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OHRC’s work with the Ministry of Training, Colleges and Universities

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One of the obstacles to removing the emphasis on disclosure of diagnosis had been the Ministry of Training, Colleges and Universities’ (MTCU) requirement for a DSM diagnosis when applying for bursaries and grants for students with disabilities. Since Offices for Students with Disabilities at colleges and universities are responsible for gathering and verifying information to establish eligibility for the Ontario Student Assistance Program Bursaries for Students with Disabilities and the federal Canada Student Grants, this meant post-secondary institutions could not completely eliminate the requirement to disclose a DSM diagnosis for students seeking such financial aid.

The OHRC therefore wrote to the MTCU in April 2016, asking the Ministry to revise its policies so that students are only required to provide a medical certificate that verifies that the student has a disability, without having to disclose a specific diagnosis (Appendix 3). The MTCU advised the OHRC that it had revised its disability-related eligibility criteria identified in OSAP forms and guidelines to remove the requirement for disclosure of mental health diagnosis, effective for the 2016-2017 OSAP academic year.

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