For immediate release
June 24, 2020
VICTORIA, B.C. - Today the B.C. Green Caucus is seeking additional actions from government to strengthen the accountability and transparency of the long-term care home sector in British Columbia.
The transfer between the provincial government and the contracted care home sector in British Columbia is one of the largest transactions that takes place at $1.3 billion a year. The significant lack of accountability, monitoring, transparency and financial oversight in these transactions raises serious concerns in this sector.
“As a province we must do more to protect the wellbeing of our seniors and envision quality health care as a right. We do not have all of the information we need to improve the quality of care in contracted care homes due to a lack of transparency on how the $1.3 billion provided by the government is spent,” said B.C. Green MLA Sonia Furstenau for Cowichan Valley.
Taking into account the recommendations outlined in the report "A Billion Reasons to Care" by the Office of the Seniors Advocate, the B.C. Green Caucus calls on the provincial government for:
Financial statements to be made public by care homes funded with public money.
Expense reports audited with a more uniformed and disciplined approach taken to funding building capital costs, a clearly defined breakdown of lump sum payments and all care homes reported on individually.
Public funds must be used on providing health care not contributing to profits.
A move towards a living wage for care home staff at all facilities.
“We must take the opportunity for societal change in our COVID-19 recovery and create a senior care sector that respects and values BC’s eldest citizens. No longer can we allow a system that fails to meet the adequate standards of care, whilst severely underpaying care staff,” said B.C. Green Party interim leader Adam Olsen, MLA for Saanich-North and the Islands. “Although ‘A Billion Reasons to Care’ reviews B.C.'s care home system in the 2017-2018 period, the pandemic has further exacerbated the underlying issues in this sector and we need immediate action.”
Media contact JoJo Beattie Press Secretary B.C. Green Caucus +1 250-882-6187 | firstname.lastname@example.org