Category Archives: Poverty

Salvation Army a Victorian era charity still needed to help the poor in Canada

Canada needs a poverty fix that doesn’t include Charles Dickens

PEI’s resort to the Salvation Army for winter heating fuel would make Dickens proud but has no place in a rich country

Salvation Army a Victorian era charity still needed to help the poor in Canada

During the coldest week of winter, people on Prince Edward Island who are living in poverty discovered  that the Salvation Army has run out of emergency oil support.

Continue reading

His name is Muki Baum, he has cerebral palsy, he's deaf and can barely speak. Yet for almost 20 years he's been fundraising outside Holt Renfrew for people with disabilities. His tally to date is a staggering $600,000. VINCE TALOTTA/TORONTO STAR

Man with disability raises $600K as street beggar

Would Jesus or Charles Dickens notice the difference in how people with disabilities are utilized in Canada today

His name is Muki Baum, he has cerebral palsy, he's deaf and can barely speak. Yet for almost 20 years he's been fundraising outside Holt Renfrew for people with disabilities. His tally to date is a staggering $600,000. VINCE TALOTTA/TORONTO STAR

Muki Baum is a man severely disabled by Cerebral Palsy who has raised $600,000 begging on the streets of Toronto outside posh stores like Holt Renfrew.

Donna Thompson, wife of Canada’s High Commissioner to the UK, argues in The Four Walls of My Freedom that we are not valuing people like Muki Baum.

The Toronto Star reports Mr. Baum raised this money day-after-day for charities like Wheels in Motion and the March of Dimes. He has done it for 20 years.

It’s a wonderful story of triumph over adversity and personal sacrifice.

It’s also the saddest commentary on how little Canadian society values people with disabilities.

Mr. Baum is not alone.

Many Canadians with moderate to severe disabilities are not employed and resort to street begging to survive.

Mr. Baum is not limited in intelligence but his appearance, mobility and verbal limitations make him fit for the lowest level of activity.

Continue reading

Prime Minister Harper, RDSP benefits few Canadians except ultra rich

RDSP fails to help Canadians with disabilities

Canadians not taking advantage of disability savings

Prime Minister Harper, RDSP benefits few Canadians except ultra rich

The Registered Disability Savings Plan, a gem in the crown of the Harper government’s social policies, has been a failure in helping Canadians with Disabilities.

If Prime Minister Harper wanted to help Canadians with disabilities he could implement many of the well researched proposals to end poverty and provide disability supports. Complicated schemes like the RDSP that target the ultra rich are of little value.

Recent survey sponsored by the Bank of Montreal shows only 5% of Canadians with disabilities have a tax sheltered savings plan for people with disabilities.

RDSP’s are focused on the upper income parents of children with disabilities who have disposable income available for savings after their own RRSP savings.

Most Canadians with a disabled dependent are spending their money on disability supports and medical costs. 95% of them don’t have any additional money for RDSP savings.

A recent Caledon study found a high percentage of Canadians with disabilities are living in poverty. Anyone living on the $9,000 annual income from CP Disability is not a potential saver.   Continue reading

cbcchoir2

The obscenity of CBC turkey drives

Phony annual charity drive illustrates how little has been done to reduce poverty

Merry Christmas from CBC, sorry you're life is not so merry

Nothing is more obscene than the pampered people at CBC with their annual do-gooder turkey drive. CBC wastes it’s considerable resources attacking the wrong end of the stick.

Do they think one turkey at Christmas will alleviate the crushing weight of poverty or is this all just another WKRP radio station publicity stunt?

If the folks at CBC really carried about Christmas and the message of Christ, they would use their considerable resources to report stories about the reality of PEI’s poverty problem.

A short stint of real reporting at CBC would inform the public and embarrass the government into fixing the problem once and for all.

Dr. Robert Coull wrote that charity drives make him angry. “The need for charity is something that makes me very angry.  It reminds me that our society is unjust.  The poor continue to be poor, while the rich get richer.  Rich people ‘feeling good’ about giving a few dollars or a few hours of their time to the ‘deserving poor’ is something I would love to see the end of.”   Continue reading

Minister of Community Services, Seniors and Labour Janice Sherry, press release to follow

Will UN International Day of Persons with Disabilities mean anything on PEI

PEI celebrates the day with plagiarism, pontificating and prevarication

Minister of Community Services, Seniors and Labour Janice Sherry, press release to follow

The world celebrates UN International Day of Persons with Disabilities. On Prince Edward Island, we can look forward to political hot air.

The appropriate minister will rise in the Legislature to acknowledge her love for and empathy with the situation of Islanders living with disabilities. Those speeches are fulsome, with profound words that puff up those who listen.  In reality, they are hollow with pontificating and prevarication.  Continue reading

UN-Enable

UN International Day of Persons with Disabilities and all is not well in Canada

Two decades of neglect by government leaves many living with disabilities further behind and living in poverty

The UN International Day of Persons with Disabilities may be a publicity stunt or a grim reminder to many of the 4 million Canadians living with disabilities that they are locked in last place in the Canadian experience.

The UN press release says “The Day aims to promote a better understanding of disability issues with a focus on the rights of persons with disabilities and gains to be derived from the integration of persons with disabilities in every aspect of the political, social, economic and cultural life of their communities. The goal of full and effective participation of persons with disabilities in society and development was established by the World Programme of Action concerning Disabled Persons, adopted by the United Nations General Assembly in 1982.” UN Enable

How good is life for people with disabilities in Canada?  Continue reading

Photo by Sharyn Morrow Creative Commons

Basic Income Could Eliminate Poverty

Changes to benefit system would replace welfare for working age people with disabilities

Continue reading