Invest in Inclusion

Submission to the Select Standing Committee on Finance and Government Services for the 2022 Budget

 

Inclusion BC has submitted its recommendations to the Select Standing Committee on Finance and Government Services for the 2022 B.C. Budget. We recommended that they invest in inclusion and equity to build resilience for all of BC. Specifically, we identified the most critical funding gaps that are preventing the full inclusion of people with intellectual disabilities and their families in B.C. 

See our full submission: Invest in Inclusion (PDF)

On September 2, 2021, Executive Director, Karla Verschoor presented our recommendations to the Select Standing Committee on Finance and Government Services. Listen to our presentation starting at 11:22:56 a.m.

Here is an excerpt, listing the key recommendations. 

People across all levels of our system – from the early years to their senior years – spend years of their lives waiting for essential supports and services without much notice, attention, or accountability. Accurate data collection and its use for the adequate review of policies and the corresponding allocation of resources are critically needed. Guided by the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (UNCRPD), this submission identifies the most critical funding gaps currently preventing the full inclusion of people with intellectual and developmental disabilities and their families in B.C. 

14 Recommendations: Key Budget 2022 Priorities 

UNCRPD Article 31 – Statistics and data collection

1. We recommend the Province of BC invest in a coordinated approach to collecting provincial-level data (particularly within the funding Ministries of Children and Family, Child Care, Education, Social Development and Poverty Reduction, Health, and the Ministry responsible for Housing) and disseminate statistics to help assess if people’s support needs are being met in our province and to guide sufficient investment. 

UNCRPD Article 7 – Children with disabilities

2. Eliminating waitlists to Supported Child Development Program with a funding increase of $50 million per year for the next three years. 

3. Expand access to Early Intervention Therapies with a funding increase of $20 million per year for the next three years. 

4. Eliminate waitlist for assessments by making a targeted allocation of funding. 

5. Targeted fund within CYSN to support families’ need for respite services in a competitive employment market. 

6. Increase the funding for Children and Youth with Support Needs to match actual costs of supports and services that children and youth require. 

7. Ensure the successful implementation of the CYSN Service Framework by establishing a targeted fund. 

UNCRPD Article 24 – Education

8. Eliminate waitlists for educational assessments by establishing a targeted fund. 

9. Expand the funding and mandate of Provincial Outreach Programs to allow parents and educators to initiate support requests and increase their capacity to support more students. 

10. Increase the funding allocation for diverse learners (Level 1, 2 and 3 supplemental funding) by 25% for the next three years. 

UNCRPD Article 19 – Living independently and being included in the community

11. Fund the development of a more comprehensive tool to assess the needs and allocate supports for people eligible for CLBC services. 

12. Invest 3 million in portable rental supplements to support 300 people, in collaboration with Community Living BC, to enter into supported and independent living options on an equal basis with other citizens in our province. 

UNCRPD Article 28 – Adequate standard of living and social protection

13. In collaboration with the federal government, raise the PWD Benefits rate to $2,200 and adjust it yearly to the provincial cost of living. 

UNCRPD Article 25 – Health

14. Targeted funds to create a provincial office to provide leadership and oversight for the health and mental health services for people with intellectual and developmental disabilities.