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Teacher Newsmagazine Volume 16, Number 3, January/February 2004

B.C. limits welfare to two years

On April 1, 2002 the B.C. Liberal government implemented a two-year time limit policy on welfare. This means that thousands of people on income assistance will receive their last cheque, their last source of income, on February 26, 2004. As teachers, we need to be sensitive to children in our classes whose lives will be disrupted by this government initiative.

B.C. is the only province in Canada to have such a policy in place. Time limits on welfare are a cruel attack on the most powerless members of our society. It is the flip side of the tax cuts for the wealthy. The tax cuts introduced on the first day the B.C. Liberals came to power provide $200 million a year to the top 8,000 income earners in the province.

Corporate tax cuts have reduced government revenues by billions.

  • Time limits resulting in reductions in assistance mean that more children will come to school hungry and more will be homeless.
  • Welfare time limits will mean more people sleeping in the streets and panhandling.
  • It will also overburden the foster-care system as many children may be apprehended because their parents will not be able to provide for them.

Please email, write or Fax Murray Coell, the Minister of Human Resources to tell him to End Welfare Time Limits, 250-356-7750, Fax: 250-356-7292, Address: PO Box 9058 Stn Prov Govt, Victoria BC V8W 9E2, e-mail: murray.coell@gems3.gov.bc.ca.

For further information on how to fight back, call Lisa at End Legislated Poverty at 604-879-1209 or visit our web site at bctf.ca/social/poverty/WelfareTimeLimit/.

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