Disability tax credit falls short for too many Canadians

Why is the Canada Revenue Agency denying the tax credit to those who need it most?

Disability tax credit falls short for too many CanadiansBy Jennifer Zwicker and Stephanie Dunn EvidenceNetwork.ca “Providing benefits not burdens” is how former Health Minister Judy LaMarsh once described the vision for disability policy in Canada. Unfortunately, this vision is not a reality when it comes to one of the main benefits open to Canadians with disability: the federal disability tax credit (DTC). Administered…

‘What gets measured gets done’

We lack critical information on the diverse and often unmet needs of Canadian children with disabilities, as well as the out-of-pocket costs paid by families

‘What gets measured gets done’By Stephanie Dunn and Jennifer Zwicker EvidenceNetwork.ca “The true measure of a nation’s standing is how well it attends to its children, including their health, safety, material security, education and socialization, and their sense of being loved, valued and included in the families and societies into which they are born,” according to UNICEF. Yet how…

Over-medicating to manage behaviour is damaging and wasteful

It’s time to talk about the overuse of antipsychotics among adults with developmental disabilities

Over-medicating to manage behaviour is damaging and wastefulBy Yona Lunsky and Tara Gomes EvidenceNetwork.ca Inappropriate prescribing of antipsychotic medications – drugs like Risperdal, Zyprexa and Abilify – to seniors, especially those in long-term care with conditions like dementia, has been a hot topic across Canada in recent years. We’ve also increasingly heard about the high numbers of these medications being prescribed to children and…

Canada Revenue Agency discriminates against PKU sufferers

The federal government routinely denies the Disability Tax Credit to those who need it – and are eligible by law

Canada Revenue Agency discriminates against PKU sufferersThis story began when I offered to represent the mother of a three-year-old with PKU, a rare genetic disorder, in a federal tax court. She had never even fought a parking ticket before she went against the federal government. We won. It turns out, evidence matters. But the story doesn’t end there. We went to…

How a traditional exam system fails all students

A good educator recognizes that an intelligent student doesn't necessarily fit into a conventional box

How a traditional exam system fails all studentsA recent National Post column argues that the extra time Canadian universities and colleges allot for students with special needs to write exams is unfair, comparing it to “winning the gold medal for the 100 metres by running only 80 metres.” The column by Bruce Pardy, a professor of law at Queen's University, makes some…

Tear down the ‘welfare wall’ for persons with disabilities

A federal disability benefit could be modelled on the GIS for seniors. We should dismantle welfare and replace it with more adequate, dignified income supports

Tear down the ‘welfare wall’ for persons with disabilitiesThe talk of walls between nations garners significant attention. There’s virtually no discussion, by contrast, of the walls within nations. In Canada, a particularly high ‘welfare wall’ keeps people out of mainstream of society. A recent study for the Centre for Research on Work Disability Policy shows how this welfare wall traps hundreds of thousands…

We can’t be afraid to look into the dark corners of history

We need to learn from the lessons of history when considering assisted dying for those with disabilities – no matter how unsettling that history may be

We can’t be afraid to look into the dark corners of historyHistory has a role in the national conversation about medically-assisted death, despite protests to the contrary. A respected physician and scholar recently stepped down as chair of the expert working group appointed to study the issue of advanced directives for medically-assisted death. Named to this position only two weeks earlier by the Council of Canadian…