We have to talk to anybody and everybody to get the Canada Disability Benefit
By Rabia Khedr
It’s important that we have conversations about disability poverty everywhere we can. I spend a lot of time talking to people. From individuals living the experience to people in positions of power, I make time to raise awareness about Disability Without Poverty and the need for the Canada Disability Benefit.
Brian Dijkema from CARDUS is one of those individuals that I spoke to earlier this year. He has co-authored a research report about work and barriers faced by people with disabilities. He wished to collaborate with us to co-host a Roundtable to discuss the findings of this report and discuss income for people with disabilities. We jointly invited a select group of people from across the country with and without disabilities including academics, researchers, non-profit leaders, government reps and advocates. This round table was held virtually on March 23, 2022 and I had the pleasure to co-host it with Brian.
Michelle, Andrea and Guillaume participated from DWP. Others included Krista Carr from Inclusion Canada, Michael Prince from Community Living BC and Sherri Torjman. Members of DWP highlighted the fact that all people with disabilities desire to work. Many face barriers to getting a job and getting the accommodations they need to work. Some cannot work due to nature of their disability. DWP emphasized the need for fast-tracking the Canada Disability Benefit. We hope our input shapes their ultimate perspective and galvanizes their support for the CDB. I participated in a follow-up podcast with Brian available coming soon.
The Canada Disability Benefit bill needs to be tabled and go through a first reading as soon as possible. We need you all to take action and ask your MP “Where’s the bill?”. The more people we have asking this question, the sooner the bill can be introduced and fast-tracked, getting money to those who need it most!
–Rabia Khedr is National Director of Disability Without Poverty