The province of Ontario is selling unused land in Vaughan to build a new long-term care home that will house 256 residents.
The new home is expected to open by 2026.
In a release, the Ministry of Long-Term Care said the home will also “offer culturally appropriate services to members of the Italian community.”
“Our government is fixing Ontario’s long-term care system and building new facilities, like the home that will be built on this site, is a key part of our plan,” Minister of Long-Term Care, Rod Phillips, said from the site’s future location at 7231 Martin Grove Road on Tuesday.
“Our government’s initiative to sell unused government lands on the condition that a long-term care home is built on the site, means that more safe, comfortable and modern beds are getting built in areas where they are most needed.”
Long-term care beds are sorely needed in Ontario. The province says as of May, 2021, more than 38,000 people were on a waitlist for a bed, with an average wait time of 171 days.
Problems with long-term care in Ontario have been exacerbated and exposed by the COVID-19 pandemic.
In June, the Ontario Ombudsman office announced it would launch an investigation into the government’s oversight of long-term care homes in the wake of the pandemic.
Ombudsman Paul Dubé said he was launching the investigation after a damning report from the Canadian Armed Forces detailing shocking conditions inside some of the facilities.
Premier Doug Ford said he welcomes the probe.
“I need answers,” he said back in June. “I want answers. We need to get this fixed and we’re going to get this fixed.”
With files from The Canadian Press