Section 7 - Persons with Disabilities

Policies

The Vulnerable Persons Act (PDF 162 KB)

Family Contribution for Persons with Disabilities (PDF 108 KB)

Treatment of the federal Registered Disability Savings Program (PDF 212 KB)

Disability Exemption of $100,000 (PDF 176 KB)

Form

Annual Report of Trust Activity (PDF 17 KB)

 

7.1.1 Definition and Legislative Authority

For the purpose of The Manitoba Assistance Act and Regulation, the term "disabled" refers to those persons who, by reason of a physical or mental illness, incapacity or disorder that is likely to continue for more than 90 days, are unable to earn sufficient income to provide the basic necessities for themselves and their dependants. 
 
Section 5(1)(a) of The Manitoba Assistance Act provides authority for granting income assistance to persons with disabilities who reside in Manitoba and are in need, in accordance with the Regulation.
 

7.1.2 Income Assistance for Persons with Disabilities (IAPD)

Schedule A, section 8(f) of the Regulation provides participants enrolled in the persons with disabilities category, who are not residing in a hospital, with additional monthly assistance.
 
Households enrolled under other categories (excluding 5(1)(f) cases) may receive the IAPD if they are transferred to the persons with disabilities category as a result of meeting the EIA disability assessment criteria.
 
Community Living disABILITY Services (CLDS) participants, persons eligible for Canada Pension Plan-Disability (CPP-D), or persons whose affairs are being administered by the Public Guardian and Trustee are automatically eligible for enrolment in the EIA disability case category where EIA financial eligibility is established. The Director or designate may sign off on these cases where confirmation of involvement with these programs is produced.
 
See sections 18.2.1 and 21.4.1 on "Income Assistance for Persons with Disabilities".
 

7.1.3 Persons Over 55 Lacking in Employment Capabilities

Where persons 55 years or older are no longer eligible as a single parent or as the dependant of an eligible spouse, they may be enrolled in the persons with disabilities category if the EIA assessment criteria are met. Persons who do not meet the criteria may be enrolled as general assistance participants.
 

7.1.4 Assistance During Pregnancy

Single parent expectant mothers should be enrolled under the persons with disabilities category, until the birth of their child, where they:
  • are 18 years of age or older;
  • are in their first or second trimester;
  • have no dependent children; and
  • medical evidence verifies their inability to work.
 
Expectant mothers in their seventh, eighth or ninth month of pregnancy who have no medical reason for being enrolled in the persons with disabilities category should be enrolled as a single parent. (See section 8.3.1 entitled "Assistance During Pregnancy").
 
When the participant has been enrolled under the persons with disabilities category, the file should be transferred to the single parent category in the month the child is born, unless the disability continues. A new EIA Disability Assessment Report must be completed following the birth of the child to maintain enrolment in the persons with disabilities category.
 

7.1.5 EIA Disability Assessment Procedure

Policy

 

Form

 
The EIA Disability Assessment Panel may recommend enrolment as a person with a disability to the director or designate, based on medical evidence provided by a physician or a nurse practitioner on behalf of the applicant.
 
The medical evidence provided must include the EIA Disability Assessment Report, which must be completed by a physician or nurse practitioner. Where this is not possible, the Medical Officer of Health for the region may complete the report. When eligibility is being assessed on the basis of a mental health disability, a psychologist may complete the Disability Assessment Report or provide an existing report in lieu of the EIA Disability Assessment Report. EIA staff may arrange for the completion of these forms for those applicants who are unable to make these arrangements on their own.
 
Community Living disABILITY Services (formerly SLP) or the Employability Assistance for People with Disabilities Program (formerly marketAbilities) staff or other health practitioners such as social workers, registered nurses or approved community health workers are authorized to confirm mental disability as long as it is supported by the following hardcopy documentation:
  • name of the physician/psychologist;
  • date of the exam; and
  • medical diagnosis.
 
Where participants claim medical conditions that do not result in immediate enrolment in the persons with disabilities category but are subsequently approved by the EIA Disability Assessment Panel, disability rates are not paid retroactively.
 

Responsibilities of the EIA office

It is the responsibility of EIA office staff to explain to applicants the eligibility requirements described in section 5(1)(a) of The Manitoba Assistance Act and to provide them with the following letters and forms: To the Applicant, To the Physician, Disability Assessment Report, Statement of Account, Self-Report, and a copy of the participant’s consent to the disclosure of their personal health information (last page of the signed EIA application).
 
While the completion Self-Report form is voluntary, EIA staff should encourage its completion in supporting participant applications for the persons with disabilities category.
 

Responsibilities of the Applicant

Under section 3 of the Regulation, applicants are required to provide information and medical evidence in support of their application for assistance under the disability category. The provision of such evidence can be waived only with the written consent of the Director or designate.
 
Applicants are responsible for making arrangements for the completion of the required EIA Disability Assessment Report and the physician's billing form, Statement of Account. For applicants with mental health disabilities, the EIA Program may accept a Disability Assessment Report from a psychologist. The Program will provide up to $45 as the remuneration to complete the EIA Disability Assessment Report; existing reports, additional assessment and therapy fees are not covered.
 
Applicants may also choose to include their own information about their disability or medical condition by completing the self-report and returning it to their EIA worker. 
 

7.1.6 EIA Disability Assessment Panel

Responsibilities of the Panel

  1. To assess an applicant's capacity to earn sufficient income to support himself or herself, and, to assess potential treatment and/or rehabilitation plans.
  2. To recommend to the director or designate a determination of the length of time required for the applicant to regain the capacity for employment and appropriate treatment and/or rehabilitation plans to restore an applicant's capacity for self-support, if applicable.

Composition of the Panel

The EIA Assessment Panel is composed of the following personnel:
  1. The EIA director or designate.
  2. The Regional Medical Officer of Health (or a private physician if the Regional Medical Officer of Health is not able to serve or if there is no Medical Officer of Health in the area).
  3. A regional representative from Personal Services (e.g., Employability Assistance for People with Disabilities Program (formerly marketAbilities), Employment Services, Community Living Services, Mental Health Services) may also be in attendance.
NOTE: Where a private physician with an active medical practice is serving on an EIA Disability Assessment Panel, that physician shall not assess the eligibility of applicants for whom that physician has provided the assessment. In such circumstances, the applicant is assessed by another EIA Disability Assessment Panel physician.
 
The EIA Disability Assessment Panel assesses each application submitted on the basis of disability. The applicant's EIA worker presents the case and acts as a resource to the Panel. The director or designate decides if the case is eligible, taking into consideration the Panel's recommendation.
 
Representation by Personal Services is encouraged, but not mandatory, in cases determined to be inappropriate for these services. The director or designate decides which cases are to be referred to Personal Services based on established referral criteria (see section 7.1.7 for the Employability Assistance for People with Disabilities Program). Personal Services then assesses these referrals to determine which cases are appropriate for Personal Services' representation.
 

Period of Eligibility and Reassessment

The EIA Disability Assessment Panel may recommend a period of eligibility not exceeding two years. Upon reassessment, and at the discretion of the director or designate, the period of eligibility may exceed two years provided that a definite time period is indicated.
 
The Director or designate may waive the assessment for the first re-assessment in cases where no change is anticipated (for example, persons with severe mental disabilities). This requirement may be waived for subsequent reviews and replaced by a progress report by an appropriate agency if the Director or designate is of the opinion that the participant's medical condition is not likely to change considerably in the near future.
 
The decision of the Director or designate regarding the period of eligibility for both the initial application and subsequent reviews should be conveyed to the participant in writing, through the use of the standard form letter. If approved, the date of eligibility as a person with a disability is effective from the date that the complete Disability Assessment Report (or all of the required information) is received by the EIA office.
 
Furthermore, so that participants with disabilities are not discouraged from attempting employment, those who leave the program because of employment and then return, will no longer be required to have their eligibility re-assessed at the point of intake providing their previously-determined eligibility under section 5(1)(a) of The Manitoba Assistance Act has not expired. Conversely, a review will be necessary if a participant has returned to the program after an employment period and the original review date is found to be overdue.
 

7.1.7 Employability Assistance for People with Disabilities Program (EAPD)

Policy

Form

 
Employability Assistance for People with Disabilities (formerly marketAbilities) provides appropriate vocational rehabilitation services for adults with a mental, physical, psychiatric, vision, hearing or learning disability in order to enhance their independence and ability to contribute socially and economically through employment in the competitive labour force. EAPD assists eligible persons with disabilities to prepare for, attain and maintain employment through the provision of vocational assessments, counselling, case management, vocational planning, job placement, training, developmental activities and support services.
 
 
The Employability Assistance for People with Disabilities Individualized Training Fund may be accessed for disability related supports such as special equipment and adaptive devices, tutoring, medical and psychological assessments, sign language interpreting, wage subsidies, educational support and transportation. For other information related to the Canada Access Grants for Persons with Disabilities see policy section 6.11.16.
 
EAPD is delivered by Vocational Counsellors in Manitoba Family Services and Consumer Affairs regional offices, Regional Health Authorities and three designated agencies that receive provincial funding to deliver Employability Assistance for People with Disabilities Program services to specific disability groups. The three designated agencies are:
  • Canadian National Institute for the Blind-MB Division (CNIB) – provides vocational assessment, training, counselling, job placement services and adjustment training programs for daily living for participants with visual disabilities;
  • Canadian Paraplegic Association (Manitoba) Inc. (CPA) – provides counselling, assessment, vocational training and job placement services to participants with paraplegia and quadriplegia; and
  • Society for Manitobans with Disabilities Inc. (SMD) – provides assessment, counselling, vocational training and job placement services to individuals with physical and hearing disabilities (excluding persons with visual disabilities or spinal cord injuries).
 

Referral Criteria

To be eligible to receive EAPD services, the applicant must meet the following eligibility conditions:
  • Living with a mental, physical, psychiatric, vision, hearing or learning disability;
  • Be a Canadian citizen or person legally entitled to remain and work in Canada on a permanent basis;
  • Be a resident of Manitoba;
  • Be 16 years of age or older; and
  • Show a willingness to prepare for, obtain and maintain employment.
 
Applications for services must include proof of a qualifying disability that has been diagnosed or assessed by an appropriate professional. Other factors that should be considered are: medical prognosis, availability of employment opportunities, and the participant's interests, aptitudes, abilities and willingness to participate. When the vocational potential of a participant is in doubt, the case should be referred to EAPD for assessment.
 

Method of Referral

Persons with a physical, vision or hearing disability should be referred directly to the appropriate designated agency. All other referrals should be directed to Manitoba Family Services regional offices.
 

Referral Information

EIA staff should include the following information with their referral to EAPD:
  1. The length of time the participant has been in receipt of assistance.
  2. Whether the participant has been referred to EAPD before. If there was a previous referral, what were the results? How have circumstances changed to justify a new referral?
  3. Any pertinent information which would assist in determining the participant's eligibility for EAPD (such as, medical reports, psychological tests and other workers' assessments).

7.1.8 School Supplies and Transportation Costs for Persons with Disabilities Attending High School

Persons with disabilities who are applicants for income assistance under section 5(1)(a) of The Manitoba Assistance Act, may continue to attend high school until age 21. In some instances, schools may request transportation costs from Employment and Income Assistance for the participant; however, the responsibility to pay for these transportation costs rests with the school division. School supplies, if requested, may be issued as special needs on an annual basis in accordance to the amount issued for dependent children of families on income assistance attending high school. For more information on allowable items under special needs, please see section 21.1.3. 
 

7.1.9 Financial Supports for Participants with Disabilities attending Volunteerism Opportunities

 

Forms

Volunteer Log Sheet (PDF 233 KB)
Volunteer Plan (PDF 186 KB)
 
Persons with disabilities who are applicants for income assistance under section 5(1)(a) of The Manitoba Assistance Act, and who are engaged in approved volunteer opportunities with not-for-profit agencies in their communities, may be considered for financial supports as allowed under section 9 of Schedule A of the Regulation to help with the costs of volunteering.
 
 
Persons with disabilities are eligible for additional financial supports for volunteerism where they produce satisfactory verification and ongoing attendance at an approved volunteer placement site of at least four times per month. Participants who are volunteering between four and seven times per month are eligible for $50.00 per month. Participants volunteering eight or more times per month are eligible to receive $100.00.
 
Financial supports for volunteerism activities will not be provided to participants who are already engaged in an approved employment enhancement measure, or who are participants of a government-funded or Regional Health Authority-funded agency mandated to support the engagement or employment of persons with disabilities in their communities.
 
Participants must be informed at the time of approval for these financial supports that they are obliged to advise EIA immediately if they leave their volunteer placement or are unable to maintain the minimum attendance requirements. Failure to do so may result in an overpayment being assessed.