Saturday, July 4, 2009


Human Rights Abuse or Just Plain Corruption?
During the recent strike that was started by Toronto City workers and union members of CUPE local 79 the welfare benefits of the poor was cut by Toronto City Officials. Welfare recipients were told that only emergency services would be provided during the strike and all other services that were normally provided to the poor were cut off during the strike. This means that those on public assistance saw either a reduction in the services that they normally recieved including a reduction in their benefits or as in the case for many has recieved no benefits at all. The fact is that those who has come to rely upon these services were left without any means to get by while Toronto City employees strike for more money. The poor were caught in the middle of the dispute and were used as pawns by those conducting the strike despite what Toronto City Officials has said otherwise. Most welfare recipients were left without money for food and shelter and for other necessities during the strike. For instance benefits for such things as transportation which many has relied upon for such things as doctor's visits or to enable them to go to their jobs or even to school for some were cut off during the strike. Many welfare recipients have began to camped out in front of the Toronto City Hall and the Mayor's office in protest of the denial of their benefits during the strike whose end appears to be no where in sight. CUPE's President Ann Dembinski and also its National Representative has denied that CUPE was involved in any decisions to cut the benefits of the poor during the strike. In fact welfare recipients were told that the decision to cut off their benefits during the strike was made by senior management which many believed to have included a collective of Toronto City Officials including the mayor David Miller. This would include also Toronto Social Services Director Brenda Nesbit and its General Manager Heather Macvicar. Brenda Nesbit has confirmed that services to the poor has been cut during the strike and that those services should resume after the srike is over. As for Toronto's Mayor David Miller his office has denied knowing anything about the reduction of benefits to the poor in the city. This is also unlikely because as the head of the operation of the city he would have been privy to that information. Both Toronto City employees and those who run the city its public officials has incomes that far exceeded those of the people on welfare and who this strike seemed to have affected the most. Joining forces together and cutting off the benefits of the poor while they strike for more money themselves is I believed corrupted on their part. They have also left the city without other essential services such as garbage collection and this city has begun to stink. Literally.