QUEEN’S PARK — MPP Lise Vaugeois, Ontario NDP critic for Persons Living with Disabilities, called on Doug Ford Wednesday to stop the contracting-out of mail sorting services for Ontario Disability Support Program (ODSP) recipients, as workers ring the alarm about delayed and suspended benefits.
“The consequences of the government’s privatization of ODSP mail sorting are being borne by recipients,” said Vaugeois. “These delays and suspensions of files mean people are unable to access funds they need desperately for things like medication, diabetic supplies and wheelchair repairs.”
In a release distributed Wednesday, Ontario Public Service workers in the Ministry of Children, Community and Social Services said the ministry’s use of a for-profit vendor to sort ODSP recipients’ incoming mail has “created chaos for ODSP clients and staff” and led to delays of up to 26 days.
The Ontario NDP continues to call on the government to raise ODSP rates to at least double, with further annual increases tied to inflation.
“Profit has no place in the provision of social service benefits,” Vaugeois said. “The Ford government has chosen to increase ODSP rates by just five per cent, knowing full well that a person cannot live a dignified life on such meager rates. Ford must immediately remove profit-taking from social service delivery and raise ODSP rates to ensure people aren’t confined to a life of poverty.”