What does it mean to be "on disability" in Canada?

Tuesday, October 20, 2009
John Stapleton
Metcalf Foundation Fellow

What understanding do most Canadians have of disability benefits, and why is it so difficult to have a national discussion about a comprehensive disability benefit program? This presentation will look at the various types of disability income and service programs we have in Canada and why they are so hard to reform.

John Stapleton worked for the Ontario Ministry of Community and Social Services and its predecessors for 28 years in the areas of social assistance policy and operations. During his career, Stapleton was the senior policy advisor to the Social Assistance Review Committee, as well as the Minister's Advisory Group on New Legislation. He was also involved in the implementation of the National Child Benefit.

Most recently, Stapleton was the research director for the Task Force on Modernizing Income Security for Working Age Adults in Toronto and co-chair of the working group associated with this project. He also completed an analysis of the legal aid needs test in Ontario. Currently, Stapleton is completing an Innovations Fellowship with the Metcalf Foundation on the disincentives faced by adults in the Toronto area with multiple subsidies. He maintains an active interest in the history of social assistance in Ontario.