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TheStar.com | Ontario | Cuts to temporary child care funding 'disgusting': NDP
Oct 16, 2008 04:28 PM
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THE CANADIAN PRESS
TORONTO–The Ontario government's move to cut off funding for grandparents with temporary custody of their grandchildren was done out of spite, the New Democrats charged today, while likening Social Services Minister Madeleine Meilleur as a modern day Marie Antoinette.
Hamilton New Democrat Paul Miller first raised the issue of grandparents in Hamilton and Ottawa being cut off from the $200 to $300 in temporary care assistance funding they received each month to help raise their grandchildren.
Meilleur agreed the rules for the funding were not being applied consistently across Ontario, but Miller said the Liberals' fix will only make things worse for grandparents.
"She fixed it, all right," Miller said.
"She changed the wording and now all the grandparents are in a position to be cut off throughout the province."
Meilleur said the rules were changed to be more consistent, and she suggested that grandparents who are raising their children's children can always go on welfare if they need extra financial help.
"Grandparents have the same rights as every other person in Ontario who is in financial difficulty," Meilleur said.
"They can apply for and receive ... welfare."
Miller said that kind of response from Meilleur sounded like something from the French Revolution.
"Her response reminds me of Marie Antoinette's statement:`Let them eat cake,"' he told the legislature.