Rights of Persons with Disabilities

Section 6.4 NDP Policy Book

New Democrats believe in:

  1. The equality of persons with disabilities with all other people and the full inclusion and effective participation of all persons with disabilities in Canadian society as guided foremost by the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms and the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (UNCRPD)
  2. The full implementation of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities including:
    • national action plan with benchmarks and timelines
    • independent monitoring mechanism
    • meaningful involvement of the disability community in developing and monitoring the plan
    • signing and ratifying the Optional Protocol that provides a complaints mechanism
    • ending the reservation on Article 12 that provides equal recognition before the law
  3. The creation and implementation of a comprehensive Canadians with Disabilities Act (CDA). Developed with broad and meaningful consultation with people living with disabilities and their families and other stakeholders, the Act will eliminate barriers and promote accessibility, effective participation, and equality of opportunity for persons living with disabilities.
  4. Adequate funding for the Court Challenges Program to ensure that people with disabilities and allied organizations are able to protect and advance equality rights
  5. Applying a disability lens, i.e. disability-based analysis, to public policy and meaningfully including people living with disabilities in the development of public policy
  6. Appointing a Disability Commissioner to advise Parliament and the minister responsible for issues affecting persons with disabilities and their families until this responsibility is assigned under the implementation of the UNCRPD or the CDA
  7. Promoting the economic equality of people with disabilities through:
    • equitable pay with people without disabilities
    • initiatives that break down systemic barriers to employment
    • initiatives to recruit, hire, promote and retain people with disabilities in the public and private sectors
    • stopping the disproportionate employment of people with disabilities in temporary and precarious work
    • improved access to EI regular benefits, sick benefits and compassionate care benefits
  8. Reducing poverty and exclusion by coordinating benefits and increasing access to adequate income support programs
  9. Establishing tax fairness and revenue supports for people with disabilities, including fair and equitable refundability of tax credits
  10. Simplifying, clarifying and ensuring fairness and transparency in access to the Disability Tax Credit and Canada Pension Plan Disability benefits. Eliminating the bias in program approach that effectively establishes “classes” of disability with unequal results in access to benefits.
  11. Fixing the Canada Pension Plan Disability appeal process. Giving appellants a hearing in a reasonable amount of time, in an equitable format, with a representative of their choosing and with adjudicators having expertise in disability issues.
  12. Ensuring accessible services are available in-person, by telephone and on-line at all points-of-contact with the federal government, federal institutions and Crown corporations
  13. Investing in affordable, stable, safe, accessible and supportive housing
  14. Ensuring equitable access, cost and quality of post-secondary education for students with disabilities
  15. Ensuring that investments in health, pharmacare, public transit, infrastructure, community and social services, and sport and recreation increase the social inclusion and participation of people with disabilities
  16. Developing a Disability Justice Strategy to ensure equitable treatment of people with disabilities who come into contact with the justice system as victims, witnesses, suspects and offenders. The strategy would include a core set of principles and directives around appropriate communications and support, early intervention and diversion, increased service capacity and accessibility, effective training, enhanced accountability and monitoring, and better policies and frameworks
  17. Addressing the higher rates of violence and crime against people with disabilities, especially women with disabilities
  18. Eliminating obstacles to the political participation of people with disabilities by:
    • reforming the electoral system
    • developing an Access to Elected Office strategy
    • compensating disability-related costs to run for office
    • promoting and providing an inclusive environment that enables full and effective participation in public and political life
    • investing in election procedures, materials and facilities that are appropriate, accessible and easy to understand and use
    • advancing the right of all people with disabilities to vote by secret ballot
  19. Stopping discriminatory practices in immigration and refugee proceedings that prevent people with disabilities from immigrating to Canada
  20. Ensuring accessibility accommodations are available to complete the requirements to obtain citizenship
  21. Promoting and defending the rights of persons with disabilities internationally, increasing development aid for persons with disabilities with a focus on improving access and inclusion, and supporting international initiatives to address the human and socio-economic impact of combat tactics against civilians designed to disable people (e.g., landmines, amputations, toxic contamination, etc.)