The cases involved four individuals with mental health issues who must travel a considerable distance in order to access mental health therapies. Public transportation is either unavailable or not appropriate in the circumstances. While ODSP provides a medical travel allowance for those who must travel for treatment, ODSP refused to cover the costs of transportation on the basis that the therapies they required did not constitute “medical treatment.” As a result, these appellants were denied access to treatment that had been recommended by their doctors and had proven effective in improving their health.
One case was resolved without a hearing. The remaining three cases were heard together on April 18, 2013.
To read one of ISAC’s factums, click here: EF - ISAC Factum - Divisional Court - 2012
On June 14, 2013, the Divisional Court granted all three appeals. The Court that it is important for people with mental health and addiction issues to have access to local programs that build strengths, allow for participation in the community and improve health.