shape the cdb
Disability Without Poverty’s Process to Bring the Perspectives of People with Disabilities to Government
In September 2020, the Government said that they would make a new benefit called the Canada Disability Benefit (CDB). The CDB would go to disabled people who live in poverty.
The statistics about disabled people living in poverty are awful:
- At least 1.4 million disabled people in Canada live in poverty.
2 in 10 people in Canada are disabled.
- But 4 in 10 of the people who live in poverty are disabled.
- Provincial disability assistance payments are below the poverty line.
- When Canadians were asked, 89% said that disabled people should not live in poverty.
At Disability Without Poverty, we believe creating the benefit must:
- Include disabled people in all aspects of the design.
- Get the money into the hands of disabled people as quickly as possible.
- We believe the best way to get the information to the Government is to ask disabled people ourselves.
We are starting a new project that will:
- Engage with a lot of disabled people in Canada to hear their thoughts.
- Write a report for the Government that tells them what people with disabilities think, and share the recommendations they have for the regulations, policies and procedures of the Canada Disability Benefit.
- Create a community of disabled people in Canada to keep talking about poverty and the ways we can work together to eliminate it for disabled people in Canada.
We want to answer questions on regulations, policies and procedures.
In other words, we will be looking to get the perspectives of disabled people on:
- Regulations 🡢 The rules and/or law that will define the standards and requirements of the CDB.
- Policies 🡢 The high level guidelines that help decision-making and action related to the CDB.
- Procedures 🡢 The details of how the CDB would be carried out in terms of access, eligibility and content.
What we are going to do
There are going to be three separate parts:
Hear from 5000 disabled people
- We are going to ask for the views of 5000 disabled people using an online tool.
- This will be available online, with options for access using ASL and LSQ, and any other methods needed so that people can participate.
- It will ask about the values and issues that disabled people care about.
Peer to peer action week
- 100 disabled people will interview a few people each from their community of people with disabilities, for 30 to 60 minutes. This will mean we hear from almost 400 people!
- We will be able to hear more detailed thoughts from people when we talk to them, one to one, friend to friend.
- We will provide training to help those who are doing the interviews, and a small honorarium to everyone who takes part.
Back to the 5000
We are going to take the results from Part 1 and Part 2 back to the 5000 people, and ask questions like:
- Did we get it right?
- Was there anything we missed?
In September 2020, the Government of Canada committed to creating a new benefit – the Canada Disability Benefit (CDB). The promise of lifting disabled people out of poverty in Canada started to become a possibility, with a benefit that would significantly reduce disability poverty.
Currently, there are at least 1.4 million disabled people living in poverty in Canada. They represent 41% of the people who live in poverty, which is a disproportionate amount, as 22% of the population of Canada are disabled people. The support for lifting disabled people out of poverty is strong, as 89% of Canadians agree that this is the right thing to do.
All too easily, the word benefit becomes synonymous with money – but that’s a small part of the story here. Instead, a benefit that takes a human rights perspective, that sees poverty reduction as a strategy that delivers dignity, autonomy, inclusivity, and independence to disabled people, offers genuine, substantive meaningful change to disabled people living in poverty.
A well designed benefit can do so much for the lives of disabled people. It can reduce poverty so that people with disabilities can live dignified lives of independence, where they can be free to achieve their potential.
At Disability Without Poverty, we believe the development of the benefit MUST:
- Include disabled people in all aspects of the design of the benefit.
- Balance thorough examination of the situation with a speedy response to get the money into the hands of disabled people as quickly as possible.
In order to ensure that people with disabilities are included in the design of the benefit, we are embarking on a substantial and inclusive engagement process.
- Engage a significant number of people with disabilities across Canada, including those with intersectional identities, especially those who are in poverty or are poverty-adjacent, to learn their values and priorities on what the Canada Disability Benefit (CDB) should look like.
- Produce a report outlining the priorities and values and recommendations of disabled people in Canada to shape the CDB and help policy-makers understand the needs and desires of this population.
- Develop a community of people with disabilities and a model for engaging with them that builds capacity for participating as active citizens in civil society and facilitates providing policy input in an ongoing manner.
Our engagement will aim to answer questions related to regulations, policies and procedures, with a focus on the latter.
In other words, we will be looking to get the perspectives of people with disabilities on:
- Regulations 🡢 The overarching rules and/or law that will define the standards and requirements of the CDB.
- Policies 🡢 The high level guidelines that provide a framework for decision-making and action related to the CDB.
- Procedures 🡢 The details of how the CDB would be carried out in terms of access, eligibility and content.
Engage approximately 5000 people with disabilities in Canada using an online tool to respond to initial principles, explore values and priorities.
Peer-to-Peer Week of Action: 100 participants will be supported to engage in a 30-60 minute peer-to-peer conversation with approximately 2-4 fellow disabled people in Canada.
We will provide:
- Guidelines for having the conversation
- Suggested questions to start from
- Support to capture the conversation
Re-engage the initial group of approximately 5000 people with disabilities as well as additional folks via a second online engagement to hone in on the details of how to shape the CDB.
Principles of Engagement
- The engagement process must be fully accessible, inclusive and transparent
- The engagement will focus exclusively on disabled people. For those people with disabilities whose perspectives we would not be able to capture without the inclusion of their caregivers and family members as proxy, we will facilitate this engagement
- Communication and outputs will be in plain language
- Updates and progress reports will be shared with contributors
- Extra effort must be made to include those in the disability community who are hardest to reach and additional barrier removal must be available to support this
Frequently Asked Questions
Who are you engaging with?
This process is aiming to engage with people with disabilities from every province and territory. With our wide range of partners we are undertaking a large outreach effort to reach a broad diversity of people with disabilities including but not limited to those with intersectional identities, those living in poverty or poverty adjacent, and those with developmental, cognitive and physical disabilities. We are putting extra effort into building partnerships and exploring opportunities to reach those people and communities who are hardest to reach.
How will the engagement be done?
We will work over three phases. The first and third are online engagements, though we will collaborate with community and partner organizations to ensure increased accessibility options for those who need support accessing the online platform.
The second phase is a peer-to-peer engagement allowing people with disabilities and partner organizations to host conversations about the issues that matter most to them.
How will you make sure you’re reaching everyone?
We are committed to working with as many partners as possible to reach as many people with disabilities in Canada as possible. By working both online and in person, we are aiming to provide opportunities for as many people to contribute as possible. Our online engagement platform can be accessed in any language. Our peer-to-peer portion of the engagement will help people have informal conversations that can contribute to our data collection.
What partner organizations are you working with?
See some of the partner organizations we work with here.
Will the engagement take place in multiple languages?
Yes. Our online engagement platform can be accessed in English and French. The peer-to-peer conversations can take place in any language the contributors are comfortable in.
How long will the engagement last?
We anticipate the engagement process will take place between October, 2023 and April, 2024. Though we are hoping to share an interim report with the Minister of Diversity, Inclusion and Persons with Disabilities in February 2024.
How are you deciding what questions to ask?
The questions we are starting with have come from our research and the research and engagement of our partners. However, our process ensures that participants can include their own questions and areas of inquiry to develop the conversation and ensure that all concerns and perspectives are included in our process.
Who is funding this?
DWP is funded by Saputo Foundation, Maytree Foundation, McConnell Foundation, Vancouver Foundation, Calgary Foundation, Hamilton Foundation, Toronto Foundation, Maple Leaf Centre for Action on Food Security, and United Way Centraide Canada.
Who will receive the reports?
All of the reports that are produced from this process will be shared with the Minister of Diversity, Inclusion and Persons with Disabilities and their team. They will also be made publicly available on our website, our social media and to all of our partners and collaborators.
How can I get involved?
We want to hear from any Canadian with a disability, or their proxy. You can participate in the online engagement or get in touch with us at email@example.com call (833) 537-1822 or text 833-947-1153.
How can I stay up to date with the advocacy work of DWP?
We want to stay connected! Sign up for the DWP newsletter here and become part of our disability advocacy community.
What is DWP?
Disability Without Poverty is a movement led by people with disabilities supported by our families, friends, service providers, allies and organizations. We want people with disabilities
to be prosperous, realize our power, pursue our passions and participate in every aspect of society. Learn more about DWP on our website.
I have more questions, who can I speak with?
We’d love to connect. Feel free to get in touch with us at firstname.lastname@example.org, or by calling (833) 537-1822 or texting 833-947-1153.
I need additional accessibility supports to be able to participate, who can help me?
Feel free to get in touch with us at email@example.com or by calling (833) 537-1822 or texting 833-947-1153.
I want to take part in the peer-to-peer engagement, how do I sign up?
Fantastic! Get in touch at firstname.lastname@example.org or by calling (833) 537-1822 or texting 833-947-1153.