Vancouver, BC (May 18, 2016) – In an incredible show of solidarity and commitment to addressing poverty for some of BC’s most vulnerable citizens, Inclusion BC, and a growing number of anti-poverty, human rights, faith groups, immigrant and refugee organizations and disability organizations have banded together in a joint Open Letter calling on Premier Clark to Raise the Rates, Leave our Bus Pass Alone.
The Open Letter is an urgent call to action by more than 150 provincial and local community groups across BC who strongly oppose the changes to the BC Bus Pass Program and Special Transportation Subsidy and believe its long past time for the BC Government to raise Persons with Disability Rates (PWD). This has garnered the support of more than 15,000 people who signed the online petition.
It has been almost a decade since the government has increased income assistance and disability rates. In BC over 100,000 people are challenged to live on low income rates while living in one of the most expensive jurisdictions in the world. Those living on PWD, their families and thousands of other BC citizens are once again calling for real increases to PWD, with no claw backs. The announcement in the most recent BC Budget of a $77/month rate increase and the accompanying $52/month or $66/month claw backs is a clear indication that BC needs a serious plan to increase our PWD rates.
A Press Conference with the organizations represented and people who live on PWD will be held:
Wednesday May 18, 2016 9:00 am
BC Non-Profit Housing Association
220-1651 Commercial Drive
Vancouver, BC V6B 6B1
Faith Bodnar, Executive Director, Inclusion BC
Yuji Kajiwara, Self Advocate
Fraser Doke, Raise the Rates
Kishone Roy, BC Non-Profit Housing Association
Trish Garner, Community Organizer, BC Poverty Reduction Coalition