Open Letter Regarding Access Barriers to Applying for Income Assistance

To All Candidates in the 2017 BC Provincial Election: We are writing to you as a candidate in the provincial election on behalf of more than sixty undersigned organizations to collectively express our concerns regarding chronic and serious barriers British Columbians face when attempting to apply for income assistance. It is our hope that you will pursue this issue, as it affects British Columbians in all corners of the province.

Deaf man takes B.C. ministry to Human Rights Tribunal over delays in income assistance

When Christopher Shay applied for income assistance in September, he was at his wit’s ends. Unlike hearing people, Shay is unable to pick up the phone and call the income assistance office. Shay struggled more than five weeks before getting any money and received eviction notices after receiving no government response to his application. He finally found help through local outreach programs.