Before Omicron and protesters took over the news cycle, Nova Scotia’s new PC Premier was facing criticism for his about-face on defending in court the Province’s treatment of people with disabilities. After initially declaring that people shouldn’t have to take government to court to make it “do the right thing” Tim Houston did just that to Nova Scotians with disabilities who need supports and services to live in the community.
The Province of Nova Scotia imposes a budgetary cap on social assistance for persons with disabilities that it does not impose on social assistance for the non-disabled.
With the budgetary cap in place, the government cannot meet what the Nova Scotia Court of Appeal has identified as its legal obligation to provide social assistance to persons with disabilities under the Social Assistance Act.
This government has the chance to put this right and respect its legal obligations by removing the budgetary cap.
Halifax – Labour, education, business, and community organisations together with individuals representing tens of thousands of Nova Scotians have joined together in an open letter calling on the Premier to take immediate action to fulfill the equality rights of persons with disabilities in need.
The letter calls upon the Premier to implement the Court of Appeal October 6 ruling, drop the application to the Supreme Court of Canada, negotiate a systemic human rights remedy to the problem of discrimination against people with disabilities in accessing social assistance, and end the funding cap which singles out the disabled and creates barriers to their inclusion in our communities.