Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Stelmach Government Mean Spirited

As Kent Hehr and Dave Taylor, both MLAs from The Alberta Liberal Party pointed out today;

The Stelmach Government is cutting funding to Albertans with developmental disabilities in a callous move to balance the budget on the backs of the disadvantaged in our Province.

More than 11 million dollars is being chopped from assistance given to people suffering from conditions such as autism, Down syndrome and fetal alcohol syndrome (FAS).

Instead of changing his Cabinet, in a weak attempt to win the next election, Premier Ed Stelmach should have changed his Government’s attitude and reached out to those disabled Albertans who need a hand up not a hand out.

That would have demonstrated compassion and real leadership.

The cuts implemented by the Stelmach Government are mean spirited. Albertans use this funding for daily needs and a quality of life the rest of us take for granted.

This Government sees health care, education and social services as expense items on a balance sheet rather than investments in Albertans.

If this Government had not mismanaged our economy there would be plenty of funding for all Albertans living in the richest jurisdiction in North America.

This Government should ensure that persons involved in the Persons with Developmental Disabilities (PDD) program receive the funding necessary for quality services and the quality of life they have a right to.

These cuts will harm the quality of life of Albertans like Kimberly Evanosko, Sarah Mah and Corey Prevost.

Kimberly is 25 and suffers from tuberous sclerosis and Lymphangioleiomyomatosis (LAM), which together have resulted in various medical issues and intellectual disabilities.

Kimberly receives residential support and although she can work she requires extra support in the work place. The organizations which assist her had their funding cut, and have been notified to expect further cuts in the upcoming budget.

Corey Prevost suffers from severe cerebral palsy, which has left him a quadriplegic with a developmental disability. He is non-verbal, and is dependent on his caregivers for everything. His mother, Teena Prevost, said “we just found these good services for Corey, and now here we are shortly after, worried that his supports and quality of life will be placed in jeopardy.”

Sarah Mau is affected by a genetic defect, Trisomy 18, which means that she requires one-on-one care, 24/7. During the day she is cared for by the Universal Rehabilitation Service Agency, and receives in-home respite care 4 hours a week.

Please tell the Stelmach Government to cease and desist funding cuts!


  1. What is the BIG SURPRISE?

    Every government views those with challenges as a sub-species of human. The Stelmach government is no better and no worse than a Swann led Liberal government would be or a Smith led Wild Rose government would be.

    So long as the reliance is on government handouts, there is unlikely to be anything done for the betterment of these people. Getting them into group homes is not an answer. They have no real control over their lives in that framework.

    Someone else makes their life decisions for them.

    Many people portend to care about the rights of the disadvantaged, but they are not willing to allow these same disadvantaged people a legitimate opportunity to compete on a level playing field. Every one of us so-called "normal" people knows three to four of the disadvantaged with Down Syndrome which actually means sub-human in governmentalese, but we allow those people disadvantaged with Down Syndrome to be denied the most basic human right: THE RIGHT TO CHOOSE.

    I am spearheading a non-profit society called the Einstein Challenged Society whose purpose is to give all people with labels a legitimate opportunity to compete and succeed on the exact same playing field as everyone else.

    It is one thing to claim that people are equal, but it is something different to literally put your money where you put your mouth.

    You, Mr. Lovett, like to play Devil's Advocate because it is comfortable and safe.

    It would be better for those disadvantaged people if you would go to and print off, fill out a Benefactor Membership Form, and mail that with your cheque so that we can begin the work of making real equality a reality.

    Don't complain about Stelmach's government being mean spirited. They are just greedy, and they are the way that they have always been.

    Do something! Be proactive so that we can take away the reliance on government charity for the disadvantaged people you accuse Mr. Stelmach of being mean to in spirit. If they start to graduate universities in meaningful numbers, if they begin to hold legitimate jobs that the financial institutions will recognize as legitimate, and when they start being able to exercise the power of choice in their own lives ~~ then AND ONLY THEN ~~ has something been done that is worthwhile.

    This is just my opinion, of course, but until you do something to redefine reality--it is just the pot calling the kettle black.

    Tedde Lotecki
    Executive Director
    Einstein Challenged Society

  2. I am working at trying to change the reality of Alberta politics.

    Those of us who want a change in political reality can ill afford to jump down each others throat, it's what has kept the Conservatives in power all these years, divide and conquer!

  3. I am not attacking you or separating from you. The disadvantaged in every political arena live the "divide and conquor" reality.

    For illustration purposes only...

    the Austism group is told by the government that if they distance themselves from the other groups, Uncle Eddie and the Conservatives will give them a nickle, but they can not give a nickle to everyone because they have to give dollars where it will matter--energy, agriculture, industry, etc.

    Separate: the disadvantaged groups are virtually powerless, but UNITED, they are a political force. Who cares about thirty votes? Four hundred and fifty thousand votes in a block gets the attention of every political party.

    I have never wanted you separated; the request has been for you to be a part of something for the good of all. Every government is good at divide and conquor, but unity is in the best interests of the electorate.

    Have a truly great and remarkable day!

    Tedde Lotecki