SOUTHGREY.CA STAFF –
In mid March, a rally gathered at the entrance to Grey Gables in Markdale carrying placards and voicing their opposition to a recent report before Grey County Council recommending the sale of the long term care facility. The report also recommended that proceeds from the sale be used to build a new amalgamated facility in Durham to replace the 30 year old Rockwood Terrace facility.
Opposition to the proposal was shared by Mayor Paul McQueen who has stated that the facility needs to stay in Markdale.
Months of staff research went into preparing the report presented by Director of Long Term Care Lynne Johnson. But the new direction comes after an April 2016 consultant's recommendation that moving 100 beds from the Rockwood Terrace facility in Durham to Grey Gables in Markdale would be the most cost-effective strategy to upgrade all long term care facilities within the county.
Currently, only two of three Grey County facilities meet Class A standards. The Ontario long term care renewal strategy requires that all facilities meet Class A standards by 2025.
The rally was organized by the Facebook group Save Grey Gables which has quickly grown to over 1,000 members in the short time span since the report was announced in early March. Organizers hope that the community can stop the plan and save the 66 long term care beds from leaving Markdale.
The announcement of the Grey County plan was made while residents were still feeling the sting of a similar recommendation to close Beavercrest School announced by Bluewater District School Board in September 2016.
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