Board Meeting - Minutes - November 16, 2023

Manitoulin-Sudbury District Services Board
November 16, 2023

Present: Kevin Burke, Bruce Killah, John Deforge, Roger Landry, Rob Campbell, Al MacNevin, David Santi, Denise                       Portelance-Godin, Ken Duplessis, Vern Gorham, Jim Cahill, Angela Kelly, Steven Olsen

Regrets: Ryan Bignucolo   

Staff:     Donna Stewart, Lori Clark, Connie Morphet, Paul Myre, Melody Ouellette, Amy Winnington-Ingram, Joshua                      Parkinson, Bryan Welsh

Media:    Michael Erskine

1.0    Call to Order

2.0    Land Acknowledgement    

We begin this meeting by acknowledging that we are all on land that has been inhabited by Anishnawbek Nations for 10’s of thousands of years.

We’d like to acknowledge that we are here in the Robinson-Huron Treaty territory and the land on which we gather is the traditional territory of the (Ah-tik-a-mek-sheng Ah-nish-na-bek) Atikameksheng Anishnawbek and we would like to give thanks for sharing this land in order for is to continue in our work.

Today, this meeting place is still the home to many Anishnabek nations from across Turtle Island and we are grateful to have the opportunity to unite, live, work and play on this land.
3.0    Business Arising from Closed Session

During its closed session, the Board discussed Human Resources issues. 

4.0    Adoption of Agenda

Resolution 23-92

Moved by: Vern Gorham                

Seconded by: Angela Kelly

BE IT RESOLVED THAT the Agenda be adopted.        


5.0    Declarations of Conflict of Interest

There were no declarations of a conflict of interest.

6.0    Adoption of Minutes

Resolution 23-93

Moved by: Roger Landry            

Seconded by: Al McNevin

BE IT RESOLVED THAT the minutes of the October 19, 2023 Board meetings be approved as presented.


7.0    New Business

7.1    CAO Quarterly Report

Donna Stewart, CAO, walked the board through the 2023 CAO Third Quarter Report. This report will be shared with all 18 member municipalities and board members who are encouraged to add it to Council agenda packages.

Resolution 23-94

Moved by: David Santi               

Seconded by: Steven Olsen

BE IT RESOLVED THAT the 2023 CAO Third Quarter Activity Report be approved as presented.


7.2  Third Quarter Unaudited Financial Report

Josh Parkinson, Finance Manager, walked the Board through the 2023 Third Quarter Unaudited Financial Report, which is forecasting a year-end surplus of $490,276.

Resolution 23-95

Moved by: Ken Duplessis                               
Seconded by:  
Roger Landry

BE IT RESOLVED THAT the 2023 Third Quarter Unaudited Financial Report be approved as presented.


7.3 Ministry of Children, Community and Social Services

Lori Clark, Director of Integrated Human Services, walked the Board through the Proposed Ontario Works Regulatory Changes.
On October 25, 2023, a memo and a question and answer document were shared with Ontario Works Administrators, Municipalities and DSSAB’s outlining the steps that the government is taking to expand its role in centralized intake for Ontario Works.  

The goal of this expansion is to reduce the administrative burden on municipal staff while allowing municipalities to provide more one-on-one support to clients.  

The ministry is seeking approval for regulatory amendments which will allow the ministry to be designated in regulation as an Ontario Works delivery agent in three geographic areas: the District Municipality of Muskoka, the County and City of Peterborough and the Regional Municipality of York.  

These changes will authorize the ministry to make Ontario Works eligibility decisions in these specific geographic areas.  The lessons learned from these sites will inform the provinces longer term plan, which will include extending the regulatory changes to all CMSM’s and DSSAB’s.

The ministry is also proposing technical changes to the cost sharing regulation to reflect the new term of delivery partner. 

This change will maintain the current cost sharing relationship that exists between the ministry and these geographic areas with no impact on cost sharing because of the proposed regulatory change.  

The changes being proposed by the ministry have been posted on Ontario’s Regulatory Registry for public feedback.  Public comments will be accepted for 45 days from the time of posting.  

7.4  Board Procedural By-Law

Donna Stewart, CAO, requested that the board approve the B.2.0.1 By-Law revisions effective November 16, 2023.  The By-Law was reviewed and approved at the Human Resources Committee meeting in October and reviewed with the board in the same month with the assistance of the DSB’s lawyer.   

Clarification was given regarding item 7.4 of the By Law which states that the term for each Board Member shall be determined in accordance with Policy B.2.08.  For most Board Members their term on the Board is 4 years, for those representing Sudbury East Municipal Association, the Board Members are rotated throughout the 4 years, so each municipality has an opportunity to sit on the Board as per the SEMA Resolution passed in 2011.

The Board asked for clarification of item 7.9 of the By Law covering vacancies. The issue is covered by the Corporation Act and the DSB Act.  The CAO will get further legal clarification on item 7.9 and report back to the Board at the January meeting.  

It was also asked that item 13.5 of the By Law also be reviewed for more positive  language.

The policy will be reviewed and revised accordingly and brought back to the Human Resources Committee for further review. 

7.5      Integrated Human Services

Lori Clark, Director of Integrated Human Services, gave the Board an update on Quality Assurance.

In September 2022, the Board was presented with an issue report regarding quality assurance in Child Care. The report outlined the benefits of providing this support directly rather than through a purchase of service agreement.  Targeted, intentional and consistent support is needed, particularly after the challenges experienced in the sector because of Covid-19. 
In the spring of 2023, we hired a Quality Assurance Coordinator to support both Ontario Works and Early Years programs using provincial funding.  The Director of Integrated Human services provided an overview of the work accomplished to date.  

In May of this year, the board received an issue report regarding our Homelessness Prevention Program Investment Plan.  As the homelessness portfolio has grown, there is an increasing need for dedicated staffing to ensure program quality and integrity. This fall a Quality Assurance Coordinator was hired using Homelessness Prevention Program administration funding.  

The Director of Integrated Human services provided an overview of the work in the Housing and Homelessness portfolio that has been accomplished to date.  

Staff plan to prepare a written Quality Assurance annual report moving forward but wanted to provide a verbal update regarding work accomplished so far.

7.6      Paramedic Services

7.6.1   Community Paramedicine Update

As in years prior, our Community Paramedic Team is ramping up to once again support our most marginalized, vulnerable homebound patients during the upcoming influenza season.  

Staff are very well prepared and will be working closely with Public Health in coordinating and providing this year’s vaccine to those wishing to be vaccinated.  

Several clinics are scheduled for November and December to capture a critical mass of people requiring or wanting vaccinations.  Our Community Paramedicine Team will be on site at our Community Housing buildings, Community Centres, and Malls across the Manitoulin, LaCloche and Sudbury East areas.  

Currently, staff are not scheduled for any clinics in any of our northern locations, but staff remain engaged with Public Health Sudbury and Districts should they require our services in Chapleau, Foleyet, Gogama and surrounding areas.  

Our Community Housing schedule for walk-in vaccinations is posted on our website along with self-referral forms for those seeking homebound visits and vaccinations.

7.6.2   Governor General’s Exemplary Award    

The Emergency Medical Services Exemplary Service Medal, created on July 7, 1994, recognizes professionals in the provision of pre-hospital emergency medical services to the public, who have performed their duties in an exemplary manner, characterized by good conduct, industry, and efficiency.

Recipients must have been employed with emergency medical services on or after October 31, 1991, and have completed 20 years of exemplary service, including at least 10 years in the performance of duties involving potential risk. Those with at least 10 years of service with emergency medical services may include, in the 20 years of service, service completed in another profession, provided this service has not been recognized by another long service, good conduct or efficiency decoration or medal awarded by the Crown. Additionally, the Governor General recognizes Paramedics with a 30-year service bar that is added to the 20-year medal for those with continued exemplary service.

Paul Myre, the Chief of Paramedic Services announced to the board that the following three (3) Manitoulin-Sudbury District Services Board Paramedics have been selected as 2023 recipients of this prestigious award for 30 years of exemplary service to our communities.

  • Primary Care Paramedic Monique Rochon-Shaw 20-year medal and 30-year bar.
  • Supervisor of Community Programs Daniel Tremblay 30-year bar.
  • Primary Care Paramedic Dwayne Elliot 30-year bar.

9.0      Other Business

9.1     National Housing Accord

Lori Clark, Director of Integrated Human Services, walked the Board through the National Housing Accord.    

The Canadian Alliance to End Homelessness (CAEH), Real Property Association of Canada (REALPAC) and the Smart Property Institute have partnered to create the National Housing Accord: A Multi-Sector Approach to Ending Canada’s Rental Housing Crisis.  

The housing crisis in Canada has reached a critical level, with rapidly increasing rents and a shortage of affordable units, vulnerable populations are disproportionately impacted.
The report outlines a plan to restore affordability, protect Canada’s most vulnerable and build at least two million new affordable and market rental units by 2030.

The National Housing Accord has outlined 10 recommendations to address housing affordability, meet the needs of the increasing population, create jobs, and play a critical role in ending homelessness.

Reform the Canada Housing Benefit to better target individuals and families with the greatest housing needs by replacing it with a Portable Housing Benefit (PHB).

The DSB created Direct Shelter Subsidy to fund those who are housed above their ability to pay with a top up to keep them housed.  This has helped with housing within our District.

Habitat for Humanity is working on multiple units in Markstay-Warren and Espanola which will also help getting people housed.

Resolution 23-96

Moved by: Kevin Burke                               
Seconded by:  John Deforge

WHEREAS the Manitoulin-Sudbury DSB Board has reviewed the National Housing Accord Issue Report; and 

WHEREAS the housing crisis in Canada has reached a critical level, with rapidly rising rents and a shortage of affordable rental units, disproportionately affecting vulnerable populations; and

WHEREAS the National Housing Accord presents a realistic plan with ten key recommendations to address the housing crisis, improve affordability, and reduce homelessness; and

WHEREAS Manitoulin-Sudbury DSB recognizes the importance of affordable housing for the well-being of people in Northern Ontario; and

WHEREAS Manitoulin-Sudbury DSB also recognizes the recommendations within the National Housing Accord cannot be fully successful without capital grants for the construction of new affordable and rent geared to income housing. 

BE IT RESOLVED, that Manitoulin-Sudbury DSB supports the National Housing Accord and its ten recommendations as outlined in the National Housing Accord Issue Report; and;

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, that Manitoulin-Sudbury DSB supports NOSDA’s calls upon the federal government to take a leadership role in implementing the National Housing Accord and working collaboratively with all levels of government and stakeholders to address the housing crisis in Canada; and

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, that the Manitoulin-Sudbury DSB supports NOSDA’s calls on the federal and provincial government to make capital grants available for the construction of new affordable and rent geared to income housing to all 10 DSSAB’s and the City for Greater Sudbury in Northern Ontario.


10.0    Next Meeting – January 18, 2024
11.0    Adjournment

Resolution 23-97

Moved by:    Jim Cahill    

Seconded by:  Al MacNevin

BE IT RESOLVED THAT we do now adjourn at 11:20 am until the next regular meeting to be held on January 18, 2024


Original Signed by Board Chair                             

Original Signed by CAO (Secretary-Treasurer 
of the Corporation)