Disability pension

Resident calls for more action to support the disabled

Re: article by Richard Rolke, Disability rate increase urged…

I keep reading articles and hearing news stories about people on disability pensions. What I only see and hear is about provincial disability payments and not one iota about Canada Pension Disability recipients, such as myself.

What the news neglects to mention is this, a person on provincial disability also has free medical, free prescriptions, free eye and teeth care, can get cheaper bus passes and cheaper recreation passes if they so desire. True there is not enough low cost housing but that is not only occurring in Vernon but throughout the province of B.C. and elsewhere in the country.

What I do not hear or see is any information on people on Canada Pension Disability. I’m one of the ” lucky ones” I guess if you want to call it that. I worked prior to becoming disabled, and went through so many hoops just to get accepted on disability.

The way it works in this province is this, if you become disabled whether it is permanent or temporarily, and you have worked in the past four years, you must first apply for Canada Pension Disability, then you can go to Social Services and apply for welfare until you have been accepted for disability.

Trust me when I say it is not easy to apply for disability, your doctor must fill out forms which you have to pay for by the way, and if your doctor does not answer the questions in the right way, it can and will take longer to jump through the hoops. Once you have the forms filled out correctly it takes any where from six months to a year for those forms to be looked at.

If you do get accepted you can now go from regular welfare benefits, which is so miniscule it’s ridiculous, to  Provincial Disability, then once Canada Pension gets the doctor reports you will then be put on Canada Pension Disability.  The only benefit of all this is this, since you applied in the first place for Canada Pension Disability, they will back pay you any money that you would of got had you been on CPD in the first place, minus the money you already got from welfare on regular benefits.

Yes it’s true you can work on both disability types of payments but first you need to find a job that fits your disability and trust me when I say this, it is not an easy task to find first, part-time work that fits your disability, second, usually once an employer finds out you have a disability they judge you on the fact and then you don’t get a call back for an interview.

I realize up until now I did not mention what my CPD pays me per month, so if you’re ready this is it, $782.54 per month.

I went from earning over $21 per hour when I was not disabled down to living on welfare for almost a year of just over $550 a month.

Thank the stars I was able to find a 13 hr a week p/t job, unfortunately I only make min. wage at it.

I have to say, yes the disability rate must be increased but what I also want to see is an even amount of disability payments for both federal and provincial and I want to see benefits included in the Federal Disability. I also want to see more low-cost housing built especially in my city, the City of Vernon.  And I’d like to say not everyone is an older person  when it comes to collecting Canada Pension Disability.

Patti Mondor

Vernon