Persons with Persistent Multiple Barriers

Overview

The Persons with Persistent Multiple Barriers (PPMB) category provides assistance to recipients who have long-term barriers to employment that are not expected to be overcome in the short term.  PPMB recipients are exempt from employment obligations.  An earnings exemption is available to encourage recipients who want to work to try employment, gain experience, participate more fully in the community as they are able, and earn more income. Family units where one or both recipients are eligible for PPMB may be provided a higher support rate and additional supplements.

PPMB category applies to recipients who are eligible under the Employment and Assistance Act.  PPMB is not included in the Employment and Assistance for Persons with Disabilities Act.  Therefore, the PPMB category cannot be assessed for spouses of recipients with the Persons with Disabilities (PWD) designation. PPMB eligibility is assessed using a single two-part application form.

It is recognized that some recipients in this category may overcome their barriers over time and improve their employability while others may not.  Some may have health conditions that worsen over time and require additional supports.  This is why the PPMB category provides recipients with time and supports to overcome their barriers and move towards independence, or transition to other client categories, including the PWD designation.

Policy

Effective: July 1, 2019

Recipients who qualify for Persons with Persistent Multiple Barriers (PPMB) are those who meet the following criteria:
 

  • has a health condition that has lasted for at least 1 year and is likely to continue for at least 2 more years or has a health condition that has occurred frequently in the past year and is likely to continue for at least two more years. This health condition is a barrier that seriously impedes a person’s ability to search for, accept or continue in employment

AND
 

  • has at least one additional barrier (listed under Barriers to Employment, below) that seriously impedes the person from searching for, accepting or continuing in employment.

Effective: July 1, 2019

The recipient has a health condition, confirmed by an approved health professional, that:

  • has continued for at least 1 year and is likely to continue for at least 2 more years,

OR

  • has occurred frequently in the past year and is likely to continue for at least 2 more years.

and, that health condition, in the opinion of the minister, is a barrier that seriously impedes the person’s ability to search for, accept or continue in employment.

An approved health professional is a: 

  • medical practitioner
  • nurse practitioner
  • registered psychologist
  • registered nurse or registered psychiatric nurse
  • occupational therapist
  • physical therapist
  • registered social worker
  • chiropractor
  • Registered clinical counsellor in good standing with the BC Association of Clinical Counsellors
  • School psychologist (as defined by Independent School Act or the School Act)

Seriously Impedes

A health condition is considered to seriously impede the recipient’s ability to search for, accept, or continue in employment when, as a result of the health condition, the recipient is unable to participate in any type of employment that would enable independence from income assistance.

When determining if the health condition seriously impedes employment, the information provided by the health professional in Section 1 of the PPMB application form should be taken into consideration:

  • Impact of the health condition on the recipient’s ability to work full-time or only part-time
  • Impact of the health condition on the recipient’s ability to work on a regular or sporadic basis

Effective: July 1, 2019

The recipient has at least one additional barrier that seriously impedes the recipient’s ability to search for, accept, or continue in employment.  A barrier is considered to seriously impede the recipient’s ability to search for, accept, or continue in employment when, because of the barrier, the recipient is unable to participate in employment that would enable independence from income assistance or that requires an accommodation to obtain or maintain employment.

Barriers that seriously impede employment are:

  • Currently experiencing homelessness or having experienced homelessness in the past 12 months.  
  • Currently experiencing domestic violence or having experienced domestic violence in the past 6 months
  • Less than Grade 12 education
  • Needing English language skills training
  • Not having basic skills for employment
  • Having a Criminal Record
  • Having accessed emergency health, mental health or addiction services multiple times within the past 12 months
  • Recent Convention refugee (within the past 24 months) or currently a refugee claimant
  • Former Child in Care (Ministry of Children and Family Development or similar Canadian jurisdiction)
  • Other severe barrier to employment listed on their application

Effective: July 1, 2019

The ministry is not currently performing regular reviews for PPMB recipients. Reviews will be completed in exceptional circumstances (i.e., the ministry has been supplied with inaccurate or new information). PPMB is not a permanent category and the ministry has the authority to review a person’s eligibility for PPMB.

Effective: October 1, 2012

Family units where one adult is eligible for PPMB may be eligible for:
 

  • higher support rate [see Rate Table: Income Assistance Rates]
  • medical coverage that includes general health supplements [see Related Links – Health Supplement Summary]
  • dental supplements [see Related Links – Dental and Orthodontic Services]
  • earnings exemption [see Related Links – Income Treatment and Exemptions – Policy – Earned Income]

 

Procedures

Effective: July 1, 2019

Step 1: Request for PPMB Assessment

If a request for a PPMB Application is received, staff must confirm if the person is eligible as a recipient of income assistance or hardship assistance.

The PPMB Application Form (HR2892) may not be provided if the person is not eligible for income assistance or hardship assistance, or if they or their spouse has the Persons with Disabilities (PWD) designation. 

If staff determine the person is not eligible to apply for PPMB, staff must advise that the decision to not provide a PPMB application form may be reconsidered.

Step 2: Provide the Persons with Persistent Multiple Barriers Application Form (HR2892)

If the recipient is eligible to apply for PPMB, provide the Persons with Persistent Multiple Barriers Application Form (HR2892) [see Forms and Letters]. Advise the recipient to have Section 1 of the PPMB Application Form HR2892 completed by a health professional, and Section 2 is to be completed by the recipient, as denoted on the form.   

Step 3: Initial Adjudication

Health Assistance (HA) adjudicates the PPMB application form.

If PPMB is approved:

HA

1.

Sends the decision letter to the recipient.

 

2.

PPMB status is effective the first of the month following approval.

If PPMB is denied:

HA

1.

Sends the decision letter and decision summary to the recipient to advise of the reasons for the denial and the right to reconsideration.

[If a reconsideration is requested, see Related Links – Reconsideration.]

Effective: July 1, 2019

Reviews will be completed in exceptional circumstances (e.g., the ministry has been supplied with inaccurate or new information).  

PPMB reviews follow the following process:

Notification of Review

1.

A service request will be created for the PPMB review.

2.

PPMB recipient is advised to have Section 1 of the Persons with Persistent Multiple Barriers Application Form (HR2892) completed by a health professional.

HA will send a letter to recipients by mail or through My Self-Serve, along with the Persons with Persistent Multiple Barriers Application Form (HR2892). 

Health Assistance (HA) conducts the review for PPMB category.

When a PPMB review results in an approval:

HA

1.

Sends the decision letter to the recipient.

 

2.

PPMB status is extended.

When a PPMB review results in a denial or no contact is received from the recipient:

HA

1.

Send a letter to the recipient to advise.

  If denied, the recipient will be sent substantive reasons for the decision and be offered the right to reconsideration. If the recipient does not provide a completed HR2892 when requested by the ministry, the recipient is sent a no contact letter to advise of the PPMB scheduled expiration date.   

 

 

2.

PPMB category is extended for 3 months, to allow for a transition period.

The change in the designation will result in the following:

  • Will be required to search for work
  • Loss of additional health supplements
  • Reduced earnings exemptions
  • A reduction in the support rate

 

[If a reconsideration is requested, see Related Links – Reconsideration.]

Effective: July 1, 2019

Clients in the PPMB category at the time when their case was closed can be reassessed for PPMB on reapplication if they have been off assistance for longer than 24 months. These clients should submit a new PPMB Application Form (HR2892).

Former PPMBs who reapply for assistance within 24 months of leaving assistance retain their PPMB category.

Authorities and Responsibilities

Effective: July 1, 2019

Persons with Persistent Multiple Barriers (PPMB)
Ministry or Service BC office
  • generating a service request 
  • providing documentation required to determine eligibility for PPMB
Health Assistance Adjudicator
  • assessing all documentation submitted against the eligibility criteria for PPMB
  • determining a recipient’s eligibility for PPMB
  • notifying the recipient of decision (after the adjudication is complete)