For Persons On Disability Assistance, BC Recovery Benefit Misses The Point


Spencer van Vloten calls for changes that go beyond one-time payments


By Spencer van Vloten

Published in The Province, December 15th 2020


While the BC Recovery Benefit isn’t unwelcomed, for persons on disability assistance it misses the point. With current disability rates falling thousands of dollars below the poverty line--making the most basic needs hard to satisfy--a one-time $500 payment is merely putting a Band-Aid on a gaping, gushing bullet wound. The government must show, through sustained engagement and policy reform, that they care about the well-being of disabled British Columbians and want to bring them along as BC moves ahead. This can be demonstrated through permanent increases to disability assistance; increasing the housing supply in low-cost bands by offering greater subsidies to affordable housing developers; and by broadening the eligibility of supplement programs to make them more accessible to persons in need. Only when the government moves beyond stopgaps and demonstrates commitment to long-term measures like these will it show that BC is building back better for everyone.