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1998-02: Welfare Changes

WHEREAS one cornerstone of Canadian society is a safety net designed to help those in need, and

WHEREAS truly helping those in need means creating a foundation for people to help themselves out of need, and

WHEREAS access to the safety net for blind people is unnecessarily complex, and

WHEREAS blindness, unlike any other disability, can be accurately medically defined which can eliminate the need for extensive and cumbersome paperwork demonstrating disability, a method which puts the emphasis on inability rather than potential, and

WHEREAS the goal of helping people out of need is thwarted by the severe work disincentives in current law, and

WHEREAS improved work incentives should be made part of provincial welfare and Canada Pension Plan, and

WHEREAS nationalizing and standardizing welfare could achieve these goals most quickly, and progressive provincial legislative assemblies could readily adapt progressive measures which could be used as a model for future federal initiatives, now therefore

BE IT RESOLVED that we call upon the parliament of Canada and legislative assemblies to adopt the medical definition of blindness for establishing the eligibility of blind persons for welfare and Canada Pension, and

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED we call upon all levels of government to eliminate work disincentives for the blind in welfare and pension programs as one way to help reduce the 90 percent unemployment rate of the blind.