Calgarians join provincial rally against disability cuts

About 100 Calgarians with disabilities and their supporters boarded buses for Edmonton on Wednesday to protest the Alberta government's plan to cut services.

Disabled Albertans and their supporters to demonstrate at legislature in Edmonton

Protesters from Calgary headed to Edmonton on Wednesday to demand the province not cut programs for disabled Albertans. (Kyle Bakx/CBC)

About 100 Calgarians with disabilities and their supporters boarded buses for Edmonton on Wednesday to protest the Alberta government’s plan to cut services.

They are heading to the capital to join a demonstration on the steps of the legislature to demand the Tories reverse a decision to cut about $42 million in cuts to Community Access Supports Programs.

Those programs help get disabled people out into the community through volunteer and recreational activities.

"Now you see me … is the name of our rally," said Disability Action Hall member Lloyd Thornhill.

"With these cuts we might disappear from the community and that is not good for us or anyone else," he said.

The province has said it wants to spend less on support services and more on other areas, such as employment.

"I feel in my heart and soul they are taking it out on the wrong people," said Tony Goodison, who has a developmental disability.

Approximaley 500 people are expected to gather in Edmonton to protest the cuts.

"We are very concerned about the impact these cuts will have on the lives of people with disabilities and we are asking for them to stop," said Ryan Geake, executive director of the Calgary SCOPE Society, a non-profit agency.

Myrna Miller is making the trip north with her son Fredrick, who attends provincially-funded day programs.

"If he's cutback, he will end up staying home and sitting in front of a TV, which would just be terrible for him," she said.

The provincial funding cuts are set to take effect July 1.