I. POLICY STATEMENT:
A. The FedsForFreedom Liberty Hardship Fund (the “Fund”) is established to provide financial support to eligible FedsForFreedom Liberty Members who are experiencing a temporary financial hardship due to a qualifying life event.
II. POLICY PRINCIPLES & FUND ADMINISTRATION:
A. The Fund shall be funded by voluntary charitable donations provided by members and any entities or individuals who wish to contribute to it. Along with a 10% of the Fund comes from the initial Membership fees and fundraising channels. As the Fund is supported by donations, there is no guarantee that funds will be available for distribution at any given time.
B. The need for funding must be the result of a qualifying life event as defined in the policy. The maximum award amount is $300 per event, subject to availability of funds and extent of need. The distribution of funds will not take effect until the fund balance reaches a total of $3000. This is to ensure adequate funds for distribution. The Fund must always maintain a balance of not less than $1000 . A member may receive no more than one award per fiscal year, and no more than $1500 during their lifetime.
C. Financial assistance shall be limited to one recipient per household per qualifying life event. Applicants to the Fund must have a documented event of emergency situation that has caused financial hardship. The application is reviewed by the Fund Review Committee.
D. All financial assistance shall be distributed in compliance with FedsForFreedom nondiscrimination policy. Liberty Members may apply to the Fund. Should a Liberty Member be rendered incapable of submitting their own application, an immediate family member can apply of their behalf. The applicant must not have any disciplinary actions that resulted from violating FedsForFreedom’s Terms and Condition’s Agreement and Procedures within the past twelve (12) months. If a member is being investigated for potential violations, the application will be placed “on hold” pending the final decision. If cleared, the member will be eligible for consideration for financial assistance from the Fund.
DONATING TO THE FUND:
Any person or entity is eligible to donate to the Fund. Donations cannot be earmarked for a specific individual.
APPLYING TO THE FUND:
A. Applications must be completed and submitted to the https://www.fedsforfreedom.ca/membership-portal/the-hardship-fund/. Financial records, billing statements, and/or estimates must be submitted as supporting documentation with the application. The Executive Director of FedsForFreedom shall prepare applications for the Fund Review Committee, omitting any identifying information to preserve anonymity of the applicant.
B. The Executive Director of FedsForFreedom communicates the Committee’s decision to the applicant and, if appropriate, submits paperwork according to the established procedure, and follows up to ensure payment has been processed and received.
C. Approval is subject to extent of need; satisfactory completion of the application; and availability of funds. All decisions of the Fund Review Committee are final. There will be no appeals process. Financial Assistance applications will be reviewed anonymously and the Fund Review Committee members will not be given the individual name associated with any application. Information provided by applicants will be treated as confidential and shared only with individuals directly involved in fund administration, processing and tax reporting.
A. Catastrophic community events such as mass destruction due to acts of God (weather, earthquake, and other natural unavoidable events) or other similar occurrences are not qualifying events for which financial assistance from the Fund will be made.
B. Common life occurrences such as routine car and home maintenance, monthly bills, animal care, and living beyond one’s means are not qualifying events for which financial assistance from the Fund can be provided. The Fund is not designed to replace all losses or to reimburse the cost of nonessential, luxury or decorative items or services.
C.Financial hardships caused by garnishments, payday/title loans, and student loans do not qualify a member for assistance.
FUND REVIEW COMMITTEE:
The Fund Review Committee shall consist of three (3)appointed representatives from each of the following groups:
- PSAC Union (1)
- PIPSC Union (1)
- Non-Unionized (1)
Committee members will serve three-year staggered terms, unless otherwise specified. Until volunteers are appointed to their positions the executive committee will support reviewing the applications.
Committee appointments will become effective January 1 and expire on December 31.
III. POLICY PROCEDURES:
A. The Executive Director will present applications for the Fund Review Committee, omitting any identifying information to preserve anonymity. The Fund Review Committee has a target application review time of 72 hours and a decision will be made on the application within 7 business days, barring any unforeseen circumstances.
B. The Executive Director communicates the committee’s decision to the applicant. If approved, the Executive Director submits paperwork to the authorized personnel to issue payment, and follows up to ensure payment has been processed and received.
C. FedsForFreedom Fund Review Committee will administer the review of the applications, including application qualification, verification of eligibility of member or other qualified individuals, but will not conduct any review of application for the purposes of distribution. Review and approval of requested funds is the sole responsibility of the Fund Review Committee, all information & documents collected will remain confidential to FedsForFreedom and will be retained for 7 years for tax purposes. FedsForFreedom Executive Director will facilitate the distribution of funds.
D. Approval is subject to the extent of need, satisfactory completion of the application and availability of funds. All decisions of the Fund Review Committee are final. There will be no appeals process.
E. Policies will be reviewed on an annual basis and revised as needed by the Executives Committee. No alteration, amendment or adjustment to the policy shall be permitted without the expressed permission of the Executive Committee.
IV. EFFECTIVE DATE January 1, 2023
V. APPLICABILITY Full-time Liberty Members or an immediate family member of an eligible member who is applying on the members behalf.
VI. POLICY MANAGEMENT FedsForFreedom Executive Director in collaboration with the Executive Committee & Fund Review Committee.
A. Qualifying Event – A Qualifying Event is defined as extreme misfortune experienced by the employee or the employee’s immediate family member for reasons beyond his or her control that prevents the employee from meeting basic living expenses. Examples of such events include, but are not limited to the following:
(1) death of a close family relation;
(2) unusual recently uninsured medical expenses caused by severe illness or accident;
(3) unusual uninsured expenses for the care of a family member;
(4) a diagnosed medical condition of the member or a close family relation that prohibits the member from working; or
(5) losses to primary residence (rental properties where the lessor is the applicant are excluded) caused by fire, crime, flood or other disasters except as described in Exclusions.
B. Immediate Family Member – A Family Member includes a Child, Dependent, Spouse, Common Law Partner, Sponsored Adult/Child Dependent, or Parent.
C. Child – A Child is defined as a biological or adopted child, foster child, step-child, legal ward or child for whom a person has legal custody.
D. Dependent – An individual meeting the criteria used by the Canadian Revenue Agency in defining “dependent” will be considered a dependent for purposes of the policy.
E. Spouse – A husband or wife as recognized by Canada.
F. Common Law Partner – a common-law partnership means that a couple have lived together for at least one year in a conjugal relationship.
G. Sponsored Adult/Child Dependent – For purposes of this policy, documentation of 12 or more continuous months of shared residency with the Sponsored Adult/Child Dependent and signed affidavit verifying the individual meets the eligibility requirement for a Sponsored Adult/Child Dependent and birth certificate of Sponsored Adult/Child Dependent.
H. Parent – A parent, step-parent or in-law.
A. Exclusions are expressly stated above in policy principles.
A. FedsForFreedom Executive Director, Executive Committee and FedsForFreedom Fund Review Committee.
A. Necessary taxes, whether municipal, provincial, or federal are not contemplated under the Hardship Fund. All funds paid will be up to the individual to report and pay the appropriate tax. FedsForFreedom may be required to produce a tax form in relation to your payments and the Society’s tax fillings, we are required to keep these records for a period of 7 or more years depending on the Tax limitations.