Letters to the Editor

Speak up Stilwell for those in need

With great trepidation I allowed some of my difficulties to be featured in reporter Lissa Alexander’s first story in a series entitled Poverty in Paradise (The NEWS, Feb. 13, part two will run Feb. 27).

I loved working, often seven days a week at times and was very proud of most of my jobs.

I would like to clarify that it is not only the pain medication that interferes with this ability and desire to work. The big obstacle is the pain and the reactions to pain. The unintended cries when hit by sudden jolts of pain, loss of balance and depression.

When I first looked at Parksville-Qualicum MLA Michelle Stilwell’s response to your reporter’s question about Person With Disability rates in B.C., it was immediately obvious that this was a stock answer to be given to anyone who asks this question.

Unfortunately, not only did Stilwell’s response not address the question, but it showed a lack of any research of her answer:

“A balance between what is necessary to help people and what is acceptable to the taxpayer.”

Past polls disagree. A majority of taxpayers that were polled by Mustel in 2011 did support a small raise in PWD rates. The current rate comes nowhere close to addressing basic needs. $375 a month for rent, whether or not a person can live in a simple room, is not enough for the rental on most  rooms for rent.

As for food, as the article said, having nutritious food is just an if, not a given.

The government does take care of my prescription costs and medical needs. Thank God, for without this I would have given up on living a long time ago.

Believe it or not I would still like a part-time job. Some paying hours every week would be nice.

As editor John Harding said in his Feb. 13 editorial, some people “want to work, want to contribute. Those are the people Stilwell and the B.C. Liberals should be helping.”

MLA Stilwell, please speak up and make a difference to those who need your help.

Hugh Baker

Parksville

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