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Ontario MPP introduces Bill to combat social isolation

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Conservative MPP Lindsey Park introduced a Bill yesterday in the legislature pushing the Ontario government to prioritize addressing social isolation and loneliness–an issue that has become a crisis alongside the pandemic.

Bill 104, Connected Communities Act, 2022 requires the Government of Ontario to maintain a strategy that aims to reduce instances of loneliness and social isolation in Ontario and support persons who may be struggling with loneliness or social isolation. The Act provides one year for the development of an initial strategy and requires the Government of Ontario to subsequently review the strategy at least once every five years.

“We are delighted to see MPP Lindsay Park’s Private Members Bill,” says Laura Tamblyn Watts, CEO of CanAge. “Loneliness and social isolation are two of the most profound issues we are facing today. It’s really a parallel pandemic.”

CanAge has been calling for this type of legislation for a long time.

“Loneliness is as bad for you as smoking 15 cigarettes a day and can take up to 8 years off your life,” notes Watts. “COVID-19 has given all of us, regardless of age or health condition, a sense of how difficult these issues are. Now is the time to make a much needed change.”

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246 Bloor Street W
Toronto, ON, M5S 1V4

Factor-Inwentash Faculty of Social Work
University of Toronto

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