A True Rant: An Opinion Piece

I’m sure you’ve all realized by now that I’m not one to take  things lying down.

Today was the 15th business day since the cheque was mailed to our financial institution. The funds were not in our account this morning. When my husband called yesterday to find out what was going on, he was told we needed to wait a month to see ‘if it will just show up’ before anything could be done. One cheque had already been received and deposited. But it’s the one we can’t touch.

So this morning I drafted a letter for my husband to send to the Director of Pensions and Social Programs. I had been corresponding with her after I had gone to my MP to figure out what the hell was going on.

He sent it and within minutes she responded that she would look into what was happening.

The basic reality is that it is not acceptable to tell someone that you owe money to that they need to wait to see if it ‘just shows up’ when the fault does not lie with them. He never asked for a cheque to be sent in the first place. Direct deposit was requested. It shouldn’t have happened this way in the first place. We have already waited 6 months. They are basically telling us we need to wait another month to see if it shows up and if it doesn’t, it could take another month for them to investigate and reissue a cheque.

I worked for the provincial government, specifically in Student Loans when I lived in Alberta. Yes, I understand that I am now battling the federal government, but hear me out.

There would be multiple instances a day where a student would call because they did not receive their grant cheque. These were the cheques I could immediately trace. If it had been over ten business days I would cancel and request a reissue (we did not have direct deposit then as an option) within that phone call. The caller was informed that if they found the cheque after they hung up the phone to not cash it because it was cancelled and wait for the replacement. Yes, there were issues where we tried to replace a cheque to a student who had an issue with their mail. We did an investigation, but not while the student waited. We found an alternative address that the student had access to and sent the cheque there while we investigated in the background.

So you don’t get to tell me that you can’t cancel a cheque and that we need to a wait a goddamn month before anything can be done.

I was very professional and polite in my letter but I am not professional or polite here. It is clear that this system is broken. Yes, we have resources that we can depend on if we are in a tight situation. Not everyone has that. Did you know that there are homeless veterans in Canada? They are doing a research project that you can read more about.

Is it any wonder? These men and women serve our country for at least five years. Many veterans did a full career in the military. There is massive culture shock in transitioning from being a soldier employed full time by the federal government to being a civilian who may need to wonder where their next meal is coming from. Our supports for these men and women are disgusting in the fact that they are few and far between. Our government has closed dozens of Veterans Affairs offices across the country.

I am tempted with bringing this ridiculousness to the media after is it resolved. A change needs to be made. It is a simple system, but it is a broken system. I am not asking for a hand out. I am asking that the money owed to my husband for his eight years of service not be such a battle to receive. Before he released we saved up the money for his tuition so that these funds we’re supposed to receive could be funnelled into wiping away debt and fixing our home. The tuition money is gone. Our savings are dry. Our house has a major issue that is not repaired.

I will not go quietly into that good night. I will not wait until this process runs its course. I will raise my voice for myself and for those who cannot.

Mark my words, this is not over yet.

Posted by Sarah Jayne in Rantings, 3 comments


Have you ever truly been alone? Being swallowed up by that black nothingness is not as lovely as it sounds. There are times when we all happily retreat to the emptyness of loneliness in an attempt to reconfigure; redefine.

But that is loneliness by choice.

Think of the child: home alone, ill, with no one to care for them. Maybe both parents work just to survive. Maybe there is only Dad who can’t leave work because that means no groceries that week. Maybe there is only Mum who can’t leave because that means her job will go to someone else. Maybe there is no one. Mum and Dad may physically be there but perhaps they don’t have the tools to offer comfort and solace.

The loneliness can persist and haunt the child all through life. As a teen, a young adult, an adult, middle-aged, senior.

When you are lonely because it has been thrust upon you it is a terrifying gaping darkness that threatens to swallow you whole.

I hope that if you find yourself in this deep dark pit of despair that you are able to climb out: that you are able to cry for help and strong enough to accept that help.

Posted by Sarah Jayne in Rantings, 0 comments