QUEEN’S PARK – Premier Ford’s Ontario PC’s have passed controversial new legislation that could force hospital patients awaiting long-term care to be stored in long-term self storage units not of their own choosing.
“Folks, we need some place to keep all these old dying people,” explained Ford to reporters, “and it seems to me that an elderly patient would fit pretty neatly inside a 75 to 149 square foot unit down at ol’ EZ Self Storage.
“Plus, for as little as $484 a month – $198.50 with EZ Self Storage’s current Summer Sale – that’s a huge savings off of the regular $1,800 per day uninsured cost of a hospital stay,” Ford exclaimed. “Think of the value!”
Ford’s government has faced criticism over the vague wording of the legislation, which implies that seniors may be packed into storage units without even a padded moving blanket. Long-term Care Minister Paul Calandra has said the government moved quickly because of the urgent need to free up acute care beds in hospitals, “and also to beat the September rush of students renting all the choice storage units.”
The Ontario PCs also opted not to solicit public feedback before the bill was passed, mainly because “old people love showing up to those things”.
Ontario NDP interim leader Peter Tabuns was quick to criticize Ford’s cost-cutting plan. “It’s very clear: seniors will get bullied, they will get huge bills, and they will possibly end up sold as part of a Storage Wars marathon on A&E.”
The new legislation doesn’t allow patients to be physically forced to move to a long-term storage unit, though uncooperative seniors could be stored upright “on one of those 2-wheel dolly things”.
Reached for comment, many Ontario seniors seem split on the storage unit announcement.
Morty Shellman of Brampton notes, “My kids don’t visit me in a rest home, my kids don’t visit me in a storage unit – makes no difference to me.”
Patrice Kremps of Thunder Bay added, “They forgot to clean out the storage unit they placed me in, and I think I used to own this lamp.”