What is DISC?

What is DISC?

The Saskatchewan Disability Income Support Coalition (DISC) is made up of a large
cross section of disability advocates, consumers and organizations from across
Saskatchewan who are committed to advocating for a respectful, dignified and adequate
income support system. As partners in a non-partisan coalition, DISC members have
joined together to speak as one voice, working towards a distinct (or separate) income
system for people with disabilities that is built on our common vision and principles.

Our Vision and Principles

Our primary vision is to see an income system that offers both an adequate baseline
income for people with disabilities and a user-friendly mechanism to address individual
financial needs based on the impact of disability.

We believe that developing a distinct income program for people with disabilities must
be a truly joint venture between all stakeholders, each contributing equally to the
process. Since 2008, DISC has worked with the Government of Saskatchewan to develop
and improve income policy for people with disabilities.

As members of DISC, we have laid out key principles for an improved system:

Adequacy- People with disabilities should have an adequate income that truly meets
their individual needs, not just basic needs.

Hope and Security- People with disabilities must have financial accommodations so that
they can live their lives with hope, respect and dignity.

Person-Centered and User Friendly – A disability income program should be easily
accessible with consistent, respectful income workers.

Higher Income Exemptions – Higher income exemptions and rapid reinstatement need to be in place to eliminate disincentives to employment and independence.

Consistent Implementation- People with disabilities should be able to expect a portable and flexible income system.

What Progress Has Been Achieved?

  • October 2008 – the Government of Saskatchewan announced that they would
    create a separate, dignified program for people with disabilities: ‘SAID’
    (Saskatchewan Assured Income for Disability)
  • December 2008 – DISC joined the joint Government – Community Task Team to
    develop plans for the new income program.
  • May 2009 – the Government accepted all 50 recommendations of the Task Team
    and announced that the new income program would be launched on December 1,
    2009.
  • December 2009 – a limited number of individuals, living in residential care, were
    enrolled at the launch of the new program.
  • December 2010 – the earnings exemption for SAID (and people with disabilities on
    SAP) was increased. A $100,000 life insurance/inheritance exemption for SAID was
    implemented.
  • March 2011 – the budget included funding to develop the assessment tool for SAID,
    to begin assessing individuals for the next phase of SAID enrollment, as well as a
    $50/month increase to SAID clients in residential care settings beginning in January
    2012.
  • May 2011 – the first SAID office is opened in Saskatoon.
  • October 2011 – Premier Wall announced that SAID would be expanded to include
    individuals who live independently in community and that benefits would increase
    in 2012 – 13 by:

    • An additional $40/month for individuals in residential care (this is in
      addition to the $50/month increase that will begin in January 2012)
    • $200/month for single people living independently in community
    • $230/month for couples living independently in community
  • June 2012 – the application process for SAID was opened to anyone with a
    significant and enduring disability in Saskatchewan.

    • The benefit rate increase of a minimum of $200/month began for people
      living independently in community. Individuals living in residential care
      received a benefit rate increase of $40/month in addition to the $50/month
      increase that began in January 2012
  • September 2012 – over 7500 people are enrolled in SAID
  • June 2013, June 2014 and June 2015 – the Government honored promises made in the 2011 election campaign by increasing SAID benefits for people living
    independently by $50/month in each of the 3 years for a total of $150. Benefits for
    people living in residential care increased by $20/month in each of the 3 years for a
    total of $60.
  • February 2018 – over 15,192 households currently receive SAID benefits.
  • March 2019 – Income Exemption amount for SAID beneficiaries is increased,
    annualized, and simplified

DISC continues to work towards an adequate income and fair assessment process.

To show your support for DISC sign up as a friend on our Facebook page
http://www.facebook.com/saskdisc

For more information go to http://www.saskdisc.ca/ or contact:

Alaina Harrison, Chair
(306) 531-5107
20-425 Winnipeg St.
Regina SK S4R 8P2
[email protected]

Dave Nelson
(306) 525-5601
[email protected]

SaskDISC.ca - Saskatchewan Disability Income Support Coalition
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