2. Learn who must report

If you're a visitor or worker at a , the law says that you must report any abuse or harm being done to a resident. This includes if you reasonably suspect abuse.

You make your report to the Retirement Homes Regulatory Authority (RHRA). See Step 3.


Your visit could be to see a resident or for another purpose, such as delivering mail, going to a Board of Directors meeting, or doing repairs or maintenance.


If you work at a retirement home, you must report abuse. It does not matter:

  • what your job is,
  • if you work there regularly or just occasionally, or
  • if you're paid by the home or by a contractor that the home uses.

This is true even if the report is based on information you would normally keep confidential, such as personal information about a resident's health. For example, you still must report abuse if you're a member of a regulated health profession or a member of the Ontario College of Social Workers and Social Service Workers.

The law says that a retirement home cannot punish its staff members for reporting abuse.

Getting a fine

If the law says that you must report abuse and you don't do this, you may be guilty of an offence and be fined. This applies to:

  • an operator, manager, officer, or director of a retirement home,
  • a staff member of the home, or
  • anyone who provides professional services at the home in the areas of health, social work, social service work, or finance.
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