Balancing the Need to Keep Both Residents and Staff Safe and Protected as Ontario Re-opens

On July 7, 2021, the RHRA provided information to licensed retirement homes on balancing the rights of the resident and obligations to protect the health and safety of staff. 

 

From time to time, and in particular during the height of the pandemic, the RHRA heard of individuals being “banned” from retirement homes. It is worth noting that the RHRA has had very few complaints of homes engaging in this practice; specifically, four in total since 2014. RHRA treats all complaints seriously and looks into every one it receives.  

 

As Ontario continues to re-open, we remind all licensed retirement homes that residents are tenants and have rights under the Residential Tenancies Act, 2006 (RTA), including rights to invite visitors to their homes and to the reasonable enjoyment of their suite.

 

Moreover, licensees have obligations under the Retirement Homes Act, 2010 (Act)not to interfere with external care providers and to protect residents from abuse, including emotional abuse.  Observing the rights of residents and the obligations of licensees may be challenging for licensees. Licensees must balance the needs of residents and staff, particularly as licensees have responsibilities under Ontario’s Occupational Health & Safety Act to keep a safe and well-maintained workplace and to take all reasonable precautions to protect staff from illness and/or injury.   

 

Under the Act, licensees have obligations to protect their residents and staff. The RTA prohibits a landlord from substantially interfering with the reasonable enjoyment of a tenant of their suite. Whether restricting a visitor’s access is appropriate will depend on the circumstances of that case.  Licensees and their staff are also prohibited from taking any retaliatory action against an individual who reports matters or provides information to the RHRA, including “banning” them from the retirement home.   

 

Where licensees have breached their obligations under the Act, the RHRA will take appropriate action. Further, residents who believe that their tenancy rights have been breached under the RTA may seek remedies at the Landlord and Tenant Board.

 

Visitors must be respectful and conduct themselves appropriately when visiting a resident in a retirement home. Should a licensee experience a challenging situation when balancing responsibilities and obligations to protect the health and safety of both residents and staff, we encourage retirement homes to take a mediatory approach and consider seeking legal advice. In general, licensees are encouraged to seek independent legal advice when they have questions about their obligations under the Act or the RTA.

 

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A retirement home

There are more than 700 licensed retirement homes in Ontario. Let us help you find the one that’s right for you.


Status of home

Search the Retirement Home Database for a complete history of a retirement home's compliance with the Act.

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Types of homes

If you've never lived in a retirement home or haven’t needed long-term care, you may not be aware of the difference between the two. Here is what you need to know.

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I'm not sure how to get started

Here, we’ll provide tools to help support your research.

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Steps to getting a licence

Get started on the licensing process and find out what you will need to submit an application.


Guidelines

As of July 1, 2012, homes that meet the definition of “retirement home” in the Act must have a licence from the RHRA to operate.

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Process

To assist you with the application process, the RHRA has put together an Applicant Guide. The Guide introduces you to the forms, supporting documents and fees that must be submitted.

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Fees

Review the 2018 Fee Schedule before submitting your application.

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Complaints & reporting harm

Reporting harm is a shared duty. Certain situations involving harm or risk of harm to any resident must be reported immediately by law. Here’s how to report harm or potential harm.


How to File a Report

Find out what constitutes harm and what you need to do if you see or suspect harm.

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RHRA Process

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Mandatory Reporting

What must you report and why.

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More information about RHRA

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A retirement home

A retirement home 1

There are over 700 licensed retirement homes in Ontario. Let us help you find the one that’s right for you.


#ICON

Status of home

Search the Retirement Home Database for a complete history of a retirement home's compliance with the Act.

Read More
#ICON

Types of homes

If you've never lived in a retirement home or haven’t needed long-term care, you may not be aware of the difference between the two. Here is what you need to know.

Read More
#ICON

I’m not sure how to start

Here, we’ll provide tools to help support your research.

Read More

A retirement home 1

There are over 700 licensed retirement homes in Ontario. Let us help you find the one that’s right for you.


#ICON

Status of home

Search the Retirement Home Database for a complete history of a retirement home's compliance with the Act.

Read More
#ICON

Types of homes

If you've never lived in a retirement home or haven’t needed long-term care, you may not be aware of the difference between the two. Here is what you need to know.

Read More
#ICON

I’m not sure how to start

Here, we’ll provide tools to help support your research.

Read More

A retirement home 1

There are over 700 licensed retirement homes in Ontario. Let us help you find the one that’s right for you.


#ICON

Status of home

Search the Retirement Home Database for a complete history of a retirement home's compliance with the Act.

Read More
#ICON

Types of homes

If you've never lived in a retirement home or haven’t needed long-term care, you may not be aware of the difference between the two. Here is what you need to know.

Read More
#ICON

I’m not sure how to start

Here, we’ll provide tools to help support your research.

Read More

A retirement home 1

There are over 700 licensed retirement homes in Ontario. Let us help you find the one that’s right for you.


#ICON

Status of home

Search the Retirement Home Database for a complete history of a retirement home's compliance with the Act.

Read More
#ICON

Types of homes

If you've never lived in a retirement home or haven’t needed long-term care, you may not be aware of the difference between the two. Here is what you need to know.

Read More
#ICON

I’m not sure how to start

Here, we’ll provide tools to help support your research.

Read More
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