Disability benefit and pension rules defy logic

Victoria resident says she's forced to choose between reduced early pension or suspension of disability benefits under government rules

May is a long difficult month for clients on disability benefits; we have to survive on an unlivable income for five weeks due to scheduling policies of the Minstry of Social Development and Social Innovation.

​But it was a double whammy for me: my disability cheque was withheld at the ministry office and I was not allowed to get it until I submitted a signed Service Canada Pension Plan application ​ ​to get early retirement benefits. I submitted the signed application ​ ​because I had no choice. Either submit it or be cut off with no money at all.

No client on disability should ever have to choose between having a permanently reduced pension for life (the penalty for early application) or eating.

Nobody dealing with chronic illness should ever have their life-line taken away from them. The fact that the ministry was completely willing to cut me off disability, knowing that I would be left on the street with no food or shelter, is absolutely horrifying.

The fact that the ministry is doing this to thousands of disabled clients across the province is beyond horrifying. It is unspeakable.

Personally, I know of clients whose disability benefits were terminated because they were too mentally or physically ill to fill out the CPP forms.

If we value our humanity as a society, we simply cannot allow this to happen to the sickest and  most vulnerable seniors in this province.

Doreen Gee,

Victoria

 

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