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Ontarios community-based, non-profit social services agencies need an immediate financial investment from the provincial government, says a group of agencies and unions.

In a report released this week, the group argues that Ontarios social service infrastructure is suffering from flat-lined funding, increased demands and growing expectations from government.

Workers have had to move into crisis management and away from support, assistance and advocacy, all the time trying to do more with less, says CUPE Ontario president Sid Ryan. They are coping with greater levels of stress and burnout coupled with minimal or no salary and benefit increases.

The coalition is calling for an immediate increase in provincial funding for non-profit agencies, new funding practices that will help agencies attract and retain staff, and stronger social and economic supports including improved welfare rates, affordable housing, child care programs, public health care and education.

The report, Building Strong Communities: A call to reinvest in Ontarios nonprofit social services, is available at www.cupe.on.ca and www.neighbourhoodcentres.ca