Dear Sir /Madam,
An example of tragedy and WCB -Governments Prov./ Fed. are guilty of:
Eight-year battle with province ends in suicide
Last Tuesday, injured trucker Bhupinder Singh Kang told a WorkSafeBC meeting
that he spent his days dreaming he was in a big hall "watching the sunset,
and waiting, waiting, waiting for death."
Hours later, he was found dead on the kitchen floor of his Abbotsford home,
an apparent suicide.
His family and lawyer Craig Paterson believe the distraught 39-year-old took
his own life because of his desperation over an eight-year battle with
WorkSafeBC -- formerly the Workers' Compensation Board -- that left him
depressed and despondent.
And Paterson said a series of letters Kang received from different board
officials within two weeks of his death gave the Indian immigrant convoluted
and conflicting information about his case, which worsened his mental state.
"The correspondence confused him and devastated him," Paterson said. "Two of
the three letters were not even copied to me."
And he said the Feb. 7 meeting, which was to conduct a vocational assessment
of Kang, had the disabled worker so stressed that he urinated in his pants
on the drive there.
Paterson wants a coroner's inquest to look at how WorkSafe B.C. deals with
clients like his who are severely depressed over their plight. He has
contacted chief coroner Terry Smith about Kang's case.
The Vancouver lawyer said he has had four similar cases over the years in
which a client has committed suicide out of desperation.
"They are twisting people into pretzels," he said. "A coroners' inquiry
should look at what could be done differently in these situations."
According to WorkSafe, 18 claims have been paid for suicides from 1996
through 2005, including three last year and five in 2001.
"These are claims accepted where it has been determined that a worker took
his or her own life due to pain or other complications arising from a
previous work-related injury," said board media officer Donna Freeman.
Chris Hartmann, WorkSafe regional director for the Fraser region, looked at
Kang's file Thursday after The Vancouver Sun requested an interview.
He said a review is underway to see if anything could have been done
differently in handling Kang's case.
"There is never something like this that happens where we don't sit back
after the fact and say: `Is there something else we could have done to
prevent this kind of event from happening?'" Hartmann said.
Kang's ordeal began in 1998 when he was a co-driver of a commercial truck
travelling through Arizona. He was asleep in the rig when the other driver
went off the road.
Kang, then a 32-year-old refugee who had been in Canada just four years,
ended up with multiple fractures of his C-1 vertebrae and an injured right
He got workers' compensation until August 2000, when he was cut off benefits
Paterson said Kang, who was unmarried, was dependent on the rest of his
family for support afterwards. He shared a house with his younger brother
Jaspal, sister-in-law Simerjit, their two children and his mother Mohinder
"He went into a total depression," Paterson said. "He attempted suicide
Paterson began advocating on behalf of Kang in 2003. The board eventually
accepted Kang's claim, agreeing he suffered from post-concussion syndrome,
major depressive disorder and chronic pain disorder. However, benefits did
There was a dispute over whether Kang was willing to participate fully in
the programs prescribed by board specialists.
Hartmann said that last August, Paterson indicated "the worker would like to
receive some support and some treatment so psychological assessment was then
set up in the fall of 2005."
That assessment confirmed that Kang would likely not improve with treatment,
but needed ongoing medical support to be stable.
"In November and December there was a brief period of surveillance that was
undertaken by the board of Mr. Kang," he said. "The surveillance evidence
didn't show that he was able to do anything more than what was being stated
He other words, Kang had told the board the truth about his capabilities,
Paterson said Friday that Kang had believed he was being spied on and others
thought he was becoming paranoid because of his increasingly fragile mental
"So he was right," Paterson said when told the board confirmed it had been
The surveillance was followed by the three letters in January, each
outlining a different process underway.
The lawyer wrote to the board on Feb. 2 -- five days before Kang's death --
and called the situation "Kafkaesque."
"Three WCB employees contact him, all at once; one tells him his benefits
have ended, another one [who never met him and does not ask to meet him]
tells him he might get a pension at a vague time in the future and a third
one wants to do a "vocational assessment" almost eight years after his
injury!" Paterson wrote.
Hartmann said the letters should have all gone to Paterson and not directly
to Kang under the circumstances.
"I think the right thing to do would have been to contact the worker through
his representative," Hartmann said. "I think it was just an oversight on
behalf of one or two of the officers."
He said while everyone who attended Tuesday's meeting recognized Kang's
fragile state, no one imagined he was in such dire straits.
"It is not unusual for people to be anxious sometimes, to be in those
meetings. I don't think anyone in that meeting felt that it got to the point
where we needed to end the interview or take him to the hospital," Hartmann
said. "Certainly we will be looking at - were there other things, was there
anything that we could have picked up on in that meeting."
Paterson was so alarmed at Kang's demeanour in the room that he summarized
his concerns in a letter to the board that he sent off that same afternoon,
before he knew Kang was dead.
"This man is totally unemployable in even the most sedentary occupation,
sadly, and the sooner the WCB realizes it and provides a 100 per
cent...pension, the better," Paterson wrote.
Hartmann said the board worker who was in the meeting was devastated when
she learned of Kang's death.
"She was in tears the rest of the day. She went home early and didn't come
to work the next day," he said.
Kang's brother Jaspal, who is also a trucker, wants answers for his family.
"There should be some investigation into how he was treated," he said,
starting to cry. "We don't want this to happen to anyone else."
Paterson is now asking for back benefits to be paid to Kang's family,
funeral expenses, legal fees and "a full, sincere and frank apology."
"They treated this guy like a cheat and a liar for the whole eight years,"
Hartmann said the requests are being considered.
"We'll take a look at everything Craig has asked for and we will make a
decision on how to respond," he said.
Asked if he thought the board's procedures could have made Kang's emotional
state worse, Hartmann said: "I guess that is an opinion. I don't know how to
respond to that."
THIS IS HORRIBLE AND VERY COMMON.
WSiB /WCB are terrorists!
PROVINCIAL/FEDERAL GOVERNMENTS ARE FASCISTS!!
IT IS A BUSINESS TRANSACTION FOR THEM (WSiB / WCB) WHILE INJURED WORKER
IF INJURED WORKER IS ALIVE, THEN THEY HAVE TO PAY PENSION TROUGH ENTIRE LIFE
OF THE WORKER.
IF WORKER IS DEAD, THEN ONLY BACK BENEFITS ARE DUE,
HOW MANY MORE?????????????
Apotex's /WSiB's- GOVERNMENT's OF ONTARIO VICTIM