"There is nothing more difficult to take in hand, more perilous to conduct, or more uncertain in its success, than to take the lead in the introduction of a new order of things."

~ Niccolo Machiavelli, historian and writer

Saturday, September 20, 2008

A Conservative Fan I'm Not, But ...

I think it's really important for the disability community to make a real, concerted effort to get our issues out there and on the radar when it comes to federal and provincial elections.

Although it's true that the majority of issues we deal with (education, health care, access to services) are provincial, there are federal issues, such as those dealing with income tax benefits and the ever-venerable, RDSP.

In that vein, I draw your attention to Stephen Harper's announcement yesterday that a re-elected Conservative Government would:
  • Allow families to split their income between spouses to reduce their taxes in situations where one spouse is not working full-time in order to care for one or more family members with disabilities – whether children or adults.

  • Improve the Registered Disability Savings Program by making it easier for a person with disabilities to access money that has been transferred from the unused retirement savings of a deceased family member.
Now, as I noted above, I am most definitely not a fan of the Conservatives. However, we need to get our issues out there. So ask anyone who knocks at your door or otherwise waylays you what they are going to do to make life easier for individuals with disabilities.

Including the Conservative candidates, let's make sure they at least know what it is they say they are going to do if re-elected.

And just for the record, the above promises bring a few questions of their own to mind:
  • If one spouse works full-time and the other part-time, will the family be able to take advantage of these income splitting provisions?


  • Will the RDSP be amended to allow funds to be transferred from an RESP to a RDSP?

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