Ex­penses im­pos­si­ble to jus­tify to those who are strug­gling

Cape Breton Post - - COMMENT -

I was talk­ing to a friend who worked un­der­ground with me at Lin­gan. He did not qual­ify for a Devco pen­sion and he is only 56. He was strug­gling with a dilemma: pay for oil or power or his mort­gage, or to buy some healthy food for him and his wife who has been ill for some time. His in­juries from min­ing coal pre­vented him from go­ing down the road to Fort Mac.

MLAs are dip­ping and spending without a thought of peo­ple who are suf­fer­ing. One MLA needs a GPS to find his way to the trough. An­other puts in an $8,000 gen­er­a­tor so he can watch his 40-inch LCD TV when the power goes out, all billed to the peo­ple of Nova Sco­tia.

MLAs are paid an $84 per diem when the leg­is­la­ture is in ses­sion; peo­ple on so­cial as­sis­tance don’t get $84 a week af­ter rent. When are we go­ing to share the wealth with those who re­ally need it? When was the last time any of th­ese MLAs went hun­gry?

I would like peo­ple on dis­abil­ity en­ti­tle­ments to know there are spe­cial diet en­ti­tle­ments of up to $150 a month if your doc­tor or di­eti­cian agrees you need them to eat and stay healthy. In the long run we would re­duce med­i­cal costs if only the gov­ern­ment could see past the prej­u­dice and the myth sur­round­ing wel­fare fraud. In ac­tual fact, it is less than three per cent of the to­tal bud­get each year.

It is the gov­ern­ment that con­trols en­ti­tle­ments, not the work­ers at the Depart­ment of Com­mu­nity Ser­vices. Maybe the premier could bor­row that GPS unit to get on track and pro­vide real changes for the poor and dis­abled. Glen Muise Syd­ney Ed­i­tor’s note: The gen­er­a­tor was in­stalled at the MLA’s home and the TV in his con­stituency of­fice.

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