MORRISBURG – Michael Parsa, Ontario Minister of the Ministry of Children, Community and Social Services was in Morrisburg June 29 to tour the local Community Living Dundas County facility.
While there were no funding announcements associated with the visit, the tour did provide the Community Living facility management team the opportunity to show Parsa what they do and to speak to him directly about the challenges the 45 year-old Non-Profit Organization faces.
Parliamentary Assistant and local MPP Nolan Quinn arranged last Friday’s tour.
“Community Living is an important organization and I wanted Minister Parsa to see services across all parts of our riding,” Quinn told The Leader.
The same tour travelled to Naomi’s Family Resource Centre in Winchester and to Baldwin’s House and Beyond 21 in Cornwall. “I wanted him to see all aspects of these important organizations,” added Quinn.
After the tour Brenda Laviolette, CLDC director of supports and services spoke with Parsa about a number of issues.
She said the lack of affordable housing and especially accessible affordable housing is a great barrier. Parsa said, “We’re moving quickly on that. We know that in a crisis situation, the most vulnerable are affected the most.”
“We need to stabilize housing. It’s top of mind for us.”
Staff recruitment and retention as well as lack of transportation resources were also discussed.
Lavioltte said that Community Living is greatly in need of an increase to its base budget funding, which has remained the same for about the last 10 years.
Parsa noted the concerns.
Before leaving new Community Living Dundas County Board President Dave Conners thanked Parsa for taking the time to get a better understanding of CLDC.
CLDC board member Daniel Kennedy presented Parsa with a copy of the book written and produced by Community Living Dundas County entitled Our Stories…Our Lives in Dundas County.
“My story is in there, and I’ve autographed this copy for you,” said Kennedy.