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Selected Cases

Turning complaints into results

Selected Cases

 
A man contacted our Office in frustration after the WSIAT heard only one of several claims he had filed, when he was expecting to have them all heard at the same time.
2017
 
After a man complained to us that his municipality had not responded to his letter about flood damage to his basement, municipal staff initially told us they didn’t answer because they deemed the complaint to be without merit.
2017
 
A mortgage broker sought our help with a delay in renewing his licence through FSCO. His brokerage firm had missed the deadline to pay the $800 renewal fee to FSCO, which in turn failed to process the renewal before his licence expired.
2017
 
A man who had a complaint about his municipality’s chief building official contacted our Office because his municipality did not have a code of conduct in place, even though this is required by the Building Code Act.
2017
 
A driver who moved to Ontario from British Columbia complained to our office that his job was at risk because of an impaired driving conviction from 13 years earlier.
2017
 
The parent of a high school student with autism spectrum disorder contacted us after she was informed by her son’s school that he would not receive credit for one of his courses because he had not met course expectations.
2017
 
A woman whose migraine medication is covered through the Exceptional Access Program contacted us because she was worried about how long it was taking the program to approve a renewal of her prescription.
2017
 
A woman who was owed more than $100,000 in support payments complained to us about FRO’s lack of enforcement action against her ex-husband, even though she had provided information about his assets, finance and employment situation.
2017
 
A man who had lost all of his identification a few years earlier sought our help because he was unable to get health coverage through OHIP.
2017
 
A woman who had surrendered her driver’s licence for medical reasons complained to us that she was having trouble obtaining a photo identification card from ServiceOntario.
2017
 
Council for the City of Oshawa held a closed meeting on December 17, 2015, to hear from the city-owned Oshawa Power and Utilities Corporation. The meeting was closed under the exception for “education or training,” and the resolution indicated that the corporation would be educating council about “local distribution company trends.”
2017
 
A student complained to us that his university had failed to respond to him on several matters, including a grade appeal, requests for a bursary and a refund for a dropped course.
2017
 
After an ODSP recipient left her case worker a message asking about reporting employment income, she was surprised to discover her benefit entitlement was suspended.
2017
 
The mother of a five-year-old girl with medical needs enrolled her in a special program after she was told a bus monitor would be assigned to administer the child’s medication if needed.
2017
 
An inmate who was 29 weeks into a high-risk pregnancy contacted us in fear that she would lose her baby due to lack of care. She complained of delays in being referred to prenatal appointments, in being taken to hospital, and in accessing her health record.
2017
 
In 2001, after years of using his stepfather’s surname, a man decided to revert to his original birth surname. He was issued a short-form Ontario birth certificate reflecting the change.
2017
 
The parents of two adult sons with highly complex medical needs and developmental disabilities contacted our Office because they felt they were in crisis. They wanted to continue to care for their sons at home, but were experiencing their own health challenges.
2017
 
A student who moved back home to live with her parents in the last semester of her two-year college program complained that her OSAP funding was denied.
2017
 
A man who needed a new driver’s licence for work complained to our Office that he could not get one because he didn’t have adequate photo identification.
2017
 
A man was upset that it took the Ontario Electricity Support Program six months to process his application, even though its website says it should take 6-8 weeks.
2017
 
The widow of a man killed in a workplace accident complained to us that WSIB would not extend survivor benefits to her son, because it had no evidence that the worker, who was not the boy’s biological father, was his legal parent at the time of the accident.
2017
 
A man complained to his municipality after a member of council called him names in an email. He was not satisfied when the mayor offered to bring him and the councillor together for a private meeting.
2017
 
An inmate who had been in segregation for nine months – because the facility had concerns about his and others’ safety and security – complained to our office that it was harming his mental health and he needed to see a psychiatrist.
2017
 
A man contacted our Office after his municipality closed and sold a road allowance adjacent to his property. His family had used the land to access the river, but they were not notified by the municipality or given the chance to purchase a portion of the land, contrary to municipal policy.
2017
 
An inmate with diabetes who needed to take insulin before his meals complained to our office that correctional staff could only give it to him after meals.
2017
 
A Toronto woman who was seeking rapid reinstatement of ODSP benefits was staying with a relative in Oshawa while undergoing medical treatment. The ODSP office in Oshawa told her she would have to apply through their Toronto office – but she was too ill to travel, and worried that she could not make ends meet without benefits.
2017
 
A student who had been expelled from university after an academic fraud inquiry complained to us that the university failed to respond to its own ombudsman’s report on his case, which raised concerns about the fairness of the inquiry and the sanctions it imposed.
2017
 
When council for the City of Timmins went in camera on June 27, 2016 to talk about the city’s Chief Administrative Officer retiring, the discussion fit within the exception for personal matters.
2017
 
We received complaints from four residents in one building who each received catch-up bills from their municipal hydro company for $2,000-5,000.
2017
 
A student enrolled in a college’s early childhood education program, but was unable to attend. She did inform the college, but because she missed the deadline to withdraw from the course.
2017
 
Ministry of Community Safety and Correctional Services
A man who needed to renew his Ontario Security Guard licence for work contacted our Office for help in speeding up the process with the Ministry of Community Safety and Correctional Services.
2016
 
Office of the Registrar General
A transgender man complained to our Office because he was having difficulty obtaining an updated birth certificate from the Registrar General.
2016
 
Office of the Registrar General
After living on the streets for many years, a man sought our help in obtaining valid identification so he could apply for full-time work.
2016
 
Liquor Control Board of Ontario
A man with a visual impairment complained to our Office that an LCBO cashier would not sell him wine unless his 19-year-old son, who was not making a purchase but only accompanying him to provide assistance, showed identification.
2016
 
Office of the Public Guardian and Trustee
After members of her family complained to our Office, we discovered the OPGT had made numerous errors in managing a woman’s affairs – failing to pay her mortgage and utilities for several months.
2016
 
Ontario Northland Transportation Commission
After narrowly escaping being hit by an Ontario Northland Railway train near her home, a woman requested an automatic signal be installed to prevent future incidents.
2016
 
Ministry of Transportation
After a 30-day suspension, a woman visited a ServiceOntario office and paid the $150 fee to have her licence reinstated.
2016
 
Ministry of Transportation
A senior complained that after he sent a medical report to the Ministry as required for his driver’s licence, he was told it could not be found and he would have to submit it again.
2016
 
Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care
A senior contacted our Office after restrictions were placed on his visits with his wife at her long-term care home, after he raised concerns with a nurse about his wife’s care.
2016
 
Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care
A man whose home and important documents were destroyed by fire complained that he was having trouble renewing his Ontario health card.
2016
 
Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care
After the Trillium Drug Program denied a woman drug benefits that she had previously received, our staff raised the case with a senior analyst at the Ministry, who found the information she had submitted about her private insurer’s drug coverage had been inconsistent.
2016
 
Ontario Drug Benefit Program
A woman complained to our Office on behalf of her 34-year-old daughter, who requires a specially-made drug at a cost of $200 per month.
2016
 
Ministry of Community and Social Services
A mother whose son has a developmental disability and is medically fragile complained that her son’s medication costs were no longer being covered since he had been placed in a group home funded by the Ministry of Community and Social Services.
2016
 
Workplace Safety and Insurance Board
A man complained to our Office about the WSIB after he had not received an update on his compensation application for almost a year.
2016
 
Municipality
A man complained after he received a municipal hydro bill of $1,300, when his normal monthly bill was around $29.
2016
 
Municipality
A homeowner complained that a $1,950 fee he paid to make a severance application was not refunded when his application was denied.
2016
 
Municipality
A man told our Office he had tried for 10 years to find out why the municipality removed the snow from the sidewalk in front of his neighbours’ homes, but not his.
2016
 
University
A distance education student complained he was asked to pay fees for various services only available on campus, such as student lifestyle fees.
2016
 
University
A would-be Bachelor of Education student complained that he was denied admission because of a mistake in his application due to a miscommunication with the university.
2016
 
University
A student complained that he had failed a course due to false information provided to his professor by a teaching assistant.
2016
 
University
A PhD student who was given no opportunity to repeat his final exam when he failed on his first try after 16 months of course work complained to our Office that he had hit a dead end in the university’s appeal process.
2016
 
School Board
After a teacher-in-charge kept a student out of class for more than two hours over an incident, the student’s mother complained to us about the board’s response to her concerns.
2016
 
School Board
The mother of a kindergarten student with special needs complained that her son’s bus was repeatedly late and that he had once been dropped off at the wrong address.
2016
 
School Board
The mother of a Grade 4 student was concerned for her son’s safety because he had to cross a busy intersection on his walk to school.
2016
 
School Board
A mother of a teenage boy with autism sought our Office’s help after her son was restricted to 45 minutes of school per day due to behavioural issues.
2016
 
School Board
A woman complained to us after trying for months to get a school board to respond to her safety concerns about vehicles regularly driving up onto a curb on school property near an entrance for young children.
2016
 
Ministry of Training, Colleges and Universities
An Everest College student who was away from the school on medical leave when it abruptly closed was turned down for assistance in enrolling in a new program because his college record did not list him as an active student at the time of the closure.
2016
 
Ministry of Training, Colleges and Universities
A mother who had been commuting two hours every day to attend classes at an Everest College campus applied for funding to resume her studies elsewhere after the college closed.
2016
 
Ministry of Training, Colleges and Universities
A student who bought $1,000 worth of textbooks for her studies at the suddenly-closed Everest College complained that foot-dragging by officials at the Ministry of Training, Colleges and Universities caused her to miss a deadline to receive a 60% refund on the books, which were now worthless to her.
2016
 
Ministry of Training, Colleges and Universities
A college student who was taking “compressed” courses over the summer questioned why she didn’t qualify for full-time OSAP funding, as her college had previously determined that her compressed course load made her eligible.
2016
 
Ministry of Training, Colleges and Universities
A woman on a waiting list for a popular, limited-enrolment college program called our Office for help when she could not get any information from the college about whether she had been accepted.
2016
 
Ontario Disability Support Program
A woman who was seriously injured in a car accident complained that she waited seven months to receive her application for ODSP benefits.
2016
 
Family Responsibility Office
A mother whose support payments from her ex-husband were collected through an enforcement agency in the U.S. complained that the FRO would not release any of it to her because it didn’t have the necessary documentation from a U.S. court.
2016
 
Family Responsibility Office
A mother of two complained that FRO officials had not done enough to collect the more than $30,000 in support owed by her ex-husband, even though they knew where he worked.
2016
 
Family Responsibility Office
A father contacted us from jail after he was arrested for failing to pay child support arrears to the Family Responsibility Office.
2016
 
Parole Board
An inmate complained that he had sat in jail for days after becoming eligible for parole because a parole hearing had not been scheduled for him.
2016
 
Legal Aid Ontario
A senior who was charged with threatening police complained that Legal Aid Ontario told him he was no longer eligible for their services after the Crown decided it would not seek to put him in jail if convicted.
2016
 
School board
A father contacted us when the principal at his daughter’s school told him she could no longer attend the school, since the family lived outside the catchment area.
2016
 
Municipality
A man complained to us that he received a water bill and a late payment penalty even though he had a $600 credit with the utility. Our staff contacted the municipality and discovered that the man’s original account had been closed and a new account had been set up without the credit being transferred over.
2016
 
Municipality
A woman applied for Ontario Works benefits and was told she qualified for $1,850 to cover the first and last month's rent payments for an apartment she was moving into in August.
2016
 
School Board
A student complained that one of his female classmates was refused entry into class for having her shoulders exposed.
2016
 
School Board
A woman complained to us after she and her husband received a ‘Notice of Prohibition of Entry’ from a board in October 2012, with no end date or written rationale provided.
2016
 
University
A woman complained to us after her acceptance into a university program through the Ontario Universities' Application Centre (OUAC), was somehow not processed, meaning she lost her spot and was put on a wait list.
2016
 
Municipality
A ​woman who was working temporarily in Ontario and renting a house with no private parking complained to us when the municipality denied her a street parking permit because her vehicle had out-of-province plates.
2016
 
University
A university student contacted us about a failed practicum course.
2016
 
School Board
A mother felt that her daughter's school board didn't follow its own rules after she tried to appeal a change to her daughter's school bus route, which effectively doubled the amount of time her daughter spent on the bus.
2016
 
School Board
A parent complained to our office after a school board decided to move their child's bus stop 300 metres to a busier intersection.
2016
 
Municipality
A town clerk contacted our office after the local council, which was considering establishing a code of conduct, expressed the view that it did not need to appoint an Integrity Commissioner, because any complaints related to the code of conduct could be forwarded to the Ombudsman for review.
2016
 
University
A would-be Bachelor of Education student complained that he was denied admission because he included a one-on-one teaching experience in his application - he said the university did not make it clear that he should not do so.
2016
 
School Board
A parent complained to our office after the school board looked into her conflict-of-interest complaint about two trustees who participated in decisions to close a local high school.
2016
 
School Board
A woman contacted our Office when she discovered the school board would only bus her granddaughter to a school that was more than twice as far away as the next closest option.
2016
 
Municipality
A homeless teenager who could not live with either parent was denied assistance through Ontario Works and was not provided with anything in writing about how to appeal the decision.
2016
 
University
A distance education student contacted us to complain he was asked to pay fees for various services only available on campus, such as printing and student lifestyle fees.
2016
 
School Board
We received a complaint that several students in the same neighbourhood were deemed ineligible for busing despite believing they lived within the school's distance requirements policy, and that the board would not provide the walk distance calculation to the complainant or other parents.
2016
 
Municipality
We received complaints of alleged violations of the councillor code of conduct in a township.
2016
 
School Board
A teenage boy with autism who was only permitted to attend class for 45 minutes a day due to aggression issues was refusing to return to school because of an incident when police were called.
2016
 
School board
A primary school student with special needs was put on a waiting list for placement in a support program for children with autism. The boy's mother was told that a spot was unlikely to become available soon. Concerned that her child's needs were not being met, she escalated her concerns with the school board and then called our Office.
2015
 
School Board
The mother of a kindergartner with special needs contacted the Office with concerns about busing services.
2015
 
Ministry of Community and Social Services (Developmental Services Ontario)
A mother was concerned about the lack of support and funding for her 19-year-old son, who has autism and aggressive behavioural issues. He had recently been taken to hospital by police after an incident when he became agitated and violent.
2015
 
Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care
A woman turned to the Ombudsman for help when she had trouble renewing her Ontario Health Insurance Plan coverage. She had been living with friends and was struggling to provide proof that she was an Ontario resident so she could renew her OHIP card before it expired on September 30.
2015
 
Ministry of Energy (Hydro One)
A woman was frustrated and confused by a dramatic increase in her electricity bills after her meter was changed in August 2013 – from $244 that July, to $403 in August, and up to $1,700 in January 2014.
2015
 
Ministry of Energy (Hydro One)
A farmer was concerned about the high electricity bills he received for the first six months of 2014, even though his corn dryer – the machine on his farm using the highest amount of electricity – wasn’t in use. His bills were close to $9,000, including $843 in delivery charges on $112 worth of electricity.
2015
 
Ministry of Children and Youth Services
The aunt and uncle of a 16-year-old boy with Down Syndrome needed help finding the boy a place to live after his mother died of cancer. They were concerned that they would not be able to care for him because they lived 270 kilometres away, both worked odd hours, and, due to their age, wouldn’t be able to look after him on a long-term basis.
2015
 
Ministry of the Attorney General (Criminal Injuries Compensation Board)
A woman whose teeth had been damaged as a result of physical abuse by her partner years earlier contacted the Ombudsman for help in obtaining funds to have them fixed.
2015
 
Office of the Chief Coroner
Three months after his partner died, a widower contacted us because he had not received the coroner’s report, despite writing the local coroner’s office twice. His partner had died of what appeared to be a drug overdose and he needed the coroner’s report to obtain life insurance payments.
2015
 
Ministry of Community and Social Services (Family Responsibility Office)
A woman complained to the Ombudsman in May 2013 that her ex-husband owed $46,000 in spousal support and the FRO was not enforcing a court order that he pay it.
2015
 
Ministry of Community and Social Services (Ontario Disability Support Program)
A woman came to us after she could not reach her ODSP case worker for two months. The woman was receiving Employment Insurance benefits of $295 per week, which were deducted from her monthly ODSP cheque of $1,842, but they had ended two months earlier. Despite this, the ODSP continued to take deductions from her cheque.
2015
 
Ministry of Transportation
A man contacted our Office in frustration when the Ministry repeatedly sent mail to his address for a former tenant. He had returned the envelopes several times with a note stating “this person does not reside at this address,” but the Ministry mail did not stop.
2015
 
Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care
A woman who was experiencing a third occurrence of HER2-positive breast cancer was denied funding by the Ministry for the chemotherapy drug Kadcyla, although it was prescribed by her oncologist. The Ministry would fund the drug for women experiencing a second occurrence of the disease, but not a third – despite scientific evidence that women with third and even fourth occurrences did benefit from the drug.
2015
 
Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care
A 62-year-old woman with Crohn’s disease required infusions every eight weeks at a cost of $4,542.76 per treatment. The woman’s private insurance covered 80% of the costs, while the Trillium Drug Program reimbursed her for the remainder, but she was reaching the lifetime maximum for her private insurance coverage and it was about to end.
2015
 
Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care
After the removal of a benign brain tumour, a woman in her 20s suffered a stroke that left her unsteady on her feet, needing assistance to use the bathroom, and with speech difficulties. She had to be hospitalized several times and was placed in the complex care unit of a local hospital for four months.
2015
 
Ministry of Community Safety and Correctional Services
An inmate was told after a colonoscopy that he likely had bowel cancer and would need surgery immediately – within a week. However, the jail’s doctor told him the facility had no paperwork from the specialist, and it would be up to four weeks before he could even get an appointment for surgery.
2015
 
Ministry of Training, Colleges and Universities
A student from outside of Canada, who was married to a Canadian citizen, chose to enter the country on an international student visa because it would be processed faster than her spousal visa. She enrolled at a college of applied arts and technology in fall 2013, and was enrolled during the fall and winter 2013 and winter 2014 terms.
2015
 
Ministry of Community and Social Services (Ontario Disability Support Program)
The mother of a young man with significant mental health problems came to the Ombudsman because her son, who was receiving ODSP benefits, had been threatened with eviction from his group home because his rent had not been paid via ODSP.
2015
 
Ministry of Community and Social Services (Developmental Services Ontario)
The family of a 69-year-old woman with developmental disabilities contacted the Ombudsman because they could no longer care for her. She was in hospital after she was assaulted at her day program, but would have nowhere to live after she was discharged.
2015
 
Ministry of Community Safety and Correctional Services
An inmate had been waiting for months to have a wisdom tooth extracted and was in severe pain, to the point where he had fainted and had to be sent to hospital.
2015
 
Ministry of Transportation
A new driver complained to our Office after waiting six months for his permanent driver’s licence. He had passed the written test and turned over his Ontario-issued government photo ID to ServiceOntario, expecting a replacement card in the mail, but he never received it.
2015
 
Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care
After a woman was denied funding for a drug to treat neuropathic pain, her husband came to the Ombudsman for help. The woman has a rare neurological disease and her condition, which is considered palliative, means she has considerable muscle and nerve pain. One of the drugs that helped her pain, Sativex, was only approved for patients with multiple sclerosis, or palliative cancer patients with refractory pain.
2015
 
Ministry of Community and Social Services (Family Responsibility Office)
A man contacted our Office because he suspected the Family Responsibility Office had miscalculated the amount he owed for child and spousal support by almost $3,800. He had written the FRO three times in the past 18 months, but it did not acknowledge his letters or adjust his account.
2015
 
Ministry of Transportation
A 65-year-old man had his driver’s licence suspended in May 2014 after hospital staff reported to the Ministry of Transportation that he had suffered a fall that knocked him unconscious. After this incident, the man provided the Ministry with letters from three different doctors confirming he was in good health, but two months later, his licence was still suspended.
2015
 
Ministry of Community and Social Services (Ontario Disability Support Program)
The owner of a home for adults with mental health issues contacted the Ombudsman, frustrated that he couldn’t get ODSP or Developmental Services Ontario (DSO) to provide funding to take one of his residents to her cancer treatments.
2015
 
Ministry of Transportation
After signing up for “Back on Track,” a remedial program for people convicted of impaired driving, a man phoned the program to book a one-hour assessment interview. He was given the choice of several time slots. He arrived at 3:30 on the appointed day, believing he was half an hour early for the 4 p.m. slot. Instead, he was told the interview had actually been booked for 3 p.m.
2015
 
Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care
A mother complained to the Ombudsman after she was forced to pay $7,000 for a spot for her adult daughter in a residential treatment program for women with substance abuse issues.
2015
 
Ministry of Community and Social Services (Family Responsibility Office)
A single mother complained to the Ombudsman that she hadn’t received child support payments in six months, despite her daughter, a post-secondary student, still living at home. The father lived in B.C., and as long as the daughter attended school and lived with her mother, he was required to pay monthly support payments.
2015
 
Ministry of Children and Youth Services
A mother contacted us in frustration because she couldn’t get help for her nine-year-old daughter, who had been severely bullied and injured at school, and was expressing thoughts of self-harm.
2015
 
Ministry of Government Services (ServiceOntario)
A young driver who was caught speeding received a letter from the Ministry of Transportation requiring him to surrender his G1 (beginner level) licence for 30 days and pay a fee to have it reinstated.
2014
 
Ministry of Community Safety and Correctional Services
An inmate complained to the Ombudsman after he was held in segregation for two weeks in a cell with a broken sink and no clean running water. He had been using the toilet to wash his hands and his only drinking water came from a jug outside his cell that correctional staff did not change or fill regularly.
2014
 
Ministry of Energy (Hydro One)
An elderly couple living on disability pensions complained to the Ombudsman about the ordeal they went through in trying to pay their Hydro One bills. When no bills arrived between July and September 2013, they called Hydro One to find out what they owed. They were told they were not sent a bill because Hydro One’s records showed their home had been repossessed.
2014
 
Ministry of Transportation
A driver who suffered what he believed to be a seizure in April 2013 was diagnosed by a neurologist and, as required by the Ministry of Transportation, had his licence suspended pending a medical review. On October 28, 2013, his doctor faxed documentation to the Ministry to prove that he had been seizure-free for six months, and thus eligible to have his licence reinstated.
2014
 
Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care
A mother contacted the Ombudsman on behalf of her 14-year-old son, who suffers from sytemic-onset juvenile idiopathic arthritis, complicated with macrophage activation syndrome. Her son couldn’t take the drug normally funded and approved for the treatment of the first condition, Tocilizumab, because it can be dangerous to people with the second condition.
2014
 
Ministry of Community Safety and Correctional Services
After spending five days in jail before being released on bail, a woman complained to the Ombudsman that she was refused her prescribed medication at the detention centre. The woman had been taking the drug for pain relief for several years, and her doctor told the jail’s doctor it was required.
2014
 
Ministry of Training, Colleges and Universities
A student complained to the Ombudsman after the Ontario Student Assistance Program (OSAP) denied his application for a provincial grant that would give him 30% off tuition for the 2012-2013 academic year.
2014
 
Ministry of Community and Social Services
The mother of a 21-year-old man with autism who cannot communicate verbally and requires assistance with everyday tasks was worried about how he would be cared for if she underwent cancer surgery.
2014
 
Ministry of Transportation
A paramedic complained to the Ombudsman after his employer told him his driver’s licence had been suddenly downgraded from a Class F to a Class G. Because he required a Class F licence for his job, he was unable to work for nearly three weeks.
2014
 
Ministry of the Attorney General (Legal Aid Ontario)
A woman complained to the Ombudsman that a collection agency was asking her to repay an unpaid debt of $5,900 to Legal Aid Ontario. She had used the services of a Legal Aid lawyer in 2004 in custody proceedings involving her grandchildren, but said she was never told she would have to pay.
2014
 
Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care
A man complained to the Ombudsman on behalf of his father, who was unable to receive rehabilitation services more than eight months after having a stroke in November 2012. Although the father’s doctor, cardiologist, and physiotherapist supported his application for rehabilitation therapy, he was turned away at three different hospitals because he did not live within their geographical catchment area.
2014
 
Ministry of Community and Social Services (Family Responsibility Office)
A mother of three complained to the Ombudsman that her children’s father – who moved to the U.S. in 2005 – had not made regular child support payments since 2006. The father owed $1,600 when he first moved away, but was still making the occasional voluntary payment.
2014
 
Ministry of Energy (Hydro One)
Two weeks before Christmas, a woman was distressed to learn that Hydro One had taken $8,390 from her bank account. She had authorized automatic payments to the utility through her account, but was astonished by the unexpectedly large bill
2014
 
Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care
In early 2012, the Ombudsman was contacted by Nickel Belt MPP France Gélinas on behalf of a constituent in Westree who complained that the Northern Health Travel Grant would not cover the costs of her accommodation in Sudbury, where she had a medical appointment, because she lived too close to qualify.
2014
 
A man who rebuilt his family cottage into his retirement dream house received no bills from Hydro One for 31 months – then was stunned to receive a bill for $12,115.72.
2014
 
Ministry of Community and Social Services (Family Responsibility Office)
The mother of a 15-year-old boy with developmental disabilities complained to the Ombudsman that the FRO would not release more than $14,000 in child support payments it had collected from the boy’s father since 2010.
2014
 
Ministry of Community Safety and Correctional Services
The sister of a young woman who died from stomach cancer not long after being released from jail complained to the Ombudsman that her sister had not received proper medical care behind bars. Health care staff at the institution repeatedly sent her to the local hospital, but each time, the hospital assessed her and returned her to jail, where staff did their best to care for her, despite her serious condition.
2014
 
Ministry of Training, Colleges and Universities
An electrical contractor complained to the Ombudsman after the Ministry of Training, Colleges and Universities asked him to repay the $1,269 he received from the Ontario Self-Employment Benefit program. The program provides unemployed people with financial support while they develop and start new businesses.
2014
 
Ministry of Community Safety and Correctional Services
In January 2013, an inmate at the Ottawa-Carleton Detention Centre slipped and fell on a wet floor in an area where staff had neglected to put up a “wet floor” warning sign. The fall was the beginning of a painful ordeal that he asked the Ombudsman to investigate once he was out of jail and no longer feared reprisal.
2014
 
Ontario Disability Support Program
A woman receiving social assistance through the Ontario Disability Support Program (ODSP) who was also entitled to spousal support payments from her ex-husband through the Family Responsibility Office (FRO) complained to the Ombudsman that she had not received any spousal support in several months.
2014
 
Ministry of Energy (Hydro One)
After Hydro One launched its new billing system in spring 2013, a Canada Post manager in a small community noticed that its bills no longer included rural mailbox site and compartment, and therefore could not be delivered to customers. As the number of undeliverable bills mounted, the manager tried several times to bring the problem to Hydro One’s attention, without success.
2014
 
Ministry of Energy (Hydro One)
Although she had received no bills from Hydro One for nine months, the owner of a rental property continued to make payments on what she estimated to be her tenants’ power usage. Despite this, Hydro One officials showed up at the property four times, claiming the account was in arrears and threatening to disconnect the electricity.
2014
 
Ontario Disability Support Program
The father of a 24-year-old man who has cerebral palsy and uses a wheelchair complained to the Ombudsman after the ODSP refused him financial assistance to cover the repair and maintenance costs of an elevator and outdoor mechanical porch lift – nearly $4,500 in all.
2014
 
Ministry of Community and Social Services
The parents of a 28-year-old man with autism who drowned in the bathtub of his group home asked the Ombudsman for help in obtaining information about their son’s death. Sixteen months after the tragedy, they were still waiting for someone to explain exactly what had happened.
2014
 
Ministry of Community and Social Services (Family Responsibility Office)
A man complained to the Ombudsman after the Family Responsibility Office (FRO) required him to pay $720 to cover two child support payments from 2008 and 2009.
2014
 
Ministry of Government Services (ServiceOntario)
After moving from Quebec to Ontario in October 2011, a man tried several times to obtain an Ontario Health Insurance Plan (OHIP) card at a ServiceOntario office. Each time, he was told that his birth certificate showed he wasn’t a Canadian citizen and that he would have to apply as an immigrant – despite having lived in Quebec most of his life.
2014
 
Ministry of Transportation
A man complained to the Ombudsman that his auto insurance was about to be suspended because two convictions for speeding had been mistakenly entered on his driving record – for only one offence.
2013
 
Ministry of Training, Colleges and Universities (Ontario Student Assistance Program)
A university student with a disability complained to the Ombudsman that he was being pursued by a collection agency to repay part of a grant he received through the Ontario Student Assistance Program (OSAP).
2013
 
Ministry of Training, Colleges and Universities (Ontario Student Assistance Program)
A university student with a disability complained to the Ombudsman after receiving conflicting information about whether or not he was eligible for grants through the Ministry of Training, Colleges and Universities.
2013
 
Ministry of Natural Resources
A Métis woman who holds a commercial fishing licence complained to the Ombudsman that she had been fighting with the Ministry of Natural Resources for six years to have her annual fishing royalty fees of $4,000 waived.
2013
 
Ministry of Community and Social Services (Services for adults with developmental disabilities)
The mother of a 20-year-old man who has complex developmental and medical needs – he has Down Syndrome, uses a ventilator and has other complex medical conditions – turned to the Ombudsman after she was unable to find a permanent residential placement for her son.
2013
 
Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care (Ontario Health Insurance Plan)
A 72-year-old man who had been treated for a rare form of melanoma in one eye was recommended for a specialized form of radiation therapy in the U.S. after cancer spread to his liver. His oncologist had had other patients successfully treated at the same U.S. hospital, funded through the Ontario Health Insurance Program (OHIP) Out-of-Country program.
2013
 
Ministry of Community and Social Services (Ontario Disability Support Program)
A woman complained to the Ombudsman about a dispute with the ODSP Overpayment Recovery Unit that dated back to 1998. She explained that back then she was ordered by a court to repay $1,150 because she had collected other benefits at the same time as ODSP.
2013
 
Ministry of Community and Social Services (Ontario Disability Support Program)
A man who lost his appeal to the Social Benefits Tribunal about a 2010 ODSP overpayment assessment was advised to complain to the Ombudsman by a member of the tribunal itself. The tribunal had no discretion to waive the overpayment assessment, but the member felt the Ombudsman might be able to help the man with what appeared to be errors and poor communication on ODSP’s part.
2013
 
Ministry of Government Services (Office of the Registrar General)
The father of a two-month-old baby girl contacted the Ombudsman out of frustration after trying to obtain a birth certificate for his daughter from the Office of the Registrar General. His wife had died of a stroke nine days after giving birth.
2013
 
Ministry of Community Safety and Correctional Services
An inmate in a detention centre called the Ombudsman out of concern for a 19-year-old female inmate who had been cutting herself and was on “suicide watch.” He said she had been taken off her anti-depressant and anti-psychotic medications and was taken to a segregated cell in handcuffs.
2013
 
Ministry of Community and Social Services (Ontario Disability Support Program)
A man who was owed money by the Ontario Disability Support Program (ODSP) dating back to December 2010 complained to the Ombudsman in August 2012 that he had been shortchanged. He calculated that he was owed $8,968 but had received only $1,140.
2013
 
Ministry of Community Safety and Correctional Services
A correctional officer at a large correctional centre alerted the Ombudsman to poor living and working conditions in an “overflow” unit, used to house inmates who could not be housed in the general population. Due to a shortage of staff, inmates were not getting access to showers, the yard or phones, and garbage was piling up.
2013
 
Ministry of Energy (Hydro One)
A woman complained to the Ombudsman that Hydro One had charged her commercial rates on a residential property. She had owned the property since August 2009, but the discrepancy only came to light when a tenant in a building on the property set up his own Hydro account in June 2012.
2013
 
Ministry of Community and Social Services (Family Responsibility Office)
A father complained to the Ombudsman that the FRO had wrongly reported him to a consumer reporting agency (a credit bureau) over $10,825.92 in arrears. The man noted that his son had been living with him for just over a year and he was no longer required to pay support to the boy’s mother.
2013
 
Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care (Community Care Access Centre)
A woman complained to the Ombudsman about a bill she received for convalescent care after being released from hospital. Her local Community Care Access Centre (CCAC) had arranged to have her spend several months at a seniors’ housing residence that offers recuperative programs – which then sent her a bill for $1,564 that she could not pay.
2013
 
Ministry of Finance (Municipal Property Assessment Corporation)
The owner of a funeral home and crematorium complained to the Ombudsman that the Municipal Property Assessment Corporation (MPAC) had unfairly assessed his property. Although it had previously exempted it from property taxes entirely, in 2010 it assessed only the cemetery as exempt and required him to pay taxes on the crematorium for 2008-2012.
2013
 
Ministry of the Attorney General (Public Guardian and Trustee)
A client of the OPGT complained to the Ombudsman about a ruling by a capacity assessor that he was incapable of managing his own financial affairs – a ruling that made the OPGT guardian of the man’s property.
2013
 
Ministry of Transportation
A man complained to the Ombudsman about a frustrating delay in getting his driver’s licence reinstated. It had been suspended after he suffered a seizure while driving, which was duly reported to the Ministry of Transportation.
2013
 
Ministry of Community and Social Services (Ontario Disability Support Program)
A man complained to the Ombudsman in October 2012 about a dispute with the ODSP over when his eligibility for benefits should begin. He had notified his local ODSP office in September 2010 that he qualified for benefits, but his application went nowhere despite inquiries from his lawyer.
2013
 
Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care (Trillium Drug Program)
A woman with complex health problems complained to the Ombudsman in September 2012 that the Trillium Drug Program had cut off coverage of her prescription medications, which cost her about $5,000 per year.
2013
 
Ministry of Finance (Municipal Property Assessment Corporation)
Owners of two different properties complained to the Ombudsman about confusion over how and when to appeal property assessment change notices issued by MPAC. These notices address changes to a property that affect its value, such as renovations or additions.
2013
 
Ministry of Community Safety and Correctional Services
An inmate complained to the Ombudsman that he was not receiving adequate psychiatric treatment. He had submitted several written requests to be seen by a psychiatrist, a social worker and an addictions counsellor, to no avail.
2013
 
Ministry of Community and Social Services (Ontario Disability Support Program)
The mother of a developmentally disabled boy applied for ODSP benefits on his behalf in January 2012, four months before he was to turn 18 and become eligible for them. ODSP staff advised parents at an information seminar at the boy’s school to apply early because of the lengthy application process.
2013
 
Ministry of Labour (Workplace Safety and Insurance Board)
A Kingston man who had to undergo a medical assessment to maintain his Workplace Safety and Insurance Board (WSIB) benefits contacted the Ombudsman because he could not afford to pay his way to Toronto for the appointment.
2013
 
Ministry of Community and Social Services (Ontario Disability Support Program)
The father of a 40-year-old severely disabled woman applied for ODSP benefits on her behalf when she gained landed immigrant status in October 2011. He complained to the Ombudsman after he heard nothing for three months – no answer to a dozen phone calls, eight voice messages, an in-person inquiry, and several written inquiries.
2013
 
Ministry of the Attorney General (Public Guardian and Trustee)
A hospital social worker contacted the Ombudsman on behalf of a client of the Office of the Public Guardian and Trustee (OPGT) who was a long-term resident of a psychiatric hospital. The man’s car had been left in the hospital parking lot for eight months and had received 13 parking tickets.
2013
 
Ministry of Community and Social Services (Family Responsibility Office)
A mother who was owed a significant amount of back child support complained to the Ombudsman that FRO officials were refusing to exercise their option to have her ex-husband jailed for failing to pay, as provided for in a judge’s order.
2013
 
Ministry of Government Services (Office of the Registrar General)
A mother complained to the Ombudsman that she was having trouble getting birth certificates for three of her four children because they had not been registered within a year of their birth. One daughter, age 4, had cognitive and physical disabilities, but the mother could not obtain benefits for her without a birth certificate.
2013
 
Ministry of Community and Social Services (Ontario Disability Support Program)
An ODSP recipient complained to the Ombudsman about a dispute over her application for a special diet allowance – which can be recommended by a recipient’s doctor. She had asked to apply for the allowance when she first applied for support in November 2009, but ODSP staff would not give her a form.
2013
 
Ministry of Community Safety and Correctional Services (Chief Firearms Officer)
A gun owner complained to the Ombudsman that the Chief Firearms Officer (CFO) had revoked his authorization to transport a firearm without providing him with a formal notice as required under the Firearms Act. Without the notice, he was unable to challenge the decision in court.
2013
 
Ministry of Energy (Hydro One)
After a Hydro One customer’s new “smart meter” was installed in October 2011, she noticed her hydro bills were unusually high. She wondered whether she was still being billed based on the old meter’s readings. She unsuccessfully tried to resolve the issue with Hydro One by calling them a dozen times, with no luck.
2013
 
Ministry of the Attorney General (Consent and Capacity Board)
A 76-year-old woman complained to the Ombudsman that despite a ruling of the Consent and Capacity Board (CCB) that found her capable of managing her own affairs, the Office of the Public Guardian and Trustee was still involved with her finances.
2013
 
Ministry of Community and Social Services (Family Responsibility Office)
A man complained to the Ombudsman that the FRO had wrongly garnished half his wages and left him with a bad credit rating. His lawyer had even written to the FRO, advising that it had misread the terms of his 2010 court order, but it changed nothing.
2013
 
Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care (Ontario Health Insurance Plan)
The Ombudsman received four complaints in 2011 about the lack of funding for a relatively new eye surgery known as “CXL” – Corneal Collagen Cross Linking – which involves a riboflavin solution treatment for keratoconus, a condition that causes thinning of the cornea and vision loss.
2013
 
Ministry of Finance (Municipal Property Assessment Corporation)
A woman complained to the Ombudsman after requesting a reduction in her property assessment from MPAC and the Assessment Review Board (ARB). She argued that she was unable to use a large portion of her land because it had been zoned as protected wetland by the local conservation authority.
2013
 
Ministry of Community Safety and Correctional Services
An inmate who has a psychiatric illness complained to the Ombudsman that he had not received essential medication over the weekend because there was no nurse on duty at the jail. His condition deteriorated, leaving him with his mind racing and feeling like he was “flipping out.”
2013
 
Ministry of Community and Social Services (Family Responsibility Office)
A mother who was expecting a child support payment of $5,000 contacted the Ombudsman when she could not get an answer from the Family Responsibility Office (FRO) about the whereabouts of the cheque. Her former spouse – a doctor whose income from the Ontario Health Insurance Program (OHIP) was being garnished to pay the child support – confirmed that the money had gone out a week earlier.
2013
 
Ministry of the Attorney General (Criminal Injuries Compensation Board)
A woman who had been physically and sexually abused as a child in foster care in both Alberta and Ontario complained to the Ombudsman that the Ontario Criminal Injuries Compensation Board (CICB) had denied her compensation because she had already been compensated by the Alberta Criminal Injuries Review Board
2012
 
Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care
A 56-year-old man on a disability pension through the Canada Pension Plan hoped to obtain a scooter through the Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care’s Assistive Devices Program. When he was told by his local Community Care Access Centre (CCAC) that he would have to have an assessment that would cost $200, he complained to the Ombudsman that he could not afford it.
2012
 
Ministry of Government Services (Registrar General)
A man who needed a new copy of his birth certificate to obtain a licence for work complained to the Ombudsman that it was taking too long, putting his employment in jeopardy.
2012
 
Ministry of Transportation
A 67-year-old woman who was born in Britain but had been a licensed driver in Ontario for more than 40 years was shocked to discover that she could not renew her driver’s licence after she inadvertently let it lapse for more than a year.
2012
 
Ministry of Children and Youth Services
The mother of a 15-year-old boy with a rare genetic disorder called the Ombudsman after she was unsuccessful in getting her son into a residential facility.
2012
 
Ministry of the Attorney General (Office of the Public Guardian and Trustee)
A man who felt he no longer needed the Office of the Public Guardian and Trustee (OPGT) to manage his financial affairs for him contacted the Ombudsman when his request for an assessment to determine whether or not he was capable was refused.
2012
 
Ministry of Community Safety and Correctional Services
A young man who was about to be released from jail complained to the Ombudsman that due to lockdowns at the facility, he had not been able to phone his parents to obtain money to allow him to travel home. He had also not been able to speak to the jail’s discharge planner to find out if he would be given a bus ticket upon his release.
2012
 
Ministry of Community Safety and Correctional Services
A jail inmate with diabetes who required a 3,400-calorie daily diet for medical reasons complained to the Ombudsman that he was only receiving the jail’s standard 2,800 calories per day. He said his blood sugar level was low and he was worried about his health.
2012
 
Ministry of Children and Youth Services
The mother of a developmentally disabled 16-year-old girl in northern Ontario turned to the Ombudsman for help when she became ill and could not continue to care for her daughter at home. The teen could not speak or walk, had a severe respiratory problem and was prone to pneumonia.
2012
 
Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care (Ontario Health Insurance Program)
A 92-year-old woman who misplaced her Ontario Health Insurance Program (OHIP) card called the Ombudsman for help, saying it would be impossible for her to travel to an OHIP office or a Service Ontario kiosk to replace it. She also wasn’t sure if she had the documents OHIP would need to give her a new card.
2012
 
Ministry of Education
A refugee assistance group contacted the Ombudsman on behalf of a profoundly deaf 20-year-old woman from a refugee family who had been denied entry into the Sir James Whitney School for the Deaf. This was an urgent complaint as the school year was just about to start.
2012
 
Ministry of Community Safety and Correctional Services
An inmate called the Ombudsman for help after making five requests to see the jail psychiatrist, whom he had not seen in two months. He was on methadone and an antidepressant, which he had stopped taking because he was having hallucinations and other side effects.
2012
 
Ministry of Transportation
A young couple living in rural Ontario complained to the Ombudsman that road salt from the highway next to their property was affecting their drinking water. They had the water tested and found it had high levels of salt, so they asked the Ministry of Transportation to provide them with a water treatment system.
2012
 
Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care (Exceptional Acess Program)
After his patient – a 20-year-old man who has autism and complex seizure disorder – experienced a severe reaction to the government’s approved seizure medication, a neurologist prescribed two other drugs as an alternative. He applied to the Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care’s Exceptional Access Program (EAP) for funding for the drugs but was turned down.
2012
 
Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care (Ontario Health Insurance Program)
The mother of a 19-year-old man with Asperger’s syndrome contacted the Ombudsman when she was unable to renew her son’s OHIP card because she did not have any documentation of his address in order to prove he was a resident of Ontario.
2012
 
Ministry of Community Safety and Correctional Services
After being in jail for three weeks without seeing a doctor, an inmate who was seven months pregnant called the Ombudsman, saying she was in increasing pain and discomfort and needed over-the-counter medication and medical attention.
2012
 
Ministry of Community and Social Services
A 19-year-old developmentally disabled man who is unable to live independently contacted the Ombudsman when his placement in a private youth group home was about to end. He is estranged from his family, and as a child was frequently in and out of the care of a local children’s aid society.
2012
 
Ministry of Finance (Municipal Property Assessment Corporation)
A woman complained to the Ombudsman about problems with the Municipal Property Assessment Corporation’s (MPAC’s) assessment of her condominium. In 2009 and 2010, MPAC assessed her for two parking spaces when she only owned one
2012
 
Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care (Ontario Health Insurance Program)
The mother of a 10-year-old girl who needed medical attention applied for an OHIP card for her, but was turned down. Both mother and daughter were immigrants to Canada and had permanent resident status. OHIP rejected the daughter’s application because there was no “client identification number” on her immigration paperwork.
2012
 
Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care (Exceptional Acess Program)
A man who has suffered from Crohn’s disease for 25 years had been receiving funding for the drug Remicade for 18 months under the Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care’s Exceptional Access Program. The man’s doctor advised that the drug, in combination with a steroid, was the most effective way to treat his disease, but the Ministry asked him to eliminate the use of the steroid.
2012
 
Ministry of Community and Social Services (Family Responsibility Office)
A mother of two turned to the Ombudsman for help because she was not receiving child support payments from her ex-husband. She had a court order, registered with the Family Responsibility Office (FRO), that said her ex could be jailed for 10 days if he failed to pay.
2012
 
Ministry of Labour (Workplace Safety and Insurance Board)
A man who had suffered a workplace injury in 2009 wanted to appeal part of the Workplace Safety and Insurance Board’s decision on his compensation. He turned to the Ombudsman for help after waiting more than 18 months for someone to contact him.
2012
 
Ministry of Community Safety and Correctional Services
The elderly mother of an inmate who committed suicide in a jail cell contacted the Ombudsman to complain that she did not have any information about how her son died. She was distraught about her inability to find out the details of what happened to her son.
2012
 
Ministry of the Attorney General (Office of the Public Guardian and Trustee)
A man had a heart attack in July 2009 and went into a coma, leaving his wife and two children, aged 17 and 20, struggling to deal with his affairs. His wife thought she had power of attorney over his estate, but there was no paperwork specifying that she should have that power if he became mentally incapable.
2012
 
Ministry of Children and Youth Services
The parents of a 10-year-old girl, diagnosed with a genetic disorder for which there is no cure, complained to the Ombudsman that they were not receiving enough support or funding to allow them to continue to care for her at home.
2012
 
Ministry of Energy (Hydro One)
A woman whose monthly hydro bill on her agricultural property was normally about $34 complained to the Ombudsman when it shot up to $500. She suspected Hydro One had charged her commercial rates on her barn, where she kept five horses for her grandchildren.
2012
 
Ministry of Energy (Hydro One)
A man complained to the Ombudsman that Hydro One had overbilled him for electricity on his farm for 15 years. The utility had installed two meters on his property – one for his residence and the other for the other buildings – but they were incorrectly installed and as a result, he was billed twice for the power used in his home.
2012
 
Ministry of Labour (Workplace Safety and Insurance Board)
A widow receiving survivor benefits from the Workplace Safety and Insurance Board (WSIB) called the Ombudsman when her monthly payment of $1,200 – her only source of income – didn’t arrive.
2012
 
Ministry of Transportation
A woman complained to the Ombudsman that a conviction for a traffic violation had been wrongly registered on her driving record. She had paid a traffic ticket for one offence but later discovered two convictions on her record. She recalled that she had sent two cheques to pay the fine – the first one had been incorrectly dated, so she had sent a second cheque to correct it.
2012
 
Ministry of Community and Social Services (Ontario Disability Support Program)
A British Columbia woman complained to the Ombudsman after the Canada Revenue Agency advised her it was withholding $1,266 from her income tax refund because she owed money to the Ontario Disability Support Program (ODSP).
2012
 
Ministry of Community Safety and Correctional Services
An inmate complained to the Ombudsman that he was being held in jail past his release date. Records staff at the jail advised him they could not confirm his release date because his warrant of committal was unclear.
2012
 
Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care
A woman whose husband died while in the care of paramedics complained to the Ombudsman about the adequacy of an investigation conducted into the incident by the Emergency Health Services Branch of the Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care.
2012
 
Ministry of Municipal Affairs and Housing (Landlord and Tenant Board)
A man complained to the Ombudsman that the Landlord and Tenant Board had withdrawn his application against his former landlord without his consent. He had been out of the country when his case was heard, but a friend had attended in his place and told him the hearing had been adjourned
2012
 
Ministry of Community and Social Services (Family Responsibility Office)
When the parents of a disabled girl split up, the father paid child support for her through the Family Responsibility Office. Although she began receiving benefits from the Ontario Disability Support Program (ODSP) when she turned 18 in 1995, the father continued to make monthly support payments for her through the FRO until 2008. In all, he overpaid $17,000 over the years.
2012
 
Ministry of the Attorney General (Legal Aid Ontario)
A woman was paying $200 per month to Legal Aid for the services of a family law lawyer. After spending $3,600 and losing her case, she felt her lawyer had not adequately represented her. The lawyer agreed not to charge anything for his services and wrote to Legal Aid, asking that the woman’s money be returned.
2011
 
Ministry of the Attorney General (Legal Aid Ontario)
A single mother with two daughters used Legal Aid for two family law matters in 2006. She had originally agreed to pay more than $6,000 in monthly installments, but stopped paying Legal Aid because she fired her lawyer and represented herself in court. In January 2010, when seeking financing for a new car, she was surprised to learn that Legal Aid had referred her case to a collection agency. She complained to the Ombudsman that Legal Aid had not brought this debt to her attention, and that she did not believe she owed the full $6,000. She did not know how she would be able to pay the outstanding debt, and she feared that the involvement of the collection agency could jeopardize her job in the financial sector, where she was required to pass a credit check.
2011
 
Ministry of Community Safety and Correctional Services
A man complained to the Ombudsman on the day that his security guard licence was set to expire. He had passed the necessary exam and submitted his renewal application, but accidentally made his cheque out to the wrong provincial ministry.
2011
 
Ministry of Community Safety and Correctional Services
The owner of a children’s dance studio contacted the Ombudsman after he learned that the Ministry had decided to open a Probation and Parole office in the same building as his studio.
2011
 
Ministry of Community Safety and Correctional Services
An inmate called the Ombudsman because he was eligible for parole in one week and he was afraid his request for a parole hearing would not be submitted on time. His Institutional Liaison Officer had not met with him to begin the process, which takes four to six weeks. Ombudsman staff discovered that delays in processing parole hearing requests were routine at the institution.
2011
 
Ministry of Community Safety and Correctional Services
An inmate who was suffering from psychological distress wrote to the Ombudsman for help. He had had mental and physical trauma many years before and felt his mental health concerns were not being addressed by his correctional facility.
2011
 
Ministry of Community Safety and Correctional Services
An inmate who was being given methadone called the Ombudsman and reported that he had been accidentally given a double dose. Because such a high dose could potentially be fatal, he was taken to hospital as a precaution. The inmate complained that this caused him anxiety and discomfort and he wanted to make sure it would not happen again to him or any other inmate.
2011
 
Ministry of Community and Social Services
The mother of a developmentally delayed woman with severe intellectual and behavioural challenges contacted the Ombudsman on her daughter’s behalf in the fall of 2010. The woman had been institutionalized since she was seven years old. In 2008, when the facility she lived in was about to be closed, she was transferred to a group home.
2011
 
Ministry of Community Safety and Correctional Services
A group of inmates complained to the Ombudsman that they had not received clean clothes for some time – in some cases over a month. The inmates were upset and some expressed concern that fights might break out over the issue.
2011
 
Ministry of Community and Social Services (Family Responsibility Office)
A father contacted the Ombudsman out of frustration after trying in vain to find out from the Family Responsibility Office how much he owed in child support arrears. The debt was affecting his credit rating, but each time he contacted the FRO to clarify what he owed, he was given a different amount – ranging from $6,000 to $27,000. He feared that the FRO was attempting to get him to pay for a period when his child was living with him and he was not required to pay support.
2011
 
Ministry of Community and Social Services (Ontario Disability Support Program)
An Ontario Works recipient applied for ODSP and had her application approved after an appeal. She was anxious for her ODSP benefits to start, as the extra funds and coverage available would assist her in paying expenses related to her ongoing battle with cancer, including chemotherapy treatments.
2011
 
Ministry of Community and Social Services (Ontario Disability Support Program)
A woman entered into an agreement with ODSP in 2005 whereby ODSP deducted $240 from her monthly benefit cheque to pay her electricity bill. The agreement was supposed to last one year, but ODSP refused the woman’s requests to end it. She also complained that the monthly deductions had been inconsistent.
2011
 
Ministry of Community and Social Services (Social Benefits Tribunal)
A woman contacted the Ombudsman after she received copies in the mail of two decisions by the Social Benefits Tribunal on appeals she had filed. She was shocked to read in the documents that she had been unwell on the day of the hearings and thus did not attend.
2011
 
Ministry of Energy (Hydro One)
In March 2010, the wife of a Canadian soldier serving in Afghanistan moved to a new home with her daughter and father. Their first two Hydro One bills were small, manageable amounts. But their third bill was $1,500.
2011
 
Ministry of Energy
When a Hydro One representative called to discuss upgrades on her “commercial” property, a woman learned that it had been mistakenly charging her commercial rates for her residential electricity. She advised Hydro One of the error and it agreed to send an agent to visit her property. Hydro One also informed her she had been overcharged $500 because of the mistake.
2011
 
Ministry of Government Services (Office of the Registrar General)
A father turned to the Ombudsman after delays in his request to the Registrar General to make changes to his two daughters’ birth certificates. The parents’ names on the certificates needed to be amended to match the parents’ passports. This was necessary for the family to apply for visas for a trip to India to attend a family wedding. They had already spent $7,500 in booking the trip.
2011
 
Ministry of Training, Colleges and Universities
A stay-at-home mom decided to upgrade her skills to re-enter the workforce. At her local employment assessment centre, she was told she would be eligible for funding for community college through the Ontario Skills Development Program (OSDP) until October 2009.
2011
 
Ministry of Government Services (Office of the Registrar General)
A father sought the Ombudsman’s help after he was billed twice for an online request for his daughter’s birth certificate in 2009. When he initially filled out the online form, the session had timed out and he could not confirm that his payment was accepted. He had to log in again and, thinking that there might have been a problem with the credit card he used the first time, he used another one.
2011
 
Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care
A woman complained to the Ombudsman after she received a bill for $1,879 in co-payment charges from the hospital where her 94-year-old mother had been for about a month before she died in April 2010.
2011
 
Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care
An elderly man who travelled to China frequently to visit his family was notified by OHIP in May 2010 that he was no longer eligible for health coverage because he did not meet the residency requirements – i.e., he had to be present in Ontario for 153 days in a 12-month period.
2011
 
Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care
A woman who was diagnosed with two potentially fatal aortic aneurysms in April 2010 was told she needed surgery immediately, but the procedure was not available in Canada.
2011
 
Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care
In October 2010, the Ombudsman received complaints from two families whose children were receiving human growth hormone medication through the Hospital for Sick Children. The Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care’s Exceptional Access Program required that approval for funding the drug be obtained every year.
2011
 
Ministry of Labour (Workplace Safety and Insurance Board)
A man who had been injured at work when he was 29 years old had his loss-of-earnings benefits cut off by the Workplace Safety and Insurance Board (WSIB) in 2001 because his employer had offered him potentially suitable work. He continued to have severe pain and was unable to work.
2011
 
Ministry of Traning, Colleges and Universities
A community college student was told that if she completed her program with sufficiently high marks, she would be eligible to have a portion of her student loans forgiven under the Ontario Student Opportunity Grant program, as she is a single mother of four children.
2011
 
Ministry of Transportation
A man in his eighties who had a record of good driving for more than 68 years was trying to complete the requirements for his driver’s licence renewal. He complained to the Ombudsman about a delay in the Ministry of Transportation’s review of the results of tests he had been required to undergo by an ophthalmologist, gerontologist, and occupational therapist, due to problems with his peripheral vision.
2011
 
Ministry of Training, Colleges and Universities (Ontario Student Assistance Program)
The mother of a young woman who was dying of cancer complained to the Ombudsman in May 2009 about delays in her daughter’s Medical Loan Forgiveness Application to the Ontario Student Assistance Program (OSAP), which was submitted in January 2009.
2010
 
Ministry of Training, Colleges and Universities (Ontario Student Assistance Program)
A 19-year-old woman submitted an online OSAP application and was provided with an estimate of the financial assistance she would receive if she were to study hairstyling at a community college.
2010
 
Ministry of Community and Social Services (Ontario Disability Support Program)
A woman suffering from brain damage and memory loss complained to the Ombudsman that she was about to be cut off ODSP and would be evicted if she could not pay her rent.
2010
 
Ministry of Training, Colleges and Universities
A science and nursing student at a community college complained to the Ombudsman that she was being charged the same tuition fees as a full-time student, even though she was only taking two courses, or less than half the normal load.
2010
 
Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care
The father of a 15-year-old boy with severe special needs, including Asperger’s Syndrome, attention deficit hyperactive disorder and anxiety disorder, contacted the Ombudsman for help in paying for the boy’s medication.
2010
 
Ministry of Transportation
A man who bought a used car from a private seller for $14,000 complained to the Ombudsman when he was unable to register it with the Ministry of Transportation.
2010
 
Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care
A diabetic senior who lives alone on a fixed income contacted the Ombudsman when her reimbursement cheque for the cost of her insulin needles failed to arrive.
2010
 
Ministry of Community Safety and Correctional Services
A correctional centre inmate complained to the Ombudsman about an error in the paperwork recording the amount of time he was supposed to serve in jail.
2010
 
Ministry of Community and Social Services (Family Responsibility Office)
A man complained to the Ombudsman that FRO was not enforcing a June 2005 court order directing his ex-wife to pay $1,079 per month for their two children.
2010
 
Ministry of the Attorney General (Legal Aid Ontario)
A woman contacted the Ombudsman after learning that Legal Aid Ontario (LAO) had sent her file to a collection agency, accusing her of failing to pay an outstanding bill and affecting her credit rating.
2010
 
Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care
A woman was sent to the United States to give birth to twins, due to a lack of space at her local hospital.
2010
 
Ministry of Community Safety and Correctional Services
A man who had been in jail awaiting trial for 5½ months had his trial date moved up eight days.
2010
 
Ministry of Children and Youth Services
When their mother could not care for them, three children moved in with their grandmother so they would not have to be placed with the local children’s aid society (CAS). The grandmother spent $1,700 on school supplies, clothes and other items for the children.
2010
 
Ministry of Finance: Assessment Review Board
In July 2009, an MPP’s office filed a complaint with the Ombudsman on behalf of a constituent who disagreed with her 2006 property assessment from MPAC and who had filed an appeal in June 2006 with the Assessment Review Board (ARB).
2010
 
Ministry of Community and Social Services (Ontario Disability Support Program)
A disabled dad was receiving monthly income support from the Ontario Disability Support Program (ODSP). His cognitively impaired son, whom he had been homeschooling since 2005, lived with him.
2010
 
Ministry of the Attorney General (Legal Aid Ontario)
A woman complained to the Ombudsman that Legal Aid Ontario sent her a bill dating back to 1991 for $802.28 and advising her that a lien had been registered against her house for nonpayment.
2010
 
Ministry of Energy and Infrastructure (Hydro One)
A homeowner was surprised to receive a survey in the mail from Hydro One that was directed at commercial business owners.
2010
 
Ministry of Community and Social Services
A 28-year-old woman with mental health issues and a genetic disorder suffered from severe depression and post-traumatic stress after injuring herself in a group home.
2010
 
Ministry of Energy and Infrastructure (Hydro One)
A woman who was looking after her 81-year-old bedridden mother at home saw her Hydro One bill rise to $600 a month because her mother required the constant use of oxygen and ventilation machines.
2010
 
Ministry of Community and Social Services (Family Responsibility Office)
A man complained to the Ombudsman that FRO was demanding he arrange payment of some $12,500 in support arrears, despite a court order that stayed the collection of those arrears.
2010
 
Ministry of Training, Colleges and Universities
A woman who lost her job and then her house due to a workplace shutdown applied to a college of applied arts and technology.
2010
 
Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care
A single mother of six who was one month away from delivering her seventh child contacted the Ombudsman after her family’s Ontario Health Insurance Plan (OHIP) coverage was revoked because they had been out of the country for too long.
2010
 
Ministry of Community and Social Services (Family Responsibility Office)
A woman complained to the Ombudsman that the Family Responsibility Office (FRO), would not release a support payment of $1,200 that her ex-husband had made, even though she was owed almost $7,000.
2010
 
Ministry of Training, Colleges and Universities
A woman who had been laid off from her job was approved for the Ministry of Training, Colleges and Universities’ Ontario Skills Development program, which covers school and living costs to retrain workers.
2010
 
Ministry of Training, Colleges and Universities
A 23-year-old unemployed man who was in the Ministry of Training, Colleges and Universities’ apprenticeship program attended a Ministry-approved training course.
2010
 
Ministry of Energy and Infrastructure (Hydro One)
A woman called Hydro One to set up an account as she and her husband moved into a new apartment. Unbeknownst to the couple, Hydro One had set up an account in the wife’s name at the wrong apartment – and had been billing her for the neighbour’s electricity since 2006.
2010
 
Ministry of Community and Social Services (Family Responsibility Office)
In early June 2008, a woman called FRO to complain that she had not received support payments from her ex-husband for six months.
2010
 
Ministry of Transportation
A woman complained to the Ombudsman that she had not received a claim cheque that the Ministry of Transportation had agreed to send her five weeks earlier.
2010
 
Ministry of Training, Colleges and Universities (OSAP)
A recent university graduate complained to the Ombudsman that she had been wrongly charged interest on her student loans for a year-long period during which she was still a student.
2009
 
Ministry of Community Safety and Correctional Services
A 40-year-old man who was being held in a detention centre called the Ombudsman’s Office for help after he was diagnosed with liver cancer and told he had only a few months to live.
2009
 
Ministry of Health and Long-term Care (OHIP)
A 70-year-old man had developed end-stage renal failure and was in need of a kidney transplant. He was told by his hospital that patients on the Ontario kidney transplant waiting list had to wait a minimum of 5-6 years for an organ. His doctor advised him that if he waited that long, he would be at an age and in a physical condition where he would not be able to undergo surgery.
2009
 
Ministry of Community and Social Services (Family Responsibility Office)
A single mother of three children complained to the Ombudsman’s Office that the Family Responsibility Office (FRO) had wrongly wiped out a debt of more than $60,000 in child and spousal support owed to her by her ex-husband.
2009
 
Ministry of Education
A 16-year-old student at a provincial school for the deaf who was gradually losing her eyesight due to a genetic condition complained to the Ombudsman that the school refused to provide her with the services of an “intervenor”.
2009
 
Ministry of Finance
A New Brunswick man was employed in Ontario on a contract in 2003. He purchased a new vehicle in July 2003, just prior to returning home, and paid Ontario retail sales tax of $1,529.
2009
 
Ministry of Transportation
A new bride who had been married in Antigua applied to the Ontario Ministry of Transportation to have her married name reflected on her driver’s licence. She presented the required documents, including her original marriage certificate from Antigua, at two local licence issuing offices. Each time, the Ministry’s head office rejected her marriage certificate as not “original.”
2009
 
Ministry of Community and Social Services (Family Responsibility Office)
A woman whose ex-husband had failed to pay her spousal support payments for 10 years complained to the Ombudsman about the Family Responsibility Office (FRO), which had been unable to find him, much less enforce his support obligations.
2009
 
Ministry of Finance
A man who had closed his business in 1998 was surprised to receive a tax bill from the Ministry of Finance nine years later – for more than $10,000 in unpaid sales taxes plus interest.
2009
 
Ministry of Energy and Infrastructure
A man had a number of renovations done to his home in April 2008, including the installation of foam insulation in his basement. To help pay for the upgrades, he was counting on assistance from the Home Energy Audit and Retrofit Rebate Program.
2009
 
Ministry of Labour
A man who lost his leg in a workplace accident complained to the Ombudsman that the Ministry of Labour’s investigation was flawed because the inspector who conducted it had previously worked for the company where the incident occurred. An Ombudsman investigator determined the Ministry’s investigator had in fact worked for the company in question for 24 years – in fact, he had only left the company 18 months before, and this investigation was his first for the Ministry.
2009
 
Ministry of Community and Social Services (Family Responsibility Office)
An MPP contacted the Ombudsman’s Office on behalf of a constituent who felt the Family Responsibility Office (FRO) was not taking adequate enforcement measures against her ex-husband
2009
 
Ministry of Community Safety and Correctional Services
An inmate in a provincial jail was appealing a court decision in his case. He had provided the necessary paperwork for his appeal to the jail’s records clerk, but was told that the institution had sent the documents to the wrong court.
2009
 
Ministry of Transportation
A truck driver complained to the Ombudsman about delays in renewing his commercial “A-class” licence.
2009
 
Ministry of Community and Social Services (Ontario Disability Support Program)
A woman complained to the Ombudsman after fighting with Ontario Disability Support Program (ODSP) officials for six years over their calculation that they had overpaid her and she owed them more than $10,000.
2009
 
Ministry of Transportation
An Ontario man complained to the Ombudsman that he was being penalized twice for a drunk-driving offence.
2009
 
Ministry of Health and Long-term Care (Northern Health Travel Grant)
A Sault Ste. Marie woman gave birth to a three-pound baby girl, 11 weeks premature. The baby was taken to a hospital in London, Ont. for special care, but the mother was unable to go with her.
2009
 
Ministry of Health and Long-term Care (Northern Health Travel Grant)
The parents of a disabled 17-year-old Sault Ste. Marie boy – two senior citizens with a limited income – applied for a Northern Health Travel Grant on their son’s behalf, for reimbursement of $1,150 in expenses incurred in travelling to Toronto so he could have surgery. Their application was rejected twice because it was not signed by the youth – despite a letter from the family’s doctor explaining that the boy’s physical and mental disabilities made it impossible for him to sign.
2009
 
Ministry of Children and Youth Services
A woman complained to the Ombudsman about delays in finalizing the adoption of her daughter.
2009
 
Ministry of Health and Long-term Care (Ontario Drug Benefit Program)
A diabetic senior who cannot tolerate synthetic insulin and can only use pork insulin complained to the Ombudsman that the Ontario Drug Benefit Program refused to pay for it.
2009
 
Ministry of Government Services
A 55-year-old woman had been trying for eight years to obtain a birth certificate so she could apply for a passport and take a trip outside Canada with her husband. She was told that her birth had never been registered.
2009
 
Ministry of Labour (Workplace Safety and Insurance Board)
After winning an appeal of his case before the Workplace Safety and Insurance Board (WSIB), a man who had been injured at work expected to receive a substantial sum of money, representing several years’ worth of retroactive worker’s compensation payments. Weeks later, he was astonished to receive a letter from the WSIB asking him how he planned to repay an “overpayment” of $119,239 that he owed to them.
2009
 
Ministry of Health and Long-term Care (OHIP)
Nine former foreign students who were living and working in Ontario under the federal Post-Graduation Work Permit Program complained to the Ombudsman about being refused health coverage under the Ontario Health Insurance Plan (OHIP).
2009
 
Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care
A patient diagnosed with prostate cancer was turned down by the Ontario Health Insurance Program (OHIP) for a surgical procedure that he and his physician believed to be available only in the United States. After spending $40,000 on the U.S. surgery, however, the man learned that it had in fact been available in Ontario, but OHIP officials had failed to inform him of this.
2008
 
Ministry of Colleges and Universities
A learning-disabled man who was enrolled in college as a mature student had been taking courses since 1999, repeating several of them until he successfully passed. When he finally completed enough courses to apply for his diploma, he was shocked to discover the college had a policy that courses must be completed within a four-year time limit.
2008
 
Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care
After a decade of unsuccessful treatments and pain, an Ontario orthopedic surgeon recommended Mr. J have ankle replacement surgery. Since the local wait time was three years, the man was granted $35,000 in out-of-country funding to have the procedure performed in the U.S. – but one month before the scheduled operation, he was turned away because the implants he needed were no longer approved by U.S. authorities.
2008
 
Ministry of the Attorney General
A 60-year-old man called the Ombudsman’s Office from the Toronto Jail, insisting he had been arrested by mistake. He said he had been ill and missed his court date for driving with a suspended license, for which he was convicted in absentia and given a $6,000 fine.
2008
 
Ministry of Community and Social Services (Ontario Disability Support Office)
A son complained that it took two years for his father to be transferred from the Ontario Works Program to the Ontario Disability Support Program (ODSP). Yet once the transfer was finally made, ODSP would not grant the man retroactive benefits. What’s more, he was told he could not appeal because he had missed ODSP’s 15-day deadline for requesting an internal review.
2008
 
Ministry of the Attorney General
Ms. L’s 83-year-old mother suffered from dementia and had recently moved into a long-term care facility. Her financial affairs were being handled by the Office of the Public Guardian and Trustee (PGT).
2008
 
Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care
A man who suffers from a rare and debilitating disorder that causes more than 50 severe headaches a day was doing well on a combination of drugs prescribed by his neurologist – one of which required special approval by the Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care for coverage.
2008
 
Ministry of Community and Social Services
Ms. C called the Ombudsman’s Office at her wit’s end, after a decade-long battle with a children’s aid society (CAS). In 1992, she became a foster parent for two brothers, both with special needs, aged 1 and 2.
2008
 
Ministry of Transportation
A visually impaired man who relies on a guide dog was denied access to a GO Transit bus on two occasions because the bus driver was allergic to dogs. Despite his complaints to GO, the man and his guide dog were again denied access by the same allergic driver.
2008
 
Ministry of Community and Social Services (Family Responsibility Office)
A mother of two young children whose ex-husband had defaulted on his support payments couldn’t believe he was getting away with it. A final default order had been issued in September, threatening him with jail, but now it was December and nothing had happened.
2008
 
Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care
A university student tried for two years to obtain reimbursement of thousands of dollars in medication costs from the Trillium Drug Program. He had sent in all his information and receipts in 2005, but when he called in 2006 to ask why he had not heard back, he was told Trillium had moved and his receipts had apparently been lost.
2008
 
Ministry of Community and Social Services
A woman in a tragic situation contacted our Office for help. She was on welfare, she had two severely disabled children and her husband was dying of cancer.
2008
 
Administrative Tribunals
Mr. G complained that the Ontario Labour Relations Board had posted its decision in his case on its website for all to see – without informing him. Ombudsman staff discovered that he was not alone – applicants and respondents before the Board were not generally notified that the decisions in their cases were accessible by the public through its website and other sources.
2008
 
Administrative Tribunals
The owner of a missing cat was relieved to find it at the local animal shelter. But before he could take the cat home, he had to pay for the food, care and treatment that had been provided. He was also ordered by the Ontario Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (OSPCA) to continue the veterinary care the cat had been receiving while at the shelter. Believing some of the veterinary expenses to be unnecessary, the man asked the Animal Care Review Board to revoke the order and have him reimbursed.
2008
 
Adoption Disclosure and Register
In the hopes of making contact with her brother who was given up for adoption at birth, a woman listed her personal information with the province’s Adoption Disclosure Register (ADR). When the search turned up nothing, she suspected it had not been done properly.
2008
 
Ministry of Government Services
A run of bad luck prompted a man to call the Ombudsman’s Office: He had lost his wallet, and was waiting for a replacement birth certificate to arrive from the Office of the Registrar General (ORG). Then he had an accident and required surgery – but his health card had expired and the Ontario Health Insurance Program (OHIP) told him he couldn’t get a new one without a birth certificate.
2008
 
Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care
Mr. D’s family was concerned that the long-term care home he was living in was not meeting the standards of care set out by the Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care. The Ministry investigated the family’s concerns and advised them it had required the facility to fix things – but it would not give further details.
2008
 
Ministry of Community and Social Services (Family Responsibility Office)
In September of 2000, Mr. P paid $1,600 that he owed in child support. But unbeknownst to him, in July of that year, the FRO had filed a Writ of Execution against him to secure the debt.
2008
 
Ministry of Government and Consumer Services
A mother who telephoned the Office of the Registrar General (ORG) about a birth certificate for her son was put on hold – for 3 hours and 15 minutes – even though the pre-recorded message on the line said the wait would be 20-30 minutes. While she was on hold, she used her cell phone to call the Ombudsman’s office.
2008
 
Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care
A resident of northern Ontario had to travel to Winnipeg to see a specialist for medical treatment. She was denied funding for her travel costs under the Ministry of Health’s Northern Health Travel Grant program because the doctor was not certified as a specialist by the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada.
2007
 
Ministry of Community and Social Services (Family Responsibility Office)
An elderly couple took on the responsibility of caring for their young grandchildren following the death of their daughter in April 2000. In November 2000, a court order gave custody of the children to their father and ordered that the grandparents pay him $609 per month from money held by them in trust for the children’s support. The couple made the payments through the Family Responsibility Office (FRO) until a second court order terminated the payments in February 2001. The FRO received a copy of this order, but did not register it in their records.
2007
 
Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care
With the help of his hospital, a man applied to the Ministry of Health’s Assistive Devices Program (ADP) for a semi-annual payment of $300 for the medical supplies he required after ostomy surgery. His application was turned down, however, because of an error. By the time the form was returned to the hospital, the error corrected and the form returned, many months had passed. The ADP refused him his $300 cheque for the first six months of the year, telling him his application could not be “back-dated.”
2007
 
Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care
The Ombudsman received a complaint from a social worker at an Ontario children’s hospital about the impact of a decision to stop funding the prosthesis insertion procedure for boys under the age of 18 who had lost testicles due to disease or other conditions. The social worker complained on behalf of a group of caregivers at the hospital, including doctors and nurses.
2007
 
Administrative Tribunals
The owners of a show dog blamed the dog’s premature death on a veterinarian. They complained to the College of Veterinarians of Ontario and, dissatisfied with the College’s decision, appealed to the Health Professions Appeal and Review Board.
2007
 
Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care
A man contacted the Ombudsman’s Office in fear of bankruptcy, after the Trillium Drug Program turned down his request for help with his wife’s drug costs of $350-400 per month.
2007
 
Office of the Registrar General
A man who had been trying for nine months to have his surname changed through the Office of the Registrar General contacted the Ombudsman in frustration. The Registrar General’s staff would not process the name change because they said the man’s spelling of his middle name did not match the spelling in their records.
2007
 
Ministry of Transportation
A man who had recently moved to Ontario from the U.S. kept hitting a brick wall in trying to obtain a driver’s licence, despite 40 years’ driving experience. The Ministry of Transportation advised him that the papers he had produced from the U.S. did not provide enough information about his driving history. The man complained to the Ombudsman, as he needed a licence to drive to work and take his children to school.
2007
 
Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care
A social worker contacted the Ombudsman’s Office on behalf of a patient who had had part of one leg amputated, and needed hemodialysis treatments three times a week at a local hospital. The patient received Canada Pension Plan Disability benefits and his municipality subsidized his accommodation in a retirement home. Still, after he paid his monthly accommodation fees, he had $116 left for all his other expenses, out of which he had to pay $96 a month to a community-based agency for transportation to his hemodialysis treatments.
2007
 
Ministry of Community and Social Services (Ontario Disability Support Program)
A mother of three who has multiple sclerosis complained to the Ombudsman that her special ODSP diet allowance, which had allowed her to be on a high-protein diet, had been cut from $250 per month to $20 per month in April 2006, following changes to the Ministry’s eligibility requirements.
2007
 
Ministry of Correctional Services
A female inmate in a correctional facility complained to the Ombudsman’s Office that she and other prisoners were being exposed to raw sewage. She claimed that correctional officers had been given protective masks to wear, but not the inmates.
2007
 
Ministry of Government Services
The president of a company that manufactures outerwear complained about the fairness of the Ministry’s tendering process for $2.5 million worth of outdoor patrol wear, primarily for the Ontario Provincial Police (OPP). Among his concerns was that some of the tender specifications regarding the outer fabric layer of the patrol jacket were not justified – he alleged the OPP were using these requirements to target a specific company to make the jackets.
2007
 
Ministry of Training, Colleges and Universities
A student nurse had almost reached her graduation day after two years at a community college when she, along with 35 other students, received an e-mail from the college registrar telling them to pay an extra tuition fee of $527.10 – or they would not get their diplomas. Like most students, she was struggling to make ends meet. The extra tuition fee was deducted from her Ontario Student Assistance Program cheque, leaving her only $285 to live on.
2007
 
Ministry of Energy (Hydro One)
A recipient of Ontario Disability Support Program benefits had accumulated an outstanding Hydro bill of $1,947. When she came to the Ombudsman for help at the end of October 2006, she had been a given deadline of mid-November to pay the bill plus all arrears, which she was unable to do, given her limited income.
2007
 
Ministry of Training, Colleges and Universities
A woman paid more than $7,500 in tuition to a community college on behalf of her niece, who was coming from abroad to study in Ontario. When the niece was unable to obtain a student visa, the college would not refund the tuition money without a letter confirming the visa had been denied.
2007
 
Ministry of Community and Social Services (Ontario Disability Support Program)
A woman with significant mental health problems was at risk of having her ODSP benefits cut off because she refused to meet with program staff. She had received an eviction notice and was on the verge of becoming homeless.
2007
 
Ministry of Natural Resources
Two members of a Métis family had been writing to the Ministry of Natural Resources for more than six years, requesting an exemption from and a reimbursement of the payment of commercial fishing royalties, based on their aboriginal status. They hoped the money refunded could help support their elderly mother, but complained their requests had been denied while other Métis had received similar reimbursements.
2007
 
Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care
Within a month of being diagnosed with multiple sclerosis, a woman contacted the Ombudsman’s Office because she was worried about getting funding for medication she would need. Her doctor had applied to the Ministry of Health’s Individual Clinical Review process and she had received an e-mail indicating it was approved.
2007
 
Ministry of Children and Youth Services
A single mother of an autistic teen contacted the Ombudsman’s Office out of frustration after she tried to obtain funding for summer transportation for her son to a specialized treatment centre about 50 kilometres away. The family’s regional school board provided transportation during the school year, but in summer the mother’s only recourse had been to pay thousands of dollars in taxi fares.
2007
 
Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care
The Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care’s Ontario Health Insurance Plan (OHIP) stipulates that people moving to Ontario who have been out of the country for more than seven months must wait three months before the province will cover their health care.
2007
 
Ministry of Community and Social Services (Family Responsibility Office)
A mother who had not received any child support payments complained that FRO was not doing enough. An attempt to get the delinquent support payor into court failed when he managed to evade being served with court documents. After the Ombudsman’s Office inquired into the case, the FRO ensured the man was served with the papers, the court granted a warrant of committal requiring his imprisonment, and he paid $15,000 in outstanding child support.
2007
 
Ministry of Community and Social Services (Family Responsibility Office)
A woman entitled to $500 a month in support who had received nothing in six months complained to the Ombudsman about the FRO’s lax enforcement of support orders. FRO officials responded that a support deduction notice and writ of seizure on the payor’s property were in place but because the man was self-employed, he had been allowed to make an agreement to make voluntary payments
2007