Overview of the Canada Disability Benefit – Supporting Canadians with disabilities

On June 22, 2023, the Canada Disability Benefit Act received Royal Assent. This benefit will help reduce poverty among working-age Canadians with disabilities.

Working-age Canadians with disabilities are twice as likely to live in poverty as working-age people without disabilities and the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic has made things even worse. That is why the Government of Canada is trying to address the financial hardships and other barriers faced by persons with disabilities. The aim is to ensure a Canada that is inclusive for all Canadians, including persons with disabilities.

The Canada Disability Benefit is a key commitment and is the cornerstone of Canada’s Disability Inclusion Action Plan (DIAP) – a Plan that was promised in the 2020 Speech from the Throne. The DIAP is a blueprint for change to make Canada more inclusive for persons with disabilities. It is based on the understanding that disability inclusion benefits everyone. The DIAP will evolve over time – the aim is to take action across the Government of Canada and make targeted investments to create lasting change.

Engagement process for the Canada Disability Benefit Regulations

Based on engagement, the Government of Canada will develop regulations under the Canada Disability Benefit Act. These regulations will include details such as the benefit amount and eligibility criteria.

Building on engagement activities that took place in 2021 and 2022, in summer 2023 the Government launched a 2-phase engagement process to inform the development of the regulations and the implementation of the benefit.

The first phase of the engagement process, in fall 2023 and winter 2024, included:

  • an information session with disability stakeholders to establish a common understanding of the regulatory process, that was held on August 23, 2023
  • an online engagement tool to gather input from all Canadians that was open from November 15, 2023 to January 4, 2024 (now closed)
  • roundtables and bilateral meetings to bring together the views of persons with disabilities, stakeholder organizations and technical experts on key areas under the regulations

The second phase of the engagement process will begin with the publishing of proposed regulations in Part I of the Canada Gazette. Canadians will be able to review and provide comments on the proposed regulations. The Government will analyze the comments received and may make changes to the regulations in response to the feedback received before finalizing them. The final regulations will then be published in Part II of the Canada Gazette.

If you would like to be informed about the next engagement opportunity to inform the Canada Disability Benefit regulations, you can choose to be part of our email distribution list. If you wish to join this list, click the ‘subscribe’ button to add your email address.

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