Public sector blow off

Disabled people have understood the woes of a bust economy for years

Dear Sir:

The barbarians are at the gates of their own demise after digging holes for resources all the way to China, leaving Canadians in poverty and an impotent service sector like Telus, B.C. Hydro and MHR Welfare Disability.

As a disabled person, I’ve learned over the years what so many people are learning. When the private sector gets in trouble, the public sector blows you off.

Last winter, I was threatened with Telus disconnection, owing $200. By May, I had paid it down to $60 when I was disconnected. I’ve since learned that that’s the general trend- 30 years a good customer and one late payment you’re cut off.

Being on a fixed income, I was broke until my next MHR cheque. Without phone services, it’s hard to make doctor’s appointments and get med refills.

When I got my next bill, it was after July 1 and I had to make payment before July 8 or face a penalty. Meanwhile, I paid the bill off and was reconnected in June. But in mid-June I was disconnected again because Telus didn’t make the connection properly.

Apparently they do that – or don’t do that – a lot.

The bill, after all this, is $106, which is for reconnection and basic service. Some guy in the Philippines takes inquiries, the outsourcing problem. There’s so much blarney and hubris, you might as well have dialed ‘M’ for madness, the current menu idiosyncrasies of phone-talk.

MHR was paying my Hydro bill direct out of my cheque. It was something like $65 per month. The year-end adjustment was $445. They also promised to disconnect me should I fail to comply.

With the assistance of MHR, my monthly payment went from $91 to $105 and the total went to $139.33 to take care of the overdraft for one year included. This money comes out of my monthly cheque.

The worker asked, “Is that okay?”

I said, “Beats freezing in the dark.”

The provincial government hasn’t given disabled people an increase in so long, nobody knows. Christie Clark is the patron saint of just saying, “No!’ when it comes to improving our frugal lifestyles.

Then there are people who suggest ‘solutions’ you’ve been doing since all this blarney and hubris took over. Welfare has been outsourced to Prince George and what local workers there are hide behind a barricade telling you to call P.G.

Brian Gregg, Terrace, B.C.




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