Mentally Disabled Win Class Status Over Loss of Services at Age 18 in Ontario

By Colin Perkel
The Canadian Press, December 14, 2018

TORONTO A lawsuit alleging the Ontario government has been arbitrarily making thousands of mentally disabled people wait indefinitely for provincial government supports after they turn 18 was certified as a class action on Friday.

In his decision, Superior Court Justice Edward Belobaba agreed the plaintiff had made a strong enough case to allow the as-yet untested claim to proceed to trial on its merits.

“The plaintiff’s complaint is not about inadequate funding or the need for a greater allocation of governmental resources but about the negligent utilization and administration of existing resources,” Belobaba wrote in his decision.

“The plaintiff points to the indeterminate delays in the wait-listed services, the flawed computer programs and bad databases, and the poor prioritization and matching of available resources.”

The lawsuit, which accuses the province of harm-causing negligence, seeks $110 million in damages. It also asks for a declaration that the government has failed adults assessed as eligible for help but who have instead been placed on indeterminate waiting lists.

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