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Lawyer accuses Ontario government of delaying two class action lawsuits over mental health care Add to ...

A lawyer representing former residents of two provincially run institutions for developmentally disabled people says the Ontario government is unnecessarily preventing the approval of two class action cases.

David Rosenfeld is trying to have the lawsuits approved on behalf of former residents of the Rideau Centre in Smiths Falls and the Southwestern Centre outside of Chatham.

He says the province is delaying the inevitable because the cases are so similar to another one that has already been approved as a class action.

A $1-billion suit alleges mental and physical abuse as well as the administration of unnecessary medication took place at the Huronia Regional Centre in Orillia, Ont., from 1945 until it closed in 2009.

The suit was approved as a class action in July 2010 but none of the allegations have been proven in court.

Attorney general office spokesman Brendan Crawley says the province has met all its deadlines for the cases.

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