CALGARY, Jan. 28 /CNW/ - In today's Calgary Herald and Edmonton Journal, Mary Ann Jablonski, Minister, Seniors and Community Supports is quoted as stating she is not forcing agencies to cut services to individuals with developmental disabilities and their families. This is simply not good enough as it leaves individuals with developmental disabilities and their families vulnerable to arbitrary cuts when agencies volunteer to cooperate with government and reduce services.
Some agencies have agreed to make cuts and done so to individuals and families without their consent. The agency may have volunteered but the individuals and families did not agree to voluntarily have their services and supports reduced. While the Minister is commendably not breeching agency contracts, she is standing by as agencies breech their contracts with families and individuals. It is unjust and unethical for some individuals with developmental disabilities and their families to have their services cut, in effect to be penalized arbitrarily, because one agency cooperates with government while another does not. This is patently unfair.
Wendy McDonald, parent of a child with developmental disabilities and the President of The Alberta Association for Community Living (AACL), stated, "We are calling upon Minister Jablonski to demonstrate her department represents not only the interests of agencies, but even more so the interests of individuals with developmental disabilities and their families. As such we are asking the Minister today to ensure any cuts imposed on individuals and families, without their voluntary agreement, are rescinded today. Further, Minister Jablonski needs to take urgent steps to communicate directly with individuals and families informing them that no cuts to their services and supports can be made without their consent."
The Minister's comments may appease agencies but they do nothing to alleviate the fear and reality individuals and families face when the agency they rely upon for support volunteers to cut services. The agency may win government's favour by volunteering to make cuts, while putting vulnerable individuals with developmental disabilities at risk.
Stop the Cuts: Remove the Fear
SOURCE Alberta Association for Community Living
For further information: For further information: Bruce Uditsky, Chief Executive Officer, Phone: (780) 940-4269, Email: firstname.lastname@example.org; Wendy McDonald, President, Phone: (780) 974-1310