Article content continued
She testified she suffered from alcohol and substance abuse and previously tried to take her own life. Emotional trauma led her to work in the sex trade because she was “desperate for money,” but the SFAA program helped her turn her life around.
Without the financial help she expected to receive until she turned 24, A.C. said she feared having to return to sex work to afford basic needs.
Alberta’s top court stated that while A.C. stood to lose supports such as access to a social worker, equivalent or greater financial help would still be available to her through other transition programs.
“In summary, the chambers judge failed to put a number of important factors on the scale, and failed to give adequate weight to the public interest in weighing the balance of convenience,” it stated.
“Put simply, the relative strength of (A.C’s) case, considered in combination with the nature and extent of potential harm, does not outweigh the public interest in the enforcement of legislation in this case.”
A.C. said she was disappointed by the ruling.
“It was a contract that was made, as soon as I turned 18, that I would have this support until I was 24 years old,” she said Wednesday. “I basically aligned my life up until this time that I turned 24 and where I go from there and what I do. It’s something that you can’t just take back.”
A.C. said she feared losing her social worker, who has helped guide her for more than a decade.
“It is something that I still worry about because I’m not really comfortable yet with the idea of not having that support there anymore,” she said.