COVID-19(Coronavirus) Information Page

We hope that all of you are staying safe during this very stressful time of COVID-19.
Here are some links to resources that will provide you with up to date information that will be helpful.
  • CISS WorkSafeBC Safety PlanClick Here
  • Public Health Authority of Canada – To go to their site – Click Here!
  • BC Centre for Disease Control – To go to their site – Click Here!
  • Government of Canada Travel Advisories – For information on travel advisories – Click Here!
  • World Health Organization (WHO) – For the latest WHO News – Click Here!

COVID-19 Symptom Self-Assessment Tool: Click Here!

Update – August 17th, 2020

BC Government Extends $300 Supplement for Four More Months

August 17, 2020 – People who receive PWD benefits and income assistance in BC will be receiving the $300 Covid-19 supplement for four more months (September – December).

This is great news and Inclusion BC applauds the Minister and the Government of BC. British Columbia has been a leader in recognizing the critical value of equity and inclusion in effectively responding to the COVID-19 challenge.

For more information:

Government news release
Media: Energicity article
More information on the Emergency Support For Persons With Disability (PWD)

Update – July 21, 2020

TODAY: $600 payment approved in Parliament

Legislation was passed today to give Canadian adults, youths and children with disabilities a one-time benefit of $600 to help cover extra COVID19 costs. Inclusion BC is very pleased that all parties in Ottawa have responded to concerns about making eligibility for this benefit more inclusive. The new benefit will go to people who receive the Disability Tax Credit, CPP disability payments and/or supports from Veterans Affairs Canada.

Included in the new, revised disability benefit legislation:

  • 1-time federal $600 benefit
  • Expanded eligibility covers 1.7 million Canadians
  • 60 days to apply for Disability Tax Credit (DTC) if not already approved
  • No need to apply for the 1-time benefit if you already have the DTC, CPP or Veterans disability. You will receive it automatically in the coming weeks.

Read the Government News Release for more information.

In the media:
CTV: MPs pass bill to implement revamped wage subsidy, disability aid payment
CBC: House passes bill to extend and reform wage subsidy, introduce disability benefits

Applying for the Disability Tax Credit

If you or a loved one (adult or child) may be eligible for the Disability Tax Credit (DTC) but have not applied, now is a good time to do so, as it opens eligibility for several disability supports, including the new COVID-19 payment.

Inclusion BC advocates can help you apply for the DTC, as can other community nonprofits like Disability Alliance BC. To reach an Inclusion BC advocate, email advocacy@inclusionbc.org.

The Federal government is giving applicants an expanded 60-day window to apply for the DTC if they also want to be eligible for the 1-time $600 federal COVID19 benefit.

Telus Offering $9.95/month Internet for People with Disabilities

Telus is now offering low-cost Internet, computers & training to those eligible for PWD benefits, through their Internet For Good program. The low-cost Internet is also offered to low-income families who are currently receiving the maximum Canada Child Benefit.

Universal access to affordable Internet is key to ensuring everyone can stay safe and connected during COVID. Inclusion BC identified access to Internet service & equipment for all people with disabilities as a priority when COVID-19 first hit us in March. We are thrilled to see this initiative and thank everyone who worked to make it happen, especially TELUS.

Program highlights (visit the Internet for Good website for more information)

  • Internet connectivity for $9.95/month (plus applicable taxes) for 24 months; regular pricing thereafter
  • Speeds of up to 25 megabits per second (where available) and up to 300 gigabits of data per month
  • Option to purchase a low cost refurbished computer through BC Technology for Learning
  • No contract or cancellation fees
  • Digital literacy support available at any TELUS Learning Centre
  • Access to free TELUS Wise® training and tools to participate safely in our digital world

Provide Feedback to the Canadian Human Rights Commission

Canada’s Human Rights Commission works to protect your rights, including rights in the UN Convention on People with Disabilities (CRPD). Are your rights being respected? Take the survey to share your thoughts: https://surveys.chrc2020-ccdp2020.ca/s3/-EN-FR

COVID Resources from Self Advocates

The Self Advocate Leadership Network and the Self Advocates of Semiahmoo have created videos and podcasts to engage people during this unique time.

Visit www.SALNBC.com for COVID-19 Plain Language Information with a Disability Focus.

BCCDC Adds Disability to List of Vulnerable Populations

The BC Centre for Disease Control has added people with disabilities to the list of vulnerable populations requiring extra consideration during COVID. Inclusion BC is pleased to see this, as it was one of our key asks included in our March COVID advocacy brief.

The new webpage on the BCCDC website includes information about the specific challenges faced by people with disabilities, an ethical framework to ensure fair treatment, as well as information about testing, visitor policies and effective communication.

Plain Language Video about MAID (Medical Assistance in Dying) Bill

In February 2019 the Government of Canada introduced Bill C-7, which expands access to medical assistance in dying. This Bill will further stigmatize people with a disability in the Canadian healthcare system. Federation member Community Living Ontario has created a plain language video explaining the importance of opposing this Bill.

Meet Inclusion BC Practicum Students

Inclusion BC offers practicum opportunities for post-secondary students who are interested in learning more about inclusive schools, workplaces and communities. Right now we have two students with us, both from UBC Okanagan.

  • Jade Banman is helping create a new, updated handbook on inclusive education for parents.
  • Kyle Bogman is helping us plan and host a Virtual Learning Series, with webinars on topics such as employment, civic engagement and education.

Thank you Jade and Kyle for applying your talent and hard work to our organization and our movement.

Person With Disabilities Check Information

  • $300 extra per month on PWD during COVID-19 Crisis
    What This Means: You will get an extra $300/month on your PWD Cheque

British Columbia will provide an automatic $300-monthly COVID-19 crisis supplement for the next three months for everyone on income assistance or disability assistance who is not eligible for the emergency federal support programs (including the Canada Emergency Response Benefit). This extra $300 will be added directly to your provincial support cheque starting with the April 22, 2020 payment. (It is automatic so you don’t need to apply!) The supplement will be provided for April, May, and June.

  • PWD Exemption for Employment Insurance
    What This Means: If you lose your job and get Employment Insurance (EI), you will still get the same PWD payments

For people in B.C. currently receiving income assistance or disability assistance, the Province will temporarily exempt federal employment insurance benefits, including the new $2,000 Canada Emergency Response Benefit (CERB). These payments will be fully exempted for the next three months, so people receiving income assistance and disability assistance in B.C. will benefit from these new emergency federal support programs, without any reductions to their monthly assistance payments.

  • $52 Transportation Supplement
    What This Means: The money from your Bus Pass — $52/month — will be added to your monthly PWD Cheque

With the current province-wide suspension of BC Transit and Translink bus fares, the Province will also provide the $52 Transportation Supplement to all BC Bus Pass Program users receiving income assistance and disability assistance for the duration of the fare suspension. This will be included in the April cheque and for each subsequent month while the fare suspension remains in place.

“We are putting in place measures that complement the federal crisis measures to support our most vulnerable populations and ensure they do not fall deeper into poverty as a result of COVID-19,” said Minister Simpson.