Comment 78310

By chris angel (registered) | Posted June 11, 2012 at 14:22:03

Mr. O'Shea, unfortunately a significant percentage of the general public is convinced that the issue of "bogus refugee claimants" is larger; perhaps much larger than it really is. There have been examples of a number of false refugee claimant sub categories paraded across TV screens and vilified in other media. These include claimants of "convenience" who hold nothing but contempt for western society and who are ready and highly likely to repatriate when it suits them. There have been criminals and human rights abusers masquerading as refugees. However; I cannot recall ever having seen dragged through the public square, an example of a false refugee claimant here to exploit the Canadian medical system. That makes no sense at all as so much is in the hands of each province. In Ontario we have OHIP not CANHIP. Any refugee who has managed to decipher the intricacies of Canadian medical services and learned which provincial system is best exploited is truly a genius and should be hot listed for citizenship.

I do not doubt that what we are dealing with is miniscule but the statement "With respect to cost, there is a large body of evidence that has shown conclusively that decreasing access to primary care increases costs in the long run." needs to be supported. I am convinced; but many people I encounter would not be. They are cynical I am afraid and many seem to feel that blanket statements claiming overwhelming evidence while citing not a shred frequently have no evidence at all. Without citing a few examples I don't think any minds will be changed and that would be a shame.

The supplemental coverage currently provided to refugee claimants IS better than the coverage too many Canadians have. I know far, far too many people who exist or who have had to exist on one or more part time jobs. These jobs and many full time entry level positions have ZERO supplemental coverage. A cold which slowly escalates into a more serious throat or bronchial issue could easily require an $80 puffer and a $65 antibiotic leaving a person struggling for survival with a bill they can only beg to have paid. That any person should experience a situation like that in our society is a travesty. Where is the outpouring of support for those people? We all know that supplemental is not supplemental anymore. Drug and dental are not supplemental they are essential. The absence of either is life shortening and can easily be life threatening. Too many employers use every resource possible to avoid having to provide supplemental benefits by using self employment schemes or staffing with part time workers then expanding hours to 40+ hrs / week without reclassifying as full time etc., etc. There is a scoop in the income slope where the working poor reside. Which takes more than 20% in income taxes and gives nothing back in the form of "supplemental" supports. Pray you do not end up there and if you are able; fight so that others don't. If there were not a significant number of such people the national conservatives would not be attempting to pit one against the other with statements about levelling the playing field. Minister Kenney should remember next time that taking something away from one group so that both groups now have nothing is called cold comfort. Employing a classic "class envy" tactic only works by redistribution not by depriving all parties. The website doctorsforrefugeecare comes off looking a little self serving like a group of doctors fighting to preserve the current system because they care and oh incidentally their jobs are dependant upon it too. Broadening that role to be totally inclusive of so-called supplemental benefits to everyone would go a long way towards eliminating that aspect.

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