GNWT releases Disability Action Plan Final Report
October 4, 2023
Today, the Government of the Northwest Territories (GNWT) released its final report outlining the key accomplishments from the GNWT Disability Action Plan 2018-2022.
The Action Plan addresses gaps and barriers identified through a collaborative engagement process involving persons with disabilities, non-government organizations, and other partners. The Action Plan’s objectives were built on the priorities of the NWT Disability Strategic Framework 2017-2027 to advance equity, accessibility, inclusion, and partnership.
The five priority objectives of the Action Plan were as follows:
- Increase income security and reduce poverty
- Build awareness and knowledge through education and training
- Improve transition planning and options
- Encourage universal design and living options
- Improve access and quality of caregiver supports
A total of 50 activities were identified, each mapped with outputs and outcomes aligned with the Action Plan’s five-year timeline. While the Action Plan ended on March 31, 2022, an additional six activities were completed by Departments during the 2022-2023 fiscal year.
Implementation of the Action Plan was disrupted by the unprecedented challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic. However, substantial progress was made:
- 13 of the 50 activities were completed;
- 32 are underway;
- 4 are delayed, and
- 1 is not proceeding.
Including the additional six activities completed in 2022-2023, the completed Action Plan activities total 19.
Accomplishments from the Action Plan include:
- Development of a new Income Assistance program for seniors and persons with disabilities;
- Introduction of the Canada NWT Housing Benefit program to support low to moderate income families, including persons with disabilities, living in private market rental housing;
- Update of Capital planning checklists for community governments and Good Building Practice for Northern Facilities guidelines to improve accessibility in public buildings;
- Expansion of rehabilitation resources to the Beaufort Delta and Stanton Territorial Hospital Rehabilitation Teams to support more families of children with complex needs;
- Establishment of an Adult FASD Diagnostic Clinic to support adults with disabilities with access to assessment and diagnostics services;
- Integration of adult psychological assessment services in Labour Market Programs to adapt training and support services to assist persons with disabilities;
- Completion of a NWT Supported Living Review to identify gaps in Supported Living services, future demand and best practices to support adults with disabilities.
GNWT remains committed to advancing the priorities set out in the NWT Disability Framework with the aim to coordinate programs and services that are inclusive for NWT residents.
“The accomplishments of the Disability Action Plan demonstrates our commitment to improving the lives of individuals with disabilities. Our collaborative efforts with various government departments and partner organizations have led to tangible improvements in accessibility and inclusion. As we move forward, we remain dedicated to building on these achievements to ensure a more inclusive and supportive environment for all.”
– Julie Green, Minister Responsible for Persons with Disabilities
- Under the priority objectives, a total of 50 activities were identified, with outcomes aligned with the Action Plan’s five-year timeline.
- Of the 50 activities, 13 (26%) were completed, 32 (64%) were underway, 4 (8%) were delayed, and 1 (2%) was cancelled.
- While the Action Plan ended on March 31, 2022, an additional six activities were completed by Departments during the 2022-2023 fiscal year, bringing the total completed Action Plan activities to 19.
- The Action Plan builds on the priorities established within Equity, Accessibility, Inclusion and Participation: NWT Disability Strategic Framework 2017-2027.
- This work was guided by the results of extensive engagement with non-government organization partners in the disability sector including NWT Disabilities Council, Yellowknife Association for Community Living, Canadian National Institute for the Blind – Alberta/NWT, Hay River Committee for Persons with Disabilities, the NWT Seniors’ Society, and the Foster Family Coalition of the NWT.
- The Action Plan was drafted in partnership with the GNWT Departments of: Health and Social Services; Education, Culture and Employment; Justice; Finance; Municipal and Community Affairs; and the NWT Housing Corporation.
- The GNWT remains committed to the NWT Disability Framework’s priorities and will continue efforts to enhance support, programs, and accessibility for persons with disabilities.
For media requests, please contact:
Government of the Northwest Territories