Disability Vocational Rehabilitation Program
Human Resources and Skills Development Canada, the federal government department responsible for administering the Canada Pension Plan, has a program that may help people who receive a Canada Pension Plan disability benefit return to Canada's labour market.
- What is the Canada Pension Plan Disability Vocational Rehabilitation Program?
- Who would benefit from this program?
- What is the goal of the Canada Pension Plan Disability Vocational Rehabilitation Program?
- Working in partnership
- What services are included?
- Moving into employment
- How do I get more information about Canada Pension Plan disability vocational rehabilitation?
1. What is the Canada Pension Plan Disability Vocational Rehabilitation Program?
The Canada Pension Plan Disability Vocational Rehabilitation Program is designed to help people who receive a Canada Pension Plan disability benefit return to work. In the past, many people receiving benefits because of a severe and prolonged disability believed that they were permanently out of the work force. Today, new technology, medical treatments and skills training are making it possible for some people with severe disabilities to become part of and remain in the work force. That is why the Canada Pension Plan is making vocational rehabilitation available to those who can benefit from it the most.
2. Who would benefit from this program?
The Canada Pension Plan is looking for people receiving Canada Pension Plan disability benefits who could benefit from vocational rehabilitation. The most likely candidates are those:
- who are motivated to return to work; and
- whose physicians agree that they can cope with a work-related rehabilitation program.
3. What is the goal of the Canada Pension Plan Disability Vocational Rehabilitation Program?
The goal of the Canada Pension Plan Disability Vocational Rehabilitation Program is to help people who are receiving Canada Pension Plan disability benefits return to work. For example, they could:
- return to their former job with their former employer;
- return to a modified version of their former job;
- work at a different job with their former employer using their current or newly acquired skills;
- work at a different job with any employer able to use their current or new skills;
- be retrained for a job through skills or education upgrading;
- be helped to gain skills for self-employment.
4. Working in partnership
Human Resources and Skills Development Canada is committed to working in partnership in all our programs. To help more people receiving Canada Pension Plan disability benefits return to work, the Canada Pension Plan needs to work with partners who provide services to the same clients. Such partners could include health care professionals, workers' compensation boards and private insurance companies, as well as local and provincial programs and employment assistance counselors.
We encourage co-insurers, social services workers, physicians, officials at all levels of government, employers and other to discuss this program with their clients who receive Canada Pension Plan disability benefits and refer them to our toll-free number listed below.
5. What services are included?
This program centers on developing an individualized return-to-work rehabilitation plan for each participant. A rehabilitation specialist in the participant's community will work with that person and the Canada Pension Plan rehabilitation case manager to develop the plan. The Canada Pension Plan Disability Vocational Rehabilitation Program could include, but is not limited to, any number of the following services:
- Guidance - Participants will receive one-on-one guidance to identify their needs, assess their education and current job skills, discuss their work goals and find out about the current job market in their area. With help from a rehabilitation specialist, participants will learn about the skills that employers are looking for, or look at opportunities for self-employment.
- Planning A Return-to-Work - A local vocational rehabilitation specialist will work with the participant to develop an individualized return-to-work rehabilitation plan in consultation with the participant's treating physician. The participant, the Canada Pension Plan case manager, as well as the participant's doctor and local vocational rehabilitation specialist must all sign this plan. Then it becomes the participant's contract with the Canada Pension Plan.
- Improve Skills/Retraining - If participants need to improve their skills, upgrade their education or retrain to secure a job, the Canada Pension Plan may cover the costs.
- Developing Job Search Skills - After participants complete their work-related rehabilitation, their rehabilitation specialist will help them to find work. For example, they could:
- find out where the jobs are;
- prepare a résumé;
- join a job-finding club to practice their interview skills; and
- develop strategies to get interviews or identify organizations that might hire them.
6. Moving into employment
In the future if they must stop working because of the same medical conditions, they may be able to use our fast-track re-application process. They may also re-apply for disability benefits. Participants should talk to a Canada Pension Plan case manager about how their eligibility for Canada Pension Plan disability benefits is protected if they need to re-apply. Participants will still get their regular Canada Pension Plan disability benefit during the time they participate in the program. At the end of the upgrading or retraining process their vocational rehabilitation specialist will help them look for a job. Their benefit continues during this period. If they find a job the Canada Pension Plan disability benefit will continue for the first three months after work begins. However, if they don't find a job, the benefit will still stop at the end of the job search period.
7. How do I get more information about Canada Pension Plan disability vocational rehabilitation?
For more information about the program or to refer someone who is currently receiving a CPP disability benefit please contact us toll-free at 1-800-277-9914 (TTY: 1-800-255-4786).
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