If you caught Tom Cooper's column in today's Spectator, you'll already know about Raising Our Children's Kids (ROCK), a support and advocacy group of grandparents who are raising their grandchildren because their children are unwilling or unable.
Right now (10:15 AM), volunteers from ROCK are holding a rally in Gore Park at King and Hughson to solicit petitions on a recent change announced by the Ontario Government to deny grandparents financial assistance under the Ontario Works Temporary Care Assistance program if their living arrangement shows signs of permanence.
Madeline Meilleur, Community and Social Services Minister, said recently that such grandparents can apply for welfare if they need social assistance.
ROCK argue that many grandparents who find themselves looking after their grandchildren own houses and would not qualify for welfare, yet cannot afford to take on the additional costs of raising children on a fixed income. The Temporary Care Assistance program is a much better fit, providing $231 per month for the first child and $188 per month for each additional child.
They also point out that foster parents receive $900 per month for each child in their care, while grandparents acting as de facto foster parents receive nothing, even though they are providing a more stable environment for children in need.
If you're downtown, be sure to stop by the ROCK rally and sign the petition to show your support.
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