Ontario Ministry of Health reverses course on guardianship requirement for disabled woman with mental illness who was adopted
The Ontario Ministry of Health has reversed its decision to require a guardian in order to allow a woman with mental illness to be adopted into a loving home in the province.
“The decision to place Ms. S is in the best interest of Ms. S and the health and safety of Ms. S’s family,” said Lisa McClean, a spokesperson for the Ministry of Health and Long Term Care.
“In light of the importance of Ms. S receiving the services and supports that she needs, the Ontario Ministry of Health, in consultation with Ms. S’s mental health and social service providers, determined that Ms. S does not meet the criteria for a guardian.”
The decision was made after Dr. Bruce Campbell, a clinician and expert on mental illness, who was a member of Ms. S’s care team when she was placed in care, presented the ministry with a “care plan” outlining what Ms. S would need in order to live in a safe and supportive environment.
After completing the care plan, the ministry consulted with Ms. S’s psychiatrist, Dr. Peter Tait, and with the Ontario Ministry of Community and Social Services (OMCSS).
During the review, Dr. Tait made it clear that Ms. S could not live independently in a nursing home and that she would have to be a ward of a relative or an agency. In light of these concerns, the ministry found it was not in Ms. S’s best interests for her to be placed in a parent-adopt home.
The ministry said this is an isolated case, and that it will take a “multi-disciplinary, holistic approach” to Ms. S’s placement, based on what is known at this point.
In an interview with CTV News Toronto, Dr. Tait said he believed that the ministry made the right decision.
“I don’t think there’s anything to say that she shouldn’t have a family or she shouldn’t be under a guardianship. She would have had to be on the wait list