Tag Archives: Ontario

Michael Fuentespina: the hearing-impaired medic

In a dinner held in held in Etobicoke, Ontario, a member of the Canadian Army and Recipient of the order of Military Merit by the Canadian Government has delivered the 2018 Apolinario Mabini Memorial Lecture of the Dinner of Hope.

He is Chief Warrant Officer Michael Fuentespina, a medic of the Canadian Armed Forces Health Services Group of the Royal Canadian Air Force deployed in Afghanistan. He has served in seven countries (Norway, Germany, United Kingdom, France, United States, Afghanistan, and Bosnia) and received the NATO Medal for Former Yugoslavia, Canadian Peacekeeping Service Medal, Canadian Decoration, Queen’s Diamond Jubilee Medal, General Campaign Star – Afghanistan, and the Member of the Order of Military Merit. He has also participated in the 2016 Invictus Games held in Florida and in the 2017 Invictus Games held in Toronto as a member of Team Canada for the Men’s Road Cycling.

But the Makati native who just moved to Winnipeg when he was two years old has followed a bomb attack during his “tour of duty” as a member of the Counter-IED’s Advisory Response Team during the War in Afghanistan in 2008. He lost his hearing then and developed post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) nine years after.

“When I witnessed the death and destruction in Afghanistan, I realized that there is that very real possibility that I may not come back or may be grievously injured and, at the same time, I saw what Canada was doing to stand up for those who could not stand up for themselves – it was then that this job which became a profession has now transitioned into a calling,” he was quoted saying in a report.

To date, Officer Fuentespina is assigned in Ottawa as advisor for all Reserve Medical non-commissioned members of the CAF responsible for the development and implementation of policies related to professional development, training and education.

 “Disability or not, we live in a great country that provides endless opportunities if you go out and seek them. Just strive to do your best in an ethical manner and great opportunities will come to you.” ~ Michael Fuentespina

Video taken from the YouTube Channel of Michael Chow


Persons with disabilities (PWDs) in Canada will finally be able to “gain the skills and experience they need to find jobs.”

Thirty-two PWDs in Cornwall, United Counties of SD&G, and Akwesasne will be supported by the Eastern Ontario Training Board (EOTB) upon receiving over $366,000 from the Opportunities Fund for Persons with Disabilities from the government of Canada.

“Canadians with disabilities deserve every opportunity to participate in the job market, and that’s why partnerships with organizations like the Eastern Ontario Training Board are so important,” Guy Lauzon, MP Stormont-Dundas-South Glengarry, was reported saying. “Through this project, people with disabilities in our area will gain the skills and experience they need to succeed in the workforce.”

Jobs Now will teach customer service and computer skills to PWDs in Canada. The latter will also be allowed to join the workforce of the local companies involved in sales and service. The program will also provide a wage subsidy to employers who employ PWDs and would keep them even after the program ends.

“We are grateful to have the opportunity to provide employment skills and make connections in the community for people with disabilities. We know that everyone has contributions they can make in the Canadian workforce, and this program will make sure that we can make it happen for dozens of local residents.” ~ Denis Thibault

Video taken from the YouTube Channel of the AttitudeLive

Going to Canada

A relative is planning to migrate to Canada this year.

I also know of three others who recently did so, and another one who have just done that.

All of them have the same reason, though: they’re after the healthcare services of Canada.

Healthcare in Canada is delivered through a publicly funded health care system. The doctors in its 10 provinces—Alberta, British Columbia, Manitoba, New Brunswick, Newfoundland and Labrador, Nova Scotia, Ontario, Prince Edward Island, Quebec, and Saskatchewan—are the ones who handle the insurance claim against the provincial insurer so there’s no need for the patients there to mind their bills.

There is a health card issued by the Provincial Ministry of Health to its residents who applies for the program. Health coverage would not be denied to those who suddenly lose their jobs, and there are no lifetime limits or exclusions for pre-existing conditions.

Canada is the only country in the world with this kind of universal healthcare system to date. But adherence to this 1984 legislation is voluntary. The Canada Health Act (CHA) does not cover the medical expenses for prescription drugs, home care or long-term care, prescription glasses, dental care, and cosmetic surgery. It is also left to the provinces to determine if the medical service is essential, where it should be taken, how it should be administered, and who should provide the services.

Canadian PWDs

About 3.8 million Canadians (or 13.7% of its 2012 population) have disabilities.

Four percent are ages 15 to 24 years old while 42.5% are ages 75 years old and over. There are more female PWDs than male, impaired by pain, flexibility, and mobility.

Still, Canada provides financial assistance and support for them. It would allot $222 million each year to its provinces and territories through the Labor Market Agreements for Persons with Disabilities (LMAPDs). Its Economic Action Plan 2013 proposes to maintain an ongoing fund of $40 million annually starting next year for the Opportunities Fund for Persons with Disabilities (OF).

It also has the disability tax credit (DTC) for Canadian PWDs with severe and prolonged impairments. It gives a tax-free benefit—child disability benefit (CDB)—to families who care for Canadian PWDS under 18 years old eligible for DTC.

“Equality is the public recognition, effectively expressed in institutions and manners, of the principle that an equal degree of attention is due to the needs of all human beings.” Simone Weil

Video taken from the YouTube Channel of the MonkeySee