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LETTER: We owe our seniors better treatment, says reader

'Let us value their past contribution to society by valuing them as they end their journey on this earth,' says letter writer
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OrilliaMatters received the following letter to the editor from reader Joyce Balaz in response to a letter published by our news agency earlier this week from Debbie Van Noort. Send your letters to

I feel compelled to respond to the letter by Debbie Van Noort – An institution, is an institution, is an institution!

To downplay the inhumane treatment revealed by survivors in sharing their lived experiences as “some negative things” is unconscionable!

I ask Debbie Van Noort to consider this:  If you had lived through these horrors, were finally moved back to the community where you have found your niche; would you want to be ‘placed’ back in that facility, when once again you did nothing wrong but need care?

For this reason, I will agree with the statement in the letter of March 29, 2021, that using Huronia Regional Centre for long-term care is indeed egregious!

The question who will pay for all of this was asked. My answer is: We will and we must!  Our seniors have contributed to society for years, it is our turn to contribute to them as they near the end of their life. We owe them that much! 

Government must change the ratio of investment. 

Currently $6 of taxpayer money is spent on the institutional model of long-term care compared to only $1 spent on home care. (According to a recent study) Turning that around so that $6 is spent on home care with only $1 on long-term care means people can be supported to age in place, supporting families to help keep their loved ones home for as long as possible. The funding must be attached to a person not a ‘bed’! 

I will agree that not everyone can end their life in their own home, but investing in small community based real homes, where people can continue to participate as able, is a better alternative to these large facilities.

If the daily rate long-term care facilities receive went to people and their families, supports according to their individual needs would enable them to remain in their own home for as long as possible.

This is the true REFORM that is needed for our elders and this can happen now!

Let us value their past contribution to society by valuing them as they end their journey on this earth.

Joyce Balaz
London, Ont.