Oral health report underscores the mental and physical toll on Torontonians
One in three Torontonians lack dental coverage. Who you are, where you live and what you earn pre-determine your access to dental coverage – yet another consequence of inequality in Toronto – as well as oral health outcomes. Over 860,000 residents (35%) do not have dental insurance, further compromising the health of the city’s most marginalized. The working poor are amongst the worst off as they fall between eligibility cracks – with incomes too high to qualify for publicly funded services and too low to pay out of pocket.
Oral health funding
Local nonprofits have stepped in to fill the dental coverage gaps over the years only to face reductions in volunteers and funding during COVID. In early 2022, Green Shield Canada, with support from Toronto Foundation, awarded $400,000 in one-year grants to five local organizations to address lack of coverage for low-income populations across the city.
Mental health funding
COVID has exacerbated inequalities in this city and residents with already fragile mental health are at risk. In late 2021, Green Shield Canada, with support from Toronto Foundation, awarded $380,000 in one-year grants to three local organizations providing mental health supports to some of the city’s most vulnerable populations.