Toronto’s Hardship Fund killed by Toronto city staff
The city until July 1 helped out the most vulnerable residents pay for prosthetics, prescription drugs and dentures with the Hardship Fund. Today those who are facing life and death have been cut off from support from the city with little help of funding elsewhere.
City Council had voted to end the program last year during the budget debates but after hearing about the need approved a motion in January to save the fund until July 1 and ask the province to continue the program until 2013. The councillors also thought if the money wasn’t given by Ontario they would find the money. It seems Toronto City staff didn’t get that part of the motions.
Those who needed the program are beginning to feel the effects. From patients who need incontinence products to others with HIV being cut off from live saving medications the city is telling them to go to charitable groups for help.
Councillor Janet Davis spoke on Metro Morning this morning about the fund. The fund supported about 1,500 people in Toronto who didn’t have the support from anywhere else.
Davis said that the motion said that if the province didn’t deliver the funds needed then the funds would be found for the rest of the year. Davis said that the city’s general manager took a different approach to the wording of the motions. Davis said that the City Council will be looking at restarting the program in September. The costs though will be harder to find with other funding for the most high-risk from Ontario being cut.
Davis said that the next council meeting until October 3.
“There’s no other place for these people to turn,” Davis said adding that it would be “inhumane to cut them off” at this point.