Powerless minister in Ontario cabinet

By: Melissa Addison-Webster

Published by the Toronto Star on Wed Jul 17 2013

Anti-poverty protesters unfurl a banner and chant "Raise the rates!" from the public gallery at Queen's Park last year. (April 24, 2012)

ROBERT BENZIE / TORONTO STAR

Anti-poverty protesters unfurl a banner and chant “Raise the rates!” from the public gallery at Queen’s Park last year. (April 24, 2012)

Ted McMeekin, Ontario’s minister for community and social services, is responsible for improving social assistance. At a community consultation in Peterborough on July 3, he made two notable statements:

  • “If it were up to me, I would raise social assistance rates by a lot more than $100 a month. But it’s not up to me.”

  • “I have to tell the story in a way that will marshal the resources. And you and I have to tell our story in a better way.”

This minister seems to deny that he has the power to improve living conditions for the people of Ontario who live on the margins. If he cannot, who can?

To read the whole commentary on how helpless this cabinet minister claims to be, go to:

http://www.thestar.com/opinion/commentary/2013/07/17/ted_mcmeekin_talks_but_who_can_act_on_social_assistance_rates.html

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