Last week I wrote about the possibility the Ford Government is preparing to conduct in person searches of the homes of those who are receiving support through the Ontario Disability Support Program (ODSP) in order to review their eligibility for the program. I would not have expected this or any reviews to take place during the peak of not just a health crisis in the province but a once in a lifetime pandemic. The disabled have shouldered more burden than anyone else during COVID 19, and now there are confirmed reports that ODSP recipients are in fact getting requests for phone call appointments and a ton of paperwork in order to review their eligibility for the program in the middle of the third wave.
There are significant concerns regarding the accessibility of the COVID vaccine for those who are disabled and their families. Doug Ford refused help from the Red Cross that could have helped with the mobile distribution of vaccines, and the vaccination roll out isn’t targeting those who are vulnerable and at severe risk of dying, but rather by age group and geographical locations. Even Ford’s own advisors are taking issue with that:
Not to mention booking or getting medical appointments with specialists and anyone in the medical field right now in order to get the proper paperwork for these “reviews” can be extremely difficult as our health care system in the province is maxing out as a result of the Ford Government’s failure to listen to medical experts months ago and curb a third wave, and stop a health care crisis from happening.
Conducting any sort of reviews during the height of the pandemic is a major violation of human rights. I would stress to all those getting requests for reviews at this stage to get in contact with a lawyer and have them advocate for the review date to be pushed back to later in the year. The Ford Government is not accommodating the situation on the ground for many disabled in this province on any level. I have a very hard time believing that any tribunal or court would agree to subjecting our disabled to an eligibility review in the middle of a health care crisis.