The advocates for disabled people are utterly grieving over the loss of former finance minister, Jim Flaherty, who has undoubtedly left behind a legacy of caring for the vulnerable. Perhaps Flaherty held the issue close to his heart because one of his triplets, John, has a mental disability. Consequently, he always desired to make sure that the needs of the disabled were addressed.
The government House leader, Peter Van Loan, mentioned in a statement that “I think the thing he wants to be remembered for most, and the thing I most appreciated from him … was his championing of the cause of disabled folks.” He added that “not just through government policies and programs, but also a lot of moral leadership.” In addition to that Van Loan alleged that “I know he touched a lot of people in the results that produced.” Mr. Flaherty is remembered to have always included something to help those with disabilities in each of his budgets. Even the 2001 Ontario government budget included $67 million, spread over five years, to build new living quarters for adults living with disabilities.