Fix The Gap asks you to call your MPP about Bill 6
The Fix The Gap campaign is asking people to call their MPP about the progress of Bill 6 an Act to create an independent Commission to set social assistance rates based on evidence. The campaign asked Put Food in the Budget to circulate this guideline on how to contact your MPP.
For more information go to http://fixthegap.hamiltonpoverty.ca/
Everyone wants social assistance rates raised. We know they aren’t even close to covering everything we need to live with dignity in Ontario. Formulas for making up rate structure on OW or ODSP are really arbitrary and are not tied to anything to do with reality. And while the government talks about changing the system, we can guess that significant increases to rates are bottom of the agenda.
Bill 6, introduced by NDP MPP Paul Miller in Hamilton won’t force a rate change. What it will do is force the government to be evidence based around what is adequate just like they are in all their other anti-poverty measures. The Research Commission will include people who live on or have lived on the system in deciding what is necessary. This bill will force the government to be open and transparent about what it really costs to live in different regions of Ontario; the government will have to release the information annually.
Then the government will have to answer to us why their own programs are so inadequate despite their own evidence.
I am asking if you would consider contacting your local MPP, Liberal ones especially, and ask “When they will hear Bill 6 in the Social Policy committee?”
I think the voices of people living on the system are really important to making change. They keep telling us we don’t vote and they don’t hear from us. Prove them wrong.
If you aren’t comfortable on the phone here is a sample script you can work with. It’s really important this be done by phone as they have to log the calls they get.
Thanks for taking the time to read this. And please let us know if you agree to call your MPP. Contact either Laura Cattari at the email address printed below or Susan Muma at email@example.com
Secretary of Hamilton Organizing for Poverty Elimination (HOPE).
Fix the Gap
Script for MPP calls re: Bill 6
Hello, my name is _________________________. I'm a voter in ____________________'s riding. Is___________________________(MPP's name) there?
I would like to talk to her / him about Bill 6.
(If the MPP is not there, talk to the assistant. They have to record your call and the issue you want to discuss.)
You may not know but Bill 6 is a private member's bill to establish a Social Assistance Research Commission, and it would look at the real cost of adequacy in different areas of the province and show how much money people really need to live on. Right now, the bill is being held back by Liberals even though it passed second reading unanimously. I want to tell MPP ________________________, that I want Bill 6 heard in committee so it can be discussed and voted on. I expect her / him to vote for Bill 6.
I am a person with lived experience of poverty. I am on ____________(OW/ODSP), and I can tell you that I don't get enough money to pay my rent and buy food. I certainly don't get enough to buy cleaning and hygiene products, let alone enough to buy bus tickets, or have a phone, which I need in to be a part of the community, including job searching.
Maybe if the government had to look at how much money people really need to live a half decent life, they'd raise Social Assistance, so we don't always have to worry about having enough to eat or a decent place to live.
Please tell __________________________________(MPP's name) that I called and that I want to know when Bill 6 will be heard in Committee and I also want to know that she/he supported Bill 6.
____________________________________________(MPP's name) can reach me at:
Give your contact information.
TELEPHONE # or email or other way to contact you:
Put Food in the Budget