Nanaimo man asks B.C. to end clawback

NANAIMO – A Nanaimo father is imploring the B.C. government to curb clawbacks from parental leave benefits for people with disabilities.

A Nanaimo father is imploring the B.C. government to curb clawbacks from parental leave benefits for people with disabilities.

Tim Kerfoot, wheelchair bound since suffering a brain injury in 2001, is a Wal-Mart employee and was on leave after his wife Sarah gave birth to their son in April.

Due to deductions, however, Kerfoot has been forced to go back to work.

At a Thursday press conference with Michelle Mungall, B.C. NDP spokeswoman on social development, Kerfoot said his parental benefits have been taken back dollar for dollar.

Kerfoot was collecting monthly employment insurance parental leave benefits from the federal government. He has to declare it to the B.C. Ministry of Social Development and Social Innovation, which Mungall said, deducts that amount, “dollar for dollar, cent for cent” from disability cheques he receives every month.

“Many people with disabilities in our province also rely on government support, and that’s fair. We’ve fought for those rights in our country … unfortunately, if you are somebody with a disability who receives disability from the provincial government, they say your rights don’t apply,” said Mungall.

Kerfoot said he has been paying into employment insurance benefits for more than five years. He doesn’t collect disability cheques because he wants to, he does so because he’s disabled.

“It’s the right of every Canadian paying EI deductions to collect that … whether I’m disabled or not. I’m working and therefore believe that’s what the intention of employment insurance is – to insure a person’s provisions whether or not they’re working,” he said.

In an e-mail, Michelle Stilwell, minister of social development and social innovation, said she understands how challenging it is for low-income families.

She said B.C. is home to “some of the most comprehensive supports for low-income individuals and their families in all of Canada,” including housing and Medical Services Plan subsidies,  free dental and optical care for children and discounted bus passes.

Just Posted

Nanaimo Theatre Group will start its season by staging a farce

Self Help follows married second-rate actors who become famous self-help coaches

LETTER TO THE EDITOR: School buses need seat belts

If I had a child in school, I would be insisting on seat belts in school buses, says letter writer

Nanaimo United forgoing soccer balls for snowballs

With soccer cancelled, snow fun day to take place at Beban Park on Saturday, Feb. 16

Man arrested in shooting at Nanaimo hotel pleads guilty to second-degree murder

Brandon Tyler Woody to be sentenced in late March in B.C. Supreme Court in Nanaimo

New museum exhibit presents Nanaimo mysteries

Nanaimo Mysteries exhibit unveils city’s fiction and even stranger facts

VIDEO: Canada’s flag turns 54 today

The maple leaf design by George Stanley made its first appearance Feb. 15, 1965

Beefs & Bouquets, Feb. 14

To submit a beef or a bouquet to the Nanaimo News Bulletin, e-mail bulletinboard@nanaimobulletin.com

Dallas Stars pay tribute to Nanaimo woman who died of cancer

NHL team wore Arlene Forbes’s initials on hockey helmets last week

Eight cases of measles confirmed in Vancouver outbreak

Coastal Health official say the cases stem from the French-language Ecole Jules Verne Secondary

Plecas won’t run in next election if B.C. legislature oversight reforms pass

B.C. Speaker and Abbotsford South MLA says he feels ‘great sympathy’ for Jody Wilson-Raybould

Workshop with ‘accent reduction’ training cancelled at UBC

The workshop was cancelled the same day as an email was sent out to international students

Former B.C. premier Gordon Campbell accused of sexual touching

Accuser went to police, interviewed by Britian’s Daily Telegraph

Judge rules Abbotsford home must be sold after son tries to evict mom

Mom to get back down payment and initial expenses

Trump officially declares national emergency to build border wall

President plans to siphon billions from federal military construction and counterdrug efforts

Most Read