MP Peter Julian will lead the disabilities workshop along with Georgina Jolibois. Photo courtesy Facebook, Peter Julian, MP

The federal NDP says upcoming seminars based out of La Ronge will help northerners dealing with disabilities to access money they are owed.

Specifically, the workshops focus on disability tax benefits that people might not be aware of.

NDP Member of Parliament Peter Julian worked in the disabilities field before he was elected and has been the force behind these open-house style meetings.

He says in the hundreds of seminars they’ve held across Canada, they’ve found that people who come out can gain thousands of dollars. The money is either saved long-term by accessing a disabilities savings plan or comes in the form of retroactive reimbursements or accessing a disabilities savings plan.

In one case, a janitor in Julian’s British Columbia riding went to a seminar and was able to get $13,000 after following the steps to apply for these programs.

Julian says federal disabilities benefits originated under Stephen Harper’s Conservatives, but the Conservatives also enforced cutbacks that stopped Revenue Canada employees from publicizing the programs to those who may use it. The Liberals have continued this practice.

“It surprises me that when there are good programs available, that the government seems reluctant to talk about them and publicize them. So we have found that most families that should be benefiting from these programs don’t know that they exist,” Julian says.

Disabilities are especially difficult to deal with in remote and First Nations communities, which is why he said Desnethe-Missinnippi Churchill River MP Georgina Jolibois is partnering with a number of organizations to put on these seminars.

“There’s a lot of money in Ottawa that actually is owed to northern Saskatchewan. So the more people we have that go out, take the steps and actually apply for the disability tax credit or for the registered disabilities saving plan, that means more money leaving Ottawa and coming to northern Saskatchewan,” Julian says.

He adds that the local economy will benefit in the long run from people having more money to spend within their communities.

Anyone who is disabled or cares for a disabled person is invited to attend.

Here is further information, based on the NDP’s news release:

The first seminar is 2:30 p.m. on Monday at the Jonas Roberts Memorial Centre.

The Telehealth session will be held from 9:30 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. on Tuesday at the La Ronge Health Centre (Room 2708).

The Telehealth session will be offered to the three northern health regions (MCRRHA, KYHR and AHA) as well as the northern First Nations communities (MLTC, PBCN, PAGC and LLRIB).

Please RSVP your local Telehealth coordinator by August 29, 2016 and ask to join session # 864560 (Seminar on Disability Tax Credit Forms).

Since the seminars are very popular and space is limited, you should call 1-844- 294-6711 or 1-866-400-2334 to reserve your spot and to receive the Telehealth Coordinator’s contact information located in your area.