STANDING COMMITTEE ON GOVERNMENT AGENCIES
COMITÉ PERMANENT DES ORGANISMES GOUVERNEMENTAUX
Tuesday 23 March 2021 Mardi 23 mars 2021
The committee met at 0901 in committee room 2 and by video conference.
The Vice-Chair (Mr. Aris Babikian): Good morning, everyone. I call this meeting to order. We are meeting to conduct a review of intended appointments. We have the following members in the room: MPP Gates, MPP Nicholls. The following members are participating remotely: MPP Cuzzetto, MPP Bouma, MPP Miller, MPP Bailey, MPP Stiles, MPP Pang and MPP Bisson.
We are also joined by staff from legislative research, Hansard, and broadcast and recording. To make sure that everyone can understand what is going on, it is important that all participants speak slowly and clearly. Please wait until I recognize you before starting to speak. Since it could take a little time for your audio and video to come up after I recognize you, please take a brief pause before beginning. As always, all comments by members and witnesses should be through the Chair.
The Vice-Chair (Mr. Aris Babikian): Adoption of subcommittee reports: Our first item of business is the subcommittee report dated March 11, 2021. We have all seen the report in advance, so could I please have a motion? MPP Nicholls.
Mr. Rick Nicholls: I move adoption of the subcommittee report on intended appointments dated Thursday, March 11, 2021, on the order-in-council certificate dated March 5, 2021.
The Vice-Chair (Mr. Aris Babikian): Thank you. Any further discussion? Are the members ready to vote? Okay. Because MPP Bisson is on the phone, the Clerk is going to call each member for their vote. We’re ready for the vote call, so please go ahead.
The motion carried.
Next we have the subcommittee report dated March 18, 2021. We have all seen the report in advance, so could I please have a motion? Mr. Nicholls.
Mr. Rick Nicholls: I move adoption of the subcommittee report on intended appointments dated Thursday, March 18, 2021, on the order-in-council certificate dated March 12, 2021.
The Vice-Chair (Mr. Aris Babikian): Any discussion? Are the members ready to vote? Okay. The Clerk is going to do the roll call. Please confirm, yea or nay. Please go ahead.
The motion is carried.
We now move to our review of intended appointees. First, we have—
The Vice-Chair (Mr. Aris Babikian): Sorry, Mr. Gates has a point of order. Yes, go ahead, Mr. Gates.
Mr. Wayne Gates: It’s more of a question, that we’re in the room—if you’re not speaking, you should wear your mask.
The Vice-Chair (Mr. Aris Babikian): MPP Gates, since we are upholding the social-distancing regulation—we are six feet away from each other—I don’t see the reason why we need to wear a mask in the room when we’re upholding the social-distancing regulations. Considering the room is a little bit warm and sticky, I think wearing a mask will make some of the members uncomfortable.
Yes, Mr. Nicholls?
Mr. Rick Nicholls: Point of order, Chair: With all due respect to the member from Niagara Falls, if he feels more comfortable with me wearing a mask, I have no problems, I have no issues, wearing a mask except for when I have to speak, in which case I can take it off. So would you feel more comfortable if I wear a mask?
Mr. Wayne Gates: I absolutely would feel more comfortable if people, when they’re not speaking, would wear a mask. I’m not sure I even agree with the ruling of the Chair, but I do appreciate your understanding. I wear my mask everywhere, so—
Mr. Rick Nicholls: It’s not a problem. I’m happy to do so.
Mr. Wayne Gates: Thanks. I appreciate that.
The Vice-Chair (Mr. Aris Babikian): Even though I ruled on your request, since there is a consensus between the members present here, I will abide by your consensus agreement. Thank you very much.
Mr. Rod Jackson
Review of intended appointment, selected by official opposition party: Rod Jackson, intended appointee as member, Landlord and Tenant Board.
The Vice-Chair (Mr. Aris Babikian): We will now move to our review of intended appointments. First, we have Mr. Rod Jackson, nominated as member of the Landlord and Tenant Board. As you may be aware, you have the opportunity, should you choose to do so, to make an initial statement. Following this, there will be questions from members of the committee. With that questioning, we will start with the official opposition, followed by the government, with 15 minutes allocated to each recognized party. Any time you take in your statement will be deducted from the time allotted to the government.
The Vice-Chair (Mr. Aris Babikian): Yes, MPP Bouma? Go ahead.
Mr. Will Bouma: If you weren’t aware, Mr. Chair, it appears that Mr. Bisson has his hand up.
The Vice-Chair (Mr. Aris Babikian): My apologies, MPP Bisson. I hadn’t seen your hand because—go ahead. Do you have a question, or do you have a point of order?
Mr. Gilles Bisson: No, I was trying to get on the list in regard to the mask issue, but I see it got resolved, so I will just let things go the way they are.
The Vice-Chair (Mr. Aris Babikian): Okay, thank you.
Okay, now I will call upon Mr. Rod Jackson to make his statement if he wishes to do so. Mr. Jackson?
Mr. Rod Jackson: Thank you very much, Mr. Vice-Chair and members of the committee. Thank you for having me here today to discuss my suitability for the role at the LTB. My only regret is that we’re not able to meet in-person due to the current circumstances. It would always be better to be in-person, I think, if possible, but as we all know the circumstances—
The Vice-Chair (Mr. Aris Babikian): My apologies, Mr. Jackson. Sorry. Can you get a little bit closer to the mike? Because your voice is not coming in very clear.
Mr. Rod Jackson: Oh. Is that okay now? Can you hear me better now?
The Vice-Chair (Mr. Aris Babikian): Yes, that’s much better.
Mr. Rod Jackson: Okay. Something was going funny there. My apologies. Should I start again, Mr. Chair?
The Vice-Chair (Mr. Aris Babikian): Please start all over again.
Mr. Rod Jackson: Mr. Vice-Chair and members of the committee, thank you again for asking me to come here today to discuss my suitability for the role at the Landlord and Tenant Board. My only regret is that we’re not able to meet in-person due to the current circumstances. It’s always better to meet in-person if possible, I think. However, obviously the current circumstances prevent us from doing that and that’s regretful, unfortunately, for all of us.
I’ll endeavour to keep my comments brief and to the point. I’m sure you’ve all had an opportunity to review my experience and education. I firmly believe that after you carefully consider my education and experience, you’ll agree I’m an excellent match for the duties at the Landlord and Tenant Board and their demands.
As a bit of background, after completing a degree at York University, I completed graduate studies in dispute resolution and mediation, and I practised mediation for about 20 years. In that time, I’ve also completed a diploma program at Georgian College in human resources management and, more recently, a paralegal graduate certificate and a paralegal licence through the Law Society of Ontario.
During my career, I’ve had the opportunity to act as an adjudicator at the city of Barrie’s committee of adjustment, and as chair of the Ontario Motor Vehicle Industry Council’s appeals committee. I’ve also had the privilege of serving as a city councillor and of course as a member of provincial Parliament.
During my time in elected office, there were many times I was unofficially and officially called upon to [inaudible] a resolution of community-based disputes, at community interpersonal levels. I’ve always made it a point to represent all the interests of all the parties involved, without bias. I believe this to be a cornerstone of natural justice, which is critical when we talk about our justice system going forward.
I look forward to bringing this experience to the fore as an adjudicator with the Landlord and Tenant Board. Keep in mind, too, I’ve also got plenty of experience at the Landlord and Tenant Board by representing clients’ interests at hearings many times, and many times, pro bono, because of my firm belief in access to justice and in natural justice without bias. I look forward to bringing all these experiences and skills to the fore as a member of the Landlord and Tenant Board.
With that, I’ll leave it to you to ask any questions that you might have, and I’m happy to comment.
The Vice-Chair (Mr. Aris Babikian): Now, for the questioning, first we will go to the opposition. MPP Stiles, go ahead.
Ms. Marit Stiles: Good morning, Mr. Jackson. Thank you for joining us here today.
Mr. Rod Jackson: Good morning.
Ms. Marit Stiles: You know how this all works. You’ve been here before. You were elected as a member of provincial Parliament. You were a Conservative member, correct?
Mr. Rod Jackson: Yes, I was. It’s a little strange to be on this side of the table today.
Ms. Marit Stiles: I’m sure; I’m sure. Did you ever sit on this committee, out of curiosity?
Mr. Rod Jackson: I think I subbed in once or twice, but I don’t think I ever sat as a full member of the committee.
Ms. Marit Stiles: As you probably know, we review whichever applicants we can get to appear before us. We try to review as many as we can. We’ve had a number—I would say a majority of folks who have appeared before us here are, without question, connected in some way to the Conservative Party, provincially and/or federally. I wondered if you could confirm for us now if you are still a member of the Progressive Conservative Party of Ontario.
Mr. Rod Jackson: To be honest, I’m not 100% sure. I think some years ago, I bought a five-year membership. I’m not sure if that’s expired yet, to be perfectly honest with you. It may or may not be.
I’m not trying to avoid the question; I simply don’t—
Ms. Marit Stiles: This wouldn’t be your intention that you’re—okay. Fair enough. Are you a member of the federal Conservative Party?
Mr. Rod Jackson: Not at this time.
Ms. Marit Stiles: Okay. And just to confirm, you were elected in 2011 as a Conservative member of provincial Parliament.
Mr. Rod Jackson: That’s right.
Ms. Marit Stiles: And you sat until 2014. Is that right?
Mr. Rod Jackson: Yes.
Ms. Marit Stiles: Okay. How many times have you run for the Conservative Party of Ontario as a candidate?
Mr. Rod Jackson: Just once—or twice, sorry. It was 2011 and 2014.
Ms. Marit Stiles: Yes, right. That makes sense. What about federally? Have you run federally before as well?
Mr. Rod Jackson: I’ve never been a federal candidate, no. I ran for a federal nomination at one time.
Ms. Marit Stiles: Ah, right. If I can also just ask, do you know how much you’ve contributed to the Conservative Party over the years, provincially?
Mr. Rod Jackson: I don’t know the total, but if I was to venture a guess, maybe $1,000 or $2,000 or something like that. I’m guessing; I don’t know the total off the top of my head.
Ms. Marit Stiles: Okay. As I said, I think we’ve seen a little bit of a trend. It’s not entirely surprising. Certainly under the previous government, under the Liberals, there were many appointments made to Liberal partisans and contributors. But it is certainly part of the role of this body to ask important questions that the people of Ontario want to know, like what exactly is the rationale for appointing people who have—does it have anything to do with the contributions, the connections? We’ve seen a lot of, I would say—you did win, so I wouldn’t call you this, but we have seen a lot of former Conservative candidates and failed candidates being appointed by this government to various roles.
I wonder if you could talk to me a little bit, though, about the Landlord and Tenant Board. Obviously, that is what you’re being appointed to right now. I’m assuming you’ve been watching the news about some of these hearings and how they’re going online.
Mr. Rod Jackson: Yes.
Ms. Marit Stiles: What we’re finding is that many people are being taken to the Landlord and Tenant Board for arrears that are COVID-related. It has been a really difficult time, I think you would agree, for many, many people in this province—correct?
Mr. Rod Jackson: Yes, for sure.
Ms. Marit Stiles: What I’m wondering is how you feel about hard-working people being evicted during a pandemic when they’re doing everything they can to remain housed.
Mr. Rod Jackson: Yes, it’s a very difficult situation, no doubt about it. I have represented people who are being evicted, and in fact, evicted by very scurrilous landlords, shall I say, who are doing pretty nasty things to get rid of them. These people need to be defended. It’s part of the reason why I’ve done a lot of pro bono work for tenants. When I believe someone is being wronged like that and being booted out of their home for reasons out of their control—illegally, I might add, in many cases, never mind the eviction orders being rescinded for some time and coming back now—it doesn’t make it all right.
We need to make sure that the right amount of discretion is used with respect to the law around the LTB, the Residential Tenancies Act, and make sure that we do the right thing by tenants and by landlords. I have also represented landlords who have been owed $40,000, $50,000 in rent arrears and have now lost the home that they owned because the people in it couldn’t pay their rent. That’s not fair either.
We need to make sure that any rulings that are made or any decisions that are made are made in the best interests of fairness and unbiasedness and on the merits of the actual—
Ms. Marit Stiles: Thank you. I have a bunch of other questions; I’m going to cut you off there, sorry.
I’ve sat in on some of these, just to watch online what’s going on, because I’ve had a number of tenants in my riding who have been evicted, of course, through this process, even in the middle of the pandemic. It has been really alarming to see people in Toronto and in other parts of the province too—we have people living in tents in parks because they’ve been evicted and they don’t feel safe to live in some of the shelters right now. And who could blame them, right?
I’m wondering: By way of example, right now what we’re seeing happening is that as long as the landlord is present, even if the tenant can’t be there for some reason, the proceeding can continue. I want to give you an example of this. People who, for example, are having technological difficulties connecting, and also people who do not have interpreters—we’ve had situations, and it’s been in the news, of individuals who were unable to understand what was happening and had their small children interpreting for them. But we’ve also had cases where tenants were not able to appear, for various reasons, including emergencies and faulty technology. Should these continue in the absence of the tenant, even if the tenant can’t be there?
Mr. Rod Jackson: I think every case is different. Generally, no. I think ex parte hearings aren’t a good thing. But, having said that, access to justice is incredibly important too. A lot of these people don’t have the proper access, and when I say access, I mean whether it’s electronically or through interpreters or that sort of thing.
I think what we’re witnessing, really, is a huge, high-volume and very challenging caseload that has caused some problems that probably didn’t exist before that need to be dealt with. I think part of dealing with that is probably appointing some more people to the board who are qualified to be able to handle this sort of thing.
Ms. Marit Stiles: Shouldn’t somebody have an interpreter there, so they can understand what’s actually happening? Do you not agree with that? Would you stop a hearing from continuing if you felt that that tenant, for example, wasn’t able to really, truly understand what was taking place?
Mr. Rod Jackson: Yes, if they haven’t had an opportunity to get an interpreter for that particular hearing—
Ms. Marit Stiles: Would they be responsible for that as a tenant, or should that be something that the tribunal—
Mr. Rod Jackson: I think they’re responsible for letting the tribunal know that they need a translator or an interpreter.
Ms. Marit Stiles: But what if they’re receiving all this information and they don’t understand it? This is what happens. This is the reality. Frankly, a lot of the folks who appear before the LTB are pretty vulnerable, right?
Mr. Rod Jackson: Yes, absolutely, and I think all of that needs to be taken into consideration and the proper discretion needs to be used by the member who is adjudicating to make sure that there’s a fair and unbiased hearing. If that means that that person needs more time to get a proper translator or interpreter, then that’s what it means. I agree with you, but every case is different on its merits.
Ms. Marit Stiles: And so what would be an example where somebody not having access to an interpreter so they could understand what’s taking place—what would be an example of that being okay?
Mr. Rod Jackson: Sorry, of going ahead with someone without an interpreter?
Ms. Marit Stiles: Yes.
Mr. Rod Jackson: I think if they’ve been given lots of opportunity to let the LTB or Tribunals Ontario know that they need an interpreter and they didn’t do that, and they let months go by without letting anyone know that they need an interpreter and showed up without one, that could pose a problem.
Ms. Marit Stiles: But would you continue? I mean, I can imagine circumstances—if I may, just to be the devil’s advocate—where somebody, again, is not receiving the information in their language or has other issues going on. For a lot of people who are in these positions, it’s certainly not out of choice. It’s because they are in a really difficult situation.
So it seems like—anyways, okay, I’m going to move on. The other thing I wanted to ask you is that—again, we’re seeing many situations like this: We’re seeing situations where people are coming in who are within 60 seconds, literally, of being evicted—sometimes, yes, it’s as little as 60 seconds. I’m wondering how you would make the process more fair, because right now it seems deeply, deeply unfair.
Mr. Rod Jackson: Yes, I’m very concerned about that. I think—
The Vice-Chair (Mr. Aris Babikian): Four minutes left.
Mr. Rod Jackson: The whole process needs to be fair on its face. As I said, that’s what natural justice is: fairness in trial and people’s ability to participate fairly in an unbiased way.
If someone is having a decision made against them in seconds, I think there’s something wrong with that. I can’t speak to what’s happened in the past. I can only tell you that in the future you can count on me to make sure that there’s unbiased decision-making and a whole lot of discretion being used in the circumstances that surround each situation, especially when it concerns putting someone out of their home.
Ms. Marit Stiles: If I can just return to some of my earlier questions, were you contacted by anybody and asked to put in an application for this or any other appointments?
Mr. Rod Jackson: No, absolutely not—
Ms. Marit Stiles: And what is your relationship like with the Premier? Have you met the Premier before?
Mr. Rod Jackson: I met him once when I was elected.
Ms. Marit Stiles: Are you familiar with any of the—you must have worked in the past with some of the staff in the Premier’s office, I would assume?
Mr. Rod Jackson: To be honest with you, I’m not even sure because I’m not sure which staff are there now.
Ms. Marit Stiles: When you applied, was this the only position that you applied for, or did you apply for other appointments?
Mr. Rod Jackson: I’ve applied for several others. Off the top of my head, I can’t remember exactly—I think the Human Rights Tribunal. I’m on the Trillium Foundation and Ontario Motor Vehicle Industry Council at the moment.
Ms. Marit Stiles: How many appointments do you currently hold?
Mr. Rod Jackson: I have an appointment with the Ontario Trillium Foundation and OMVIC.
Ms. Marit Stiles: And OMVIC is, again, the Ontario Motor Vehicle—
Mr. Rod Jackson: —Industry Council, yes.
Ms. Marit Stiles: So this will be your third appointment?
Mr. Rod Jackson: Yes.
Ms. Marit Stiles: Mr. Jackson, are there any circumstances in which you think that it would be acceptable right now to evict somebody in the middle of a pandemic?
Mr. Rod Jackson: Yes, I think there are.
Ms. Marit Stiles: So what happens to people who are evicted?
Mr. Rod Jackson: It depends on their situation. Sometimes they’re being evicted because they can’t pay. Sometimes they’re being evicted because they are destroying the property. There’s a whole slew of reasons someone can be evicted. It all depends on the circumstance. Like I said, I’ve represented landlords that are $50,000 out of rent and are about to lose the property that—
Ms. Marit Stiles: Do you think you represented more landlords than you’ve represented tenants?
Mr. Rod Jackson: No. Probably more tenants than landlords.
Ms. Marit Stiles: And do you think landlords—obviously I know, in my riding, lots of small landlords. I work with them all the time, and absolutely, there are sometimes situations that arise that are difficult for sure. But do you believe that there should be a moratorium on evictions during the pandemic? This is a pretty unique time.
Mr. Rod Jackson: That’s not really up to the LTB to commit to anything like that, and I certainly wouldn’t be comfortable commenting on that. That’s something for the government to be deciding. I think they need to be very careful about putting people out on the street and take everything into consideration before evictions happen. I think they trust, hopefully, the members of that board to make sure that any evictions that do happen are just.
Ms. Marit Stiles: Thank you very much. And what I hear—I just want to share before I—
The Vice-Chair (Mr. Aris Babikian): One minute left.
Ms. Marit Stiles: Yes. Before my time runs out, I just want to use this opportunity to share with you that I think—well, we are finding certainly, and it has been widely reported; it’s not just us in the opposition that have this opinion—that the Landlord and Tenant Board seems to be very stacked against tenants right now. Obviously, I hear a lot of what you’re saying, and I appreciate it. I just feel like this is an opportunity to bring fairness. We really need to make sure that the fairness is there.
There are many, many people in my riding and I know in ridings across this province that are being evicted because they simply can’t come up with the money right now. They’ve lost their jobs and, I’ll be honest, there ain’t no jobs coming any time soon—right?—for a lot of these folks. This isn’t going to just end with the pandemic ending—
The Vice-Chair (Mr. Aris Babikian): MPP Stiles, your time is up.
Ms. Marit Stiles: Thank you.
The Vice-Chair (Mr. Aris Babikian): Now we will move to the government side. The government side has 12 minutes and a half.
Mr. Rick Nicholls: Ready to go?
The Vice-Chair (Mr. Aris Babikian): Okay. Mr. Nicholls, go ahead.
Mr. Rick Nicholls: Thank you very much, Mr. Vice-Chair. Good morning, Mr. Jackson.
Mr. Rod Jackson: Mr. Nicholls.
Mr. Rick Nicholls: It’s good to see you here this morning, sir. We do go back a little bit. Of course, I’ve always known you to be a very fair MPP when you were serving the riding up in Barrie, and you represented your riding very well. I have no problems thinking that with your position as being a member of the Landlord and Tenant Board, you will also represent both tenants and landlords very fairly. Again, I thank you for that.
A quick question for you, Mr. Jackson: What motivated you to apply for this position? Was this the only one that you had applied to? I know you somewhat answered that in the previous opposition member’s question, but if you could just maybe elaborate on that for us a little bit.
Mr. Rod Jackson: Sure. The law is something that has always interested me, for a very long time, and part of the reason that I became a lawmaker, when I was elected as a city councillor in Barrie and then as an MPP.
As I mentioned earlier in my opening statement, I also served on the committee of adjustment, which is a quasi-judicial body. A lot of people haven’t heard of the committee of adjustment before. It takes care of minor land use issues in municipalities and makes decisions based on submissions, just like any hearing the LTB might have—a similar sort of set-up, with a panel. There, I was able to gain a lot of experience adjudicating and looking at both sides of the story and realizing how important it is for a very unbiased, a very level-headed, approach to solving people’s problems. These have dramatic effects on their lives, whether they’re landlords or tenants.
MPP Stiles mentioned, too, that people are losing their jobs and are unable to pay their rent. Well, I know that’s absolutely true and extremely sad, to see people put out of their homes. But there are also landlords that—that’s their only source of income, especially a couple of retirees; I’ve represented retirees, and their only income right now is through renting out properties that they own. Now they’re owed tens of thousands of dollars, and they’re having to sell the properties that were their only income. So they’re losing their jobs too.
This is of great concern to me, so being able to apply to this, having represented people there and actually being able to make a difference and help people, is something that has always been important to me. Whenever anyone asked me why I wanted to get elected, I always struggled with the idea, because I was worried, I think, that people would think you’re just giving them a line if you said that it’s because you want to help people, and then I realized that that’s okay. It’s okay to say you want to help people; it shouldn’t be something you’re embarrassed or ashamed of, that it’s something that drives you. I think that’s what drives me: the ambition to help people. It’s why when I left politics I went back to school to become a paralegal, so that I could help people with these types of situations. This just enables me to level-up.
Mr. Rick Nicholls: Thank you very much, Mr. Jackson. Now I’d like to turn it over to MPP Billy Pang.
The Vice-Chair (Mr. Aris Babikian): MPP Pang.
Mr. Billy Pang: Mr. Jackson, it’s nice to meet you. I’m glad that you applied to this position with passion. How will your previous work experiences assist you in being a fair and impartial adjudicator on the LTB?
Mr. Rod Jackson: Thanks for the question. I spent—oh, is everyone still there? Hello?
The Vice-Chair (Mr. Aris Babikian): Mr. Jackson, you are okay. Go ahead.
Mr. Rod Jackson: Oh, okay. Sorry. Everything just dropped off my screen. Can you still hear me now?
The Vice-Chair (Mr. Aris Babikian): Yes, you’re still on.
Mr. Rod Jackson: My apologies. Sorry, everything just blanked out on my screen. I don’t know what happened there. My apologies.
Your question was—I’m sorry. I got thrown off, Mr. Pang. What was your question again?
Mr. Billy Pang: How will your previous work experiences assist you in being a fair and impartial adjudicator on the LTB?
Mr. Rod Jackson: My apologies for that.
I’ve spent a good 20 years as a mediator, and I’ve done everything from community mediations between landlords and tenants and also between families, within businesses. That experience as a mediator, trying to find the right balance for win-win-win—triple-win—situations, which is what you’re always after as a mediator—is really the best way of approaching things. So I think, as an adjudicator, which is definitely a different job, but it really helps you to see—because you’re trained as a mediator to see the value of interests on all sides of the story. I think when you’re doing that as an adjudicator, it’s very valuable to have training to be able to see things for their interest value on both sides. I think that brings a lot to bear in this role.
Also, the experience I have actually at the Landlord and Tenant Board, representing landlords and tenants, is extremely invaluable. You know the language. You know the types of people that are coming there, the types of problems that they have, the challenges the Landlord and Tenant Board has with volume right now, and never mind the pandemic as well and the extra challenges that brings for tenants and for landlords. These things are a big challenge, and I think my experience as an elected official, as a trained mediator and as a paralegal representing parties at this very tribunal would really embolden anything that I’m able to do and any action I’m able to take at the board in that role.
Mr. Billy Pang: Thank you, Mr. Jackson. I will pass the questions to MPP Bouma.
The Vice-Chair (Mr. Aris Babikian): Go ahead.
Mr. Will Bouma: Thank you, Chair. Through you to Mr. Jackson: Thank you for joining us today. It’s a pleasure to have you here. I don’t think we’ve met before, but thank you for your service. I know what it’s like on a committee of adjustment and all the other things that council likes to throw at committee of adjustment when they’re adjudicating these things, whether it’s fencing around lawns or whatever they happen to put on your plate—neighbours mad at neighbours, calling in bylaw on different things. Truly, I get that.
I was just wondering what your experience is with high case volumes, because we know—it has already been mentioned here today—how many cases there are before the Landlord and Tenant Board. Are you prepared to jump in with both feet and get going? And what would you say has prepared you for that work?
Mr. Rod Jackson: Yes, that’s a good question. Well, certainly when I was on the committee of adjustment, we were dealing with very high volumes there. Barrie, as you know, especially at that time, was an extremely fast-growing city—
The Vice-Chair (Mr. Aris Babikian): Five minutes left.
Mr. Rod Jackson: —and that created a high volume. Also, in my time at the Landlord and Tenant Board as a representative, I see the volume and I’m very aware of it. I’ve been working within that high-volume situation, and I think I’d be well attuned to be able to manage that very quickly.
Mr. Will Bouma: Right on. Thank you.
Mr. Chair, I’ll pass it along to MPP Norm Miller.
The Vice-Chair (Mr. Aris Babikian): MPP Miller, it’s your turn.
Mr. Norman Miller: Chair, how much time is there?
The Vice-Chair (Mr. Aris Babikian): Four minutes.
Mr. Norman Miller: Okay, great. I just wanted to make sure I had time for my questions.
Mr. Jackson—Rod—good to see you today. It has been a bit of time. Just a question for you: Parties appearing before the Landlord and Tenant Board often don’t have legal representation, and this can create some challenges, so how would you work with them to ensure they have a fair hearing, even if they can’t understand the procedural details clearly?
Mr. Rod Jackson: I think that’s of critical importance. I know that Small Claims Court, for example, has really shaped itself around people who are self-represented, as an example, as keeping access to justice is a primary thrust of that. They do that by making sure that a lot of the rules are—I wouldn’t say “softened,” but certainly a little more discretion is used by judges in those cases as far as procedure is concerned. I think the same sort of application should be used at the Landlord and Tenant Board, if it’s not already.
I think that there needs to be a lot of patience with people who are unrepresented, as long as they’re respectful. I’m sure there are going to be procedural issues that they don’t recognize; I think making them aware of these and taking that into account, without it being something that counts against their actual case, is critically important. That means using a lot of really good, well-informed discretion and making sure that these people have an opportunity to be fairly heard that doesn’t impose any unfairness on the other party as well.
That can be tricky balancing. It’s a balance of power, something we also deal with in mediation all the time, making sure that there are not any power imbalances. That’s really what it boils down to, I think, as far as making sure that people who are unrepresented have a fair shot when they’re in these situations—maybe even a bit of a guiding hand to them, in that case, as long as it doesn’t create an unfair advantage for the other side.
Mr. Norman Miller: Thank you for that. I think you’re well suited for this position.
I’ll pass it on to MPP Billy Pang.
Mr. Rod Jackson: Thanks, Mr. Miller.
The Vice-Chair (Mr. Aris Babikian): MPP Pang?
The government side has two minutes. Does anyone want to take it? MPP Cuzzetto, please go ahead.
Mr. Rudy Cuzzetto: Good morning and thank you, Mr. Jackson, for being here. I know that under COVID-19, most of the Landlord and Tenant Board hearings are being conducted online. What do you see as some of the challenges of online hearings, and how will you approach them differently than in-person hearings?
Mr. Rod Jackson Yes, it’s definitely more difficult to do virtual hearings. I think, as we all can attest sitting here today in this hearing, everything is always easier when you’re in-person. You can see body language. You can see facial expressions better. It’s the way we’re built to interact with one another, so virtual hearings are definitely a challenge.
The Vice-Chair (Mr. Aris Babikian): One minute.
Mr. Rod Jackson: I think, as far as being an adjudicator, that it’s very important for you to be able to have a certain amount of patience when you’re dealing with technological issues with people who maybe aren’t that great with technological issues, and making sure that that doesn’t affect the outcome of the matter at hand. I think just having a lot of patience in dealing with people and technology itself and everything surrounding it—and understanding that people are also under a lot of stress right now, and their behaviour might be indicative of that, and using your discretion to make sure you manage that situation properly.
Mr. Rudy Cuzzetto: Thank you.
The Vice-Chair (Mr. Aris Babikian): Ten seconds left for the government side. Okay.
Thank you very much, Mr. Jackson, for coming and sharing your thoughts, your experience and your insight with us. We’re grateful for your spending the time with us. Thank you very much.
Mr. Terence H. Young
Review of intended appointment, selected by official opposition party: Terence H. Young, intended appointee as member, Retirement Homes Regulatory Authority—board of directors.
The Vice-Chair (Mr. Aris Babikian): Now, we’ll move to Mr. Terence H. Young, who is nominated as a member of the Retirement Homes Regulatory Authority board of directors.
Mr. Young, as you may be aware, you have the opportunity, should you choose to do so, to make an initial statement. Following this, there will be questions from members of the committee.
Mr. Young, you’re ready?
Mr. Terence H. Young: Yes, thank you.
The Vice-Chair (Mr. Aris Babikian): Oh, my apologies. I have to read—I thought we could leave it to afterwards.
With the questioning, we will start with the government, followed by the official opposition, with 15 minutes allocated to each recognized party. Any time you take in your statement will be deducted from the time allotted to the government.
Mr. Young, go ahead, please.
Mr. Terence H. Young: Good morning to the committee members. Mr. Chairman, I appreciate the opportunity very much to appear before you today to outline my qualifications for serving on the Retirement Homes Regulatory Authority.
In 1966, a lady in her early seventies rang our doorbell at the rectory of St. Anne’s Anglican Church in Parkdale, where my father, Canon George Young, was rector. I lived there with my parents and four brothers. My father invited the lady into his study and asked how he could help her. She asked him if he could help her find a job. She told him she lived alone and just wanted to be around people.
In those years, hundreds of pensioners lived alone in Parkdale rooming houses, flats and tiny apartments, many of them not cooking nutritious foods or even having any visitors.
That request was an inspiration to my father, and in 1968, Governor General Roland Michener officially opened St. Anne’s Tower, the very first high-rise not-for-profit seniors’ residence providing meals in North America. Now there are hundreds. On opening, there was a waiting list of over 400 seniors.
This great respect for the dignity and health of seniors was a value ingrained into my four brothers and me as far back as we can remember. My father has been my role model in caring for seniors and others.
I believe in the Retirement Homes Regulatory Authority Residents’ Bill of Rights, which sets out the rights of residents and guarantees the right to be treated with courtesy, with respect and, most importantly, with dignity. As a director of the authority, I will dedicate myself to ensuring those rights are enforced.
In the 1980s, I was asked to be secretary of the board of directors of St. Anne’s Tower, and later I served as president of the Lewis Garnsworthy Tower, one of three buildings at St. Hilda’s Towers in Toronto, where I served on the board until 2012—another not-for-profit residence. The chairman was Canon Derwyn Shea, a former member of this assembly. We provided our first-class in-house supportive care program and delicious meals there to up to 400 seniors.
I am very comfortable speaking up for vulnerable patients and speaking truth to power, which I have done for 20 years as a patient advocate, especially in the House of Commons and Senate as MP for Oakville.
In 2000, after losing our 15-year-old daughter, Vanessa, to an unsafe prescription drug, I founded Drug Safety Canada as president, and I became the go-to guy in Canada for people who had loss a family member to a prescription drug, our fourth-leading cause of death in Canada and the US.
As MP, I conceived Vanessa’s Law, the Protecting Canadians from Unsafe Drugs Act, which was turned into the most significant amendment to the Food and Drugs Act in 50 years. It was passed without dissent in the House and Senate and became law in November 2014. I focused on working with the other parties and we accomplished a lot of good, collegial work on the Standing Committee on Health, and not just Vanessa’s Law. I seconded Elizabeth May’s private member’s bill to establish a national framework to address Lyme disease, which became the law of Canada. I introduced a private member’s bill, C-68, with all-party support, which would demand warning labels on all devices that emit radiation.
On the Standing Committee on the Status of Women, I initiated a study of eating disorders, the most deadly and difficult to treat of all psychiatric diseases, 90% of which strike females, which provided an important resource for patients and doctors.
I have a great deal of committee and board experience. In this assembly, I chaired the Standing Committee on Finance and was parliamentary assistant to the Minister of Finance, as well as colleges and universities, where I was responsible for stakeholder relations.
My board experience also includes three years as board member and adjudicator at the Ontario Alcohol and Gaming Commission, and my ICD.D—that’s the Institute of Corporate Directors—training at Rotman School of Business in the Directors Education program.
I accepted this assignment because it is an honour to work in the public interest, but especially protecting vulnerable people. I am grateful for the opportunity, and I look forward to your questions.
The Vice-Chair (Mr. Aris Babikian): Thank you, Mr. Young. We will go to the government side. You have 10 minutes left. Who wants to start the questioning? MPP Nicholls, go ahead, please.
Mr. Rick Nicholls: Mr. Young, it’s always a pleasure to see you, sir, and to chat with you along the way. Listening to your story about your father—I, at one point in time, served 25 years on a not-for-profit seniors’ residence in Chatham, Ontario, called Evangel Villa, so I can certainly relate to your situations and your desire to serve as a member on the Retirement Homes Regulatory Authority.
Very quickly, Mr. Young: How do you feel that your role as a former elected official will help with the responsibilities associated with this appointment?
Mr. Terence H. Young: Thank you, MPP Nicholls. The skills are to a large degree the same, between being a member of provincial Parliament and serving on a board. First of all, political intelligence and understanding how governments work will be a big help: what the Legislative Assembly can do and what it can’t do; what’s more appropriate for regulatory bodies to do and what they can’t do; how do the choices of the boards affect public policy and how do they communicate them.
Another skill is issues management. Politicians have to deal with issues day in and day out. So what creates them and how do you deal with them? How does an issue grow, and how can they be defused? Those are key skills for a board member as well.
How regulations work: I served in Ottawa on a joint committee called scrutiny of regulations, a joint committee with the Senate, where they actually study closely regulations that have been law, and how they’re not working, because they actually have the power to change regulations. So that can be a huge help.
Also, public boards have oversight over operations, just as legislative committees have oversight of operations. You bring out weaknesses and strengths by asking questions, by probing and by asking questions about the culture of the organization. You can write and pass regulations all day, but if they can’t be enforced, you undermine the law.
So the jobs are very, very similar. Board members must listen to and examine, in order to protect the residents. I have here a copy of the Residents’ Bill of Rights, which I’ve read through about 10 times over the last week. It’s a great document, and in number 8, it establishes a level of care that the board is responsible for, which is higher than you could actually put into regulations. You have to exceed what the regulations say.
Here’s what it says with regard to retirement homes, which I think is the most important clause. If I can just read briefly, Chair: “a safe and clean environment, where” the resident “is treated with courtesy and respect and in a way that ... recognizes” their “individuality and respects” their “dignity.” I think “dignity” is the key word there.
The probing and the understanding government and all those other skills that are related—they’re all similar skills.
Mr. Rick Nicholls: Thank you very much, Mr. Young. I appreciate your detailed explanation. I’m now going to turn it over to Mr. Pang.
How much time do we have left, Chair?
The Vice-Chair (Mr. Aris Babikian): Seven minutes.
Mr. Rick Nicholls: About seven minutes; okay. We have a number of people to ask some questions.
Mr. Pang, I’ll turn it over to you, sir.
The Vice-Chair (Mr. Aris Babikian): MPP Pang, the turn is yours.
Mr. Billy Pang: It’s nice to meet you, Mr. Young. To listen to your story is a treat to me, as a first-term MPP. Having said that, how can your professional experience in settings other than your work at Queen’s Park and Parliament Hill apply to the RHRA?
Mr. Terence H. Young: Thank you very much, MPP Pang. When I left Parliament in 2015, I chose a path to pursue in part working on public and private boards. I completed a one-year course at the Rotman school of business to achieve my director’s status for membership in the Institute of Corporate Directors. That course is an excellent course. It’s like a mini-MBA for directors. We discussed all the aspects of a director’s responsibility, the importance of spending up to 30% of your time on long-term strategy, the understanding that in a large organization, “culture eats strategy for breakfast”—that’s the quote we studied by Peter Drucker—and leading by example. That added to my own experience on boards that I’ve been on throughout my career.
I’ve been on a number of community boards, like Crime Stoppers of Halton, the Glen Abbey policing board, and I was on the Glen Abbey Residents Association board. But in addition to that, I served on the Alcohol and Gaming Commission for three years, from 2000 to 2003, where we adjudicated and helped determine policy for the province on the safety of gaming and keeping the regulations with regard to serving alcohol.
I’m a co-founder of the Ontario Association of Former Parliamentarians, which was established by a bill through the Legislative Assembly, where we do some charitable works and we do educational works regarding the parliamentary system. It’s a resource for former members if they ever have any personal issues etc. It’s a fraternal organization.
In addition to that, I was on the board of St. Hilda’s Towers for 12 years. St. Anne’s Tower was the one my father built. They came from all over North America; 400 people from different groups came to see St. Anne’s Tower. One of them was at Dufferin and Eglinton—St. Hilda’s parish—and they built three towers. I later went on that board for 12 years. We spent every board meeting scrutinizing the quality of life, the health care we provided and the food that the residents were being served. We were like a committee of the whole caring for the residents. I think that that would help greatly in serving on this board as well.
In addition to that, I spent a lot of my life in customer service. If we viewed the residents as customers—more than customers, but customers certainly—and follow the Residents’ Bill of Rights, we would be able to stay on top of issues before they got out of hand.
I was 14 years in customer service at Bell Canada, doing sales and service. We set up the highest level of service for residential customers in North America, out of 50 telcos. Our average wait-time on calls was seven seconds before answering the phone. We spoke 30 languages. We had 40 people working there and we spoke 30 languages. We extended our hours of service from 9 in the morning until 9 at night. We gave superb service. That’s always been an interest of mine and something I’ve had a lot of experience in as well.
Mr. Billy Pang: Thank you. Wow, great experiences. I’ll pass the next question to MPP Bouma.
The Vice-Chair (Mr. Aris Babikian): MPP Bouma, go ahead. You have three minutes.
Mr. Will Bouma: Thank you, Mr. Chair. Through you: Mr. Young, it’s so good to see you here today. I saw from your resumé that you also have quite a bit of experience between rural and urban, just like my riding. We have the city of Brantford but then we have so much in the county of Brant around that, and we would also have retirement homes both in the city and in the county. I was wondering if you could expand a little bit further about how your experience working through rural and urban and the different pieces on that will help you on the RHRA.
Mr. Terence H. Young: As MPP for Halton Centre, which is north Oakville and north Burlington, we travelled on one of our major bills across Ontario with the general government committee, so I got to see the different needs and the different issues in those communities. They were a lot different from where I lived, which was Oakville, basically the urban GTA.
When I was at Bell Canada, we provided service across Ontario getting broadband—that is, you couldn’t get cable in a lot of the communities. Broadband had not yet expanded, so there were disadvantages, certainly, for education and a whole range of things. I became aware of that.
I also became aware—I’m chair of Drug Safety Canada, which I founded in 2000. The level of health care and what’s available in health care to communities is very different in the small communities and in the northern communities than it is in the GTA. I can drive to a hospital in 15 minutes from my home, as many people can in the GTA. It’s not like that in the north. Some people have trouble finding a regular family doctor in the Far North. I know in some of the homes, it’s difficult to get PSWs to provide the service that they need. It’s like a different world in many ways. They’re polarized in many ways, and they require special attention—
The Vice-Chair (Mr. Aris Babikian): One minute left.
Mr. Terence H. Young: Sorry. Go ahead.
The Vice-Chair (Mr. Aris Babikian): You can continue, Mr. Young, if you have additional comments.
Mr. Terence H. Young: Just that they have different needs and require different services sometimes. Thank you.
Mr. Will Bouma: Well, I think we’ll wrap it up there with just a minute left, but again, if I could just say on behalf of the members here at the committee that it’s an absolute pleasure having you here today. I look forward, if we pass this resolution, to having you sitting on the RHRA on our behalf. Thank you again, Mr. Young.
The Vice-Chair (Mr. Aris Babikian): Now we will go to the opposition side. Who would like to take the first—MPP Gates, go ahead.
Mr. Wayne Gates: Mr. Young, first of all, I’ll congratulate you on being a former PC MPP. At some point in time, we’re all former MPPs, regardless of our party. If I take a look at it, it would look like in 1999 you lost to an NDPer and in 2015 you lost to a Liberal, so you’re kind of spreading it around to all three parties, if I’m correct. I picked up on that on the language I got.
This particular committee—and certainly no disrespect to you, sir—should be non-partisan, so I’ll ask you a question and I’ll make a few statements, and I’ll carry on to the Retirement Homes Regulatory Authority, because, quite frankly, that particular authority is a mess.
As a previous Conservative MP and Progressive Conservative MPP, would it be fair to assume you have made donations to the political party that is currently in government? The current government is appointing you to this position to protect Ontarians living in retirement homes.
Mr. Terence H. Young: Yes, that’s fair to say.
Mr. Wayne Gates: Would you have any idea how much you donated to the party?
Mr. Terence H. Young: I don’t think I—my business is I do strategic communications for people who have to deal with government, so I do government relations. I have donated mostly related to events, to attend events that give you a chance to network and to meet the members of provincial Parliament. I have donated probably less $1,000 a year, on average.
Mr. Wayne Gates: And what about the federal Conservatives?
Mr. Terence H. Young: I’m just looking at it. It’s similar. But some of that money is also associated—when you go to a party convention, some of the money is considered a donation as well, so mostly related to conventions and events.
Mr. Wayne Gates: Yes, conventions are all donations as well. It’s kind of how they function.
I want to clear, because I learned a new word yesterday in question period. It was called “myth.” This is a good place to use “myth.” It’s a myth that this is a non-partisan committee, from what I’ve seen in the last three weeks that I’ve been here.
With the COVID-19 pandemic, we have witnessed some real tragedies in our long-term-care homes and in our retirement homes. Do you currently believe that the Retirement Homes Regulatory Authority is an effective agency to regulate the well-being of residents?
Mr. Terence H. Young: Well, I’m fully aware of the serious problems that have happened in these homes in the last year in particular, some of the horror stories—
Mr. Wayne Gates: Can you ask him to speak up? I can’t hear him.
The Vice-Chair (Mr. Aris Babikian): Can you speak louder, please, or get closer to the microphone? Thank you.
Mr. Terence H. Young: I’m fully aware of the problems that have been in the newspapers in some of these retirement homes. I know a number of them have been closed or taken over by other care institutions. It’s a tragedy. It’s truly a tragedy.
But I think this points out the importance of the Patients’ Bill of Rights that is in the law itself, and that the RHRA enforces it properly. I can tell you, one of the first questions—if not the first—that I will ask at my first board meeting will be, what happened in these homes and why did it happen? When they started to get into trouble, who did they contact? What progress did they make? Those are the questions we need the answers to.
I know that there’s a statutory review of the agency coming up. That would be another opportunity to examine matters that worked and move toward best practices so that these things never happen again.
Mr. Wayne Gates: Well, I think I can help you on why it happened: We decided to put profit ahead of care, and when we did that—when shareholders and CEOs were taking profit from retirement homes and long-term care—we saw the care that was given to our parents and our grandparents and our aunts and our uncles. I’ll be very clear: The pandemic highlighted it. It’s been going on in long-term care and retirement homes for a long, long time.
One primary area of concern in the retirement home industry is inclusive of residents that require complex medical care. I hope you understand that. Typically, they are discharged from a hospital with no long-term-care beds available and they end up in a retirement home. The Auditor General found that thousands of retirement home beds are being used for alternate-level-of-care residents, who are trapped in a place that isn’t meeting their needs. Do you think the Retirement Homes Regulatory Authority is doing enough to address this serious, serious problem?
Mr. Terence H. Young: I haven’t been to a board meeting yet; I only know what I’ve read in the newspapers. I’m anxious to get involved to try and improve the situation for all the residents and enforce this bill of rights.
Mr. Wayne Gates: Mr. Young, are you aware of this issue where they’re releasing alternate-level-of-care residents to retirement homes? Are you aware of this as you’re applying for this particular position?
Mr. Terence H. Young: No, I wasn’t aware of the extent of that happening. Back in 2003, I represented St. Peter’s Hospital at Queen’s Park. They were working on getting funding to build a long-term-care facility in Hamilton. St. Peter’s Hospital is a chronic care hospital, as you know. They did get the funding and they built a facility with 200 beds for long-term care. So I’m familiar with the issues around it.
I wasn’t familiar with what you’re telling me right now because I haven’t been involved with retirement homes. But I understand the issues with complex continuing care, that it is a higher level of care and that facilities that are not equipped would not be appropriate for it.
Mr. Wayne Gates: I’m going to be very clear on this particular subject: It is happening in our retirement homes, and unfortunately—I’m going to read out a situation that happened in my own riding, which has really gone on across the province. Maybe this will help you, because no matter what we do here, you’ll get appointed to the regulatory authority, just because of sheer numbers.
I’d like to speak to you about a real-life situation where I witnessed this, and how it can be devastating to someone’s life. Chris Gladders was a resident at Greycliff Manor retirement home in Niagara Falls. He was young—he was in his thirties; he had complex medical care needs—but still found himself in a retirement home. He was released from the hospital in Hamilton. The home was not staffed or equipped to handle his complex care needs, and he suffered because of it. He decided to seek out medical assistance in dying, and that took place in January. When his family visited him the day that he was having medical assistance in dying, they found him living in deplorable conditions. There was feces and urine on the floor and in his bed. His 12-year-old daughter was laying beside her father in the bed with feces and urine, in a bed that hadn’t been changed for months. This is how she had to say goodbye to her dad.
This particular home’s owners had their operating licence revoked, but they still remained the owners until June of this year. A third-party operator was put in place and approved by the RHRA; however, these conditions were still allowed to continue. Do you believe, sir, that the RHRA has enough regulatory power if situations like this can continue, even though they are aware that there is neglect by an owner?
I want to say that nobody should have had to die the way this man did, and no family member should have had to see what that daughter saw, because that’s the last thing she’s going to see and remember of her dad.
Now, this has been brought forward, but this is what’s going on in retirement homes because they don’t have the level of care they need, they don’t have the staffing they need and they don’t have the expertise. This is what you’ve applied to become a board member of. We need to fix the RHRA.
I’d like to hear some comments from you on this, sir.
The Vice-Chair (Mr. Aris Babikian): Five minutes left.
Mr. Terence H. Young: Well, obviously, that’s completely unacceptable. It’s very hard to listen to, and I appreciate your explaining it to me in detail. I had read a little bit about that situation, but not with the same level of detail that you provided today.
All I can say is that as a board member on the RHRA, I will investigate that situation thoroughly and any others like it. I find them completely unacceptable. I think we have to go to what I read to you earlier, number 8 on the Residents’ Bill of Rights. If that is properly enforced, these situations won’t happen.
The right to live in a safe and clean environment, to be treated with courtesy and respect, in a way that fully recognizes the resident’s individuality and respects the resident’s dignity—what you’re saying is that this young man had no dignity in those last few days of life, and it’s an awful situation. I guarantee you, I will work to make sure those situations don’t happen again.
Mr. Wayne Gates: Mr. Young, because I want you to know what you’re going into when it comes to the retirement homes and exactly what the Retirement Homes Regulatory Authority—this is not an isolated case. This is going on in a number of retirement homes. I don’t know about Oakville, but I know they’re happening in Hamilton. They’re happening in Toronto and Peel. So what we have to do, quite frankly, is to do what everybody is saying should be done: The RHRA should be discontinued and put into an entire body. I’ve talked to the government about this. I’ve talked to the chief of staff of our long-term-care minister.
So I guess I’m trying to get a point across to you, sir, that when you ask to be appointed to this, there is going to be a very big responsibility. I know from being an MPP—like all of us who are MPPs—that there’s a big responsibility to be an MPP and to serve our constituents, but in this particular case you’re going to be serving all Ontario, and you’re going to be sitting on a regulatory authority board that has lost its way here in the province of Ontario.
I would advise you to talk to the long-term-care minister, who is fully aware of this particular situation; talk to the seniors’ minister, who is aware of this situation, but he’s also aware of others; talk to his staff about it before you go to your first meeting, so you get educated on exactly what you put your name in for.
No hospital—because it’s not just the retirement home. The hospital should never have released that man after he’s had a stroke to a retirement home, knowing full well they didn’t have the staffing, they didn’t have the expertise and they couldn’t take care of him. He suffered another stroke and decided to have assisted dying. That shouldn’t happen in our system and it shouldn’t happen in a system that’s geared to profit, rather than care.
I’m trying to get this across to you, sir. I appreciate the fact that you have put your name forward here, but this is a regulatory authority that is in a mess and needs to be cleaned up. I can’t be any clearer.
I think I’ve got one more question for you.
The Vice-Chair (Mr. Aris Babikian): One minute.
Mr. Wayne Gates: I’ve got one minute, and I’ll try to read it out, sir. Obviously I don’t believe that you will want a situation like that that I just described to happen in the province ever again. No one should be forced to live in such conditions. So what are some possible changes that could be made at the RHRA to ensure that homes like these cannot continue to operate, even with a third party operating it, like in the case of Greycliff Manor? And there are other retirement homes that are operated by third parties as well.
Mr. Terence H. Young: Thank you very much for the detailed explanation, and I much appreciate your heartfelt remarks; I really do.
I’m not on the board yet. I have yet to learn the strict parameters of what the board can and cannot do. But I know there’s talk of a commission starting in July to examine what’s happened with regard to COVID in these situations. There’s a statutory review. The bill has to be reviewed every five years. Perhaps that’s the time for new—
The Vice-Chair (Mr. Aris Babikian): Thank you, Mr. Young. The time is up. That concludes the time allocated. Thank you very much for your presentation.
Now we will consider the intended appointment of Mr. Rod Jackson, nominated as member of the Landlord and Tenant Board. A member will move the concurrence. MPP Nicholls.
Mr. Rick Nicholls: I move concurrence in the intended appointment of Rod Jackson, nominated as member of the Landlord and Tenant Board.
The Vice-Chair (Mr. Aris Babikian): Is there any debate? Any further discussion? Thank you. Are the members ready to vote? Okay.
Ms. Marit Stiles: Chair?
The Vice-Chair (Mr. Aris Babikian): Yes, MPP Stiles?
Ms. Marit Stiles: Can I ask for a recorded vote, please?
Bailey, Bouma, Cuzzetto, Norman Miller, Nicholls, Pang.
Bisson, Gates, Stiles.
The Vice-Chair (Mr. Aris Babikian): The motion is carried.
We will now consider the intended appointment of Mr. Terence H. Young, nominated as a member of the Retirement Homes Regulatory Authority board of directors. A member will move the concurrence. MPP Nicholls.
Mr. Rick Nicholls: I move concurrence of the intended appointment of Terence H. Young, nominated as member of the Retirement Homes Regulatory Authority board of directors.
The Vice-Chair (Mr. Aris Babikian): Any discussion? Any debate? Go ahead, MPP Stiles.
Ms. Marit Stiles: I would ask for a recorded vote, please.
The Vice-Chair (Mr. Aris Babikian): Thank you, MPP Stiles. Since it is already 10:15, we will not have time to do the voting, so we will move it to next week’s meeting.
The committee is adjourned. Thank you.
The committee adjourned at 1016.
STANDING COMMITTEE ON GOVERNMENT AGENCIES
Chair / Président
Mr. Gilles Bisson (Timmins ND)
Vice-Chair / Vice-Président
Mr. Aris Babikian (Scarborough–Agincourt PC)
Mr. Aris Babikian (Scarborough–Agincourt PC)
Mr. Gilles Bisson (Timmins ND)
Mr. Will Bouma (Brantford–Brant PC)
Mr. Lorne Coe (Whitby PC)
Mr. Wayne Gates (Niagara Falls ND)
Mrs. Robin Martin (Eglinton–Lawrence PC)
Mr. Norman Miller (Parry Sound–Muskoka PC)
Mr. Rick Nicholls (Chatham-Kent–Leamington PC)
Mr. Billy Pang (Markham–Unionville PC)
Mlle Amanda Simard (Glengarry–Prescott–Russell L)
Ms. Marit Stiles (Davenport ND)
Substitutions / Membres remplaçants
Mr. Robert Bailey (Sarnia–Lambton PC)
Mr. Rudy Cuzzetto (Mississauga–Lakeshore PC)
Clerk / Greffière
Ms. Julia Douglas
Staff / Personnel
Ms. Lauren Warner, research officer,