Canadian government cuts woman with severe autism’s financial support

old ageRenfrew County, Ontario, Canada — The Ontario government has decided to cut its financial support to a 44-year-old woman with severe autism after finding out she still has $7,000 in her account.

Jennifer James is unable to speak, read, write, and is not fit to hold a job of any kind on her own due to the severity of her autism. Jennifer relies heavily on the people caring for her to go about her daily life— and the government, through the Ontario Disability Support Program, for her financial needs.

But because it seems that Jennifer hasn’t been spending a lot from the funds that she gets from the government’s financial support, they decided to stop giving her her funds.

It appears that according to the rules being strictly implemented by the Ontario Disability Support Program, individuals with disabilities can’t have more than $5,000 in cash, bank funds or assets.

Jennifer has never had a problem with this rule before, until both of her parents— who took care of everything for her— died in last year.  Her siblings took over the responsibility of caring for her, but none of them were aware of the rule being strictly implemented by the Ontario Disability Support Program.

Now the Ministry of Community and Social Services wants to look into their parents’ old accounts, and the whole family has been asked to appear before the Social Benefits Tribunal if they want financial support for Jennifer restored.

Jennifer’s sister, Wanda, wrote a heartfelt plea calling for the government to appreciate their family’s modesty, and recognize their sacrifices.

Source: Kelly Egan in the Ottawa Citizen  Ontario cuts off severely autistic woman’s support payments because she has $7,000 in her bank account and Middle-aged, autistic, lost without Mom: Where does a family turn?