Sattler Presses Premier to Resolve London’s Assisted Living Wait List Crisis

Queen’s Park – On Tuesday, NDP MPP Peggy Sattler (London West) pushed Premier Kathleen Wynne to help Londoners with physical disabilities — those languishing on indefinite wait lists for assisted housing — by increasing the number of assisted living placements.

During question period, Sattler called on Premier Wynne to increase the number of assisted living placements in the South West LHIN so that adults with complex medical needs can access appropriate, dignified living spaces.

“Last week in London I met with four families with adult loved ones living with severe physical disabilities. They’re all in dire need of residential care after suffering stroke or traumatic brain injury,” Sattler said. “The wait lists for assisted living are so long that these individuals are more likely to die than to make it to the top of the list and move into an appropriate, supportive home.”

Sattler invited the families to join her last week to speak out, and call attention to the crisis. They described how, with no options available, two of the adults with disabilities are living in hospital, one is living in a retirement home and one is living at home with his aging and unwell mother.

“What will the premier do to ensure that these families, and all other adults with complex medical needs, are able to live with dignity in the kind of housing they deserve?” asked Sattler.

In the London area, there are about 500 adults on the waiting list for Cheshire homes, 50 on the Dale Brain Injury Services wait-list for housing supports, and as many as 90 on the housing wait-list at Participation House. They are waiting for LHIN-funded dollars to support their medical needs.

“The lack of assisted living is creating a crisis for families. It is forcing the permanent hospitalization of people who want to live in the community. It is trapping people who are in the prime of their lives inappropriately in nursing homes,” Sattler said. “Will the premier commit today to increasing the number of assisted living placements in the South West LHIN so that these adults, and others like them, with complex medical needs can live with dignity in the kind of housing they deserve?”

Premier Wynne passed on Sattler’s questions to the minister of community and social services and to the minister of health.