Advocate for a Nurse’s Retention Bonus in Home Care

The Ontario Nurses Association (ONA) announced on Friday afternoon they had reached an agreement in principle with the Premier and Minister Elliott to provide $5,000 retention bonuses to nurses in publicly-funded facilities.

Home Care Ontario worked over the weekend to gather intelligence about this proposal, and specifically whether home care was to be included. Through those discussions, we have been told that while home care was not included in the initial proposal, including home care nurses is now an option that is on the table, and the Treasury Board Committee and then Cabinet will be reviewing these options later this week.

This morning Chris and Sue met with the Minister of Finance’s office and advocated strongly for home care to be included. They reinforced the fact that not including home care would go to further destabilizing your workforce. They also explained that any retention bonuses offered would need to be in addition to providing contract rates to stabilize the system more broadly and address the wage disparities.

We need the Board’s help, TODAY!

To ensure home care is not left out of this proposal, please take a moment and send an email to the key Minister’s involved in the proposal. Below you can find a template and the addresses:

Template Note for Board to Modify:

Send to:
Hon. Christine Elliott –
Hon. Prabmeet Sarkaria –
Joyce Mankarios –
Ali Pensamento –
Chris Sulway –

Subject: Retention bonuses for nurses

Dear Deputy Premier Elliott and Minister Sarkaria,

I am writing on behalf of XXX, a home care company providing critical health care services to Ontarians. We have recently learned the province is considering a proposal to offer nurses in publicly-funded facilities each a $5,000 retention bonus, and that your colleagues may vote on this idea later this week.

I am writing to implore you to ensure that all home care nurses – be those managers, supervisors or front-line workers – receive these bonuses. Were the home care system to be left out of this proposal, it would further exacerbate existing wage inequalities that are damaging our sector, and would further destabilize our workforce, directly impacting patient care.

Additionally, we wish to highlight these bonuses must be offered over and above the $460 million in stabilization funding the home care sector is asking for in the upcoming provincial budget. As your offices are aware, home care faces a very serious staffing crisis, and stabilization funding is required immediately to help the system recover from COVID-19. We also strongly recommend that government introduce a home care tax credit to help support families who choose to fund their own care.