COVID-19 update: DABC offering remote services during office closure

To remain in line with the recommendations of provincial health authorities around physical distancing, DABC’s office will remain closed until further notice.

DABC’s direct services are now being offered remotely. Appointments can be booked by email or phone, but during this time email may be more efficient.

Thank you for your patience. Stay safe, everyone!

Program contact information:

Advocacy Access

If you require help accessing provincial disability benefits (PWD) or Canada Pension Plan-Disability Benefits (CPPD), please contact Advocacy Access:

– email advocacy@disabilityalliancebc.org, or
– call 604-872-1278 or 1-800-663-1278 (Toll-free).

Tax AID DABC

If you are a person with a disability who requires assistance filing your income taxes, please contact Tax AID DABC:

– email taxaid@disabilityalliancebc.org,
– call 236-477-1717 or 1-877-940-7797 (Toll-free), or
– book an appointment online here.

Access RDSP

If you require help accessing the Disability Tax Credit (DTC) or Registered Disability Savings Plan (RDSP):

– email rdsp@disabilityalliancebc.org
– call 604-872-1278 or 1-800-663-1278 (Toll-free), or
– visit https://www.rdsp.com/supports-and-services/

Disability Law Clinic

The Disability Law clinic can help British Columbians with disabilities with the following issues:

o Accommodations related to the COVID-19 virus and social distancing
o Accommodation in the workplace
o Access to transportation
o Access to education
o Housing
o Service animals

We can also provide advice to people having problems with their disability benefits.

To contact the Law Clinic:

– call 604-872-1278 or 1-800-663-1278 (Toll-free), or
– email lawclinic@disabilityalliancebc.org

DABC joins community partners in calling on the Ministry to provide crisis supports for income assistance and PWD recipients

DABC has joined with other advocacy groups to call on the provincial government for additional support for people who receive income assistance and disability assistance during the COVID-19 crisis. Specific asks include temporary exemption of EI and the newly announced federal Emergency Support & Emergency Care benefits from clawback, as well as increasing availability of crisis supplements for all income assistance and disability assistance recipients.

To read the letter to Minister Shane Simpson, please click here.

TransLink update re: COVID-19 measures and people with disabilities

TransLink has implemented several temporary measures in order to keep people safe during the current health crisis. Below are the measures that may be particularly relevant to people with disabilities.

  1. STATION ASSISTANCE FOR CUSTOMERS WITH SIGHT LOSS

Due to the heightened importance of social distancing at this time, TransLink will be modifying how the Station Assistance service for customers with sight loss is delivered.

If you require sighted guide at a SkyTrain or Canada Line Station, please call 604-520-5518 as you have previously done. Please note that wait times may be longer than usual due to less availability of Station Attendants at this time.

The measures that will be in place to facilitate social distancing, while continuing to assist customers with sight loss in a safe manner were developed through consultation with staff at Vision Loss Rehabilitation Canada. Depending on the level of assistance required by the customer, a Station Attendant will either provide guidance with descriptive verbal cues, or provide distant contact sighted guide with the use of a mobility aid.

  1. REAR DOOR BOARDING ON CONVENTIONAL BUS

In order to promote social distancing, customers who are able are now being asked to board buses using the rear doors. Customers who need to board at the front door are still welcome to do so. Given that TransLink cannot collect fares at the rear doors, and some buses aren’t equipped with Compass Card readers at that entrance, fare collection will be suspended on the bus system until further notice. Regular fares still apply on other TransLink modes.

  1. SUSPENSION OF FARE COLLECTION ON HANDYDART

Because fare payment on HandyDART can often require close interaction between operators and customers, TransLink is suspending fare collection on HandyDART until further notice.

  • This step is being taken to protect operators and promote social distancing.
  • Regular fares still apply on SkyTrain, West Coast Express and SeaBus as payment doesn’t involve any person-to-person interaction.
  1. SUSPENSION OF IN-PERSON ASSESSMENTS FOR RFID FARE GATES

Temporary provisions have been made to the Universal Fare Gate Access Program. Applications will continue to be processed; however, in-person assessments will not be held at this time. Instead, a short phone meeting will be scheduled with the applicant, and if RFID gate access is determined to be a fit, a two month temporary access will be granted. Once the Covid-19 situation normalizes, an in-person meeting will then be held.