Ontario Premier Kathleen Wynne and Minister of Francophone Affairs Marie-France Lalonde visited Hawkesbury on the afternoon of April 30, 2018, to announce the creation of 78 long-term care beds at the Prescott & Russell Residence, bringing the total to 224.

“It’s such an opportune time for this announcement,” said UCPR County Warden François St-Amour.

“As you know, we’re planning to build a new residence. The timeline is 2025, so the timing is bang-on.”

Ontario Premiere Kathleen Wynne arrived at the Prescott & Russell Residence alongside Hawkesbury Mayor Jeanne Charlebois. (Photo Credit: Cedrik Bertrand)

The expansion is part of the government’s plan to create 5,000 new beds by 2022 and part of an overall commitment to create more than 500 new beds for Francophone seniors across the province.

“For all our policies, we ask: ‘Are we sure that we are treating equitably everyone in the province?’,” stated Wynne.

Lalonde later took the stand and announced that Ontario would also be investing $300 million over the next three years to hire an additional registered nurse for every long-term care home, thus increasing the provincial average to four hours of daily care per resident by 2022.

Ontario Premier Kathleen Wynne speaking to one of the Prescott & Russell Residence’s residents before addressing the crowd. (Photo credit: Cedrik Bertrand)

In its 2018 Budget, Ontario will be making over $3.3 billion in additional investments to support seniors and caregivers over the next three years.