Students Receiving Welfare in Canada

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Lisa, after having been informed by her welfare worker that she would have to pay back her welfare for the period she was in school, be cut off of welfare, and faced charges of fraud, decided this was unreasonable and questioned the legality of her circumstances. Angrily, she decided to talk to the director of the welfare office. Lisa said, “First of all, international law in accordance to the United Nations Declaration of Human Rights Article 26. 1. States that everyone has a right to education. In the case of higher education everyone shall have equal access based on merit (http://www.un.org/en/documents/udhr/index.shtml ). As such I have the right to have my university education. My acceptance to school and my grades show I have the merit. So not only does the government have an obligation to foster my positive liberties of education, it also cannot take such economically violent actions without breaching this aspect of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights which Canada has signed on to. The very fact that I am on welfare shows my financial need, the fact that I received an additional student loan not only show welfare is not enough, but that I had no intent to defraud the government as I declared my welfare as income. To cut me off of welfare, would force me to drop out of university for financial reasons. It is obvious that without a student loan I could not afford to go to school nor could I get my own credit to pay for school. Not only that being on welfare is evidence I have not developed the skills sets needed to work in this economy, and in article 23.1 it states I have the right to work. Essentially by engaging in such policies which are not easily available to the public nor was explained correctly you are takin... ... middle of paper ... ...tion to the policy. The welfare officer offered her two choices. She was given the option that she could continue to receive welfare for this academic year only. However, she would have to begin paying back all the welfare at the end of the year, and agree to an over payment penalty (http://www.lss.bc.ca/assets/pubs/yourWelfareRights.pdf pp 103) . If she did not agree to sign a repayment agreement of this nature, she would be cut off welfare immediately (Ibid pp 102). Lisa was told if she chooses the first option she would also have to agree to submit her monthly bank statements, and any statements regarding lines of credit, and credit cards. A follow up meeting was held by her welfare agent where they closely reviewed the rules, and made certain everything was understood. At the meeting Lisa would be told that she would have to choose one from those two options.

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