I am writing to alert residents to the fact that the federal government in its wisdom has cut off thousands of low-income seniors ages 65 – 75 from the Guaranteed Income Supplement. The cut-off penalizes people who made a bit more from the Canada Emergency Response Benefit (CERB) or the Canada Recovery Benefit. No one realized that receiving a benefit would affect their yearly income; the cut off for single seniors is $18,984, with a monthly maximum of $936, and for couples the cu toff is $45,504.
One low-income senior found out two days before that there would be a drastic reduction, not providing adequately for rent, utilities, food, and necessities. Green MP Paul Manly wrote that the new regulation “fails to account for the costly ramifications of forcing low-income seniors into greater poverty.”
It is ironic that images of seniors huddling in the snow and begging will—I hope–not sit well when electors go to the polls to elect a federal government, allegedly this September. Cartoons of Justin Trudeau as the character Scrooge in The Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens will evoke earlier bad times when poor people were sent to the workhouse and divided up into the deserving and undeserving recipients of charity. Giving billions to large corporate entities in the name of saving the economy will not sit well if ordinary Canadians are left out in the cold so to speak.
If you care about your country and citizens, please let your political representatives know about how you feel about this matter. Let’s not be apathetic!
Nina Westaway, Lumby, BC