Disability Income Support Program

Background | What We Know | News and Updates

What We Know

The Service Journey

The department has developed a service delivery model for the new disability income support program, which is shown and described in detail below.

Flow Chart - Disability Income Support Program

Applying to the Program

The new program will be separate from Employment and Income Assistance.  We want to make sure the application process is accessible and as simple as possible:

  • We are creating a single application form that will be used for all income support programs – including the new program and Employment and Income Assistance.
  • A single application form will connect people to the right program, without having them decide which form to fill out, or filling out more than one form.
  • We plan to accept applications by phone, mail, online, or in-person at any regional social services office.

Testing for Eligibility

The eligibility assessment will have two parts:

  • A review of the household finances, similar to how they are reviewed in Employment and Income Assistance.  If someone is found to be are financially eligible, they will be invited to participate in a disability impact assessment.
  • The disability impact assessment will include a form to be complete by a medical professional, as well as an assessment of how the person’s disability impacts their daily life.

Currently, we are looking consultant from the community to develop the disability assessment for the new program.  This consultant will work collaboratively with community stakeholders to create an assessment process that is fair, equitable, and accessible.

Prescribed Classes

Some groups of people who are financially eligible for the program will not have to participate in a disability assessment, because they have already had other assessments performed that confirm their eligibility.  These groups will be called “prescribed classes” in the Disability Support Act Regulation.

Prescribed classes will include:

  • People who receive services from Community Living disABILITY Services (CLDS).
  • People who live in personal care homes.
  • People who are receiving the Canada Pension Plan (CPP) Disability benefit.

    Service Delivery and Community Navigation

    In community consultations, we heard that some people want a more pension-like program without having to check in regularly.  We also heard that some people wanted more intensive case management and service navigation.  To meet these diverse needs, we are developing a service delivery model that has two parts.

    • Financial benefits will be delivered by a central office.
      • Compared to EIA, the new program will have fewer reporting requirements.
      • Community navigation supports will be available as an option for anyone who wants them.
        • Community navigators will provide person-centred supports tailored to the needs of persons with disabilities. 
        • Community navigation can include assistance with referrals or connections to other programs, supports, and benefits; assistance with building support networks; and helping clients increase their community participation and inclusion.

        When The New Program Will Be Ready?

        We are planning to open the new program in two distinct phases.

        In Winter 2022, the program will open to current EIA Disability clients in prescribed classes.

        • These people will be invited to move to the new program.

        • These people may need to sign a new consent form, but will not need to provide any financial or medical information.

        In Spring 2023:

        • Other current EIA Disability clients can apply to the new program.

          • These people will need to provide new medical information and attend a disability assessment to find out if they are eligible, as the criteria for the new program is different than EIA Disability. 

          • The new program will launch to the public and anyone can apply. These people will submit an application, have their finances reviewed, and then participate in the disability assessment process.