Persons with Disabilities applying for ODSP 

 If you are a person with a disability and you are applying for ODSP,( Ontario Disability Support Program), then you need to know your rights before they deny you. This legislation, the ODSPA (Ontario Disability Support Program Act)  was created to Deny by Design.

ODSPA discrimination under the Ontario Human Rights Code.

Section 4 (1) of the ODSPA discriminates against persons with disabilities.

Discrimination under the Code can be direct refusal to provide access to services, for example, because of a disability.

In some cases, it will be clear that discrimination has occurred. In others, a preliminary assessment tool may be helpful. The Supreme Court of Canada, Law v. Canada (Minister of Employment and Immigration), [1999] 1 S.C.R. 497, has suggested three broad inquiries to determine if discrimination has taken place:

(1) Differential treatment


Was there substantively differential treatment, either because of a distinction, exclusion or preference, or because of a failure to take into account the complainant’s already disadvantaged position within Canadian society?

(2) An enumerated ground


Was the differential treatment based on an enumerated ground? The enumerated grounds appear in s.15 (1) of the Charter. They are: race, national or ethnic origin, colour, religion, sex, age or mental or physical disability.

(3) Discrimination in a substantive sense

Finally, does the differential treatment discriminate by imposing a burden upon, or withholding a benefit from, a person? The discrimination might be based on stereotypes of a presumed group or personal characteristics, or might perpetuate or promote the view that a person is less capable or worthy of recognition or value as a human being or as a member of Canadian society who is equally deserving of concern, respect and consideration. Does the differential treatment amount to discrimination because it makes distinctions that are offensive to human dignity?

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Social Benefits Tribunal

The Supreme Court of Canada ruled that the Social Benefits Tribunal of Ontario, a provincially created statutory tribunal which hears appeals regarding social assistance matters, is obligated to follow provincial human rights legislation in rendering its decisions.
Tranchemontagne v. Ontario (Director, Disability Support Program), 2006 SCC 14, [2006] 1 S.C.R. 513

 

 

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