Landmark Decision: Toronto Board of Health demands healthcare for all, irrespective of immigration status
TORONTO, April 30 2013
Today, in a landmark decision, the Toronto Board of Health joined a growing number of community organizations declaring its opposition to the denial of health services based on immigration status. In accepting a report from the Medical Office of Health, the Board calls on the Ontario government to expand funding to community health centres, end the devastating three-month-wait for OHIP coverage for new residents, and put an end to discriminatory billing practices of hospitals who charge people without OHIP more for the same service.
The Board of Health is also adding its voice to the growing opposition to the Federal government’s anti-migrant cuts to the Interim Federal Health Program that has left thousands seeking refuge without access to basic health care. They have joined people across the country, including every major healthcare provider association, and provincial governments in calling for a full reversal of the cuts.
The Toronto Board of Health also calls for the expansion of the city’s new “sanctuary city” policy into provincially funded health spaces in Toronto- requesting that healthcare facilities develop a policy of not reporting immigration status of clients to federal authorities.
The negative health impacts of Canada’s immigration system are indisputable. Health for All commends the Toronto Board of Health for voicing its opposition to anti-migrant policies that have a direct effect on the health of residents of our city. We call on our allies and supporters to raise their voices in support of growing resistance to health injustice.
On May 1st Health for All will join with people around the globe for International Workers Day. We will join in the 8th Annual May Day of Action in Toronto. At this year’s May Day we will join together to build a Solidarity City, a city of people unified in Respect for Indigenous Sovereignty, Status for All, an End to Imperialism and Environmental Destruction, an End to Austerity and Attacks on the Poor and Working class, continued resistance against Patriarchy, Racism, Ableism and Homophobia and Transphobia.
Please join us at 5:30 PM at City Hall.