Community Rights

Right #1: You have the Right to be Treated with Respect

  • Every person who comes through our doors has the right to be treated in a respectful manner, regardless of their race, culture, colour, religion, sex, age, mental or physical disability, class/economic position, sexual orientation, gender identity, diagnosis, or legal status.
  • Every person has the right to have their privacy respected.
  • Every person has the right to respect of their needs, wishes, values, beliefs and experience.

Right #2: You have the Right to Freedom from Harm

Every person has the right to a safe, comfortable environment free from harm, discrimination, harassment, retribution, punishment and exploitation.

Right #3: You have the Right to Quality Services

Every person :

  • has the right to have services provided in a manner that complies with legal, professional, ethical and other relevant standards.
  • has the right to fair and equitable access to a range of services.
  • has the right to assistance with meeting their basic needs including but not limited to: support accessing education and vocational training, income supports, getting identification, housing, social supports and health care while at Cornerstone.
  • has the right to be involved in their discharge planning, and to have access to information about various support options available in the community, including self-help organizations.

Right #4: You have the Right to Fully Informed, Consent & Confidentiality

Every person has the right to:

  • Detailed explanations of their service and program options that are honest and accurate.
  • Their client file without undue difficulty.
  • Know their counsellor’s professional and educational background and all relevant certifications and designations.

Right #5: You have the Right to Make an Informed Choice, and Give Informed Consent to Treatment

  • No treatment and/or breach of confidentiality shall occur without the client’s informed consent, except in accordance with the law.
  • Consent must be for that particular treatment or plan of treatment.
  • Consent can be withdrawn at any time.
  • Consent must be voluntary and not obtained by coercion or misrepresentation.

Right #6: You have the Right to be an Active Member of our Community

Every person is considered an important part of the local Recovery Community. You have the right to full participation in this community and to be welcomed and safe within the community.

Right #7: You have the Right to Lodge a Complaint

  • Every person has the right to make a complaint in writing, verbally or through technology such as through the phone or email, access advocacy and to make suggestions and inquiries.
  • Every person has the right to make a complaint without retribution.
  • Every person can make a complaint to: the individual(s) who provided the service, anyone on the management staff, Executive Director or Board of Directors.
  • Every person has the right to suggest their idea of an appropriate resolution and to be informed in a timely manner of the progress and resolution of their complaint.

Service Philosophy

Cornerstone’s mandate is to deliver person-directed and strengths-based services that prioritize the needs of the individuals and families receiving services, in balance with the health of the Cornerstone recovery community.

Cornerstone’s services encompass a whole-person philosophy and offer spiritual, physical and emotional programs to ensure comprehensive programming. Cornerstone recognizes that every person we serve has individual needs, values, background and identity and commits to support each client, guest and community member in meeting their needs wherever possible. All individuals receiving services are encouraged to include their circle of care, including partners, children, family and their community in their recovery process, where it is deemed desired and safe by the individual. Person-directed services are facilitated by gathering information of an individual’s needs, providing them information about their service options and assisting them to determine which programs will most suitably meet their needs, while utilizing a holistic approach.

Finally, if the client determines that the Organization does not provide treatment that best meets their immediate needs, or that the admission and/or program requirements are not presently sustainable for them, we will refer to an alternative, appropriate community partner at the client’s request.

Cornerstone Complaint Policy

All residential guests, alumni, clients, community members and members of the public have the right to complain about the care or services they have received at any and all Cornerstone programs and facilities. The complaint can be about a staff member, a volunteer, or a student, in this policy generally referred as “staff”. A complaint may be made in person, by telephone, email or, in written format through a letter or note. The individual lodging the complaint can choose to make the complaint to the staff or their supervisor or choose to go directly to the Privacy Officer and Executive Director with the complaint. The Client Complaint Policy and Procedures shall be posted. A copy may be provided to any person on request. All complaints will have a Complaint Form completed that records the complaint and all actions taken for resolution. Resolution of the complaint should be timely so as not to delay appropriate action for the complainant or cause undue stress to any of the parties involved.

To make a complaint, please contact our Privacy Officer, Patty Trudel, at (905) 762-1551 ext.401 or


Cornerstone is committed to protecting the confidentiality of the personal information and personal health information in its custody and control. The collection, use and disclosure of the Organization’s client, guest or community member’s health information is subject to several statutes including: the Personal Health Information Protection Act (“PHIPA”), the Health Care Consent Act, the Freedom of Information Act and the Mental Health Act.
Cornerstone staff may be responsible for collecting personal health information from the Organization’s client, guest or community member. Employees must collect, use and disclose personal health information in accordance with all applicable legal requirements.

  • Assessment, intake and program eligibility requirements
  • Program delivery
  • Program referrals with expressed consent
  • Professional supervision and case conference for the counselling staff
  • Quality assurance purposes
  • Accreditation processes and requirements

Cornerstone is committed to establishing informed consent with every guest, client and community member prior to engagement in service delivery. Informed consent is established during the intake, assessment and admission stages and as an on-going process throughout service delivery.

All client, guest and community member personal health information may be shared with an on-site review team as part of Cornerstone’s Accreditation Program through the Canadian Centre for Accreditation. All team members of the Canadian Centre for Accreditation complete their own consent form and are held to the same standard as Cornerstone employee’s in terms of their requirement to uphold all agency and legislative requirements for the protection of personal health information.

The Organization can disclose personal health information without a client, guest or community member ’s consent when:

  • There is suspicion of neglect or harm (of any kind) to a child, elderly person or dependent adult.
  • Where there is a disclosure of imminent harm to oneself or others.
  • As required by court subpoena.
  • Otherwise permitted or required by law


“Personal Health Information” may include any of the following:

  • Any and all identifying personal information, history and information disclosed during intake, assessment and service delivery
  • Personal health history, including family health history
  • Health care provided and previous/current health care providers
  • Client or guest records, assessments, intakes and notes

Depending on the circumstances, the Organization may also be required to save voicemail messages and e-mail messages from the Organization’s client, guest or community members. The Organization’s employees are expected to keep all personal health information strictly confidential.
Aggregate Client, guest or community member’s data is used for:

  • Quality Improvement
  • Program Development
  • Grant proposals and fundraising efforts

Cornerstone Online Properties Privacy:

Cornerstone takes all necessary measures to protect visits to our online properties. Cornerstone online properties consists of our website, mailing list, Canada Helps, Google Analytics, Survey Monkey, Paypal and virtual newsletter via Mailchimp. Cornerstone utilizes a standard procedure of server log files as a part of hosting service analytics. This information includes IP addresses, browser type, Internet Service Provider (ISP), date and time stamp, referring/exit pages and number of clicks. This information is not linked to any personally identifying information.

This information is used strictly to analyze trends, administer online properties, track users movement on the website and gather demographic information. All participation in the mailing list and virtual newsletter is voluntary and subscribers can unsubscribe at any time by clicking ‘unsubscribe’ or contacting Cornerstone. All online properties privacy policies are consistent with Cornerstone privacy policies as well as all provincial and federal legal requirements.

All past and present Cornerstone to Recovery clients have the right to view or receive a copy of their personal client file. To request your file or to learn more information about how Cornerstone protects our community’s privacy, please contact our Privacy Officer, Patty Trudel, at 905-762-1551 ext.401 or

Navigate the Pillars of Cornerstone to Recovery

Cornerstone to Recovery is proud to be awarded a four-year accreditation by the Canadian Centre for Accreditation (CCA) in recognition of achieving established CCA standards for quality in governance, management, and community mental health and addictions services.