Members of the Hall have been talking about the Alberta Budget.
Here is what we think Alberta Finance and Treasury needs to look at:
We think their needs to be a basic income pilot. Many people do not have the ability to fill out forms to show they cannot work due to their disability or for other reasons. People fall through the cracks. We think it is about time a basic income pilot happens to help figure out if it may make things better for all Albertans living in poverty versus just doing the same thing.
We want to see no cuts to services. They save money as people stay out of the hospital, jail and are healthier because of these services offered by Community and Social Services and other ministries. Keeping Albertans stable helps us get to work, volunteer and build a better Alberta.
Our direct care workers have not had a raise in four years. We are afraid if they don't get a raise soon they will leave or get hurt on the job because they are tired. The average starting worker wage is $ 16.60 ($ 1.60 more than minimum wage).
Many of our friends do not qualify for Persons with Developmental Disabilities program but have had a disability before the age of 18. If we look if IQ or other ways, then the ministry needs more money to help all people with all people with developmental disabilities to help get the help we need. Its just not a big enough pie to help more people with less money.
Advanced education needs to help level the playing field for people to attend school, ensure people have access to education and can earn credit in affordable post-secondary understandable courses, longer term to pay of student loans and more bursaries or subsidies.
Loneliness is a problem around the world and Alberta has the same problem. Some studies show loneliness can be worse than smoking a pack of cigarettes. Some countries doctors write prescriptions (health, physical health, mental health and places for people to connect with others, supporting each other, prescriptions for rent control, supporting healthy sexuality and healthy relationships (training, more knowledge) and supporting people with disabilities, supporting people to explore building relationships whether they are LGTBQ or not.
We need to make Alberta more accessible. The Canadian government is working on an Accessibility Act. We need more tools, plain language and language materials more money for Aids to Daily Living. We need more accessible, affordable housing and rent subsidy programs. Our entire province needs steady money to help make transportation affordable like the partnership between the Calgary and Edmonton low-income transit pass.
Tell the Alberta government by Sunday February 10th what should be in the budget. Have your say by clicking on this link.