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Authority record
Secondary Agency

Saskatchewan. Vocational Rehabilitation of Disabled Persons (VRDP) Program

  • GA 55
  • Secondary Agency
  • 1961-1998

An Act Respecting the Vocational Rehabilitation of Disabled Persons and the Co-ordination of Rehabilitation Services was assented to on June 1st of that year and proclaimed in force on December 1, 1961. In operation by in 1962, the Vocational Rehabilitation of Disabled Persons (VRDP) Program was managed as a joint Federal-Provincial/Territorial program to provide assistance and services to disabled persons to train for, seek out or maintain employment.

In 1945 the Saskatchewan Department of Social Welfare sent out a questionnaire to the Secretary-Treasurers of all rural municipalities and local improvement districts to determine the number of "crippled and handicapped persons" in the province who received public aid and were believed to be able to gain sustainable employment given appropriate training and support services. In addition, the Department began studying the methods and programs offered by agencies in order to formulate a plan to accommodate an increase in public demand for training services. In 1946, the Department set up the Civilian Rehabilitation Division to administer a program for the rehabilitation of disabled persons. The services offered were to be the precursors of those offered by the VRDP program. The services included: i) Vocational Diagnosis; ii) Counselling and Guidance; iii) Vocational, Technical and Educational Training; iv) Prosthetics; v) Employment Placement; vi) Auxiliary Services; vii) Public Relations.

This program was a joint venture between the province and municipalities. Municipalities were asked to contribute 50% of costs for the vocational, technical or education training, and prosthetics, the Department of Social Welfare assumed the administration costs.

In 1948, the Department of Public Health made an effort to classify jobs in various hospital industries with a view to organizing certain areas for the accessibility and placement of those occupationally or mentally handicapped. As well, national grants became available to enhance programs associated with the care of children.

The Federal Government called a meeting with the provinces, territories, and private agencies in February, 1951 to discuss the need for a federal-provincial initiative for the rehabilitation of handicapped persons. The main resolution from this meeting urged the establishment of the Civilian Rehabilitation Program for Handicapped Persons to provide suitable allowances, physical restoration, guidance and training. The resultant goal of this initiative was to develop skills and capacities to enable handicapped persons to undertake permanent employment and live a "reasonable life."

In view of the limited resources and shortage of skilled personnel at the time, services were aimed at those individuals capable of "economic independence and social usefulness." Municipalities were invited to share in the costs of restoration, training, tools and equipment; and provide medical, psychiatric and vocational diagnostic services. A conference held later in 1951 established an advisory committee with representatives from the provincial governments, labour, industry, medicine and private organizations.

By 1952 -1953, the Saskatchewan Department of Social Welfare and Rehabilitation was working closely with the Department of Education to arrange for clients to participate in sheltered training workshops. In August, 1953, the Minister of the Department of Social Welfare and Rehabilitation signed an agreement on rehabilitation services for disabled persons, under which the costs of establishing a provincial government office for the co-ordination of these services within the Government of Saskatchewan would be shared on a 50-50 basis with the Federal Government. Saskatchewan was the first province in Canada to sign such an agreement and the first to appoint a Provincial Co-ordinator of Rehabilitation Services.

By 1954 the Department of Public Health participated in a similar program to assist paraplegics in receiving financial assistance, and arrangements for transportation - with efforts being coordinated with the Departments of Public Health, Education and Labour and the Workmen's Compensation Board. Furthermore, in 1954, a federal-provincial agreement was reached with the Federal Department of Labour and the various provincial Departments of Education for the selection and training of disabled persons and for the provision of shared costs for transportation, tuition, books and maintenance of certain disabled persons undergoing vocational training. The provinces were to provide individual evaluations and reviews of cases prior to acceptance into the program.

In 1961 the Federal Government entered into agreements (for six years or less) with individual provinces to supply 50 per-cent of the funding. Provincial and Territorial Governments held discretion as to specific services and individual financing. The program offered the following general services: i) Assessment and counselling; ii) Training and employment placements along with training or maintenance allowances; iii) Assistance in accessing the services and programs and services offered by voluntary organizations who participate in the vocational rehabilitation of disabled persons; iv) Training of persons as counsellors or administrators to carry out programs; and v) Books, tools/equipment and aids.

Additionally the VRDP Program provided funding for certain volunteer agencies that offered individual vocational rehabilitation services (i.e. Canadian Paraplegic Association, Canadian National Institute for the Blind, and Canadian Hearing Society).

In 1964, a Review Committee with representation from the provincial Departments of Welfare, Public Health and Education, and National Employment Services was struck; this committee ultimately reviewed and granted approval for training. This was followed by a review program that gathered information six months and one year after completion of training in order to assist officials in future program planning. [By the end of the program, this follow up period was extended to 36 months.]

In Saskatchewan, the administration of the VRDP program continued the earlier practice of having services to disabled persons offered cooperatively by three provincial departments - Education, Social Services and Health coordinated through a Director of Vocational Rehabilitation. The role of the Department of Social Services was primarily to administer the funds, to handle negotiations between the Federal and Provincial government departments and to provide for sheltered workshops. These workshops encouraged disabled persons to develop work and social skills until they were able either to reach their potential level of independence or to obtain sustainable employment. In addition the Department of Social Services offered the Long-Term Employment Initiative in order to offset the costs of additional supervision and/or job placement and/or job development costs, this included such initiatives as wage subsides and core funding to provincial disability organizations.

The Department of Education administered the funding to applicants for training (unpaid employment training and pre-employment training) and recreation/therapy programs for adults with disabilities. Support for post-secondary education was a major component of the individual vocational rehabilitation programs providing cost sharing for tuition, books and supplies, living allowances and support services such as attendants, interpreters, tutors and technical aids.

Under the Department of Health, the VRDP program provided assistive devices; medical supplies and equipment; alcohol and drug recovery services; individual and group counselling; psychological assessments; and vocational services/training in life skills and job search techniques. The Consultant Medical Social Worker was an officer working within the Department of Health, responsible for receiving referrals to the Program from various agencies and passing along to these agencies the results of the evaluation by the Training Selection Committee.

The VRDP Program, scheduled to end on 31 March 1997, was extended an additional year at a cost of $168 million (nationally) for existing programs while negotiations continued for the development of a suitable programming successor. By October 1997, the Government of Canada and provincial and territorial ministers responsible for social services approved the Employability Assistance for Peoples with Disabilities (EAPD) Initiative.

The Province of Saskatchewan entered into the five-year EAPD agreement with Human Resources Development Canada in March 1998 that allowed for a three-year transition period in which programs and services cost-shared under VRDP could be adjusted to reflect a new employability focus and avoid significant disruptions in client service.

Saskatchewan. Standing Committee on Public Accounts

  • GA 35
  • Secondary Agency
  • 1889-

The Select Standing Committee on Public Accounts and Printing was originally established in 1889 and was known as such until 1894. From 1895 to 1905, the Committee was known as the Select Standing Committee on Public Accounts, and in 1906 reverted to its original name until 1981.

In November, 1981 the Committee became known as the Standing Committee on Public Accounts. It reviews expenditures and revenues of the government as detailed in each fiscal year's Public Accounts Report and Provincial Auditor's Report and makes recommendations thereon. The Committee involves the Provincial Auditor, the Comptroller and officials from departments of the government to provide insight to the financial information that it is presented.

During the 1980s and 1990s, the Committee was struck at the beginning of each Legislature, and lapsed upon dissolution of that Legislature. Membership was determined by a Special Nominating Committee at the beginning of each Legislature. Its membership consisted of ten Members, and was chaired by a member of the Opposition. The ratio of party members within the committee reflected the proportion of the seats in the Assembly. The Committee was permitted to meet both during and in between legislative sessions. It was served by a Clerk-at-the-Table of the Legislative Assembly.

Upon recommendation from the Special Committee on Rules and Procedures, the structure and operation of standing committees in the Legislative Assembly changed extensively in 2003. A new committee structure was implemented in the first session of the Twenty-fifth Legislature. The Standing Committee on Public Accounts operates as the Legislative Assembly's only Scrutiny Committee. However, the Committee's purpose and functions remain the same as they were prior to 2003.

Saskatchewan. Standing Committee on Private Members' Bills

  • GA 34
  • Secondary Agency
  • 1903 - 2003

The Select Standing Committee on Standing Orders and Private Bills was established in April, 1903. In its early years, the Committee also functioned as the Select Standing Committee on Private Bills and Railways (1906-1917). It became known as the Select Standing Committee on Private Bills in 1918 and functioned as such until 1981. In November, 1981, the Committee's name was changed to the Standing Committee on Private Members' Bills. The Committee's function was to examine all proposed Private Bills, and Public Bills introduced by a Private Member, both prior to introduction in the Assembly and after receiving second reading in the Assembly.

The Standing Committee on Private Members' Bills was struck at the beginning of each Legislature, and lapsed upon dissolution of that Legislature. Membership was determined by a Special Nominating Committee at the beginning of each Legislature. The Committee was usually chaired by a member of Government. The ratio of party members within the committee reflected the proportion of the seats in the Assembly. Membership of the Committee consisted of between eight and ten Members.

The Committee was permitted to meet both during and in between legislative sessions. It was served by a Clerk-at-the-Table of the Legislative Assembly.

The Standing Committee on Private Members' Bills was dissolved in 2003 upon the recommendation of the Special Committee on Rules and Procedures. Since the commencement of the Twenty-fifth Legislature in 2004, the Standing Committee on Private Bills has operated as a House Committee under the Standing Committee structure.

Saskatchewan. Standing Committee on Non-Controversial Bills

  • GA 33
  • Secondary Agency
  • 1971-2003

The Select Standing Committee on Non-Controversial Bills was established in July, 1971 to review Bills that were referred to the Committee by the Ministers responsible for the Bill and his/her officials, and made recommendations thereon. The Committee became known as the Standing Committee on Non-Controversial Bills in November, 1981.

The Committee was struck at the beginning of each Legislature, and lapsed upon dissolution of that Legislature. Membership was determined by a Special Nominating Committee at the beginning of each Legislature. Membership consisted of between seven and ten Members.

The Committee was chaired by a member of the Opposition, with the majority of membership also being held by the Opposition.

The Committee was permitted to meet both during and in between sessions. Daily substitutions by Members were also permitted in the Committee. It was served by a Clerk-at-the-Table of the Legislative Assembly.

The Standing Committee on Non-Controversial Bills was dissolved in June, 2003 upon the recommendation of the Special Committee on Rules and Expenditures.

Saskatchewan. Standing Committee on Estimates

  • GA 32
  • Secondary Agency
  • 1981-2003

The Standing Committee on Estimates was established in 1981 to review and consider budgetary estimates that were referred to it by the Legislative Assembly, and made recommendations thereon.

The Committee was struck at the beginning of each Legislature, and lapsed upon dissolution of that Legislature. Membership was determined by a Special Nominating Committee at the beginning of each Legislature. Membership consisted of nine to ten Members.

The Committee was usually chaired by a member of Government. The ratio of party members within the committee reflected the proportion of the seats in the Assembly.

The Committee was permitted to meet both during and in between sessions. It was served by a Clerk-at-the-Table of the Legislative Assembly.

The Standing Committee on Estimates was dissolved in June, 2003 upon recommendation of the Special Committee on Rules and Procedures.

Saskatchewan. Standing Committee on Crown Corporations

  • GA 31
  • Secondary Agency
  • 1946 - 2003

The Standing Committee on Crown Corporations was established in February, 1946 to examine the annual reports and financial statements of the Province's Crown corporations and related agencies.

The Committee was originally named the Select Standing Committee on Crown Corporations and its name was changed to the Standing Committee on Crown Corporations in November, 1981.

The Committee was struck at the beginning of each Legislature, and lapsed upon dissolution of that Legislature. Membership was determined by a Special Nominating Committee at the beginning of each Legislature.

Between 1982 and 1991, the membership of the Standing Committee on Crown Corporations consisted of twenty Members. By 2003, nine members stood on the Committee.

The Committee was usually chaired by a member of Government. The ratio of party members within the committee reflected the proportion of seats held in the Assembly.

The Committee was permitted to meet both during and in between sessions. Daily substitutions by Members were also permitted in the Committee. It was served by a Clerk-at-the-Table of the Legislative Assembly.

The Standing Committee on Crown Corporations was dissolved in June, 2003 upon the recommendation of the Special Committee on Rules and Procedures. Since the commencement of the Twenty-fifth Legislature in 2004, the Standing Committee on Crown and Central Agencies has operated as a Policy Field Committee under the Standing Committee structure.

Saskatchewan. Standing Committee on Communication

  • GA 30
  • Secondary Agency
  • 1981- 2003

The Standing Committee on Communication was in existence from 1981 to 2003 to examine records retention and disposal of schedules submitted by the Saskatchewan Archives Board, and consider matters pertaining to the broadcast of Legislative Assembly proceedings.

In 1981, the Select Standing Committee on Library and the Select Standing Committee on Radio Broadcasts of Selected Proceedings, were dissolved and merged to form the Standing Committee on Communication, with the new Committee assuming the functions of the former committees.

During the 1980s and 1990s, the Committee was struck at the beginning of each Legislature and was in existence for the duration of the Legislature. Membership was determined by a Special Nominating Committee at the beginning of each Legislature. Its membership consisted of between nine and eleven Members, and was usually chaired by a member of Government. The ratio of party members within the committee reflected the proportion of the seats in the Assembly.

The Committee was permitted to meet both during and in between legislative sessions. It was served by a Clerk-at-the-Table of the Legislative Assembly.

The Standing Committee on Communication was dissolved in 2003 upon the recommendation of the Special Committee on Rules and Procedures.

Saskatchewan. Special Committee on the Review of the Legislative Library

  • GA 21
  • Secondary Agency
  • 1979 - 1981

The Special Committee on the Review of the Legislative Library was appointed on May 3, 1979 during the First Session of the Nineteenth Legislature. It met fourteen times, from June 9, 1979 to May 4, 1981. The Committee travelled to Toronto, Ottawa, Edmonton and Victoria to tour legislative libraries in those jurisdictions. It received six briefs and conducted six interviews with selected individuals. The Committee presented its Final Report on May 7, 1981.

Members of the Special Committee on the Review of the Legislative Library were: Hon. D McArthur, MLA (Regina Lakeview) (Chairman); R. Katzman, MLA (Rosthern) (Vice-Chairman); Hon. D. Lingenfelter, MLA (Shaunavon); Hon. R. Long, MLA (Cutkinfe-Lloydminster); Hon. G. MacMurchy, MLA (Last Mountain-Touchwood); R. Nelson, MLA (Yorkton); R. Pickering, MLA (Bengough-Milestone); B. Poniatowski, MLA (Saskatoon Eastview); G. Taylor, MLA (Indian Head-Wolseley); and C. White, MLA (Regina Wascana).

Staff members for the Committee were: Gwenn Ronyk (Secretary, May 1979 - December 1980); David Mitchell (Secretary, January 1981 - May 1981); and Carol Adams (Research Assistant).

Saskatchewan. Special Committee on the Review of Liquor Regulations in Saskatchewan

  • GA 19
  • Secondary Agency
  • 1971-1973

The Special Committee on the Review of Liquor Regulations in Saskatchewan was appointed on August 9, 1971 during the First Session of the Seventeenth Legislature. It met thirty times from August 24, 1971 through to January 3, 1973. On January 10, 1972, the Hon. John E. Brockelbank, MLA stepped down as Chairman and as a member of the Steering Committee. He was replaced in both capacities by Don Faris, MLA. At this time, Ed Whelan, MLA was also appointed to the Steering Committee. Upon the death of Russ Brown, MLA, Arthur Thibault, MLA was appointed to the Committee.

The Committee held five public hearings throughout November and December, 1971. It presented an Interim Report on January 10, 1972 and its Final Report on January 1, 1973.

Members of the Special Committee on the Review of Liquor Regulations in Saskatchewan were: Don Faris, MLA (Arm River) (Chairman); Don McPherson, MLA (Regina Lakeview) (Vice-Chairman); Hon. John E. Brockelbank, MLA (Saskatoon Mayfair); Russ Brown, MLA (Souris-Estevan) (died during Committee's tenure); M. Feduniak, MLA (Turtleford); Mike Feschuk, MLA (Prince Albert East); John Gardner, MLA (Moosomin); Miro Kwasnica, MLA (Cutknife); David Lange, MLA (Assiniboia-Bengough); Cy MacDonald, MLA (Milestone); Cliff McIsaac, MLA (Wilkie); Arthur Thibault, MLA (Melfort-Kinistino); and Ed Whelan, MLA (Regina North West).

Staff members for the Committee were: Gordon Barnhart (Secretary); and Joe Zakreski (Research Assistant).

Saskatchewan. Special Committee on the Provincial Auditor in Saskatchewan

  • GA 20
  • Secondary Agency
  • 1978

The Special Committee on the Provincial Auditor in Saskatchewan was appointed on May 23, 1978 during the Fifth Session of the Eighteenth Legislature. It met only three times, from May 26 through to August 28, 1978. The Committee died upon the dissolution of the Eighteenth Legislature on September 19, 1978. As a result, no formal reports from the Committee were published.

Members of the Special Committee on the Provincial Auditor in Saskatchewan were: William Allen, MLA (Regina Rosemont) (Chairman); Jack Wiebe, MLA (Morse) (Vice-Chairman); Mike Feschuk, MLA (Prince Albert; Gary Lane, MLA (Qu'Appelle); Harold Lane, MLA (Saskatoon Sutherland); Norman MacAuley, MLA (Cumberland); Gordon MacMurchy, MLA (Last Mountain-Touchwood); Randall Nelson, MLA (Yorkton); Glen Penner, MLA (Saskatoon Eastview); John Skoberg, MLA (Moose Jaw North); and Walter Shimsek, MLA (Regina North East). Staff member for the Committee was Gordon Barnhart (Secretary).

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