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Province focusing on digital service delivery

Traditional methods won’t be abandoned

The province says proposed legislation will bring government services in line with the digital age.

As part of the 2019 budget, the Ford government is proposing the Simpler, Faster, Better Services Act.

According to a media statement, if passed, the act will “significantly improve” government efficiency and related services.

Minister of Government and Consumer Services Bill Walker said the province has maintained an “out-of-date, overly bureaucratic” process that has “reduced quality of service provided to the people.”

“It’s time for the Ontario government to bring services into the 21st century. Our government has introduced the Simpler, Faster, Better Services Act and a number of other legislative changes to put people at the centre of the services we provide,” Walker added.

Among the measures laid out in the proposed act include adoption of digital practices across the government, updated approaches, including at ServiceOntario and increasing data sharing.

Walker points out there are “dozens of provincial laws governing multiple ministries” that require hard-copy signatures on documents, while relying on older processing methods such as fax machines and traditional mail.

He noted that the province will not completely abandon traditional methods.

“Digital first does not mean digital only. We are expanding access to meet people’s expectations for service delivery, whether it’s from 9 to 5 at a ServiceOntario centre or at 10 p.m. from the comfort of your own home,” Walker states.