Desperate couple in need of housing

A couple who left everything behind to start a new life in Fort Frances is struggling to survive here.
Robert Card, 60, from London, Ont., and his wife, De De, 58, from Yankton, S.D., have been staying at a local hotel since Monday, trying to sort out their living arrangements.
Things have not been going as planned.
The two met more than a year ago on the Internet, and Card had been making the trip from London to Yankton about once a month to visit his bride-to-be.
In June, he packed up all his belongings and went to South Dakota, where the couple married in July.
When he went to the U.S. to get married, Card only intended to stay for a short while, then he and his wife planned to move to Northwestern Ontario.
“We had made this decision a long time ago,” he noted.
There were several reasons the couple decided to settle down here.
For one, Card is familiar with the area. He worked as a plumber before he suffered a stroke in 1989, and had come up to this region to work many times.
As well, it’s closer to South Dakota, where his wife still has family, than London.
Card needs to stay in Canada because he has no health coverage in the U.S. He lives on payments from the Ontario Disability Support Program because of the stroke.
The visit to South Dakota was meant to be brief, but his wife’s brother died while they were there and so the couple decided to extend their stay.
Card notified the Ministry of Community, Family and Children’s Services that he would be out of the country for a couple of months.
They promptly cancelled his disability payments, but said he would be reinstated immediately upon his return to Ontario, he noted.
But when the newlyweds arrived here Monday, they found that was not the case.
“I have to have an address to get the [payments] back,” Card explained. But even with an address, he said the government won’t send him any money until the end of the month.
“We got a lot of promises, and we’ve had a lot of doors slammed in our face,” his wife said.
The couple expressed some frustration with the false information they were given by a government official who told them the transition from the U.S. to Canada would be simple.
“She was not totally equipped to give me the answers I needed,” Mrs. Card said of the person she spoke to on the phone.
“Had they told us this was going to go on, I would have stayed in South Dakota and let Bob [Card] come up and get everything arranged,” she added.
Unfortunately, the couple is quickly running out of money because they’ve spent more time than they anticipated in the hotel— and they are no closer to finding a place to live.
“That’s our biggest obstacle right now,” she said.
“We’ve called all the listings in the paper,” Card added. “Half don’t answer the phone and half are no longer available.
“We need housing, and we need some way to get back to South Dakota to get our stuff back here,” he continued.
The couple had loaded up what they could into their car, with the rest waiting in her trailer in the U.S. She has to have everything moved out by Sept. 27.
“We’re between a rock and a hard spot,” she said. “We’re just playing this hour by hour at this point.”^The couple also is trying to get Mrs. Card, a retired nurse practitioner, resident status. She currently is in the country on a six-month visitor’s visa.
They have been told it will cost about $550 to get resident status— money they just don’t have. “I really need to be legalized or I’m going to be bounced out on my ear,” she stressed.
In addition, both are on medication.
She has diabetes, and both have arthritis.
“We still have about eight or 10 days of medication,” she said.
“I’m holding on OK. I’m really worried about him more than me.
It’s the emotional upset,” added Mrs. Card.
How the couple fares will depend on how quickly they can find a place to live here.