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the Bulletin December 2018

the Bulletin

#11 #608 December 2018
DOWNLOAD The Print (.PDF) version of the Bulletin!
Download and Share the December Fun Free Events Guide – Prepared by Amber Graydon, RT

1. Big Changes need Survivor Responses

Social Assistance and Rent Control

The Ontario government “For The People” has promised jobs rather than increasing social assistance. The government will change the definition of disability to the federal standard, which will restrict access to ODSP for new applicants and will leave many of us poorer and more vulnerable.

Rent control will be removed on new units built after November 15th, 2018. The government believes this will increase rental buildings.

Sometimes we may not even believe it ourselves, but we are People. We are part of  “The People”.  People with ideas, humour, and rights.

You might want to give some feedback (see details within).

* * *

There is a great cartoon inside about how:  “Desperate People Make Ideal Workers and Distracted Citizens”

Let’s pay attention and use our desperation and vulnerability to make a difference!

Navigate Below:

  1. Intro: Big Changes need Survivor Responses
  2. Moments in C/S Bulletin History
  3. Rights and News
  4. Resources
  5. Jobs
  6. Key Free Events
  7. Dignity and food and recovery – Quick Food BOOKLET
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Let us know about your events and important issues please at

Surveys and feedback help us improve!

2. Moments in C/S  History

History – Moments in C/S  Bulletin History C/S Bulletin 313, December 15th, 2005:
In 2015, “International Human Rights Day was dedicated to “End human rights violations against people with mental health disorders“

Photo of 4 faces. Overlaid with text reading "All Human Beings Are Born Free & Equal in Dignity and Rights"
Dr Lee Jong-wook, Director General of WHO. “We have solutions to reverse the situation, in rich and poor countries alike. I urge countries, international organizations, academia, the healthcare and legal sectors and others to take a hard look at the conditions of people with mental disorders and take action to promote and protect their rights….

And Now in 2019  Human Rights Day focuses on equality and dignity:


  • Human rights are relevant to all of us, every day.
  • Our shared humanity is rooted in these universal values.
  • Equality, justice and freedom prevent violence and sustain peace.
  • Whenever and wherever humanity’s values are abandoned, we all are at greater risk.
  • We need to stand up for our rights and those of others.

Human Rights Day is an opportunity to recognize that we are part of a bigger movements. There is so much to learn. For example we highlighted how  Mad In Asia is using “inclusion” as a way to talk about our madness in society (issue #604).

3. Rights, Advocacy

Submit your stories of advocacy and or photos and the Bulletin may share your actions! 

OW / ODSP Changes Announced

Key Point: Government did not increase/decrease ODSP and OW levels in response to extensive advocacy. Disability definitions will exclude many new applicants (existing recipients will maintain benefits). Many new applicants will not qualify for ODSP so they will end up on much lower supports of Ontario Works with “wrap-around supports” for our needs (jobs workers, mental health workers etc…). Earnings exemptions and clawbacks have changed. Lots of details to come.

View The announcement [YouTube].
Read a great summary from ISAC  Many questions, few answers, and great risk for people with disabilities

Bulletin Questions:

  1. Do you need more service navigators or accessibility, food, travel, and other resources?
  2. Do you need more employment agency workers or jobs?
  3. Do you need a housing worker or housing?
  4. Do you want a case manager as part of your OW claim or access to mental health supports on your own terms?

Let us know at

Rent Control eliminated for new buildings

New legislation by Ontario Government means that Rent Control will continue for residential units occupied before November 15, But new rental units will not be subject to rent control.

Do you have feedback?
Ontario Government: Give feedback (pro or con) directly to the Government through a survey, consultation.  deadline is January 25th, 2019. You can also sign a petition to Tell Doug Ford: no unlimited rent Make sure the City and Province knows what tenants think!

Sign our petition to save rent control >>> Rent control under attack

Do you want Out of the Cold Program Funding to be permanent?

Does permanent funding of these programs imply that the our most vulnerable friends are being condemned to mats?

Or does a permanent funding mean that we can save the desperate advocacy needed each winter to prevent freezing? There will be opportunities for survivors to work to provide for the short term desperate needs and to work for better housing that we deserve —under an accessibility and inclusionary view.
Check out the Toronto Star article by Emily Mathieu November 22, 2018 // Photo: (RICK MADONIK / TORONTO STAR)

Do you ever feel like someone is trying to distract you?

Desperate People Make Ideal Workers and Distracted Citizens. Bigger version of the comic on our website. 
Image description: Cartoon with three headlines and cartoons of people. Cartoon is from Australia. Punchline: Desperate People Make Ideal Workers. And Distracted Citizens. More detail: Headline 1: Desperate People who have 6 months with no welfare, high student debt, ATSI programs cut, high medical fees and who send 40 Job Apps a Month. Headline 2: Make Ideal Workers [who will Work for cheap, for pizza, down a mine, far from family, sell us your land if we create jobs on it? Headline 3: "And Distracted Citizens" who don't have time to pay attention: Climate change? I gotta pay rent! Disability Rights? Igotta find a job! Land Rights? I need to feed my kids! Refugees? I've got medical bills to pay! Long-Term Problems? I got short-term problems!

I’m going to use my desperation to pay attention!

From Campaign Pledges to Action

Consumer survivors can use the Prosperity Platform which was prepared by Commitment TO Community to advocate for resources and actions at City Hall. We can use it to remind / support / shame  our representatives.
You can contact Israt Ahmed at and More information from Commitment TO Community: child carehousingjobspoverty, and transit.

Learn about (and sign) the Cannabis Amnesy Petition //

5 Reasons Why Drug Consumption Rooms Benefit People Who Don’t Use Drugs

DCRs are a UK term for OPS, SIS. This is an article for an audience of non-users. What do you think?

  1. DCRs ensure safer streets …
  2. DCRs reduce the spread of disease …
  3. DCRs improve access to emergency services …
  4. DCRs can reduce crime …
  5. DCRs help people integrate into the legitimate economy … 
  6. DCRs save lives…

More details at our site.

4. Resources

TTC – Fair Pass Discount Program

The Fare Pass Presto card saves money: $2.00 per ride, 115.50 monthly pass. If you receive a transport allowance from OW or ODSP check with a worker before you apply for the pass so that you don’t have that subsidy cut from your cheque.

Find the forms and the details at: //

And more info at //

5. Jobs & Funding

Research about Peer Researchers Peers Project!

  1. Fresh Start Specialty Supervisor
  2. PASAN Art to Power Project Coordinator

6. Fun Free EventsPhoto of a green bull frog with big cheeks.

General Tips on finding events:

Full list of events at Sound Times!

City of Toronto Event Listings—Lots of good stuff

Toronto Public Library 

  • Big events with huge authors and speakers at the Reference Library (789 Yonge Street)


Lots more newsletters

7. BOOKLET Special Bulletin Part 1! Food  Access, Advocacy, Fun

We are building up resources for the food and mental health booklet. We want to include your project and ideas in future versions.Link to the Food and Mental Healthy Booklet

Please email us at
You can contribute to the planning through this FOOD Survey.

The Bulletin

Resources for Consumer / Survivors / People who use substances / Service and Substance Users / Fun Folks in TORONTO AREA

#11 – 608 December 1, 2018 

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The Bulletin is published on the 1st of every month
by Sound Times Support Services. Funding for this Consumer/Survivor initiative has been provided by the Toronto Central Local Health Integration Network (LHIN).

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The views expressed herein do not necessarily reflect those of the
Toronto Central LHIN, the Government of Ontario,
Sound Times Support Services Staff or Board Members.
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