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Programs and Services

Volunteer Legal and Advocacy Program (VLAP) - AB & NWT

    The Volunteer Legal and Advocacy Program (VLAP) assists people living with multiple sclerosis, within the Alberta and NWT Division of the Multiple Sclerosis Society of Canada, to access legal and advocacy resources.

    Topics

    Information about the following topics is provided in sections below:

    1) Self-Advocacy Tools: Resource Guides

    2) Self-Advocacy Tools: Archived Webinars

    3) Help with AISH, CPP-D, Income Assistance Program, and DTC Applications

    4) Help with Legal Matters

    5) Help with Other Advocacy Issues

    6) Volunteer with VLAP

    Additionally, information is provided via email, telephone, or in-person at offices throughout the Alberta and Northwest Territories Division (please click here to find an office near you or contact an MS Navigator).

    1) Self-Advocacy Tools: Resource Guides

    2) Self-Advocacy Tools: Archived Webinars

    These webinars address the legal and advocacy issues that individuals experiencing MS most often encounter. Webinars on new topics occur and are shared throughout the year; please check back for new recordings or contact us with your questions and to learn about upcoming webinars (please click here to find an office near you or contact an MS Navigator).

    3) Help with AISH, CPP-D, Income Assistance Program, and Disability Tax Credit Applications

    The Alberta and Northwest Territories Division is pleased to offer help with applications for Assured Income for the Severely Handicapped (AISH), Canadian Pension Plan – Disability (CPP-D) benefits, the Northwest Territories’ Income Assistance Program, and the Disability Tax Credit. If you require assistance with one or more of these applications, please reach out as we have trained volunteers and staff who can support you with the more difficult parts of these applications. By receiving support, you will increase your chances of receiving these benefits.

    If you are interested in receiving application assistance, please contact the Coordinator, Advocacy and Support or an MS Navigator, who will guide you through the initial steps.

    4) Help with Legal Matters

    The Alberta and Northwest Territories Division is pleased to offer help with accessing legal resources. Pro bono legal representation is also available in specific legal areas of expertise in several communities throughout Alberta and NWT. Financial and other eligibility criteria apply to this aspect of the program.

    If you are interested in receiving help to access legal resources, please contact the Coordinator, Advocacy and Support or an MS Navigator, who will guide you through the initial steps.

    5) Help with Other Advocacy Issues

    The Alberta and Northwest Territories Division is pleased to offer information and advocacy support with issues in the following areas:

    • Additional Income Support, including short- and long-term disability and chronic illness insurance, as well as Registered Disability Savings Plans (RDSPs)
    • Education and Employment
    • Equipment
    • Family and Caregiver Support
    • Health
    • Housing
    • Human Rights
    • Transportation

    Individuals who require assistance, and/or are unsure if advocacy support is provided for a particular issue, are encouraged to connect with the MS Society for more information (please click here to find an office near you or contact the Coordinator, Advocacy and Support). The MS Society works with individuals to foster self-empowerment and determine the best course of action. If the MS Society is unable to assist, volunteers and/or staff will connect individuals to other resources where these are available.

    6) Volunteer with VLAP

    If you are interested in working with individuals experiencing MS to foster self-empowerment, complete income support applications, and learn about legal and advocacy resources, you might like to be a VLAP volunteer! For more information, please visit https://mssociety.ca/get-involved/volunteer and scroll down to the Alberta tab.

    To read Chris Alex's advocacy story, please click here.

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