By Goldie Ghamari, MPP for Carleton
Save the date, you’re invited!
For the last three years, it has been difficult for anyone or any organization to plan and organize a community event.
Fortunately, the restrictions from the COVID-19 pandemic have been lifted, and things are getting back to normal.
The good news for us is that we can finally hold our free community BBQ!
This year’s event will take place Sat., Sept. 9 at the Richmond Fairgrounds. Volunteer firefighters from Richmond will be manning the grill and cooking up hamburgers and hot dogs, while we will also be serving up cobs of corn and vegetable samosas.
The most entertaining and multi-talented man in all of Carleton, Dr. Kaboom, will be joining us. We will also have a bouncy castle, face painting, and entertainment and activities that will be announced closer to the date.
I also want to emphasize that this is a non-partisan, non-political event. This is an event to celebrate Carleton, and to celebrate our best summer in years.
I hope to see you there!
The media, both locally and around the province, has been very kind in promoting my Private Member’s Bill. If passed, Bill 93, 2023, An Act to enact Joshua’s Law (Lifejackets for Life) would make it mandatory for any child aged 12 years or younger to wear a life jacket or a PFD while on a pleasure boat nine metres in length or less that is under way or while being towed behind a boat: for example, water-skiing, wakeboarding or tubing.
Even though it is not yet the law, please be sure to wear lifejackets while on the water and stay safe.
The Capital Fair is just around the corner at Rideau Carleton Raceway
One of the great things about being the MPP for Carleton is that our riding hosts three amazing fairs every year.
The Richmond Fair and the Metcalfe Fair are well known throughout Eastern Ontario, but the entire fair season kicks off with a big one that is right in the back yard for readers in Riverside South and Findlay Creek.
The Capital Fair gets underway Aug. 18 and takes place at the Rideau Carleton Raceway. While many people think the fair started to replace the old Central Canada Exhibition or Ottawa Ex, the Capital Fair is actually the old Gloucester Fair.
In 1999, the Gloucester Agricultural Society moved the Gloucester Fair to the Rideau Carleton Raceway. They changed the name to the Capital Fair in 2014. In taking on a new 10-day format in August, the fair moved to introduce its expanded program to the region by implementing an introductory free gate admission program. The results were wildly successful as in 2017 the fair attracted more than 255,000 guests.
With all of the restrictions from COVID-19 now behind us, we hope to see the biggest and best Capital Fair ever!
Ontario Doing Even More to Grow its Health Care Workforce
The Ontario government is continuing to create new pathways to connect more people to care across the province, both for now and for future generations. As part of Your Health: A Plan for Connected and Convenient Care, the government is launching three new programs that will break down barriers for internationally educated physicians to work in Ontario, retain more health care workers with mentorship opportunities and explore innovative ways that health care workers can deliver convenient care to people in their own communities.
The Honourable Sylvia Jones, Deputy Premier and Minister of Health, commented that these new initiatives will allow international physicians to work sooner, support experienced nurses to share their skills and knowledge, and explore innovative ways to grow our workforce for future generations.
Starting July 25, new “As of Right” rules come into effect, making Ontario the first province to allow highly-trained physicians, nurses, respiratory therapists and medical laboratory technologists already registered or licensed in another Canadian jurisdiction to start work immediately when they arrive without having to first register with one of Ontario’s health regulatory colleges. These changes will help health care workers overcome bureaucratic delays that have made it difficult to practice in Ontario.
The Ontario government is also launching:
- The Practice Ready Ontario program for doctors that will break down barriers for internationally educated physicians by removing the requirement to complete lengthy re-education programs allowing them to practice in Ontario immediately. This program will add more than 50 new physicians to the province’s workforce by 2024.
- The Clinical Scholar Program which pairs an experienced front line nurse as a dedicated mentor with newly graduated nurses, internationally educated nurses and nurses wanting to upskill to ensure they have the support they need to confidently transition into the nursing profession.
- The Models of Care Innovation Fund, a new $40 million fund to encourage health care partners to bring forward innovative ideas to connect Ontarians to better services and care. Applications from eligible organizations – including hospitals, health care facilities, long-term care homes, home care providers, family health teams, nurse practitioner-led clinics and Ontario Health Teams and others, including mental health service providers – can be submitted via Ontario Health starting July 24.
These new, innovative initiatives join a number of existing successful programs the government has introduced to grow Ontario’s health care workforce, including:
- the Supervised Practice Experience Partnership;
- the Enhanced Extern Program;
- the Nursing Graduate Guarantee Program; and
- the Community Commitment Program for Nurses.
Since 2018, 63,000 new nurses and nearly 8,000 new doctors have registered to work in Ontario. Last year, over 15,000 new nurses registered to work and care for people in Ontario – a new record in the province – and another 27,000 nurses are studying at a college or university, ensuring there is a pipeline of talent for the future.
- The Supervised Practice Experience Partnership provides internationally educated nurses the opportunity to demonstrate their current nursing knowledge, skill and language proficiency while working to meet the requirements to enter practice as a nurse. This program has funded more than 2,800 internationally educated nurses since it launched in January 2022.
- The Enhanced Extern Program offers employment opportunities for clinical learners like nursing and medical students to work as Externs in hospitals. This program has funded over 6,800 externs since the government launched this program province wide launched in January 2021.
- The Nursing Graduate Guarantee provides new graduate nurses in Ontario, including those who studied out-of-province and abroad, with temporary full-time employment to support their successful transition into full-time employment. This program has hired more than 3,300 nurses since 2020.
- The Community Commitment Program for Nurses offers a $25,000 incentive for nurses who commit to work in an underserviced area for two years. This program has hired more than 2,600 nurses since 2020.
My office is open Monday to Friday, 9 am to 4 pm. If you require assistance on any matter, please contact me at any time. My staff and I will be happy to assist. Even if it’s not a provincial issue, I’ll make sure to connect you with the proper office.
Your voice at Queen’s Park