Despite court ruling, no timeline for closing N.S. institutions for disabled people

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HALIFAX — The Nova Scotia government says it doesn't have a precise timeline for phasing out its large institutions housing people with disabilities.

Tracy Taweel, deputy minister of the Department of Community Services, told a legislature committee today that while the government is committed to closing the facilities, it needs to ensure residents are supported as they move out.

Taweel says there are eight adult residential and regional rehabilitation centres that are still open, with one slated to close by the end of this year.

Vicky Levack, spokeswoman for the Disability Rights Coalition of Nova Scotia, says the government is still using an incremental approach to solve a human rights issue that requires more immediate action.

Last October, the Nova Scotia Court of Appeal ruled that the province's failure to offer "meaningful" access to housing services for people with disabilities amounted to a violation of their basic rights.

A report released in 2013 known as “The Roadmap” had called for phasing out institutional facilities and replacing them with small options homes by 2023.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Sept. 6, 2022.

The Canadian Press