The Durham Region Employment Network – or DREN has been helping people in my riding for 23 years; folks who want to participate in their community’s economy but face multiple barriers and need additional support to find work.
Sadly, DREN is facing closure due to lack of funding from the provincial government.
This is a government that talks about accessibility and pretends it is a priority for them, but can’t commit to a grassroots community agency that has been recognized by David C. Onley. and meets very real needs in Oshawa.
Last week I had the opportunity to meet with Donna McAllister, DREN’s Executive Director, and she asked me:
When the agency for helping vulnerable people find job has to close because the government won’t commit to funding it, what does that say?
What does it say about the importance this government places on accessibility services? The never ending precarious merry-go-round of project funding… apply, wait, wonder, call, hope, call again, email, hope, wait… rinse repeat.
That is the model this government has established to fund our frontline service providers?
This government can say that accessibility is a priority, but actions speak louder than words. We need sustainable funding for DREN and real commitment to support workers with disabilities.
I support DREN, my community supports DREN, and I call on this Liberal government to finally commit to sustainable funding for an organization that helps those that need it most.