Letter to the editor: Kenney should know what he’s taking from handicapped

Re: “Camp for developmentally disabled loses funding,” Oct. 29.

Today is a very sad day for our special people and our community’s most vulnerable.

As a father and legal guardian of a 26-year-old severely handicapped son, who was born with cerebral palsy, I was extremely saddened to read the news about more funding cuts for services for handicapped people.

Provincial funding for Camp L.G. Barnes is being withdrawn and I wonder now where my son will go for his summer vacation?

He had been attending L.G. Barnes campsite faithfully for 10 years now, and something that seems so simple, and what we would take for granted, will be gone forever.

The impact of losing such a special place will be felt forever among many disabled folks, not just my son.

From being able to interact with the animals, to being layed in a tube in the water to float on a hot summer day, is now becoming a thing of the past.

Many people do not understand that simple things we take for granted in our daily lives mean the world to those who do not have such easy circumstances or situations.

Jonathan has never walked or talked a day in his life, but L.G. Barnes was a place he knew, understood and loved. It meant the world to him, and yet it is one more simple thing in life he can no longer be part of.

Many don’t understand the level of comfort a place like L.G. Barnes can bring to our community’s most vulnerable; how such a small outing can make such a big difference.

This week, The Hub on Ross was closed permanently as well. I wonder what is next? Soon, my son will be confined to his group home, strapped in his wheelchair for 12 hours a day, only to be layed in bed for the other 12.

The swimming at Michener pool will dissapear, the vacation at L.G. Barnes already has. The Hub, now also a thing of the past. The Relax Crew next?

Premier Jason Kenney, you need to live one week in my son’s shoes. You would be quick to discover how many funding cuts would impact the quality of your life, how something you see as irrelevent and small is life changing.

I understand there needs to be cuts and funding changes, but you must realize you are taking everything away from someone who already has very little. What’s next? Do you want his wheelchair? Maybe his track lift?

You should be ashamed of yourself, good sir.

You cut anything and everything you want as premier, but why should it ever come at the cost of someone who can’t even defend himself?

Enclosed is a picture of my son at L.G. Barnes. Please have a good look at it. I hope you never forget it.

I hope you see it every morning when you wake up. That’s a smile that only L.G. Barnes can bring. I want you to know and feel you are the man responsible for taking it away from my son.

James Bast, Red Deer

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

A vial of the Medicago vaccine sits on a surface. CARe Clinic, located in Red Deer, has been selected to participate in the third phase of vaccine study. (Photo courtesy www.medicago.com)
Red Deer clinical research centre participating in plant-based COVID-19 vaccine trial

A Red Deer research centre has been selected to participate in the… Continue reading

Asymptomatic testing will now be available for "priority groups" who are most likely to spread the COVID-19 virus to vulnerable or at-risk populations. File photo by THE CANADIAN PRESS
Red Deer jumps to 449 active COVID-19 cases on Sunday

1,516 new cases identified in Alberta

The QEII was closed Sunday morning due to a pole fire. (Photo courtesy City of Red Deer)
UPDATE: QEII near Red Deer reopens

The QEII has been reopened after being closed due to a pole… Continue reading

Innisfail RCMP are investigating a single-vehicle crash that happened west of Bowden on March 21, 2021. (File photo by Advocate staff)
Bashaw RCMP investigate fatal collision in central Alberta

Bashaw RCMP are investigating after a fatal collision Saturday afternoon. Police were… Continue reading

A damaged unicorn statue is shown in a field outside of Delia, Alta. in this undated handout photo. It's not often police can report that a unicorn has been found, but it was the truth Saturday when RCMP said a stolen, stainless-steel statue of the mythical beast had been located in a field not far from where he'd been taken. THE CANADIAN PRESS/HO, RCMP *MANDATORY CREDIT*
Mounties get their unicorn; stolen statue of mythical beast found in Alberta field

DELIA, Alta. — It’s not often police can report that a unicorn… Continue reading

Investigators from the Vancouver Police Department were in Chilliwack Saturday, collecting evidence connected to a double homicide. (file photo)
Police investigate shooting death of man outside downtown Vancouver restaurant

Vancouver police say one man was killed in what they believe was… Continue reading

Dr. E. Kwok administers a COVID-19 vaccine to a recipient at a vaccination clinic run by Vancouver Coastal Health, in Richmond, B.C., Saturday, April 10, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
B.C. to start registering people 18 years and older for COVID-19 vaccines

VICTORIA — The British Columbia government says it’s inviting people 18 years… Continue reading

San Jose's Tomas Hertl, center, celebrates with teammates Patrick Marleau, left, and Rudolfs Blacers, right, after Hertl scored a goal during the first period of an NHL hockey game against the Minnesota Wild, Friday, April 16, 2021, in St. Paul, Minn. (AP Photo/Stacy Bengs)
Patrick Marleau set to break Gordie Howe’s games record

For Patrick Marleau, the best part about Monday night when he is… Continue reading

Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, speaks during a press briefing at the White House, Tuesday, April 13, 2021, in Washington. (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky)
Half of U.S. adults have received at least one COVID-19 shot

WASHINGTON — Half of all adults in the U.S. have received at… Continue reading

People are shown at a COVID-19 vaccination site in Montreal, Sunday, April 18, 2021, as the COVID-19 pandemic continues in Canada and around the world. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Graham Hughes
Federal government to send health-care workers to Ontario, Trudeau says

MONTREAL — Prime Minister Justin Trudeau says federal departments and some Canadian… Continue reading

People cross a busy street in the shopping district of Flushing on Tuesday, March 30, 2021, in the Queens borough of New York. Access to the COVID-19 vaccine in the United States is growing by the day. THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP-Kathy Willens
Despite COVID-19 vaccines, Americans in D.C. not feeling celebratory — or charitable

WASHINGTON — This might make Canadians jealous of their American cousins for… Continue reading

A man pays his respects at a roadside memorial in Portapique, N.S. on Thursday, April 23, 2021. RCMP say at least 22 people are dead after a man who at one point wore a police uniform and drove a mock-up cruiser, went on a murder rampage in Portapique and several other Nova Scotia communities. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Andrew Vaughan
Memorial service in Nova Scotia marks one year since mass shooting started

TRURO, N.S. — A memorial service is planned for today in central… Continue reading

In this April 23, 2016, photo, David Goethel sorts cod and haddock while fishing off the coast of New Hampshire. To Goethel, cod represents his identity, his ticket to middle class life, and his link to one the country's most historic industries, a fisherman who has caught New England's most recognized fish for more than 30 years. (AP Photo/Robert F. Bukaty)
‘It’s more than just a fish:’ Scientists worry cod will never come back in N.L.

ST. JOHN’S, N.L. — The latest assessment of Atlantic cod stocks, whose… Continue reading

Most Read