Ontario Supporting Military Heroes and Their Families
New Military Hotline Offers Quick Access to Government Information and Services
TORONTO - Ontario's government is making it easier for Canadian military heroes and their families to get the information and services they need when relocating to the province.
The Ontario Military Families Relocation Hotline - a one-stop hotline that connects Canadian Armed Forces (CAF) personnel with live customer service agents - provides specialized knowledge about health cards, driver's licences and vehicle registration.
The hotline supplements the government's online resource hub - ontario.ca/MilitaryFamilies - that lets military family members know what key resources are available to them.
"We are honouring the heroes who put their lives on the line for us by making life easier for them and their families when they relocate to Ontario from out-of-province," said Lisa Thompson, Minister of Government and Consumer Services. "The people of Ontario are grateful for the service of our brave men and women in uniform every day, and our dedicated hotline gives them quick access to government services and information they need to build a great life and participate fully in our province."
The dedicated toll-free number at 1-888-333-8545, available from the United States and Canada, directly connects CAF members and their families with ServiceOntario agents who provide value-added assistance. Callers can also dial +1 416-850-0320 as a collect call from outside North America.
"Through our consultations, CAF members and their families told us that getting timely and affordable access to Ontario's public services and information was a big challenge," said Minister Thompson. "Our dedicated priority hotline and online resources make it easy and seamless for deployed military families to quickly get answers to key move-related questions before they come to Ontario."
Military personnel and their families can visit ontario.ca/MilitaryFamilies for up-to-date information about healthcare, education and schools, childcare, driver and vehicle licensing, and job opportunities. The Ontario government is continuing to work closely with its federal government partners to better align all available programs and services for military members and their families.
"We promised we would do what we can to make moving to and living in Ontario easier for our military personnel, and that's exactly what we're doing," said Minister Thompson.
- Consultations were held from November 2018 to February 2019 to understand the challenges faced by CAF members and their families who move to Ontario. More than 250 online survey results were received. As well, 18 in-depth one-on-one interviews with veterans were held over a six-week period.
- A 2013 report by the Ombudsman for the Department of National Defence found that relocation is a major cause of strain for spouses and children of members of the CAF. Military personnel are transferred three times more often than the average non-military Canadian throughout their careers.
- The CAF launched the Seamless Canada initiative in June 2018 to better align military programs and services across all provinces where CAF members may be deployed.
- Nine CAF Family Resource Centres across Ontario (Borden, London-Southwestern Ontario, Kingston, Meaford, National Capital Region, North Bay, Petawawa, Trenton, and Toronto) also provide comprehensive in-person and online support services and programs.