May 9th, 2024

Ontario NDP’s Gates introduces legislation to compensate caregivers

QUEEN’S PARK – MPP Wayne Gates (Niagara Falls), Official Opposition critic for Long Term care will introduce a motion that would provide a benefit for people providing full or part time care for loved ones.

“So many of us become a caregiver for a loved one at some point in our lives,” said Gates. “It’s essential, intensive, and sometimes full-time work that can often go completely unpaid. It’s long past time to provide a benefit for the people who are putting in long hours to make sure loved ones are cared for.”

Millions of Ontarians – a majority of whom are women – reported that they provide unpaid care for family and friends. From basic medical tasks to administrative support, caregivers provide an endless stream of support, often with significant financial cost.

“Whether you’re providing support to an ailing parent, a vulnerable adult, or a friend recovering from illness or injury, this benefit will have you covered,” said Gates. “With the cost of living as high as it is, we know that every single extra dollar goes a long way.”

Nova Scotia is currently the only province with a caregiver benefit. Gates’ motion would let Ontario join as a leader in this important initiative.


Cathy Barrick, CEO of Alzheimer’s Society Ontario

"Despite being integral to the ability of our health and long-term care systems to function, care partners in Ontario receive little or no government assistance. We can’t afford not to care for care partners. The Alzheimer Society of Ontario fully supports calls for direct financial supports for care partners, and we call on elected officials of all parties to stand with Ontario’s unpaid family care partners."

Liv Mendelson, Executive Director of Canadian Centre for Caregiving Excellence

“Caregivers need help. There are 4 million Ontarians currently providing care and half of caregivers across the country say they are in financial distress. A caregiver benefit is a smart way to recognize the essential work that they do and support them in their care responsibilities. All of Ontario wins when caregivers are doing better."

Hillary Buchan-Terrell, Advocacy Manager for Ontario at the Canadian Cancer Society

"As people live longer with and beyond cancer, their caregivers need easy-to-access support to help the two in five caregivers struggling to pay their bills and put food on the table in Ontario. Caring for caregivers is caring for patients - and keeps people out of hallways and off of waitlists.”

Chris Beesley, CEO of Community Living

"Providing caring support to loved ones must be recognized and valued by all of us, including all levels of government. Anything less is an indictment of our humanity."

Bhavini Patel, caregiver with Ontario Caregiver Coalition

“As an unpaid caregiver, one of approximately 4 million in Ontario, I see how important a Caregivers Support Benefit will be by providing some financial relief. My journey as a working caregiver evolved into being a full-time caregiver, by stepping away from my career to look after my father at home.”