Raising Shelter Rates for BC
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For DECADES now, we the disabled, have been living in worse and worse conditions, and told to "tighten our Belts, and make a few sacrifices"
a) VERY insulting.
b) Incredibly Debilitating.
d) Not OUR fault, yet we get left behind constantly. This petition is to make sure that YOU BOTH acknowledge this issue. You have both TALKED about it, but, prices are NOT coming down. instead they are rising up. We ALL KNOW that prices will never drop by much at all. STILL. And we ALL know that you can barely rent a storage locker for $375 dollars a month. And yet, both the NDP AND the Liberal Party seem to feel that it is an acceptable practice to leave people out in the cold. (and by the way gentlemen, we DO acknowlege the efforts that your party IS making, but, once again, it is ONLY down south, there is NOTHIING EVEN PLANNED for the Town of Dawson creek,)
Yes, we know, SOMETHING is SUPPOSED to be happening this spring (2019) but NOT ONE THING has been stated on record about it. Nothing about what it supposedly entails. (update. we got a 50 dollar raise. still not enough to aid in renting, but at least it is food for some that are closer to the bottom end of the rent pool)
One of my BIGGEST concerns is the fact that it was the BC NDP that actually CUT our rates in 1995. Yes, I am also aware of the fact that it was in response to the Federal Funding cuts. But, NOTHING has been done up until your party came into power in 2017. You DID exactly as promised. You raised our rates almost immediately come fall by 100 dollars. BUT.... Shelter Rates are STILL only 375. That makes almost 12 years in a row now. The Help at the beginning of your term? We cannot thank you enough for that.
You ALSO added yet another 52 dollars onto our checks for transportation endorsement. ON TOP of the money given for transportation by the Liberal Party. (But that was because they cancelled our transportation Fund, that was there for DECADES before it was used to a> help us monthly for transport, and b> absorb the remaining amount. It helped No one but the Liberals, when they raised the rates for bus fare for the disabled to just under full amount instead.)
This brought our income UP by 256 dollars between 2016, and 2017.
ALSO very appreciated. And yet, despite all that, we are STILL receiving LESS today, than we did 24 YEARS ago.
And the drops continued from 1995, to what we recieved in 2016.. Declines in monthly "allowances" from BOTH The NDP, and The Liberal Party.
We were receiving $14,400 per YEAR in 1994. Compared to the average of $13,500 (or even less in MOST cases) or so for 2017.
And also brought in the Clawbacks. Something that NEVER should have been implemented in the first place. It takes from the disabled peoples Futures, and then AFTER they hit 60, THEN it is declared income, but is NOT before we have to apply for CPP. it is "unearned income, benefits that we had to work for to get. And yet another terror attack from the MSDES towards Disabled People, NO PWD )persons with Disabilities) checks without signing away our CPP-D cheques. dollar for dollar. and harassment. NON stop. every month, they hold the checks. try being with NO legs, and having to go down to the local 3rd party office (it is no longer a welfare and disability office. Service BC handles everything now) in the middle of winter, because you KNOW it is difficult, and hope it will discourage people. No, it is the ONLY income we have, you made sure of that. Local economies do not have room for disabled people. Even Walmart has VERY few disabled people as greeters anymore, because they can use people on "light duty" for that. as well as the greeters being able to help stock shelves.
. Bullying. Forcing people to do things your way, because you KNOW that advocates to fight for our rights are almost ALL gone now. Also part of YOUR doing. They used to be hundreds if not thousands of them a few years back. Now? can't find more than 1 per small community these days.
You FORCE people to take short cuts, smaller amounts, make do without the basics. Apply for CPP-D. And stealing the futures of those that are forced onto it. It affects our CPP when you force those that are 60 onto it immediately. And worse, you ALL know it.
John Horgan, I KNOW that YOU are fully aware of this. You after all, were working with Premiere Harcourt at the time, as one of his TOP troubleshooters. This means YOU were definitely in a position to know, and to understand the severity of it all.
I am willing to wait until the Poverty Reduction plan starts to take effect. BUT.. My Landlord, nor the holder of my Mortgage do NOT care for that at all. I have been fighting to keep my trailer from falling apart. and it requires money. Which, considering rents went up yet again by a large amount in 2018, mean I have even less now, than I did a few months ago.
We, the disabled of BC, are all struggling just to keep a roof over our heads each month, and FOOD has beciome a luxury, not a staple.
THESE are problems that have to be addressed NOW, not waiting until spring of 2019 to let us know what may be happening. Turns out that the new budget was a severe dissapointment. it did NOT solve MANY issues for the disabled. Let down again. More and More "wait, ot's coming, honest!! the same story we hear often. do NOT get me wrong, the NDP have done FAR more for the disabled under John Horgan, than ANYONE has done for us since Harcouer back in 1994, and for THAT alone, we thank you profusely. BUT, after 25 years of reductions, we can't wait anymore. we need the help NOW. not later.
People are starving, people are getting sicker, and people are losing their very HOMES as we wait. I expect action from you both. I blame the Liberal Government for voting themselves a raise right after telling us all that are on disability and welfare, that there was nothing they could do, and that "WE" had to tighten our belts, and make a few sacrifices. Apparently, we had to make those sacrifices so that the Liberal party could enjoy a decent year end bonus. Christy Clark's year end bonus ALONE would have added a LOT to each and every disabled person in BC. THAT is wrong. and The Liberals SET the rate for Shelter back in 2007, BEFORE the HUGE climb in housing costs. and decided to TAKE money FROM the disabled programs, in order to balance HER budget.
I DO blame your party, for the initial HUGE Cuts in 1995, and for not doing SOMETHING to rectify this issue. I blame the Liberals for never ONCE even TRYING to make a difference in this situation. I blame BOTH parties for reducing the amount yearly for a few yearss, until we had next to nothing. And i blame BOTH for not once doing anything to adjust this. Did you know, John Horgan, that your party POLICY actually states in it that we are supposed to have our income adjusted according to inflation? Seems since Harcourt (who literally HATED people on disability, and made NO secret about it) that it was buried. Never to be seen again.
These SHELTER RATES are 12 Years out of date, These were challenged By Shane Simpson himself, up until the NDP got in. Then talk of shelter rates stopped. Cold. and is STILL the standard by what rates are paid out. Show me ANYTHING that is still the same as it was 12 years ago please. Sadly, the SUPPORT rates, are 25 years out of date.
We rely on the 2 of you to NOT do the same to us. We needed heroes. We needed mediation. Are either of you up to it?
If ANY of theis sounds hateful, i do profusely apologize. I am here TRYING to make a valid, CRUCIAL point, without losing any of the impact.
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