONTO -- With eleven days left in July, Premier Doug Ford has yet to announce the details of an independent commission into Ontario’s long-term care homes — despite promising to launch the commission this month.
The government said an independent commission would hold public hearings and deliver a public report into the impact of COVID-19 on the province's long-term care sector, with Ford promising to appear as a witness if called by the commission.
While Merrilee Fullerton, Ontario's Minister of Long-Term Care, told the legislature her government is committed to transparency in the process, the government has yet to reveal crucial details about the commission, including who has been tapped to lead it, the terms of reference, and the exact date the commissioner's work is set to begin.
"We are going to find out what happened," Fullerton promised. "We'll be having that commission, an announcement will be coming."
On Monday, at his daily news conference, Premier Ford said he was "just as anxious" about the details into the commission but acknowledged that he wasn't able to provide "an exact date."
"Definitely before the end of the month and we're heading to the end of the month," Ford said.
The premier also made a point of noting that he's remaining "totally independent" of the process and won't weigh in on who will lead the commission.
"I'm letting the ministry [of long-term care] look into it and make their choice," Ford said.