What can I do if I see abuse in a long-term care home?

3. Report the abuse

If someone is being hurt or threatened, call 911.

If it’s not an emergency but you think a crime is being committed, you can call your local police station. You can also report a crime without giving your name through Crime Stoppers. Call them at 1-800-222-8477. Or, you can make a report using their website.

Making a report

Residents can report abuse but the law says they do not have to.  If you’re a worker or visitor, you must report abuse.

If you work at a , you must report the abuse to the Ministry of Long-Term Care. You must do this even if management at the home says you must report to them.

If management does not require you to report to them, you can still do that if you want to.

The law says that the management must investigate concerns and report to the Ministry of Long-Term Care. A long-term home cannot punish its staff members for reporting abuse.

Visitors must also report abuse to the Ministry. And they can report to staff or management of the home if they want to.

How to report to the Ministry

You do this by contacting the Long-term Home Care ACTION Line. You can call 1-866-434-0144, between 8:30 a.m. and 7 p.m., 7 days a week. You don’t have to give your name.

Give as much as information as you can. This makes it easier for your report to be investigated. You have to give:

  • the name of the home
  • the address of the home, including the town or city it’s in
  • a description of what happened, including whether it happened once or is an ongoing problem
  • when and where it happened if it’s a specific event, for example, inside or outside the home
  • who was involved

After you make a report

The Ministry of Long-Term Care must look into all reports of abuse.

There are number of things that can happen after you make a report. For example:

  • the Ministry works to make sure that the home is following the laws that apply to long-term care homes
  • the police could be called to investigate if it looks like a crime has been committed
  • the home could be inspected

The Ministry must send an inspector to the home immediately if the report is about harm or risk of harm to a resident.

If you give your name, address, and telephone number:

  • a Ministry employee will follow up with you to get your full report, usually within 2 business days
  • the two of you can discuss the next steps
  • you’ll get a report explaining what was done about the problem

If you don’t give your name and contact information:

  • phone-line staff will pass your report to an inspector, who will follow up
  • the inspector won’t be able to contact you later to let you know what happened
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