Chronicling community action, revolutionary and revealing thought

Tuesday, November 01, 2005

This just in from 'The Man'

Think The Man's keeping you down?

Surprise, surprise.

You're absolutely right.

Visible minority recipients of social assistance face the brunt of recent attempts by Canadian governments to enforce welfare reforms, concludes a Canadian Race Relations Foundation (CRRF) report unveiled in Toronto last week.

Prepared by Dr. Kiran Mirchandani of the Ontario Institute of Studies in Education (OISE) and Dr. Wendy Chan of the School of Criminology at Simon Frasier University in B.C., the report examines the impact of reforms in the welfare systems in Ontario and British Columbia; they used a snowball sampling method and were able to document the impact of neo-liberal ploicies on people of colour.

Current enforcement policies rly heavily on racial stereotypes and myths about recipients. The rules not only penalize and criminalize the poor for being poor, but harsh on racialized people, many new Canadians. They tell stories of being given the run- around ins earch of records which may not be necessary, and threatened with cut-offs to benefits until they do.

depression on being on social welfare, structural barriers to employment due to racism and the utter inadequacy of the payments they receive combine to forrce them to resort to food banks and community service agencies.

CRRF Acting Chair Andree MEnard said the research points out the fundamental need for govenrmemts at all levels to take the issue of racism seriously.