Tuesday, July 17, 2018

What does Poverty FEEL like in Canada?

Today, a study from the Angus Reid Institute was released. The study looks at what it means to be poor in Canada.

Yesterday, Jacqueline Hansen with CBC National spoke with me, in regards to this study.

But, we can focus on what it means to be poor in Canada, as much as we can focus on how if feels to be poor in Canada.

I fall into the category, as the "struggling".

I struggle to pay my bills on time. I struggle to go out and be an active part of society.

It feels degrading, scary, anxiety provoking, hopeless, and despairing.

One of the first things that are taken away when you live in poverty? The persons dignity.

We are vulnerable to stigmas, predators, and a system that perpetuates poverty.

But, we are also strong, resourceful, and make a stronger community.

I have to rely on gifts to get new clothing, furniture.

I have to rely on gift cards or my parents for food and other necessities.

I feel like a failure, a burden. To myself, my family, as well as a member of society.

This is Canada. This is supposed to be one of the best places to live in the world.

Unfortunately, for many of us, this is not the case.

We do not prosper.

You can read the Angus Reid Institute study here: http://angusreid.org/poverty-in-canada/

Thursday, June 14, 2018

Alberta Works CPAP request.

Well, So, you THINK you KNOW how the system works, do you?

Well, if you have never been on Alberta Works, you really don't KNOW how it works. OR, IF it "Works" for that matter.

In 2016 my CPAP machine for my sleep apnea broke down. I was given a temporary machine until I was approved for a new one through Alberta Works.

In the fall of 2017, Alberta Works requested that I get more testing done for Alberta Income for the Severely Handicapped (AISH), to approve of the CPAP machine.

So, I went and had a Pulmonary Function Test done, and another sleep study done. And was sent to Alberta Works on January 29, 2018.

Alberta Works sent the information to AISH on February 13, 2018.

On March 21, 2018, my social worker received an email back from AISH, asking for me to get a Level 3 sleep assessment done in order to confirm diagnosis. THIS had been done and completed, and sent in to Alberta Works in January.

On March 23, 2018, Respiratory Home Care solutions sent this information back to Alberta Works.

On April 4, 2018, Alberta Works received 2nd request for CPAP with documentation, and Alberta Works emailed this to AISH.

On April 13, 2018, Alberta Works received an email back from AISH. The second request for a CPAP machine was NOT supported, and they were requesting documents from my initial diagnosis.

On April 24, 2018, Respiratory Home Care Solutions faxed this information, to Alberta Works.

On April 20, 2018, the initial diagnosis testing documents  were received by Alberta works and submitted to AISH.

This morning, I spoke with my social worker, and she indicated in the initial phone call that they never received the initial diagnosis, and asked me once again to send in this information, I informed her that it was sent in APRIL, and she stated she did NOT have it in her file.

So......I called Respiratory Home Care Solutions, asked them to once again, send the information to Alberta Works.

In my phone call to my Alberta Works social worker, this afternoon, to ask her and confirm she sent the information. She stated that, "Oh, I found the paperwork that was sent in April."

So, today, June 14, 2018, we are once again, waiting for AISH to approve my CPAP machine.

For someone who struggles with physical and mental health issues, this is NOT how ANYONE, who is trying to improve their health should be treated.

Sure a lot of miscommunication, and unnecessary stress for someone.

I never wanted it to come this way, but I have now had no choice to advocate for myself, and sent a letter to my MLA, and the Minister of Health, and the Minister of Social Services.

I'd rather their time be spent fixing the issues as a whole, than focusing on an individual's issues, to maintain a healthy lifestyle.