This new Act will reduce the number of hours spent per week on life-sustaining therapy needed to qualify for the credit from 14 to 10. It will also expand the definition of what counts as life-sustaining therapy to include determining dosages of medical food and activities related to determining dosages of medication, including dietary or exercise regimes. This would allow 35,000 more Canadians with disabilities the potential to access savings of an average of $2,100 a year.
As a start, New Democrats will uphold the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities and strengthen the Accessibility Act to cover all federal agencies equally with the power to make and enforce accessibility standards in a timely manner.
To help tackle the unacceptable rate of poverty among Canadians living with a disability, we will launch a full review of income security programs. When it comes to employment, everyone deserves a fair shot at a good job that fits their unique abilities. A New Democrat government will continue and expand employment programs to make sure that quality employment opportunities are available to all.
For Canadians facing a serious illness, we’ll make Employment Insurance work better by extending sickness benefits to 50 weeks of coverage and by creating a pilot project to allow workers with episodic disabilities to access benefits as they need them.
Canadians living with disabilities shouldn’t need to worry about the cost of prescription medication, how to find housing, or how to get their mail. In addition to putting in place a universal, publicly funded national pharmacare program that will offer full benefits to all Canadians, a New Democrat government will restore door-to-door mail delivery for those who lost it under the Conservatives and create affordable, accessible housing in communities across the country.