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

Newmarket, Ontario, Canada

On July 7 2015 there is a “ Stroll & Roll to Freedom” march proposed, beginning at 17250 Yonge St in Newmarket, Ontario, York Region headquarters, and proceeding from that address down Yonge St to Wellington St in Aurora and continuing east to the MPP Chris Ballard’s office located at 238 Wellington St East, Aurora, Ontario.

The march, endorsed by the Poverty Action for Change Coalition (P.A.C.C.), was spearheaded by Newmarket disabled resident Dan Philion who is asking that the provincial government adjust their pay rates for those with disabilities and part of the Ontario Disability Support Program.

People like Mr. Philion, unable to work full time or at all, find it increasingly difficult to survive month to month even with all the benefits the current safety net system provides.

Mr. Philion already has subsidized housing but despite this rarely goes a month without being in need of extra food or clothing or transportation costs due to the lack of actual dollars he receives versus actual costs. Recreation is but a pipe dream for him.

Philion suggests a rate increase of 50%, feeling the rate scale is that out of real costs, and plans to present his request to his M.P.P., Chris Ballard, who has agreed to meet with him, hoping to have the request represented to the Ontario government parliament by the M.P.P. on Dan’s behalf.

The “ Stroll & Roll” march plans to gather at 12:00 noon on Tuesday July 7th 2015, arriving at the Constituency office by 3pm and disbursing soon thereafter.

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


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