Disabilities Supports

We’re building a Manitoba where no one is left behind.

Many people with disabilities have trouble accessing the services others take for granted. We are addressing these issues so that Manitoba can be a stronger, more inclusive home for everyone.

  • We want to remove all barriers for persons with disabilities, whether that means making buildings more accessible or improving employment practices. In December 2013, we passed into law historic legislation that sets out a collaborative, long-term plan for making Manitoba completely barrier-free.

  • When Brian Pallister was in cabinet, his government did not build a single unit of affordable housing. This creates even more barriers for people with disabilities who have a harder time finding a place to live. Instead, our government is developing thousands of new social and affordable housing units for families, including over 250 accessible Manitoba Housing units for low-income persons with disabilities.

  • The Residential Adaptations for Disabilities Program provides financial assistance to low-income Manitobans with disabilities to make changes to their house or rental unit. This could include installing things like wheelchair ramps, hand guards and lift systems that help increase a person’s mobility, safety and independence in their home.

Our government is working to guarantee persons with disabilities the same rights as everyone else and to build an accessible Manitoba for families.

Disabilities Supports Stats & Facts

Connecting Manitobans of all abilities to jobs & training opportunities

  • Last year, our NDP government helped launch a pilot program at Red River College (RRC) to provide people with intellectual disabilities with new educational opportunities that can help them transition into good jobs.

    • This 20-student Transforming Futures program includes hands-on learning in career exploration, essential employability skills and full integration into RRC programming if a student chooses this option.

  • Manitoba social enterprises, such as BUILD and ImagineAbility, have a proven track record of helping people – who may have never held a job – enter the workforce. This year we will continue to work with social enterprises to create a comprehensive strategy to grow the sector and create more first jobs. We will also continue to support community enterprises with an enhanced tax credit.

  • We are also helping people with disabilities find and keep jobs with:

    • A new fund to support projects that help people with disabilities living in rural and northern communities secure and maintain employment.

    • A multi-media campaign targeted to encourage employers to hire Manitobans based on what they can do, not what they can’t.

    • Access to communications technology for up to 1,100 Manitobans with impaired speech.

  • We have increased the Rewarding Volunteer Benefit from $50 to $100/month for people with disabilities on assistance, to offset costs of volunteering like clothing, transportation or child care.

Working towards a barrier-free Manitoba

  • In December 2013, our historic Accessibility for Manitobans Act (AMA) became law. It sets out a framework for long-term planning with the goal of a fully accessible province.

  • We formed the Manitoba Accessibility Advisory Council with representatives from organizations of people with disabilities, businesses and municipalities to make recommendations on our future accessibility legislation. Their recommendations are the basis of The Accessibility for Manitobans Act.

  • The AMA calls for the Government of Manitoba and all public sector organizations to create multi-year plan to identify and eliminate barriers in their policies, programs and services.

  • This summer, we announced a regulation identifying deadlines to prepare accessibility plans:

    • 2016 is the deadline for government and larger public sector organizations, Crown corporations, universities and colleges, regional health authorities and larger municipalities.

    • 2017 is the deadline for smaller municipalities, agencies, boards and commissions.

    Jennifer Howard, MLA for Fort Rouge, kicks off the 2013 Manitoba Access Awareness Week at the Forks.

    Creating better protections and supports

    • This fall, our government introduced new standards to remove customer service barriers for people with disabilities. The focus will be on creating better training and communication practices for employees to make sure people with disabilities can still shop, do business and access services without running into frustrating barriers.

    • We created Canada’s first registry of people who abuse vulnerable adults, including seniors and people with disabilities or mental illness, to protect those who need it most.

    • In January 2014, we established a special fund of $6 million over three years to increase wages for support workers at agencies that offer valuable services for adults with intellectual disabilities. It was increased in July and there will be a third increase in 2015.

      • This funding is intended to help agencies meet the challenge of attracting and retaining employees who work with adults who have complex needs.

    October 2015