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Refugees don’t deserve supplemental healthcare?

Kelly Block is ending heath and dental benefits for refugeesNot really sure what to say about this.  I have worked with a variety of refugees over the years and many of them come from horrible refugee camps where there was violence and horrors while not being home to a lot of dental and medical care.  When they come to Saskatoon (or Canada) they need essential medical and dental care that they have never had. 

Also, job prospects for refugees are limited which means even if they are working, it’s for $10/hour while they establish themselves.  I just paid $250 for glasses and it was for a simple prescription.  I am incredibly happy that Wendy has a great dental plan or else it would hurt us a lot more.

I want my tax dollars to help newcomers to Canada to have a good and healthy start.  They have a lot of obstacle to overcome, dental, health, and some glasses aren’t too much to pay for to make a hard road ahead easier.

In the end, the Government of Canada has taken away what we call Supplemental Healthcare coverage in Saskatchewan.  It’s extended coverage that people on Social Assistance get and it helps them get by on almost no money.  Losing it is a big deal and I am not sure why the Government of Canada is doing it and I am not sure I would be bragging about it.

As most of you know, Wendy is an immigrant to Canada (from Guyana).  Coming to Canada, the family had a sponsor and jobs for her parents and it was still really, really hard.  Starting over with nothing is terrible and they never had to go through the refugee process.  

Most of us will have never known the horrors of having to flee a country.  Helping them while they get established is not unfair, it’s an investment and it’s not anything I would brag about.

5 Comments

  1. Erin Wilson says:

    Sigh. This is just so mean-spirited and backward.

  2. Clement Ng says:

    The title of your post is seriously misleading, Jordan, because you conflated dental, visual and prescription care with basic health services. The cut in refugee benefits largely bring the scope of services covered in line with what Canadians enjoy and Canadians do not benefit from subsidization of dental, health and prescription coverage. Whether or not you feel such a reduction in service is justified, you cannot reasonably claim that MP Kelly Block’s message is that “Refugees don’t deserve healthcare”. They *do* receive basic healthcare, just like the rest of us.

  3. Clement Ng says:

    Pardon my mistake – the second clause of my second sentence should read “Canadians do not benefit from subsidization of dental, visual and prescription coverage.”

  4. Lila Wagner says:

    Dear me!! I used to have respect for Kelly Block–I can’t believe what I’m seeing!!!

  5. Erin Wilson says:

    Wanted to come back to thank you for including a shot of the whole page. I’m not sure I would have gone the extra step to look up her email address. You made it impossible not to write to her office. I appreciate that.

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