The Manitoba government has passed legislation to support the development of a new income support program for individuals living with severe and prolonged disabilities who have no other means of supporting themselves.
“Our government is committed to supporting the specific and unique needs of Manitobans with severe and prolonged disabilities and to improving their quality of life,” said Families Minister Rochelle Squires. “The passing of Bill 72, the Disability Support Act, lays the groundwork for the development of the income support program tailored to their needs.”
The Disability Support Act supports the creation of the program that will be separate from Employment and Income Assistance (EIA) and include disability support payments and shelter assistance tailored to the unique and specific needs of individuals with severe and prolonged disabilities, the minister said.
Under previous legislation, Manitobans with severe and prolonged disabilities were treated the same as those experiencing temporary losses of employment or lesser barriers to permanent employment due to shorter-term or less severe disabilities.
The minister noted the Manitoba Assistance Act has also been amended to strengthen requirements for participation in programming and supportive planning that would help people move closer to employment and labour market attachment.
Public and stakeholder consultations in 2019-20 showed strong support for the new income support program, separate from EIA. Additional virtual consultations were held earlier this year. All public feedback will be used to form the next steps in the development of the program, the minister added.
More information on services for Manitobans with disabilities is available at gov.mb.ca.