Where do I get help for my child with autism? Is there a waiting list? Our family needs respite care –do I contact Non Insured Health Benefits or the provincial Department of Community Services? These can be complicated questions for people with disabilities living in First Nations communities. The first step to getting help is finding out what programs and services are available and then finding out about eligibility requirements such as status, residence, income and type of disability. The Tripartite Forum Project on disability services for people living on reserve is finding out just how hard it can be to get the right information at the right time.

Project committee members have collected directories of services from government agencies and service organizations to find out what services are available on reserve in Nova Scotia for persons with disabilities. Now the Committee is reviewing that information and meeting with service providers to ask about policies and procedures for obtaining assistance.

If you have experience as a parent, service provider or person with disabilities, the Committee would like to hear from you. Please come to the meetings being held in First Nations communities in Nova Scotia during the autumn. This is a chance to tell Steering Committee members about your experiences and your suggestions for service improvement. For more information about when a meeting will be held in your community, ask your Health Director or contact The Confederacy of Mainland Mi’kmaq Health Liaison at (902) 895-6385 or health@cmmns.com

“Identifying Critical Pathways of Access to Provincially and Federally Funded Disability Programs and Services for First Nations Living on Reserve in Nova Scotia” is a province wide project sponsored by the Mi’kmaq-Nova Scotia-Canada Tripartite Forum.

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