Many of you assisted me in 2014 and 2015 with my rising medical bills. I was and am very grateful to you all. But this past year has found me struggling with health issues yet again. I thought I could manage on my own. I was wrong. I need your help. In frustration I have written the following letter.
My name is Nina Andersen.
I have been a law abiding citizen all my life. I have paid my taxes. I have asked for nothing in return as I have always strived to be independent, to care for myself, to be responsible for myself.
Sometimes, however, life has other plans.
In addition to caring for my elderly mother who's health is failing, I have had my own serious health challenges (yet again!) this year. Some doctors have even formed the opinion that my illness is terminal.
Being a fighter, and just a tad stubborn, I have refused to accept their opinion. But, admittedly, life has become a daily struggle.
I have been unable to work all year, and provide for myself and my mom. As a result, I have used all my savings. All of it. There is nothing left. And yet, for some reason, the bills to keep a roof over our head continue to come in.
Finally, with nowhere else to turn, and receiving a lot of pressure from family and friends, I went to the Ministry of Social Development here in British Columbia, at the beginning of November. I thought they were there to help me. I was wrong.
Two long months have gone by. My application for disability has not been processed. The Ministry has also refused to provide me with any emergency funding.
This is a shameful way for our BC government to treat its citizens. That, for some reason, we need help, we have become people that are less than and unworthy. It has been a very humiliating process for me.
The position of the Ministry is that I have assets. It was discovered, unknown to me, that there is a mobile home still registered in my name and the name of my ex husband. The farm we owned in Sayward was transferred to my ex husband in 2012. It seems that lawyers for both parties did not do their due diligence.
My ex husband has refused to be cooperative and remove my name from the title of the mobile home. I purchased that old mobile home for $1. That's right. $1. Because of this $1 asset, the Ministry is refusing to process my disability application, nor provide me with any emergency funding. Are you kidding me?!
Is the mandate of the Ministry to deny assistance rather than help the people of BC? And if so, what does that say about our society?
Between my ex husband and the Ministry, I have been feeling bullied and pushed around. The Ministry is not even returning my phone calls. This is all very exhausting.
Those of you that know me, know that I am a good person. That I am fiercely independent, probably more than is for my own good! But now I am at an impasse. I don't know what else I can do.
Should I go stand on a street corner with a sign?
If there is anyone out there that can help me, I would be very grateful. God bless.
Campbell River, BC
I have sent this letter to the following, in the hope that it may have an impact.
Shane Simpson, Minister of Social Development
Sheila Taylor, Deputy Minister of Social Development
Claire Trevena, MLA for North Vancouver Island
Karen, Case Worker, Ministry of Social Development
Campbell River Mirror