This morning the Council of Canadians dropped banners off overpasses in Toronto and set up a pirate radio station for commuters to learn more about the 200,000 Ontarians without access to public health insurance.
The OHIP For All Campaign is calling for Ontario Health Insurance Plan (OHIP) coverage for over 200,000 people currently denied public insurance due to their immigration status. Today at noon, rallies are being held across Ontario, including in Toronto, Hamilton, London, Kitchener, Mississauga, Peterborough, and Ottawa, to demand that the Ontario government provide needed health care support to everyone.
“The Ontario government should provide OHIP coverage for everyone. Our patchwork system leaves too many people behind, and leads to preventable and costly negative health outcomes in Ontario’s communities,” says Michael Butler, Health Care Campaigner with the Council of Canadians, who will be speaking at the Toronto OHIP For All rally. “In a province that prides itself on being welcoming to newcomers, it is time the government put its money where its mouth is and provide the fundamental health coverage every human deserves.”
As a founding supporter of the OHIP For All Campaign, the Council of Canadians is participating in rallies across the province.
The Council of Canadians supports the campaign’s demands to:
end OHIP’s three-month waiting period for new immigrants, temporary foreign workers, migrants newly approved for Permanent Residency and returning Canadians;
provide OHIP coverage to those left uninsured with temporary status, including temporary foreign workers between contracts and international students;
provide OHIP coverage to those left uninsured while inland immigration sponsorship, humanitarian and compassionate status applications are pending;
- provide OHIP coverage to those left uninsured due to being non-status while residing in Ontario.
The Council of Canadians will be joining the rally in Toronto with many more groups, including CUPE Ontario, the Ontario Council of Hospital Unions, the Ontario Council of Agencies Serving Immigrants, the Ontario Nurses’ Association, the Ontario Health Coalition, the Ontario Federation of Labour, Access Alliance, Toronto Public Health, and Health Providers Against Poverty.