Karen

Name: Karen Brack

Occupation: Tour Guide

Karen Brack moved to BC, from Oshawa, Ontario in 2000 to be closer to her grandchildren. While looking for work in BC, she was dual diagnosed with fibromyalgia and osteoarthritis, and had to go on welfare while she waited for her application for CCP disability to be accepted. After some time Karen found work at a job that paid living wage that had the limited hours she needed to cope with her medical condition. Karen loves her work but this year, due to cutbacks at her workplace, she has seen her hours cut to 12 per month. The added pressures of the job have led her to decide to retire at the age of 60 and lose the added income that the job provided her.

We support raising disability rates. An income of $906 per month ($10,782 annually) is significantly below the poverty line. As housing costs continue to rise without a corresponding increase in disability benefits, those living on disability are forced to make difficult choices to make ends meet.

“The money I earn at my job has gotten me to be able to buy the little things like fresh fruit and veggies, not having to always look for the discounted priced veggies and meat.  When you don’t have the money, those little things like fresh food all of a sudden become big things.”