Updated: Jan 22
This is just a small sample of the comments we've received about the urgent need to raise disability assistance rates. As you can see, the current rates force people on disability into lives of poverty and anxiety.
If you'd like to send us your comments, send a message to firstname.lastname@example.org!
-Once I pay rent and bills I was left with $120 for groceries...the extra $300 was a blessing. Stressed that it will soon end. People on disability deserve better. LH
-Disability assistance is thousands below the BC poverty line. The income allowance is several times lower than average rent in the province. No one can look at the numbers and cost of living and think that this is an okay situation. Do people want us to be poor? ES
-Please increase the disability. People cannot live on the current rate. I have a daughter who is 9 with a severe learning disability and i fear for her future if we cannot take care of our disabled. LP
-My son and I both are on disability and renting takes majority of our moneys, which doesn't leave much for even food or hydro. Just to try to live a normal life on such a little amount is very tough. Especially if you have lots of medications to buy every month. GL
-What is provided has not been enough for a decade. It is STILL less than what was given in 1994 by the NDP government, before clawbacks in 1999. Where were the MLA cuts and clawbacks during these times? JD
-People on disability cannot survive on under $1200 a month .Every person received about $2000 for a monthly federal COVID benefit, yet people on disability in BC live on half that. Please fix disability income so we don't have to struggle so badly. IK
-When a basic living wage is deemed to be $2000/month and people on disability, who by that very nature have more expenses, only get $1200/month one must wonder if they are intentionally being gotten rid of. Taking away the $300 extra for covid is criminal. Prices aren't going back down. How can we be expected to survive now? SM
- I truly support increases to income assistance and disability assistance, with a clear, earmarked increase to the shelter portion. The cost of living has sky rocketed VH
-With the rental costs always going up then SHOULD NOT the 375.00 also go up? It's a huge reason for the amount of homelessness. LB
-Please help us by raising the disability rates so we can afford food,medical supplies, and not be so broke that we run out of money especially when some months our cheques are 5 weeks apart AH
-I am infuriated that I cannot afford housing because disability is so far below the poverty line. LW
-It is extremely hard to make it on disability, friends and family are always stepping in to help JL
-I think disability should be raised we can't survive on what we get after rent, I have $200 a month to live off EL
- I was living better with the three hundred extra a month it helped with special diet and meds I need paid for. We need keep this increase or do world wide 2,000 a month for all. CC
-I find that the extra $300 makes it easier for me to eat properly and to help buy more safety masks and hand sanitizer. Please don't take the $300 away. MV
-The $300 will be nice just don't stop there we will still be below the poverty line SG
-My daughter is disabled. The amount she gets is a bad joke. BH
-I am not sure how I will make it when the $300 is gone AM
-That extra $300 a month is much needed AD
-I really hope a change for the better to help people with disabilities with an increase to income assistance and PWD will happen, the time for change is now not later EH
How about raising the shelter rates for EVERYONE? Bring it in line with the average rent across the province. Add internet as an utility as well, since everything the BC gov't does is now online. Plus the $300 in support, so us disabled can get proper food, medical aids, etc.
My adult kid is trying to get on disability, but can't live anywhere besides my husband and I...can't even come close to rent. Average 1 bedroom in my small town is $650-$800 a month, plus utilities. KG
-I have lived poor most of my life. Now that I am on disability it is even harder. The 300 extra helped out but rolling it back will not. If I pay my bills then I'm short on food and being diabetic and my other health issues mean that I cannot afford the foods I need.
We should have a living wage so that we may live with proper nutrition, and I haven't been able to buy new clothes in years, which means I wear pants with holes or stained shirts.
This has to change and 375 a month for rent hydro gas and phone is not near enough as you know. I would like these ministers to try and live on what we are forced to. They would not be able to. LM
Spencer van Vloten is the editor of BC Disability. Get in touch by emailing email@example.com!