There is an interesting article today in the Toronto Star about the number of disabled people using food banks are up this year. Apparently, in the past 19 years the benefit amount for people on Ontario DIsability Support Program (ODSP) has increased $156.00 (about 17%) per month to $1086.00 with another $15.00 coming this October.
I don’t know about you but my cost of living has gone up much more than 17% since 1995. As near as I can figure from cost of living figures I can find it has gone up about 40% in that time period. Even a 40% increase would only amount to about $1,300 per month which isn’t much after paying rent, heat hydro and food.
The government treats people with disabilities the same way they treat other people receiving welfare benefits. They pay normal welfare recipients a subsistence amount to entice them to return to the workforce.
The government’s, both federal (CPP DIsability) and provincial (ODSP), seem to think that if they pay disabled people a low enough benefit they will somehow miraculously become well and be able to work at jobs that they can live on.
I guess the theory is that low benefits will weed out those who would collect disability benefits but are able to work but the problem is, those who truly can’t work starve and live in hovels.
The governments could police the programs better to make sure those collecting are deserving and pay them a benefit they could live on but that would require bigger budgets.
These days “taxpayers” would rather see disabled people hungry than pay a few more bucks a year in taxes because, in their eyes, there is nothing worse than paying taxes to support services that they don’t need personally.