Kathy Tomlinson, investigative reporter with the Globe and Mail, is asking for our help with in-depth research into workers compensation across Canada. In particular, she says she would like to determine if and how those systems lead injured workers to take addictive painkillers for long periods - and how that affects people’s lives. Here are more details from her:
“I would very much like to connect with workers or family members who have experienced this firsthand and/or have insight to share. Ultimately, we intend to push for positive changes.
First, I need to figure out/illustrate how and if the push to get people back to work contributes to addictions, how people on painkillers risk getting re-injured on the job, and how and if painkillers may be used as a substitute/bandaid, instead of covering other treatments people need (as well as anything else I can learn about this).
If you are willing to help, much appreciated. Here is some info about me:
You can reach me (confidentially) at firstname.lastname@example.org or at 604-631-6628. Many thanks!”
Investigative Reporter, Globe and Mail
Physical impairment can cause mental stress. i found this pic and thought of so many workers. Always seek help dealing with pain and stress relating to an injury
The break is done for me. I always miss daily life when I think I need a break. I am always anxious to get back to routine that I know and love.
DATE: JULY 29 2019
I have continued to contest the "Locker rule." at WCB
I guess it reminds me of day care or kindergarten that should have got me prepared for this.
The reasons back then was I guess not for security but for organization of our desks.
This is my most recent email to the WCB on behalf of workers and security concerns and the "locker rule"
Does anyone else get their knickers in a knot over this rule?
Letter to WCB
Attention: WCB Management
I do not know any other government, agency, legal firm, hospitals, treatment facility,
bank, or any organization that has mandatory lockers for clients . .
Why does WCB have such a fear of the public?
WCB is the only organization that has such a safety concern. I think WCB should consider
meeting rooms set up as bank tellers due to the WCB fears..
Millard does not have the same system and the front counter does not have the same
process yet your front line staff are exposed to the public.
It is sad that WCB has created such rules and should have a scanner rather than a lockers.
What will removing diabetic supplies, medication, keys, a wallet, sanitary lotion, glasses,
paper pen, identification resolve
My opinion of the WCB and the Annual meeting does not ever improve.
The new WCB CEO Trevor Alexander leads the way. I did not see any personal contact or mingling with stakeholders. It was on the podium and after his speech out the door. Financial deficits they blamed on the economy rather than any faults at the WCB.
The format of the meeting was very dictatorial, lots of propaganda for WCB. It was one sided.
Stakeholders had no opportunity for feedback for the public record. The reason stakeholders were there (the few of us that attended is that WCB is mandated to advertise and invite the Public. The room was filled with probably 98% staff. WCB group think tank is willing to see the Board sink rather than key stakeholders input who may have solutions. I was surprised Board members are not even aware there are representatives outside the Fairness office that are available. No sooner did I approach a couple Board members when I was approached by a staff member of WCB management level to ensure Board Members do not have conversation with the Public or a worker advocate that may have something other than the Board propaganda that they are exposed to.
There were no MLA's or any media.
I am not impressed at all with the WCB at the best of times, my challenges only increase with inexperienced staff, the changes that have not improved Customer Service.
The Board needs help but with the miss guided statistics the hidden difficulties will remain.
The Legislative changes at WCB meant that WCB was able to create their own policy again and interpet these changes to ensure the financial gate keepers could tighten the pockets of WCB not increase overall benefits to severely injured workers.
Pain and suffering is still not recognized. Limitations due to pain, difficulites such as a lack of sleep, depression and anxieity are difficult and impact return to work planning. To an injured worker that can not work it does not matter how many weeks they give to find a job, they can't work. WCB will estimate their earnings in a fictionary position anyway at te end of day.
The Case Manager letters start with a return work plan before treatment is even completed. So don't think it is only you ths is what they refer to as as the main purpose of WCB not your medical care and health, your return to work..
The Appeals Commisison appeals are down 60% and the WCB is so proud of the good work they are doing to change the appeal statistics.
Reality is workers have given up on the system and stopped appealing.
I encourage Workers are encouraged to fight for their entitlement throught the Appeal System.
On June 20 2019 the WCB annual general meeting will take place in Edmonton. The audience has few workers, and employers. I will attend on behaf of injured workers once again to ensure someone speaks out about the unjust system for the injured worker.
I feel if I do not speak out who will?
Fairness office. Question asked;is this office to be trusted and what has changed? Workers had the Appeals Advisors office dictated by the WCB.It was slow and not meetng the needs of workers with appeal. Dissatisfaction that resulted in a move by the Alberta Government now brought it into the Government with another level of of manangement. No understanding of the internal system at WCB past to the government , which is now an office to represent workers. The feedback is horrible for the new office.
HOPE, LOVE, PEACE AND JOY
This year started out a challenging new adventure for me. I felt guilt when I got sick and weak. This year, as
there was work to be done.
I had to focus on my own health and life, which I have neglected for a long time. Helping others and
having compassion has been my life time goal and achievement, Challenging the WCB for injured workers
rights who are suffering and left with little hope is such a big part of my life.
I had all the hope for recovery from my cancer and I was successful. I was given the love I needed and my family beside me gave peace and joy within
My work that is such a big part of my life continues with the tenacity, I have even with a decline in my physical health that took a beating.
I thought of every injured worker that suffers, has pain, loss and need the emotional strength within to
go forward. My clients that have lost love ones this year and my thoughts are with you every day
The year 2019 is a New Year that I will cherish every moment with my family, friends and my clients.
To the injured workers of the world I wish you all the best of health as we know the physical decline in health needs your emotional acceptance. Things change whether it is mental health, injury or illness. Please cherish every day.
Now it is time to "get the job done" and give another shock wave to the WCB and Government trying to change
the world of compensation once again. Focusing on health of workers needs to be a priority it is not about the dollars.
Happy New Year to All and Thank you for all the compassion thrown back my way when I needed it the most.
WCB CONTINUES TO TAKE A HARD STANCE ON NARCOTICS.
With the medical complications from narcoitcs, and media reporting I do not disputed the health risks for individuals
and liability for WCB accepting responsibility. Narcotics are not for everyone and alternatives must be considered
for severely injured workes in chronic pain.
Medicinal marjuana is an accpted alternative authorized by the Government.
WCB is not the govvernment and has not developed a policy.
The criteria for my representation will start with my evaluation of severity of injury, diagnosis, medical authorization and supported medical reporting, The product is obtained legal with receipts, and is required soley due to the work related injury after the date of accident. I will review the request for representation and use my discresion to determine if I am comfortable representing you on this matter.
The reprsentation request form is required on line.
If I decide to represent you the cost will be $1200 to represent you on this one stand alone issue to be paid upon represenation agreement.