The year started off on many lows, the loss of some notable celebrities,’ as well as millions of anon. not “known people” since we can’t mention them all, we’ll say rest in peace to the many whom have shed this mortal coil to ascend to a higher plane of existence where the body will no longer feel sensations that plaque the human mind, but a freedom, the kind that will never be found encased in this delicate shell of flesh and blood.
In December 2019, the first case of COVID-19 was reported in China. Since then, the coronavirus has struck the entire world by surprise. The importance of physical touch and contact was bought into emphasis as the entire world went into lockdowns and people were made to isolate and quarantine within the walls of their homes. Since the novel coronavirus spreads at an exceedingly fast rate, it poses a huge threat to public health with its high mortality rate.
Temporary Protection from Eviction
COVID-19 has affected almost all areas of our daily lives, be it financial, personal, educational or professional. Adjusting to the new normal has indeed been a challenge for people all around the globe. However, health care providers and people in authority are working round-the-clock to ensure the wellbeing of as many people as they can.
As a response to this global threat, state and local governments have taken drastic measures to ensure public health and safety. When it comes to housing, eviction laws in several countries, including the US, have been temporarily altered to not only prevent the spread of this disease but also facilitate people who are struggling with financial issues.
Providing stable housing is an effective measure because it allows people to abide by the stay-at-home and social distancing measures recommended by state and local authorities. It also reduces the number of homeless people residing in congregate settings or shelters. Improved living conditions are bound to reduce the spread of this virus.
The Final Word
The laws amended in the light of COVID 19 provide increased protection to tenants and renters. From March 1, 2020, to September 30, 2021, all landlords and property owners have been advised not to evict any residents if the sole reason for their eviction is their inability to provide housing payment. The state has developed a rental assistance program to reduce financial distress on both landowners and renters. All tenants that qualify for this program will be provided with financial assistance during and beyond this period to help reduce their struggles.
Proper dental care is essential to living a healthy life. However, there’s a greater chance for people from low-income backgrounds to have greater dental health problems than those from affluent families. Here’s a quick analysis of the disparity in dental care between the rich and the poor.
The Gravity of the Situation
A greater percentage of people from deprived backgrounds have been hospitalized because they needed dental care than those who were better off financially. However, many people from low-income backgrounds struggled to receive the care they needed because 35% of low-income parents and 38% of low-income adults without children did not have health insurance in 2013.
What makes this situation worse is that dental care treatment in the hospital is about 10 times more expensive (even with Medicaid enrollees) than preventative dental care at a dentist’s office. Furthermore, Medicaid doesn’t cover preventative costs. Thus, enrollees have to rely on ER care at the hospital when their conditions worsen.
The Effects of Lack of Dental Care for the Poor
Receiving proper dental care is vital because it affects the patient’s and physical health as well. A lack of proper dental care can contribute to various chronic illnesses that may pertain to cardiovascular disease, pregnancy complications, respiratory infection, and so on.
In addition to physical health ramifications, there are mental health concerns, such as a correlation between decaying or missing teeth and depression. This is also the case because missing teeth can result in increased self-consciousness and societal scrutiny. So, it makes it more challenging for people from low-income backgrounds to thrive within society.
Lack of proper dental care for people from low-income backgrounds also causes them to struggle with its effects on their employment opportunities. Poor dental care causes patients to experience discrimination in the job market. Thus, there’s a cycle in which disparity in dental care between the rich and the poor causes the latter to continue struggling to receive better dental care because they can’t afford insurance.
There is no point in sugar-coating the fact that transitioning from homelessness to renting can be quite difficult for an individual, especially in cities like Toronto or Vancouver. From a landlord’s perspective, these markets are full of eligible and desirable tenants, so why would they lend their property to someone without any reference and an unstable (or non-existing) rental history.
This is a challenge most homeless people face, even when they have found a stable job and have enough money for a deposit. Finding rental housing without references can be tough but not impossible. There are a few things you can do:
1. Seek out your regional Housing First* program. It’s designed to help homeless people find stable homes. You’d need to contribute a portion of your income (ideally 30% or more) while the rest would be covered by rent subsidies. It also helps you establish a rent history that can open up more rental housing options for you.
2. Provide potential landlord proof of stable income. If you’ve been working for a while, bring your last three payslips and, preferably, a letter from your employer stating your good behavior (and that they don’t have any plans to let you go in the foreseeable future).
3. If you have a stable income and money for monthly rent but not the deposit, charities like Canadian Red Cross and Salvation Army might assist you (financially). With a decent deposit amount (say three-months rent), you might be able to convince potential landlords to rent to you, even if you don’t have references.
4. Don’t fake a reference history. It is a huge red flag, and if you get caught, it might disrupt your chances of renting with other landlords as well.
5. Talk to the people who are running emergency shelters. They might be able to guide you to individuals who might be inclined to rent to you without references, just to pull you out of homelessness. If not, they might be able to put you in touch with local housing assistance programs you might not be aware of.
Be honest, talk to the people helping homeless individuals in your community, try to save as much money as you can for rent and deposit, find a co-signer if you can, and make sure your employer puts in a good word for you. These might help you find rental housing without references.
-From “Boggles Brown – My Cartoon Life in the Land Of Schizophrenia” inner sleeve. – 2010
Boggles Brown is broke, except for the “People With Disabilities Allowance” he gets once a month. This month, he lives in a run-down motel – he manages to buy an old beat-up Toyota which is unreliable but reliable if you know what I mean. Somtimes he thinks his car may be bi-polar.
He wonders whether he should be using one of those fancy-named gasoline additives like “Engine-X,” I imagine “Engine-X” to be somewhat like Olanzapine, only for cars.
Boggles Brown struggled through college. He graduated,worked for a while and then became bonkers. It was not worth the ecstacy or all the raves in the world to lose his mind – he knows that now. But it is his life, what to do?
Boggles Brown is not how I see myself so much, as how I think others see me. My mom has read some of my cartoons and scratched her head. I imagine a lot of people will do the same. But that’s not the point – is it? Am I Canada’s Andy Warhol? I think not.
I hope you like Boggles, and if you don’t, I hope you keep it to yourself because the point is that it gave me something to do.
These are all hand-drawn on whatever paper I could find.
January 11, 2021: Cheektowaga-Omni, a production, media, and marketing company has today announced its foray into film making with the production of a socially conscious movie, “My Name is Brad”. The company hopes to engage the public and has started fundraising, soliciting support from keen donors and people who value movies with a cultural and socially significant theme.
The prevailing atmosphere in the USA makes it ripe for movies like My Name is Brad to be an eye-opener for a public swayed by bigotry and misinformation. Moreover, homelessness is a growing issue that is affecting many people.
“My Name is Brad” narrates the story of a young middle class suburban white man who struggles through University, only to end up deluded, and living on the streets. He watches his promise die, like so many North American youth today.
Cheektowaga-Omni is a production and media marketing company that was established as a tie up between Cheektowaga Music and Omni creative group Cheektowaga Music was formed by prolific musician, music, entertainment producer and, performer “Little” Herbert in 1986. Cheektowaga-Omni is in the process of reactivating a dormant Analogue TV station in Northern Washington State.
The movie My Name is Brad being produced by Cheektowaga-Omni is in memory of Kelly Thomas, who was killed by members of the Fullerton police dept in 2011. Cheektowaga-Omni has launched fundraising efforts to support the movie and plans are afoot to launch a kick-starter and a web page in support of My name is Brad. For more – click here.
Cheektowaga – Omni media is based in Kelowna BC, with studios located in Abbotsford BC and Vancouver BC.