Community Frugal Crowd Health & Wellness Videos

Please Urge Ontario to Raise ODSP Rates: Join ‘Stroll & Roll to Freedom’ March on July 7, 2015

Please urge Ontario to significantly raise the Ontario Disability Support Program (ODSP) rates for Disabled Canadians.

The following video (2012) presents Laura Cattari: Living on ODSP:

Laura Cattari wants to reform Ontario’s social assistance program. She says it’s unwieldy and difficult to navigate. And she should know, as she is an ODSP recipient. She shares her experience with Steve Paikin.

Poverty Action for Change Coalition (PACC) urges the provincial government to adjust their pay rates – an increase of 50% – for those with disabilities and part of the Ontario Disability Support Program.

Join supporters, including an MPP, as we walk, stroll or roll from York Region headquarters to the Aurora-Newmarket MPP’s office to support a better deal for Danny Philion and those mired in poverty by circumstance. Please note the fixed date is tentative. We are asking for a 50% increase in ODSP payments and hope to have the issue highlighted in parliament. Dan arrived at the initial meeting with the MPP Chris Ballard wearing no shoes or boots. ” I can’t afford boots” he informed him. Dan already has the best deal we offer those in his position including subsidized housing so something is not right here. Do you support a better deal than this for Dan? Support the Stroll & Roll for his freedom then. Stroll, walk, scoot, wheel or …

PACC – Poverty Action for Change Coalition

Stroll & Roll to Freedom

A March Hosted by Tom Pearson and Danny Philion

Tuesday, July 7, 2015 at 12:00pm – 3:00pm

 Starting at York Region (The Regional Municipality of York)
17250 Yonge Street, Newmarket, Ontario, Canada


Ending at MPP Chris Ballard’s Office, 238 Wellington St East, Aurora, Ontario

Contact for the event is via cell phone @ 289-221-0928.

…It is a reasonable request, and one the Ontario government will tell you they are working on this master plan for – but the one thing they have consistently resisted, despite the Harris era 40% cuts – is raising O.D.S.P. rates to livable rates. While welfare is meant to be temporary and used in parcel with community supports to move people forward in life, those with certain disabilities most often do not have that option, yet are painted with the same brush.

Join Dan July 7 2015 on the Stroll and Roll to Freedom starting at York Region Headquarters on Yonge St. Newmarket at 12 noon and ending at the MPP’s office.

” We’ve listened, and people have said they want to work” Ontario Government on their Poverty Reduction Strategy

I call that selective hearing. Yes they want to work. But they can’t all do so. What they really want is just to be recognized as valuable and useful members of society. That’s the issue. “You hear the expression falling through the cracks? Well guys like Dan are the ones who fall through those cracks”, I explained, ” and the direction of the poverty reduction strategy does nothing to address this..That’s where these cracks surface…”

I also stressed to Ballard that since Dan already has subsidized housing, and special diet, he is already getting the best deal we offer guys like him, and it isn’t near enough. I pointed out the 1% raise his government gave those on O.D.S.P. amounted to 3 bus rides in expensive York Region – $12 a month. The visit to his office would take up $8 of that, $16 for two both ways.

We both got the feeling Chris Ballard was receptive, and he even said he would possibly even march himself,…

It was a 15 minute trip to the M.P.P.’s office with York Region Wheel-trans on the way there, but took an hour and a half to get back with all the ladies’ stops, the driver carefully walking each to the door…

Tom Pearson, Chair of Poverty Action for Change Coalition

Update from Poverty Action for Change Coalition:

RE: Stroll & Roll to Freedom – Event Date – June 7 2015
Postponed – Thunderstorm warning

Weather reports calling for thunderstorms on the date proposed for the Stroll & Roll to Freedom march, starting in Newmarket Ontario, have moved organizers to postpone the march.

Taking into account not only the danger during a possible storm, especially if caught mid-route, but also that some are unable to carry umbrellas and would face undo conditions with march areas passing through temporary sidewalk and road construction areas on Yonge St.. Wet, or cold weather conditions also negatively affect a person abilities with motor functions in the body when afflicted with muscular dystrophy as march organizer Dan Philion is. This also allows for some to cancel pick ups without losing demerit points – another bone of contention by Mr. Philion.

The march is to support a better deal for Dan and others in similar positions, stuck on disability support, with little hope to enjoy a stress free life, aside from dealing with their ailments.

The Stroll & Roll to Freedom group will announce another date and route in the near future.

You may contact organizers by sending e-mails addressed to, join them on Face Book or call 289-221-0928

""Danny Philion is tired of asking of charity for basics and hates food banks. Mr. Philion wants a 50% increase in his income rates rates in order to buy his own groceries, clothes, and to socialize." Image Credit: Tom Pearson
“”Danny Philion is tired of asking of charity for basics and hates food banks. Mr. Philion wants a 50% increase in his income rates rates in order to buy his own groceries, clothes, and to socialize.” Image Credit: Tom Pearson

For more info, please go to .


June 7, 2015

Stroll & Roll to Freedom

July 7 March Planned to Protest low Disability Rates

Community Frugal Crowd Health & Wellness Videos

“Fixing Canada’s Housing Crunch”: Canadian Municipalities’ National Campaign Needs Your Help

The following video presents “Michael Shapcott – Affordable Housing and Homelessness in Canada November 20, 2012.”

  • Michael Shapcott is Director of Affordable Housing and Community Innovation at the Wellesley Institute, an independent, non-profit policy, research and social enterprise / innovation institute.
    • Shapcott has worked extensively in Toronto, in many parts of Canada, nationally and internationally on housing and housing rights, poverty, social exclusion, urban health and health equity.
      • He has worked with community and municipal officials in a dozen Canadian cities to develop local housing plans.
      • Shapcott has worked with Aboriginal housing and service providers nationally and in a number of communities to develop practical and effective strategies for Aboriginal housing under Aboriginal control.
      • He is co-author, with Jack Layton, of “Homelessness: The Making and Unmaking of a Crisis” (Penguin, 2008) and co-editor, with David Hulchanski, of “Finding Room: Policy Options for a Canadian Rental Housing Strategy” (CUCS Press, 2004).
    • He has worked on housing rights issues with the United Nations Human Rights Council in Geneva.
      • He is co-chair of Canada’s National Housing and Homelessness Network.
      • He is active internationally with the Habitat International Coalition and has worked with community partners on housing issues in Beijing, Istanbul and Nairobi, as well as seven U.S. cities.
  • United Nations Human Rights: International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights, Part III, Article 11 states:
    1. The States Parties to the present Covenant recognize the right of everyone to an adequate standard of living for himself and his family, including adequate food, clothing and housing, and to the continuous improvement of living conditions. The States Parties will take appropriate steps to ensure the realization of this right
  • Duration of video is 53 minutes:40 seconds.

This is an update to the following previous blogs:

Vancouver Mayor Gregor Robertson, Chair of the Big City Mayors’ Caucus at the Federation of Canadian Municipalities (FCM) meeting in Ottawa (October 28, 2013), just launched the Fixing Canada’s Housing Crunch campaign.


You’re Invited: Public Consultation & Review of Canadian Social Assistance in Ontario March 7, 2012

This is an update to my previous blogs:

Here is a letter from Yvonne Kelly of  The PUT FOOD IN THE BUDGET CAMPAIGN inviting you to attend a public consultation re: the Options Paper just released from the Commissioners reviewing our Social Assistance System (both OW – Ontario Works – and ODSP – Ontario Disability Support Program) in Ontario, Canada:

Hello Everyone

Please find the invitation below to attend a public consultation re: the Options Paper just released from the Commissioners reviewing our Social Assistance System in Ontario. One concern is that given the direction of the paper, that we may not see adequacy of rates being addressed in the final recommendations they make in the final report to the Ontario government in June. Please do review the paper (link below) and join us on March 7th as the Human Services Planning Board hosts this community consultation.

The Commissioners have been invited to attend and have not sent a final confirmation. Nonetheless, this consultation with the community, service providers and community based groups can yield important feedback on the review thus far that will be compiled and provided to the Commission as part of their overall review of the system (both OW and ODSP) in Ontario.

Please RSVP as noted below and if you are able to attend and assist by taking notes in a small group or leading the discussion in a small group please reply to me. We are looking for about 8 individuals to help out in this way.

Bye for now.

Your invitation:

Community Health & Wellness Videos

“Billions for Business, Pennies for the Poor”: Please Petition Premier McGuinty to Give a $100 Increase to Canadians’ OW and ODSP

One Paycheck Away  is a one-minute video depicting the growing gap between the rich and the ‘rest of us” in Canada, as shown here:

The following Put Food in the Budget editorial provides the update to my previous blog You’re Invited: Holiday Lunch Dec.19 + Urge Dalton McGuinty to Give a $100 Increase to OW and ODSP:

“Billions for Business,
Pennies for the Poor”

Community Frugal Crowd Green Health & Wellness

2012! Happy New Year!

Happy New Year 2012!
Happy New Year 2012!

Wishing our readers a better, healthier, and Happier New Year 2012!

It’s been an amazing year!

Thank you for your marvellous help; together we had accomplished so much as well as made great differences as follows:

Community Frugal Crowd Health & Wellness Videos

You’re Invited: Holiday Lunch Dec.19 + Urge Dalton McGuinty to Give a $100 Increase to OW and ODSP

The following video portrays these concerns:

  • currently a single person on social assistance in Ontario, Canada, gets $585 per month to cover housing, food, transport, and everything else
  • this amount is not enough to cover a healthy food supply and
  • forces those in need to find a different food bank source for day to day.
  • Do the Math yourself and advocate to Put Food In the Budget with an extra $100 increase in social assistance to support healthy food choices.

Put Food in the Budget and the ODSP Action Coalition invite you to a holiday lunch and to sign a special Holiday Card to Dalton McGuinty calling for an immediate $100 increase to OW (Ontario Works) and ODSP (Ontario Disability Support Program) as a down payment on social assistance rates that reflect the real cost of living.

Your Invite:

FREE Holiday Lunch

December 19, 2011
12:30 pm – 3:00 pm

 The Stop Community Food Centre
1884 DAVENPORT RD,  Toronto, Ontario, Canada

Please R.S.V.P. to

The Special Holiday Card to Dalton McGuinty reads as follows:

You're Invited: Holiday Lunch Dec. 19 +  Urge Dalton McGuinty to Give a $100 Increase to OW and ODSP Now! Above, illustration and design by Tony Biddle.
You're Invited: Holiday Lunch Dec. 19 + Urge Dalton McGuinty to Give a $100 Increase to OW and ODSP Now! Above, illustration and design by Tony Biddle.