May 2010
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“Filming The People’s Blueprint”

May 9th, 2010 | By | Category: Campaigns (incl.) Grassroots, Health, Housing

“Filming The People’s Blueprint”

May 2010 c.smith ( photo Fierce Light by Kelly Mackin)

“The importance, power, and logic of peer-everything needs to be brought to the fore of mainstream consciousness.” Laura Pesantez

It has been an extraordinary opportunity for Peacock to be invited to this table with a group of some twenty people from all over Ontario who share their experience on Social Assistance through a myriad of lenses and who aim to provide a People’s Blueprint for Social Assistance Reform through research in their respective communities.

As they with lived experience of poverty research others with lived experience, so too does Peacock Poverty- with lived experience- report, research and learn of the Panels’ work through the process and fruition of their labor. This is historic, remarkable, and hopefully a sign of the times.

These twenty people are bright, talented, creative, energetic, and productive, as “we” are, and yet are left to languish in their respective “cells”. Until now.

“By the people, for the people”, they study community-based research learning how to gather information without bias, collecting data from us to study and formulate ideas and suggestions for change, for us and for the community at large.

Together, they have managed to break free and find the common ground where solutions might actually be found. This is a place of hope and joy, of tears and laughter, of challenge and accomplishment, and of community.

It has been an enlightening and inspiring journey thus far. The group sizzles with imagination, with compassion and understanding, and with a willingness and desire to help each other that is overwhelming.

There is no black and white here, no one size fits all, yet common themes emerge. We with lived experience can all guess what they might be: stigma, barriers, want, frustration, isolation, housing and food are just the tip of the iceberg as these folks dig deep to discover what might actually transform individual lives and therefore our communities at large.

One can only hope their hard work does not go unnoticed or duly noted, that this is not just another example of “lip-service” and that this Liberal government (McGuinty 2010) will not renege again (eg. Special Diet Cut) and hold to its promise of a Review that actually results in the positive change that we who believe know is possible for now and for the next generation to come.

Peacock would like to thank the Panel’s facilitators and members for opening its doors and allowing us to bring to you

The People’s Panel:

Visit The People’s Blueprint page (found along the top of the site) where everything Blueprint can be found. Comments welcomed on this post for both.

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  1. Johnathon doesn’t speak much. He is more of an observer in the panel. When Johnathon speaks, there’s wisdom, and you realize that he’s taken it all in. Johnathon, I hope you can find the time to contribute to the “findings” portion of the project.

  2. I agree T: Our stories may be different, yet there are so many commonalities?

    You go, wise woman! I’ve enjoyed our talks… Hope we can still get together after this is done…

  3. Dylan, you don’t often have something to say. When you do, like Jonathon, it’s deep, it’s pertinent. I like the ending.

    I too hope that the powers that be listen to us. When we listen to them, we continue to suffer. We continue to experience the results of their words, and it really hurts.

    Will anyone of them, walk a mile in any one of our shoes???

    We are all connected! We are all unique! Each one of us matters!!!

  4. Great insights guys – the journey continues……! with our input – hope things change for the better …soon!

  5. I think ALL of you are GREAT- EACH and EVERY ONE.
    my pleasure and honor to share

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