Advocacy, Independent Living

Fellow Canadians with Disabilities, Please Support the Opportunity for Workers with Disabilities Act

On Tuesday, February 27, 2018 at 10:46 AM
The Honourable pierre.poilievre.a2@parl.gc.ca [mailto:pierre.poilievre.a2@parl.gc.ca] said:
Support the Opportunity for Workers with Disabilities Act

(French Follows / Le Français suit)

To Whom It May Concern,

Groups like yours work hard to maximize opportunities for people with disabilities. Yet sometimes, government seems to stand in the way. As you know, when people with disabilities start earning income, they not only pay taxes, but also face sharp clawbacks of their income, medication, housing, and other supports — meaning they can lose more than they gain from getting a job, earning a raise, or working more hours.

It is a story Linda Chamberlain knows all too well: “After three decades of battling schizophrenia and homelessness and poverty, Chamberlain finally got a job,” wrote former Toronto Star reporter Catherine Porter. As a reward, the government boosted Linda’s rent almost 500% and cut her disability payment, making her $260 per month poorer because she got a job. So she had to quit her job and remain poor.

She is not alone. “According to Statistics Canada’s 2012 Canadian Survey on Disability, there were over 650,000 disabled individuals aged 15 to 64 who were not in the labour force at the time of the survey and either used to work or indicated they were capable of working. Of these, roughly 94,000 reported that if they were employed, they felt that they would lose additional support. About 82,300 individuals reported that they expected their income to drop if they worked,” according to Statistics Canada.

The Bill
The Opportunity for Workers with Disabilities Act would allow workers with disabilities to gain more in wages than they lose in clawbacks and taxation. It does this through three steps:

Measurement
The bill would require that Finance Canada calculate how much people with disabilities in each province lose in taxes and benefit clawbacks as a result of each additional $1,000 of income earned up to $30,000. Calculations of the clawbacks would include lost benefits like income assistance, housing, medications, and so forth, and would use publicly available tax and benefit rules, not any person’s private tax and benefit information.

2. Action If the calculation finds that people with disabilities are losing more than they gain due to clawbacks, the Finance Minister would have to consider changes to the Working Income Tax Benefit Disability Supplement, the Canada Pension Plan Disability Pension, or any federal tax measure that would ensure people with disabilities always benefit from their work.

If the Minister deemed that provincial taxes and clawbacks were the cause of the problem, he would consult with the province to remedy it.

3. Enforcement The Opportunity Act would attach another condition to the Federal-Provincial Fiscal Arrangements Act requiring provinces to arrange their taxes and transfers so that people with disabilities never lose more than they gain from working.

Conclusion
This bill will only pass with the help of respected organizations like yours. So, if you agree that governments should reward rather than punish the work of people with disabilities, please add your voice to the Opportunity Act.

Here are three things you can do to help pass the bill:

Please encourage your local Members of Parliament to vote for the Opportunity Act. And ask your friends, family, and supporters to do the same.
Use #OpportunityAct on social media when endorsing and discussing the bill.
Please email my office a few sentences endorsing the bill that we can use for social media and other communications that will build momentum towards its passage. You can email Pierre.Poilievre.A2@parl.gc.ca.

Thank you for your help. Together, we can empower Canadians with disabilities to get ahead through their talents and work — because, as Dr. Martin Luther King put it, “all labour has dignity.”

I ask for your organization’s support to make this bill law.

Sincerely,

Hon. Pierre Poilievre, P.C., M.P.
Carleton

Madame, Monsieur,

Les groupes comme le vôtre travaillent fort pour optimiser les possibilités offertes aux personnes handicapées. Pourtant, le gouvernement semble parfois leur mettre des bâtons dans les roues. Comme vous le savez, lorsque les personnes handicapées commencent à gagner un revenu, non seulement elles paient de l’impôt, mais elles doivent aussi faire face à une forte récupération de leur revenu, des mesures de soutien pour les médicaments, le logement et autres. Cela signifie qu’elles peuvent perdre plus qu’elles ne gagnent à décrocher un emploi, à obtenir une augmentation de salaire ou à travailler plus d’heures.

Cette situation, Linda Chamberlain la connaît très bien. « Après s’être débattue pendant 30 ans contre des problèmes de schizophrénie, d’itinérance et de pauvreté, Mme Chamberlain a enfin décroché un emploi1 », écrit Catherine Porter, ancienne journaliste du Toronto Star. Pour la récompenser, le gouvernement a augmenté son loyer de presque 500 % et a coupé sa prestation d’invalidité. Au final, elle avait donc 260 $ de moins dans ses poches chaque mois, parce qu’elle travaillait2. Elle n’avait donc aucun autre choix que de quitter son emploi et de continuer de vivre dans la pauvreté.

La situation de Linda n’a rien d’unique. « Selon l’Enquête canadienne sur l’incapacité réalisée en 2012 par Statistique Canada, plus de 650 000 personnes handicapées de 15 à 64 ans qui ne participaient pas au marché du travail au moment de l’enquête ont indiqué qu’elles avaient déjà travaillé ou étaient capables de le faire. Environ 94 000 d’entre elles étaient d’avis qu’elles perdraient une partie de leur soutien additionnel si elles travaillaient, et environ 82 300 personnes étaient d’avis que leur revenu baisserait3 ».

Le projet de loi
La Loi sur les perspectives d’emploi des personnes handicapées vise à garantir aux travailleurs ayant une incapacité qu’ils ne perdront jamais plus en prestations et en impôts que ce qu’ils gagnent grâce à leur travail. Pour ce faire, le projet de loi propose trois étapes.
Calculs
Le projet de loi obligerait Finances Canada à calculer le montant que les personnes handicapées dans chaque province perdent en impôts et en récupération de leurs prestations pour chaque tranche supplémentaire de 1 000 $ de revenu de travail qu’elles gagnent, jusqu’à concurrence de 30 000 $. Le calcul des dispositions de récupération comprendrait les pertes de prestations comme celles liées à l’aide sociale, au logement, aux médicaments et ainsi de suite. Pour faire ces calculs, le Ministère utiliserait des renseignements publics au sujet de l’admissibilité aux prestations et des règles fiscales plutôt que des renseignements personnels ou privés sur l’impôt et les prestations d’une personne.

Mesure
Si le calcul confirmait que les personnes handicapées perdent plus qu’elles ne gagnent en raison des récupérations, le ministre des Finances devrait évaluer s’il serait opportun de modifier le supplément pour les personnes handicapées de la Prestation fiscale pour revenu de travail, les prestations d’invalidité du Régime de pensions du Canada ou toute autre mesure fiscale fédérale pour s’assurer que les personnes handicapées profitent toujours de leur travail.

Si le ministre jugeait que les impôts et les dispositions de récupération provinciaux sont à l’origine du problème, il consulterait la province pour tenter de remédier à la situation.

Application
La Loi sur les perspectives d’emploi des personnes handicapées assujettirait à une autre condition la Loi sur les arrangements fiscaux entre le gouvernement fédéral et les provinces : elle exigerait des provinces qu’elles gèrent leurs impôts et leurs transferts de manière à éviter que les personnes handicapées aient plus à perdre qu’à gagner de leur travail.

Conclusion
Ce projet de loi ne sera adopté qu’avec l’aide d’organismes respectés comme le vôtre. Donc, si vous croyez que les gouvernements devraient récompenser plutôt que punir le travail des personnes handicapées, faites entendre votre voix dans le cadre de la Loi sur les perspectives d’emploi des personnes handicapées.

Voici trois choses que vous pouvez faire pour contribuer à l’adoption du projet de loi :

Veuillez encourager vos députés locaux à voter pour la Loi sur les perspectives d’emploi des personnes handicapées. Et demandez à vos amis, à votre famille et à vos partisans de faire de même.
Utilisez le mot-clic #OpportunityAct sur les médias sociaux pour appuyer le projet de loi et en discuter.
Veuillez faire parvenir par courriel à mon bureau quelques phrases appuyant le projet de loi que nous pouvons utiliser dans les médias sociaux et d’autres communications et qui donneront un élan en faveur de son adoption. Écrivez à Pierre.Poilievre.A2@parl.gc.ca.
Je vous remercie de votre aide. Ensemble, nous pouvons donner aux Canadiens handicapés les moyens de progresser grâce à leurs talents et à leur travail. Car, comme l’a dit Martin Luther King, « tout travail a de la dignité ».

Je demande l’appui de votre organisation pour que ce projet de loi soit adopté.

Agréez, Madame, Monsieur, mes salutations distinguées.

L’honorable Pierre Poilievre, C.P., député
Carleton

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blindness, Independent Living, Low Vision, Training, Victoria BC

Blindness Skills Instructor Job Posting, Victoria BC

Contract Job Posting

Blindness Skills Instructor

Pacific Training Centre for the Blind

www.pacifictrainingcentre.ca

817a Fort St

Victoria, BC, V8W 1H6

250-580-4910

info@pacifictrainingcentre.ca

 

Independent Contractor Position

Blindness Skills Instructor

Location: Victoria, BC

Reports To: Program Coordinator

Dates of Contract: January 9, 2018 to June 29, 2018

Hours: up to 12 per week (number of days and hours are somewhat flexible).

Hourly Rate: $20

 

We are looking for someone who is passionate about teaching, excited by new challenges, and interested in working as part of a small, energetic, grassroots organization.

 

Services to Be Performed:

  1. Provide individualized and group instruction to blind  adults in all areas of the alternative techniques of blindness, such as Braille, talking computers, travel with the long white cane, cooking, home management, job readiness etc.
  2. Work / train part of the time under sleepshades / learning shades, if not totally blind, and use a long white cane at all times during the program.

(guide dogs are of course welcome to be at the centre, but the expectation is that the individual will use a long white cane when actually teaching.

  1. Help students become independent by adopting the structured discovery / problem-solving method of teaching used at the centre.
  2. Help to plan programs and program activities.
  3. Provide community outreach and help to identify the needs of blind individuals; Propose ways to meet these needs. Assist in the recruitment of new students.
  4. Provide services as part of a multidisciplinary team through group and one-on-one lessons.
  5. Link clients with formal and informal resources, and help individuals develop their skills and ability to use their own resources and those of their community to solve problems and find solutions.
  6. Support the Program Coordinator and other staff in the management of client files and demographic reports.
  7. Assist in the submission, writing and compilation of student reports to ensure student requirements are being met.

 

Qualifications

  1. Candidate must be legally blind.
  2. Strong belief in and understanding of the structured discovery model of blindness skills training taught at the centre, and the centre’s positive approach to blindness.
  3. A degree or diploma in a Human Services, Social Work, or Community Social Services, or experience in a relevant field of knowledge with blindness experience preferred. Previous training at a structured discovery blindness centre an asset.
  4. Experience in teaching adults and an understanding of the unique needs of adult learners.
  5. Working knowledge of Braille, adaptive speech and Braille technology, travel with the long white cane, and other aspects of blindness skills.
  6. Experience working with people who have various disabilities in conjunction with blindness such as physical challenges, learning disabilities, brain injuries and mental health issues.
  7. Must be detail oriented and possess effective organizational and research skills.
  8. Must have excellent written and verbal communication skills.
  9. Have experience in developing and organizing lesson plans.
  10. Possess the ability to work with a variety of people in a diverse range of situations.
  11. A willingness to be flexible.
  12. A willingness to help out occasionally during extra activities such as conventions and recreational activities.
  13. Punctual, reliable and dependable. Work requires high degree of emotional intelligence and intuitiveness.

 

 

Please email a cover letter and resume to Elizabeth Lalonde, Executive Director, at Elizabeth@pacifictrainingcentre.ca no later than December 15, 2017.

For more information about the Pacific Training Centre for the Blind, please visit our Website at www.pacifictrainingcentre.ca or contact us info@pacifictrainingcentre.ca 250-580-4910

 

 

 

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blindness, Independent Living, Low Vision

research study for vision impaired women

Please register with:

 

Alexis

 

Her contact information is 647-388-0664  <mailto:alexis.fabricius@gmail.com> alexis.fabricius@gmail.com

 

Department of Psychology

 

RESEARCH PARTICIPANTS NEEDED

 

We are looking for adult, visually impaired women to volunteer to talk about their experiences with violence and their everyday safety concerns. You do not necessarily have to have been victimized to take part – we are looking for a range of voices.

 

As a participant in this study, you will be asked to take part in a small focus group with about 6-8 other visually impaired women that will last approximately 90 minutes.

 

In appreciation for your time, we will provide you with a FREE self-defence workshop for blind/partially-sighted women.

 

For more information about this study, or to volunteer,

 

please contact:

 

ALEXIS FABRICIUS      647-388-0664

 

alexis.fabricius@gmail.com

 

This study has been reviewed by and received ethics clearance

 

through the York University Research Ethics Board.

 

 

 

  1. Approximately 6-8 women per focus group. The focus group itself is 90 min and the self-defense session will be about 90 min. So, approximately 3hrs for both parts. (on the flyer)

 

 

 

  1. Interested women must call Alexis to register for one of two sessions to be offered in December 2017.

 

Sessions will take place at the CNIB at 1929 Bayview Ave (Room 218 A and 218 B) To meet Alexis at the front reception.

 

On: Sat Dec 2/17 12 to 3 pm or Sat Dec 9th, 12 to 3 pm.

 

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blindness, Independent Living, Low Vision, Training, Victoria BC

Pacific Training Centre for the Blind (PTCB) Train the Trainer Workshop, Victoria BC from September 5 through 8, 2017

The Pacific Training Centre for the Blind announces two important initiatives .

Please help us spread the word.

 

Pacific Training Centre for the Blind (PTCB) Train the Trainer Workshop

 

Date: Tuesday September 5 – Friday September 8 2017

Time: Tuesday and Wednesday – 10:00 – 4:00, Thursday and Friday 3:00 – 7:00

Location: Victoria Disability Resource Centre 817a Fort St.

 

This four day free workshop is for individuals interested in becoming an instructor for the PTCB.  We are looking for blind or partially sighted adults who have independent blindness skills in at least two of the following areas: Braille, travelling with a white cane, accessing technology through a screen reader and independent life skills.

 

The workshop will include:

 

  1. The Foundation: including founding principles of the PTCB, its philosophy and code of ethics
  2. Training Basics: including the structured discovery model, use of sleep shades, peer trainers, the long white cane and problem solving.
  3. Assessment and Goal Setting
  4. Lesson Planning
  5. Specific Training Techniques and Tools
  6. PTCB Policy and Best Practices

 

The workshop will include discussions, demonstrations, hands on exercises and assignments.  Participants will be expected to attend all Train the Trainer sessions and will be evaluated throughout the week.

 

For more information please call: 250-580-4910 or email:

lbartram@telus.net  or info@pacifictrainingcentre.ca

 

Please complete the following application form, if you would like to participate in the workshop.

 

 

 

PTCB Train the Trainer Workshop Application Form

 

Name:

 

Phone number:

 

Email:

 

Amount of vision (if any):

 

Number of years you have been living with vision loss:

 

Describe your independent blindness skills in the following areas.

Braille:

 

Travel with the white cane:

 

Assistive Technology:

 

Life skills such as cooking:

 

Describe an incident where you helped another person with vision loss learn

how to do something:

 

Describe why you wish to take the Train the Trainer Workshop:

 

Return your completed form to Linda Bartram at lbartram@telus.net No later than Friday August 18 2017.

 

 

The Pacific Training Centre for the Blind (PTCB) is expanding its Blind People in Charge Adult program to include students from outside of Victoria.

 

Staff at the centre will work with an out-of-town student to find appropriate and viable housing options for these students such as billeting, homestay or other affordable accommodation while they are training.

 

Students will be expected to attend the training centre three-days-a-week. A firm commitment to training is expected.

 

If practical, and the student doesn’t live too far away, students can also travel to Victoria each week for training and return home later in the week.

 

Through its Blind People in Charge Program, the Pacific Training Centre for the Blind teaches blindness / independence skills including Braille, travel with the long white cane, talking and Braille adaptive technology, cooking, cleaning, sewing, job readiness, organizational skills, financial management and other lifeskills. The PTCB uses a positive and empowering method of teaching that encourages students to problem solve and take charge of their own lives. All instructors and mentors at the centre are blind.

 

If you wish to learn more, or register, please contact us.

 

Elizabeth Lalonde, Executive Director

Pacific Training Centre for the Blind

Phone 250-580-4910

info@pacifictrainingcentre.ca

www.pacifictrainingcentre.ca

817a Fort St

Victoria, BC, V8W 1H6

Blind people empowering blind people to be employed, independent and free.

 

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