Take heart!

e-Sword NAS77

Psa 118:1  Give thanks to the LORD, for He is good; For His lovingkindness is everlasting.

Psa 118:2  Oh let Israel say, “His lovingkindness is everlasting.”

Psa 118:3  Oh let the house of Aaron say, “His lovingkindness is everlasting.”

Psa 118:4  Oh let those who fear the LORD say, “His lovingkindness is everlasting.”

Psa 118:5  From my distress I called upon the LORD; The LORD answered me and set me in a large place.

Psa 118:6  The LORD is for me; I will not fear; What can man do to me?

Psa 118:7  The LORD is for me among those who help me; Therefore I shall look with satisfaction on those who hate me.

Psa 118:8  It is better to take refuge in the LORD Than to trust in man.

Psa 118:9  It is better to take refuge in the LORD Than to trust in princes.

Psa 118:10  All nations surrounded me; In the name of the LORD I will surely cut them off.

Psa 118:11  They surrounded me, yes, they surrounded me; In the name of the LORD I will surely cut them off.

Psa 118:12  They surrounded me like bees; They were extinguished as a fire of thorns; In the name of the LORD I will surely cut them off.

Psa 118:13  You pushed me violently so that I was falling, But the LORD helped me.

Psa 118:14  The LORD is my strength and song, And He has become my salvation.

Psa 118:15  The sound of joyful shouting and salvation is in the tents of the righteous; The right hand of the LORD does valiantly.

Psa 118:16  The right hand of the LORD is exalted; The right hand of the LORD does valiantly.

Psa 118:17  I shall not die, but live, And tell of the works of the LORD.

Psa 118:18  The LORD has disciplined me severely, But He has not given me over to death.

Psa 118:19  Open to me the gates of righteousness; I shall enter through them, I shall give thanks to the LORD.

Psa 118:20  This is the gate of the LORD; The righteous will enter through it.

Psa 118:21  I shall give thanks to Thee, for Thou hast answered me; And Thou hast become my salvation.

Psa 118:22  The stone which the builders rejected Has become the chief corner stone.

Psa 118:23  This is the LORD’s doing; It is marvelous in our eyes.

Psa 118:24  This is the day which the LORD has made; Let us rejoice and be glad in it.

Psa 118:25  O LORD, do save, we beseech Thee; O LORD, we beseech Thee, do send prosperity!

Psa 118:26  Blessed is the one who comes in the name of the LORD; We have blessed you from the house of the LORD.

Psa 118:27  The LORD is God, and He has given us light; Bind the festival sacrifice with cords to the horns of the altar.

Psa 118:28  Thou art my God, and I give thanks to Thee; Thou art my God, I extol Thee.

Psa 118:29 Give thanks to the LORD, for He is good; For His lovingkindness is everlasting.

Systemic Victimization of the Mentally Ill

Taxing the Disabled

I am a person with a non-visible disability. I present well, until you ask me to speak; then, I sound like an 18 year-old. That’s because, at 18, I became very ill with the prodromal phase of schizophrenia. It has been as crippling up to today as it has been pervasive. Everything from simple chores to the complexities of relationships – and all things in between – are affected. This includes working. With short-term memory loss, lack of organization, the inability to plan for, or foresee possible consequences in, the future, and the inability for both decision-making and impulse control all contribute to a demise in daily functioning. It also worsens as one ages. My psychiatrist used to say that as I would grow older, I would become more and more motionless and mute – simply staring at walls all day if I didn’t have a TV or Internet connection. Personally, I don’t ask for very much. I don’t smoke, nor drink, nor do drugs. I don’t dress fashionably, nor gamble. I don’t do Vegas nor go on annual vacations. I pay my rent and bills on time. I have given back to the community through 30 years of volunteering, and help out my elderly family members as they have been caring for me. But the illness imposes cruel limitations.

Statistically, 1 in 4 of the general population are mentally ill. This might not seem like a big deal to you. Just wait. It gets worse.

When we ask why we, those on disability benefits, can’t get a raise that reflects inflation and the high cost of living in BC, we’re told repeatedly we’re expected to work.

When we approach employers with our resumes, we’re questioned about the holes in our resumes and just exactly what disability we have. They’re not allowed to ask this. But they do anyway. And when we tell them the truth that we have mental illness, they show us the door. Literally. They used to ask right on the application form if we have ever been hospitalized and what for. Now they’re not allowed that, but they take a different route to the same, insistent, discriminatory question.

So, then, seeing our desperation, someone along the way recommends vocational rehab for the mentally ill. These are “non-profit” organizations who get paid at least $5,000, from our BC Liberal provincial government, for each “client” who signs up with them. Whether or not we get jobs at the end or have to repeat the course is a matter of indifference to them (another failed client is potentially a repeat customer, and means another $5000 in the organization’s coffers). They have been known for not graduating the bulk of their “clients” onwards towards jobs, and for making many of us clients believe, if we just come for the fourth time to the same program, we may make it, this time. Non-profit job rehabs in BC are a revolving-door industry for organizations capitalizing on the chronic desperation, innate confusion and eternal hopefulness of some of BC’s most vulnerable of citizens. Meanwhile, the bottom line is that we’re jobless after finishing months or years of “job rehab” sessions, and no closer to working than before.

Now the BC Liberals are taxing the disabled for transportation although, ostensibly, the BC Liberals want to heroically lift the 9-year freeze on our rates. They’re really just using it as a way to perhaps legitimize an eventual pay raise for themselves. The BC Liberal premier not only required two terms for her to sell her pitch again to maybe make mental illness a “disability” (which she never did) as she promised over and over while campaigning, but she appears to have further transgressed by raising the 9-year freeze on disability payments to an increase of $77 minus $52 in claw-back so that disabled people would have to pay for their own public transportation. While it doesn’t bother me to have to pay for the transportation, $25 monthly more is too little to counteract the rising cost of living. It’s a slap in the face, and saying we’re stupid and worthless, perennially powerless, while we’re already being downtrodden by poverty, stigma, and illness. And what has the provincial Liberal premier done in terms of personal transportation during her career in office so far? She charged taxpayers for personal use of airflights for family vacations, justified it, and stayed in office.

I think the BC Liberal government is betting on the likelihood that mentally-ill persons are too disorganized and chemically lobotomized to contribute anything meaningful to the civic and cultural dialogue, or to vote them out of office. Well, I’ve written this short op-ed on behalf of those who suffer like me to prove the provincial Liberals wrong.

©️Veek Young 2017-2022 All Rights Reserved

Taxing the Mentally Ill: Systemic victimization with the BC Liberals

Taxing the Disabled

 

I am a person with a non-visible disability. I present well, until you ask me to speak; then, I sound like an 18 year-old. That’s because at 18, I became very ill. It is as crippling as it is pervasive. Everything from simple chores to the complexities of relationships – and all things in between – are affected. This includes working. With short-term memory loss, lack of organization, the inability to plan for, or foresee possible consequences in, the future, and the lack of impulse control all contribute to a demise in daily functioning. It also worsens as one ages. My psychiatrist used to say that as I would grow older, I would become motionless and mute – simply staring at walls all day if I didn’t have a TV or Internet connection. Personally, I don’t ask for very much. I don’t smoke, or drink, or do drugs, or dress fashionably, or gamble. I don’t do Vegas or go on annual vacations. I pay my rent and bills on time. I have given back to the community through 30 years of volunteering, and symbiotically care for my elderly parents as they have been caring for me. But the illness imposes its cruel limitations.

 

Now the BC Liberals is taxing the disabled for transportation ostensibly. They’re really just using it as a way to legitimize a pay raise for themselves.

Statistically, 1 in 5 of the general population are mentally ill. This might not seem like a big deal to you. Just wait. It gets worse.

 

When we ask why we, those on disability benefits, can’t get a raise that reflects inflation and the high cost of living in BC, we’re told repeatedly we’re expected to work.

 

When we approach employers with our resumes, we’re questioned about the holes in our resumes and just exactly what disability we have. They’re not allowed to ask this. But they do anyway. And when we tell them the truth that we have mental illness, they show us the door. Literally. They used to ask right on the application form if we have ever been hospitalized and what for. Now they’re not allowed that, but they take a different route to the same, insistent, discriminatory question.

 

So, then, seeing our desperation, someone along the way recommends vocational rehab for the mentally ill. These are “non-profit” organizations who get paid at least $5,000, from our BC Liberal provincial government, for each “client” who signs up with them. Whether or not we get jobs at the end or have to repeat the course is a matter of indifference for them (another failed client is potentially a repeat customer, and means another $5000 in the organization’s coffers). They have been known for not graduating the bulk of their “clients” onwards towards jobs, and for making many of us clients believe, if we just come for the fourth time to the same program, we may make it, this time. It is a revolving-door industry for organizations capitalizing on the chronic desperation, innate confusion and eternal hopefulness of some of BC’s most vulnerable of citizens. Meanwhile, the bottom line is that we’re jobless after finishing months or years of “job rehab” sessions, and no closer to working than before.

The BC Liberal premier not only required two terms for her to sell her pitch again to make mental illness a “disability” (which she never did) as she promised over and over while campaigning, but she appears to have further transgressed by raising the 9-year freeze on disability payments to an increase of $77 minus $52 in claw-back so that disabled people would have to pay for their own public transportation. While it doesn’t bother me to have to pay for the transportation, $25 monthly more is too little to counteract the rising cost of living. It’s a slap in the face, and saying we’re stupid, worthless and powerless, while we’re already being downtrodden by poverty, stigma, and illness. And what has the provincial Liberal premier done in terms of personal transportation during her career in office so far? She charged taxpayers for personal use of airflights for family vacations, justified it, and stayed in office.

 

I think the BC Liberal government is betting on the likelihood that mentally-ill persons are too disorganized and chemically lobotomized to contribute anything meaningful to the civic and cultural dialogue or to vote them out of office. Well, I am writing this short essay on behalf of those like me to prove the provincial Liberals wrong.

©️Veek Young 2022 All Rights Reserved