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W5: Neglected Care: Decades of investigations into the long-term care industry


For nearly two decades, groundbreaking W5 investigations have shone a light on the failings of Canada’s long-term care system. From staff-to-resident abuse, resident-to-resident abuse, sexual assault, homicide, substandard care and staffing; we have shared the stories of victims, their families, and held institutions and governments accountable. We have championed the need for change.

Camille Parent told us how a hidden camera he installed caught confused nursing home residents walking into his mother’s room and rifling through her belongings; and the shocking images captured a personal support worker (PSW) aggressively trying to force the 84-year-old out of bed, while on another occasion, a PSW took a feces smeared cloth and shook it near the frail senior’s face.

Gaylord McAlpine and his sister Pat shared how their mom had been sexually assaulted by a resident in the nursing home, and how she was not alone in suffering this abuse.

Frank Piccolo’s family described to W5 how the immobile senior, suffering from Parkinson’s disease and dementia, was repeatedly hit over the head with a wooden activity board. Staff found him slumped over in his wheelchair, covered in blood. His attacker, another resident, was found nearby washing Frank’s blood from her hands.

And Lori Dekervor believes a lack of adequate care in a Toronto nursing home led to the hospitalization of her dad Arthur Ross Jones and the discovery of a massive gaping wound on his lower back that had turned septic. Dekervor says it was laced with feces.

Over the years, many families have approached W5 with claims of neglected care; maggots in wounds, repeated falls that weren’t stopped, and attacks by employees on residents. Staff have also shared the abuse they suffered at the hands of seniors in the throes of dementia.

And when the story of the pandemic is told, the huge tragedy will be how society let down the elderly. How provincial governments turned a blind eye for decades to problems plaguing long-term care. How, despite inquests, inquiries and coroners’ reports, recommendations for change have been largely ignored.

On April 26, 2021, Ontario introduced legislation to strengthen health workforce accountability and to implement a regulatory model for the province’s PSWs. Ontario is also promising further action, following a damning report by an independent commission over the failings of the government to protect LTC residents and staff during the pandemic.

Watch our 14 investigations going back to 2004 above, and read the story behind the stories and comb through exclusive data and legal documents on our dedicated W5: Neglected Care page.

If you or a loved one have a story about a long-term care facility, we want to hear from you. Top Stories

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