Kendall Worth on yet another case where a caseworker doesn’t believe a doctor’s diagnosis and special diet recommendation. Keep in mind that these doctors who write the special notes have gone to school seven or more years of their lives to study to become doctors! Why do we have a system where this needs to happen?
At last night’s screening of My Week on Welfare in Dartmouth, g=human rights lawyer Vince Calderhead talked about how the much-hyped transformation did not at all make things better for people on income assistance and his fear that special needs allowances will be next.
He also tackles the subject of tactics, don’t waste your time trying to convince bureaucrats, he says.
Earlier we wrote about a woman on income assistance who lost her special needs allowance. She fought back, she made noise, and now the allowance has been reinstated. There’s a lesson in that.
We talk with an older woman on income assistance who, as a result of a cut to her special needs allowance, has lost her ability to go to medical appointments and grocery trips. But we saved the tax payer some $50 a month. This is what austerity looks like in Nova Scotia.
Kate, a fearless mother who we have written about before, fights Community Services and gets the glasses (with warranty) her autistic son requires. It was hard and scary, and it looks like questions the NS Advocate was asking made a bit of a difference. This story has a happy ending, but you can’t help but wonder how many people would just have given up much earlier.
Kendall Worth meets up with a couple on income assistance, all set to do a serious job search now that they have a free bus pass and a phone. Just goes to show what a difference access to public transportation makes. “Now that we have both the bus pass and the phone, we are planning to get down to business with looking for meaningful employment,” Peter and Peggy tell Kendall. “Kendall, we are tired of living with the bureaucratic nonsense. We are tired of it, and we hope that now that we got our free bus pass we can get off this system.”
Anti-poverty activist Kendall Worth on five income assistance recipients who all lost their special diets in the last little while, even though their medical doctors told Community Services that the diet was medically necessary. What to do?
Kendall Worth on the difficulties of searching for a job without a phone, and why a phone is a basic necessity for a person on income assistance.
Kendall Worth reports on yet another case where a Community Services case worker questions the opinions of a doctor about special diet requirements. We hear quite a bit about this happening.
Another episode in our series Lives on Welfare where people living in poverty tell their stories: Things went relatively well for Emma, a mother who lives with her daughter in a town an hour or so away from Halifax. Then she got sick, lost her job, and ended up on social assistance. Then her daughter also got sick.