‘Many people still don’t have services’: Disability rights advocates ask Quebec to step in
Montreal disability-rights advocates are calling on the new provincial government to provide more services and help for adults and children.
“Unfortunately, we have to protest again and ask the government very high up to help people with disabilities,” said Electra Dalamagas with Autisme Montréal.
A few dozen people braved the wind and snow to protest outside Jean-Talon Métro and demand attention from the François Legault government on Monday, which marks the International Day of Persons with Disabilities.
It was also held the same day the new Coalition Avenir Québec (CAQ) government provided an economic update, with tax breaks for families and seniors, ahead of releasing its first full budget next year.
Demonstrators took to forming lines to show how long the wait can for people with disabilities to receive the help they need.
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Dalamagas said more and more Quebecers are living with disabilities, but there has been no increase in the services the province provides for them. She said establishments are struggling to meet the needs of those who need it most.
“Many people still don’t have services,” she said. “Many people still don’t have adequate services and many people who have services are at risk of losing services.”
“There is a lot of consequences for all of this — there is a lot of emotional and human impact on families and individuals.”
The protest also comes one month after advocates protested what they call a crisis in the social services sector in Quebec. They occupied the province’s ombudsman’s office, demanding a meeting with the health minister.
Sam Kuhn, a father of two children with disabilities, described a sense of abandonment by the province.
“We’re hearing nothing from the Quebec government that giving us any hope whatsoever,” he said. “It’s the same old, same old since the last government.”
His family, along with others, aren’t receiving the support they need, he added.
“We’re just not getting it,” he said.
— With files from Global’s Dan Spector
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