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UPDATE: Waterloo woman with mobility issues gets overwhelming support from community

Denise Seitz says she has been unable to walk or move freely since being diagnosed with Arthritis and Fibromyalgia
Icy sidewalk
File photo. Blair Adams/KitchenerToday

UPDATE: Seitz tells 570 NEWS that she has accepted an offer for snow removal and salting for the remainder of winter at no cost. Seitz was brought to tears of joy as she read all the community support in her email inbox. Seitz says she feels protected and loved by the community, and that her mother would have been proud of everyone who reached out to her.

She says her doctor has also since called her to apologize for the delay in submitting her disability forms.

Seitz is still waiting for disability approval, which prevents her from being able to apply for any disability insurance. If you would like to help Seitz with a donation to help with her daily costs for medication and treatment, you can visit her GoFundMe page.


It just recently became difficult for Denise Seitz to walk because of Arthritis and Fibromyalgia.

For now, she is paying for all medication and phsyiotherapy out of pocket until she gets disability approved by the government -- which will take months.

Seitz says she has already reached out to community services and charity organizations for help with her sidewalk, but nobody has been able to help.

"I've contacted The Working Centre numerous times, leaving messages asking for snow clearing, which would be a cost to me, but they have not returned my phone call. I have also reached out to our MP and our MPP to expedite my disability applications."

Seitz says every dollar she has goes to medication and treatment.

As she continues to wait for disability approval without a job, she says the last thing she can afford right now is to pay for snow removal.

"I need phsyiotherapy and medication to recover, but I don't have any funds available for that. The LHIN does come over and help, but again, that is only a number of visits. So I will have four more visits for physiotherapy with them, and then I am on my own."

Seitz adds that the slippery sidewalks are not only dangerous for pedestrians, it also prevent her from being able to leave the house.

She says there are a few things the government can do to help people in her position.

"Perhaps the community services could be a little more lenient if we were able to approach them and show them that we have applied, we do have the documentation, the MRIs, what have you, to prove the disability approval is in the works. I know they're very backlogged, and I understand that."

She says the government should also consider fining doctors who take too long to fill out disability forms.

In her case, her doctor held on to the forms from October last year, and did not submit them until late December, adding more time to an already lengthy waiting period.

Director of The Working Centre, Joe Mancini, says they only offer snow removal services for people living in Kitchener.

"We don't do that work in Waterloo but we are doing it in the city of Kitchener," says Mancini. "The City of Kitchener is paying for that service as part of their plan to ensure all Kitchener sidewalks are cleared."

He says if someone is looking for snow removal help, they should contact the City of Kitchener.

"There was a link on The Working Centre's website and the City of Kitchener's website for people who needed to sign-up," says Mancini. "Now, the sign-ups only happen through the by-law officers."

Mancini says they are working to help clear snow for around 40 people living in Kitchener, and he has not heard of a similar service offered for those living in Waterloo.

Seitz has set up a GoFundMe page hoping to find donations and help with her snow clearing issues.



Aastha Shetty

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