Feb 14, 2021

By Jeremy Logan

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A retirement home operator says it’s launched an investigation after a senior staff member at a southern Ontario facility allegedly removed the handles from some residents’ doors.

A statement from Verve Senior Living says the removals took place at White Cliffe Terrace home in Courtice, Ontario, noting they were removed from “a small number” of suites belonging to assisted living residents.

The statement did not specify why the handles were removed, but several media reports allege the residents involved had tested positive for COVID-19. This allegation could not immediately be independently verified.

David Bird, president of Verve parent company Diversicare Canada, says the home’s general manager was immediately placed on leave once the missing handles came to light.

He says all handles have since been replaced and an investigation is underway to determine how long residents may have been confined to their rooms.

Bird says he was “deeply disturbed” upon hearing of the missing handles, calling the decision a violation of the company’s practices and protocols.

Durham Regional Police have also launched an investigation into the allegations.

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