November 15, 2022

The Quebec Intellectual Disability Society, the Fédération québécoise de l’autisme, the Confédération des organismes de personnes handicapées du Québec, and the Alliance québécoise des regroupements régionaux pour l’intégration des personnes handicapées and the Réseau Communautaire en santé mentale present their brief on Bill-C22, An Act to reduce poverty and to support the financial security of persons With disabilities by establishing the Canada disability benefit and making a consequential amendment to the Income Tax Act.

Passing Bill C-22 Promptly: A Priority for Persons With Disabilities or With Mental Health Conditions in Quebec

The top five disability and mental health organizations in Quebec are calling for the swift passage of Bill C-22, to create a Canada Disability Benefit. This bill could help lift hundreds of thousands of Canadians with disabilities or mental health conditions out of poverty. To this end, the signatory organizations are calling for the rapid adoption of the bill and for work to begin on the development of the related regulations.

The organizations also call on the provincial, territorial and federal governments to work together to ensure that the programs are complementary and will truly help those in need.

Finally, the signatories offer their collaboration to parliamentarians and the various orders of government in order to make the delivery a success, particularly in Quebec.

Organization’s statement


Read the brief

Read the Summary

Recommendations pertaining to the bill

Recommendations of the organisations
  • Recommendation #1: Do not amend bill C-22 and proceed with its expeditious adoption.
  • Recommendation #2:  work with the provinces and territories to coordinate benefits.
  • Recommendation #3 :
    • Rapidly create workgroups on the regulatory aspects of the Benefit, made up of persons with disabilities and mental health conditions, their organizations and policy experts.
    • Clarify the mandate and scope of the work of these workgroups and their composition.
  • Recommendation #4: in an initial implementation phase, provide access to the Benefit to recipients of provincial or territorial financial assistance programs for persons with disabilities or mental health conditions.
  • Recommendation #5 :
    • Ensure the Benefit is not an excuse for provincial and territorial governments to scale down their financial assistance programs.
    • Ensure the Benefit is complementary to provincial and territorial programs.
    • Ensure the Benefit lifts out-of-poverty individuals who have difficulty accessing provincial and territorial financial security programs.
  • Recommendation #6: Update provincial and territorial legislation to ensure coordination of benefits and that recipients will not be penalized.
  • Recommendation #7: Ensure that the definition of disability follows the Accessible Canada Act and includes cyclical, periodic and invisible disabilities.
  • Recommendation #8: Consider granting access to the Canada Disability Benefit to caregivers who have left their jobs to care for a loved one.
  • Recommendation #9: Fully individualize the Benefit to prevent violence and financial abuse against persons with disabilities or mental health conditions. 
  • Recommendation #10 :
    • Do not apply any reduction rate to the Benefit in relation to employment earnings.
    • Tax the Benefit.
    • Work with the provinces and territories to ensure that the reduction rates tied to employment earnings are phased out so that people can work and lead dignified lives.
  • Recommendation #11 :
    • Use the Market Basket Measure (MBM) as determined by Statistics Canada to regionalize the amount of the Benefit, achieve substantive equality and allow for a dignified life for all Canadians.
    • Improve the Market Basket Measure by taking into account the additional costs associated with disability.

Society’s testimony in front of the Standing Committee on Human Resources, Skills and Social Development and the Status of Persons with Disabilities

Work on Bill C-22 continues

It must be noted that the work surrounding Bill C-22 is still ongoing. The bill is currently in committee in the House of Commons and is expected to be studied in detail shortly. If the committee issues a favourable recommendation, the bill will be sent to the Senate for consideration, before returning to the House of Commons for final adoption.