Questions Asked of Candidates
1. How have disability issues affected you and your family?
2. What do you see as being the greatest accessibility challenges within your constituency and what will you do to address these challenges?
Manitoba Party Candidate - Frank Godon
Answer 1: As a caregiver to my 91 year old father who cannot walk due to vertigo suffered from being a POW in WWII I find that support - federal or provincial - is minimum for families that have to deal with this - the only options is to place them in a care home or take care of them yourselves juggling both family work and caregiving. I am fortunate that some help comes from the DVA and that I myself have a pension that I can rely on because having a full time job is not an option - and I can imagine what other families like myself who don't have this backup are going through and not only with elderly parents but with disabled spouses or children. As MLA I would make it one of my priorities to see that some type of financial help is offered to families who are caregivers - this frees up our health care system and makes sure that patients who need this assistance are looked after by the people who love them and who they love.
Answer 2: Accessibility challenges in our constituency are both physical an social - physical due to the age of a lot of buildings in towns in our riding which I noticed while moving my father around in his wheel chair a few months back - not all building or businesses are handicap accessible. Social due to financial difficulties many people with disabilities find themselves in - due to below poverty incomes most have, it keeps them from participating in different activities that most of us take for granted - this leads to further alienation and withdrawal from society - as MLA I would lobby on behalf to the government to consider help that would improve the income of individuals facing this hurdle - also work with the government to make sure that all public buildings are handicap accessible and provide grants for business owners to have this work done.
New Democratic Party Candidate - Lorne Topolniski
Answer 1: Luckily, my family has not experienced any disabilities personally. However, I have experienced an issue with extreme limitations to mobility, and it proved very difficult to access and move around in my house, which was not well equipped to handle this
Answer 2: There are many in rural Manitoba who require access to services, and I would like to make sure those services are affordable and accessible.
Progressive Conservative Party of Manitoba Candidate - Doyle Piwniuk
Answer 1: My family includes individuals with physical and intellectual disabilities, which has allowed me to see opportunities and challenges for individuals with disabilities from a different perspective. My family member with an intellectual disability is supported by his immediate and extended family who work to help him to maximize his potential and develop his independence as he ages. On the other hand, my family member with physical limitations is more challenged to get around. When we go out, her reality is that public space are not always made to accommodate wheelchairs and scooters. This ranges from sidewalks/infrastructure to accessing buildings to moving within public spaces.
Answer 2: As a rural riding, there are issues with crumbling infrastructure, noting that not all roadways have sidewalks, and not all sidewalks are constructed with accessibility in mind. So from an accessibility perspective, I will work with local planners to ensure urban construction proceeds with consideration to accessibility.
Individuals with intellectual disabilities need supports and services to help them to be independent, defining independence based on their personal abilities.
I recognize that we can observe disabilities all around us. However there are many people that live with disabilities that are not always visible or obvious, so it is important that as a province we have strong education, social and health care services for all Manitobans, so those who need assistance, support or services have access to them.