Ontario Ministry of Health reverses course on guardianship requirement for disabled woman
The Ontario Ministry of Health reverses course on guardianship requirement for disabled woman
Ontario’s Ministry of Health has reversed its decision to require people with disabilities to be guardians of their non-disabled children.
The ministry’s decision on April 27, which followed a public, online consultation, is a significant change from its previous position.
From January 26, 2015, through April 27, 2015, the ministry announced it would no longer require people with disabilities to be guardians of their non-disabled children but had a range of other changes to its policies.
The ministry said the previous policy, which has been in place since 2004, was no longer necessary as the requirements relating to the guardianship of non-disabled children were no longer necessary due to reforms in the law and in Ontario’s disability legislation.
The ministry said it was also clarifying its prior position with regard to guardianship.
The ministry said it had to reconsider its position in light of public consultations and other factors and had taken the position that people with disabilities should not be required to be guardians of their non-disabled children.
“(L)oose is a word that gets thrown around a lot in the disability world,” said Dr. Michael McIsaac, a psychologist at Toronto’s Trinity College, who is a former member of the Ontario Special Needs Board. “But the reality is there is a lot of disability there is a lot of diversity and there are children that are without a parent. This is an important issue for children whose parents are either ill or deceased, or there are other circumstances where people have disabilities, but they don’t have a parent.”
McIsaac said he was troubled by the ministry’s decision to change its policy on guardianship.
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