New Challenges

Ongoing barriers include:

Awareness: Ensuring that all people eligible for the RDSP become aware of the tool, and have the financial literacy to understand how it works and how they can use it

Getting funds to people with low income so they become eligible for more than just the Bond

Legislation: Changing provincial guardianship legislation so that individuals can have an RDSP without being declared incompetent

Welfare Reform: Extending the crack in dysfunctional welfare systems to eliminate all claw-backs on earned or un-earned income

Deficit: Shifting away from an income support framework to an asset accumulation one, now recognized around the world as the most effective anti-poverty strategy

Inflexible Rules: Adapting the RDSP to enable people with a disability whose condition is terminal to withdraw funds sooner

Eligibility: Making the RDSP available for folks with a genetic condition that will lead to a disability that has not yet manifested itself

The RDSP, as a savings tool, is self-sustaining, supported by the investments that Canadians themselves make. It is believed that the private monies that become available through the RDSP to support the financial security of people living with disabilities will encourage the federal government to maintain its support of the initiative. All Canadian banks now offer it as a product not only because they see it as an important social responsibility, but because they recognize there is a ‘disability market’ and the RDSP represents a doorway to that market.

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“We learned an important organizational lesson in PLAN’s early years. Our innovative programs would not have much impact unless they were recognized by society’s systems and institutions.  We needed our governments to recognize and adjust their regulations, policies and statutes to accommodate the solutions that we were developing.  Since then we learned that all social innovations require corresponding structural changes in order to be sustainable, long lasting, and to have widespread impact”. – Al Etmanski, Safe and Secure

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