‘Listen to the people:’ Rally calls on Ministry of Social Services to make changes

Chants echoed from 12th Avenue to Broad Street as around 50 people marched from Carmichael Outreach to the Ministry of Social Services.

The goal of the rally was to show the Ministry the realities of living on Saskatchewan Income Support (SIS) and houselessness.

Payton Bryne has experienced short-term homelessness and organized the march with her sister. After volunteering at Camp Hope, she said that the need for something to change became apparent.

“We volunteered at Camp Hope for its entirety, and that’s really where we realized how big the problem is,” she said. “We knew it was a thing, but it wasn’t until we were at Camp every night and saw hundreds of houselessness people coming and asking for tents, blankets, food, absolutely anything they could get.”

Byrne said what sparked the march was listening to Minister Lori Carr.

“It was honesty, Minister Lori Car, who was in Legislative Assembly. The last few weeks, the things that she was saying it was out outstanding. She actually doesn’t believe there is houselessness, and if she doesn’t believe us, then we will prove it.”

“We started with the posters, call Lori Carr, then her mailbox got full, and she didn’t want to answer it so that we will walk to the Ministery of Social Services, and if you need help, here they are,” she continued. “We just want to show her that people care and that there are people that need help, and she can’t deny it.

We needed to show the Minister that so many people care, and we are not going to be quiet about it. We are going to show how much we care until people are being helped and the system is fixed. They tried giving one dollar a day increase, which doesn’t do anything. I just hope they realize the SIS program is broken,” she added

Bryne had a clear message to Minister Lori Carr.

“Listen to the people, listen to the people on the ground working with these people, listen to the people directly affected and that are directly helping the people who need it. Get out of her office, stop reading her talking points and listen to the people.”

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