Guest Post: Tell the Government What You Know About Disability and Accessibility, Survey available until June 28, 2019 , FALA

From: Federal Accessibility Legislation Alliance [mailto: fala@civicrm.ca

Subject: Tell the Government What You Know About Disability and Accessibility

 

Hello Partners and Members of FALA / Bonjour partenaires et membres d’ALFA:

français à suivre

Here we are still in the afterglow of the passing of the Accessible Canada Act. In a few weeks, it will receive Royal Assent. Ahhhhhh… this feels good.

Meanwhile, there is still work going on to get the Accessible Canada Act up and running. Interviews are happening for the positions in the Canadian Accessibility Standards Development Organization (CASDO) as well as for the Accessibility Commissioner and the Chief Accessibility Officer. Government staff are searching for office space for CASDO. The goal is to have CASDO up and running by mid-summer.

The Government of Canada wants to be able to measure change caused by the Accessible Canada Act. The only way to do this is to measure where we are at right now. So, they have developed a survey asking about awareness and experience with accessibility and disability issues.

Obviously, people with disabilities are going to know WAY more about disability issues than the general public, so we have our own part of the survey. Both groups will be surveyed to give the government an idea of where Canada is at regarding accessibility and disability issues – and where Canada can improve.

Your feedback is really important to mark where we are today and where we need to go in the future.

The survey is open to all Canadian citizens at least 18 years of age who have had a disability in the past or are currently living with a disability. The survey takes about 15 minutes and is open until June 28.

Here are all the ways you can complete the survey: (The FALA leadership team worked hard to ensure there were multiple ways to complete this survey.)

You can complete the fully accessible online version of the survey by clicking on the following link: online survey:

https://na1se.voxco.com/SE/85/W1309/

 

You can schedule a telephone interview by calling the following toll-free number: 1-866-875-5470. You will be prompted to leave a message describing when you would like to be called by an interviewer.

You can use your VRS, IP relay or TTY service to call the toll-free number: 1-866-875-5470 to schedule a telephone interview. When you are prompted to leave a message, please include your VRS, IP relay or TTY contact number, preferred language and time you would like to be called by an interviewer.

 

You can also email: discussions@quorusconsulting.com to request a VRS, IP relay or TTY interview. In your email please include the following information:

If requesting VRS, your preferred language (ASL or LSQ) and your VRS contact number.

If requesting IP relay or TTY, your preferred language and service contact number.

You can request or download a paper copy, Braille paper copy, digital Braille, or DAISY version of the questionnaire by visiting: www.quorusconsultations.com

or by emailing:

discussions@quorusconsulting.com

 

If you have any questions or concerns about this survey or need it in another format, please contact:

discussions@quorusconsulting.com

 

Nous sommes encore tous sous le coup de l’adoption de la Loi sur le Canada accessible. Dans quelques semaines, elle recevra la sanction royale. Ahhhhhh… que ça fait du bien.

Entre-temps, il reste encore du travail à faire pour que la Loi sur le Canada accessible soit opérationnelle. Des entrevues ont lieu pour les postes au sein de la Société canadienne d’élaboration de normes d’accessibilité (ACSSO), ainsi que pour le commissaire à l’accessibilité et le chef de l’accessibilité. Le personnel gouvernemental cherche des locaux pour CASDO. L’objectif est que CASDO soit opérationnel d’ici mi-été.

Le gouvernement du Canada veut pouvoir mesurer les changements causés par la Loi canadienne sur l’accessibilité. La seule façon de le faire est de mesurer où nous en sommes en ce moment. Ils ont donc mis au point un sondage sur la sensibilisation aux problèmes d’accessibilité et de handicap.

De toute évidence, les personnes handicapées vont en savoir beaucoup plus sur le problème des personnes handicapées que le grand public, nous avons donc notre propre sondage. Une enquête sera menée auprès des deux groupes afin de donner au gouvernement une idée de la position du Canada en matière d’accessibilité et des questions relatives aux personnes handicapées – et des domaines dans lesquels le Canada peut s’améliorer.

Vos commentaires sont très importants pour marquer où nous en sommes aujourd’hui et où nous devons aller à l’avenir.

L’enquête est destinée à tous les citoyens canadiens âgés de 18 ans ou plus et qui ont déjà eu une déficience ou vivent avec une déficience. Le sondage est d’environ 15 minutes et sera affichet jusqu’au 28 juin.

Voici toutes les façons dont vous pouvez remplir le sondage (l’équipe de direction de l’ALFA a travaillé fort pour s’assurer qu’il y avait plusieurs moyens de répondre à ce sondage):

Vous pouvez compléter la version en ligne entièrement accessible du sondage en cliquant sur le lien suivant: sondage en ligne: https://na1se.voxco.com/SE/85/W1309/

Vous pouvez planifier une entrevue téléphonique en composant le numéro sans frais suivant: 1-866-875-5470. Vous serez invité à laisser un message décrivant à quel moment vous souhaitez être appelé par un intervieweur.

Vous pouvez utiliser votre service VRS, relais IP ou ATS pour composer le numéro sans frais 1-866-875-5470 afin de planifier une entrevue téléphonique. Lorsque vous êtes invité à laisser un message, veuillez indiquer votre numéro de contact VRS, relais IP ou ATS, la langue de votre choix et l’heure à laquelle vous souhaitez être appelé par un intervieweur.

Vous pouvez également envoyer un courrier électronique à: discussions@quorusconsulting.com. pour demander une interview VRS, relais IP ou ATS. Dans votre courriel, veuillez inclure les informations suivantes:

Si vous demandez VRS, votre langue préférée (ASL ou LSQ) et votre numéro de contact VRS.

Si vous demandez un relais IP ou un téléscripteur, votre langue préférée et le numéro de téléphone du service

Vous pouvez demander ou télécharger une copie papier, une copie papier braille, une version braille numérique ou une version DAISY du questionnaire en visitant: http://www.quorusconsultations.com ou en envoyant un courrier électronique à: discussions@quorusconsulting.com.

Si vous avez des questions ou des préoccupations concernant ce sondage ou si vous en avez besoin dans un autre format, veuillez contacter: discussions@quorusconsulting.com.

On nous a demandé de vous dire que votre décision de participer revient à vous et qu’elle n’affectera pas votre relation avec le gouvernement du Canada ni les services qu’il vous fournit de quelque manière que ce soit. Les informations que vous fournissez seront gérées conformément aux exigences de la Loi sur la protection des renseignements personnels.

Le rapport final du sondage sera disponible au public par l’intermédiaire de Bibliothèque et Archives Canada et transmis à la communauté des personnes handicapées.

 

CCB Tech Articles, Donna’s Low Tech Tips, Scam Alert, January 21, 2019

January 21 2019

A scam alert

 

Happy New Year everyone!

Hi there!  It’s Donna and thank you for allowing me to come into your inbox.

Today, I’d like to introduce you to my scam alert.

 

A scam alert

You have been chosen

 

This is one of the more common scams going around these days and if you are not careful or paying attention you can be easily taken in.

 

More often than not you receive a phone call telling you that you have been chosen for a phone survey.

I would say; ignore this phone call and hang up as quickly as you can.

 

More often than not it is with an airline or well known cruise line  company and if you choose to indulge this call in quick time you’ll be asked for your credit card details and banking details

Along with some personal preferences.

 

What could happen if you choose to go along with this phone call?

If you choose to divulge these then look out!

They’ll be used against you to hack your account.

 

Remember!  These calls could be in the form of either a recording or a live person.

 

Some important points to keep in mind:

You need to remember that scams come in the following formats:

As emails, as phone calls both recorded and via a live caller, and o yes!  It can even show up at your door and in your mailbox.

And now they are targeting us through texts being sent to our cell phones.

 

Before giving you the latest scams making the rounds; we have some do nots to share with you.

Do not respond to emails that look strange to you.

Do not download attachments from unknown senders.

Do not share your username and password to your online banking and any other online payments facilities with anyone.

Do not give out any banking or personal details on the phone to unknown callers.

Do not pay any attention to threats from automated phone recordings or from live persons with regard to your credit card or that you owe money to any revenue agency.

Do not entertain any offers either via email or by phone from senders and callers offering incredible service packages as they may pertain to cable and tv services, prizes that you have won, or any sort of any type of service package.

Do not answer the door to unknown callers.

Take extra caution to make sure that the details of your credit cards and debit cards are fully protected when you make payments at restaurants or at stores, pharmacies, and elsewhere.

Do not enter your password for Facebook or Twitter in response to a text request on your cell phone.

The same if you are asked for your Apple ID.

Do not fall prey to a text message telling you that your banking details have been compromised online.

 

That’s it from me for this week.

If you would like to become a member of  my CCB Mysteries chapter you can do so for the price of $10 annually and in return you will receive unlimited access to either of the following libraries.

Recipes –

http://www.donnajodhan.com/library-recipes.html

Audio mysteries for all ages –

http://www.donnajodhan.com/library-audio-mysteries.html

Or you can subscribe to both for the price of $20 annually.

Now you  can subscribe to “‘Let’s Talk Tips”‘ which is my monthly resource for the most current and reliable informational tips available in the areas of Technology, Nutrition, Media, Business, and Advocacy.

http://bit.ly/ADJSubscribe

 

To contact me, send me an email at info@sterlingcreations.ca and I’d be happy to respond.

Have yourselves a great day and see you next week.

Donna

 

 

 

CCB Tech Articles, Donna’s Low Tech Tips, Privacy Protection, January 14, 2019

January 14 2019

Privacy protection

 

Happy New Year everyone!

Hi there!  It’s Donna and thank you for allowing me to come into your inbox.

Today, I’d like to introduce you to my tip on privacy protection.

 

Privacy protection

We are constantly striving to protect ourselves from scams and scammers, but most of all we need to ensure that our privacy, confidentiality, and independence are kept safe from prying eyes and those who thrive on destroying our right to these precious commodities.

 

Paying at the supermarket or at any type of store

 

Usually there are three methods of payment and you should probably choose the one that best suits you.

  1. Via cash: Make sure that when you open your wallet that you do not open it up too wide so that prying eyes could see or read what you have in it.

 

  1. Via credit card: Here is where you need to ensure that when you enter your pin number that you do it yourself.

Chances are that the helpful cashier or sales person would be willing to help but better be safe than sorry.  Make sure to ensure that you cover the screen or the keypad so that no one can see what you are entering.

 

  1. Using your debit card. This is probably the most risky of the three methods in that you would need to enter more info than in option 2. Not just your pin number, but the type of account that you are withdrawing from.

Chances are that the cashier or sales rep could be counted on to keep your info private but if you are concerned then it is probably best to take a trusted person along with you when you go shopping.

Be sure to destroy all of your receipts when you arrive home so that they do not get into the wrong hands.

 

That’s it from me for this week!

If you would like to become a member of  my CCB Mysteries chapter you can do so for the price of $10 annually and in return you will receive unlimited access to any of the following libraries.

Recipes – A collection of hard to find recipes

Audio mysteries for all ages – Comfort listening any time of the day

Home and garden – A collection of great articles for around the home and garden

Or you can subscribe to all 3 for the price of $30 annually.

Visit http://www.donnajodhan.com/subscription-libraries.html

 

To contact me, send me an email at info@sterlingcreations.ca and I’d be happy to respond.

Have yourselves a great day and see you next week.

Donna

CCB Tech Articles, Donna’s Low Tech Tips, Scams and Scammers, December 31, 2018

December 31 2018

 

Happy holidays everyone!

Hi there!  It’s Donna and thank you for allowing me to come into your inbox.

Today, I am going to do something a bit different and as we get ready to welcome in 2019 I am going to give you some great pointers for avoiding scams and scammers.

I have gathered these through investigations, hard core experiences, and input from others.

 

Here goes.

You need to remember that scams come in the following formats:

As emails, as phone calls both recorded and via a live caller, and o yes!  It can even show up at your door and in your mailbox.

And now they are targeting us through texts being sent to our cell phones.

 

Do not respond to emails that look strange to you.

Do not download attachments from unknown senders.

Do not share your username and password to your online banking and any other online payments facilities with anyone.

Do not give out any banking or personal details on the phone to unknown callers.

Do not pay any attention to threats from automated phone recordings or from live persons with regard to your credit card or that you owe money to any revenue agency.

Do not entertain any offers either via email or by phone from senders and callers offering incredible service packages as they may pertain to cable and tv services, prizes that you have won, or any sort of any type of service package.

Do not answer the door to unknown callers.

Take extra caution to make sure that the details of your credit cards and debit cards are fully protected when you make payments at restaurants or at stores, pharmacies, and elsewhere.

Do not enter your password for Facebook or Twitter in response to a text request on your cell phone.

The same if you are asked for your Apple ID.

Do not fall prey to a text message telling you that your banking details have been compromised online.

 

That’s it from me for this week.

If you would like to become a member of  my CCB Mysteries chapter you can do so for the price of $10 annually and in return you will receive unlimited access to either of the following libraries.

Recipes –

http://www.donnajodhan.com/library-recipes.html

Audio mysteries for all ages –

http://www.donnajodhan.com/library-audio-mysteries.html

Or you can subscribe to both for the price of $20 annually.

Now you  can subscribe to “‘Let’s Talk Tips”‘ which is my monthly resource for the most current and reliable

informational tips available in the areas of Technology, Nutrition, Media,

Business, and Advocacy.

http://bit.ly/ADJSubscribe

 

To contact me, send me an email at info@sterlingcreations.ca and I’d be happy to respond.

Have yourselves a great day and see you next week.

Donna

 

 

 

 

Advocacy: The Americans with Disabilities Act and The boutique Avanti Hotel

I wonder if our Accessible Canada Act will allow for this level of action?  The article pasted below can be found at this link:

 

Nov. 11–The boutique Avanti Hotel is known for its poolside, dog-friendly rooms. Yet its website uses the valuable opening page not to highlight the Palm

Springs inn’s amenities, but to explain, in stark black letters on a plain white background, that the Avanti violated the Americans with Disabilities Act.

 

Like thousands of other businesses in the United States, the 10-room hotel on East Stevens Road has been sued because it hasn’t fully complied with the

1990 law that requires public places — hotels, restaurants and shops — to be accessible to people with disabilities.

 

But Avanti isn’t being accused of failing to build a wheelchair ramp or install handrails — common charges in the scores of ADA lawsuits in years past.

Instead, the lawsuit contends that the hotel’s website can’t be used by people who have problems seeing or hearing.

 

Avanti Hotel and others have been caught up in a recent wave of ADA lawsuits targeting websites across the country. The Trump administration’s decision

to stop drafting rules for website ADA compliance is widely seen as opening the floodgates to legal action.

 

Nearly 5,000 ADA lawsuits were filed in federal court for alleged website violations in the first six months of 2018, according to an analysis by Seyfarth

Shaw, a law firm that specializes in defending such cases. The firm predicted that the number of lawsuits will climb to nearly 10,000 by the end of the

year, a 30% increase from 2017.

 

With online sales, reservations and job postings now a huge part of modern commerce, advocates for the disabled say websites need to be as accessible to

everyone, just as brick-and-mortar stores, restaurants and schools are.

 

“We have been dealing with website issues for a long time,” said Jim Thom, past president and government affairs director for the California Council of

the Blind. “We want compliance. It is a serious problem, no question about it.”

 

For a website to be accessible to disabled people, the content must be coded so that screen-reading software can convert the words to an audio translation.

Video that appears on a website must include descriptions for the deaf. Also, all interactive functions must be operable through keyboard commands for

people who can’t use a mouse.

 

No formal government standards exist for private businesses to follow to ensure their websites comply with the ADA, although a consortium of web innovators

has created guidelines, known as the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines, to make websites more accessible to disabled people. Government websites already

follow those guidelines, but private business websites, which are typically loaded with images and video, tend to be more difficult to overhaul to meet

the guidelines, experts say.

 

The cost of making sites accessible ranges from several thousand dollars to a few million dollars, depending on the complexity of the site, according to

trade groups and business owners.

 

ADA lawsuits, filed in federal and state courts, have targeted the websites of retailers (including Winn-Dixie Stores Inc. supermarkets), restaurants (including

Domino’s Pizza Inc.) and universities (including Harvard and MIT).

 

The Hooters restaurant chain was sued last year, even after the chain agreed to fix its website as part of a settlement of a previous lawsuit. A federal

appeals court ruled that Hooters remained vulnerable to lawsuits until it fixed the website under the previous lawsuit settlement.

 

Earlier this month, the American Council of the Blind announced that it had reached a settlement with the streaming service Hulu to make Hulu’s website

and software app more accessible to blind users.

 

The cost of defending such lawsuits can be burdensome for small businesses such as the Avanti Hotel.

 

Fixing the site would cost about $3,000, which hotel manager Jim Rutledge said he is willing to pay. But the lawsuit demands the hotel also pay damages

to the plaintiff, and Rutledge said his lawyers advise him that he may have to settle for between $8,000 and $13,000.

 

“I would really like to fight it, but it just comes down to finances,” he said, estimating that he could be forced to pay up to $25,000 in damages, plus

lawyer fees, if he fights the suit and loses. In the meantime, several pages of the hotel’s website have been replaced with plain type because “no access

is equal access for everyone, per the ADA requirements,” the site notes.

 

Some trade groups say the lawyers and plaintiffs who file many of these lawsuits are only interested in using the law to pocket hefty court-imposed damages.

 

“Simply put, for those who are abusing the system, it’s about money, not about expanding access,” said Peter Clerkin, a spokesman for the Asian American

Hotel Owners Assn., which is advising its members to make websites ADA-compliant and not wait to get sued.

 

Since it was signed into law by President George H. W. Bush in 1990, the Americans with Disabilities Act has been cited thousands of times in lawsuits

filed against hotels, restaurants and shops to remove physical barriers for disabled people.

 

As early as 2009, the act was cited in lawsuits that targeted the websites of businesses and universities, saying the online portals must be just as accessible

to disabled people as the buildings that house businesses and schools.

 

In 2010, the Justice Department began to draft formal regulations for websites to meet ADA goals. But last December, the agency announced it was withdrawing

its “rulemaking process,” at a time when the Trump administration was calling for a rollback of federal regulations.

 

The department said it was killing the regulations because it was “evaluating whether promulgating regulations about the accessibility of web information

and services is necessary and appropriate.”

 

In a June 20 letter, 103 members of Congress — Republicans and Democrats — urged then-Atty. Gen. Jeff Sessions to adopt website regulations, saying the

absence of such regulations “only fuels the proliferations of these suits.”

 

Lawyers who defend ADA lawsuits say the Justice Department’s actions to pull the plug on adopting new regulations may have instigated the latest surge

in lawsuits.

 

Business owners who are sued under the ADA complain that the law allows plaintiffs to demand huge payouts in damages without first giving the business

owner the opportunity to fix the websites.

 

California leads other states by far in ADA lawsuits filed over website accessibility, according to the Seyfarth Shaw analysis. That may be because a California

law sets a minimum dollar amount for damages of $4,000 plus attorney’s fees for each ADA violation, a minimum not imposed in most other states. The minimum,

according to lawyers who defend such lawsuits, makes suing in California more lucrative.

 

The lawsuit against Rutledge’s hotel was filed by Manning Law in Newport Beach. The plaintiff was Kayla Reed, who is described as a resident of Montana.

Manning Law has filed 355 ADA cases, primarily in California, in the last 12 months, according to court records.

 

In an email, Joseph Manning, an attorney at Manning Law, declined to comment on the case against the Avanti Hotel, but rejected criticism that his lawsuits

are intended to enrich him and his clients.

 

“This case will not be resolved without addressing the accessibility concerns in the complaint, of that I can assure you,” he said.

 

Reed, who is described in the Avanti lawsuit as visually impaired, is listed as a plaintiff on more than three dozen lawsuits in federal court and in state

courts in Ventura and San Bernardino counties, court records show. The defendants in her lawsuits include Kmart, Hugo Boss, David’s Bridal and CVS Pharmacies.

 

The Los Angeles Times couldn’t locate Reed, and Manning said she would not comment on her lawsuits. But he said that money is the “least important issue

for her in these cases,” adding that “private enforcement of these laws is also the means devised by Congress to enforce these laws without burdening the

taxpayer.”

 

Manning was listed as Reed’s lawyer in a Ventura County Superior Court suit against CVS in 2017, according to court records. In the suit, she is described

as a resident of Ventura County who was seeking $75,000 in damages, saying that the CVS website was not accessible to blind people.

 

The case was eventually transferred to U.S. District Court in Los Angeles. The case was dismissed Dec. 8, 2017, when the court was notified that a settlement

had been reached. The details of that settlement were not disclosed.

 

Manning declined to comment on the settlement.

 

Asked to comment, CVS issued a statement saying the company is “committed to compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act and other laws and regulations

related to assisting individuals with disabilities.”

 

___

 

(c)2018 the Los Angeles Times

 

Visit the Los Angeles Times at

http://www.latimes.com

 

Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC.

 

Re-Blog: Three blind Maryland residents and the National Federation of the Blind are suing Walmart, alleging that the company violates the Americans with Disabilities Act because its self-checkout kiosks are not fully accessible to blind customers.

Hi GTT Participants.  Have any of you tried to use Self-Help Checkout Kiosks? Is this something for the Accessible Canada Act?

Advisen Canada Front Page News

advisen.com

 

Advisen Canada Front Page News

4-5 minutes

——————————————————————————–

 

Oct. 29–Three blind Maryland residents and the National Federation of the Blind are suing Walmart, alleging that the company violates the Americans with

Disabilities Act because its self-checkout kiosks are not fully accessible to blind customers.

 

The lawsuit, filed Thursday in U.S. District Court, also claims that an employee at the Walmart in Owings Mills allegedly attempted to take money from

one of the plaintiffs while she was checking out at the store.

 

The suit claims that a staff member at the Owings Mills store on Reisterstown Road was assisting Cynthia Morales with a purchase at a self-checkout kiosk

in July 2017 when the employee selected an option for cash back from her debit card and took $40 without her knowledge.

 

“It’s important for blind people to be able to use the machines independently … so that people are not stealing from us,” Morales, a Parkville resident,

said in an interview. “We should be treated like everybody else — when we come into the store we would like to check out at the self-checkout quickly

just like everybody else, and I know that the technology is out there.”

 

In addition to Morales, other plaintiffs include Linwood Boyd, a Pikesville resident who was shopping with Morales when the alleged incident occurred;

Baltimore resident Melissa Sheeder; the National Federation of the Blind Inc. and the National Federation of the Blind of Maryland.

 

The plaintiffs are seeking a permanent injunction that would require Walmart to make its self-service kiosks throughout the U.S. accessible to blind customers;

a declaration that Walmart has been violating the ADA; and court costs and attorneys’ fees.

 

According to the suit, Morales and Boyd were checking out at a self-service kiosk when Morales handed an employee her debit card and instructed the employee

to enter her pin number on the keypad. She expected to pay about $80 for her items, according to the suit. During the transaction, the screen prompted

the users to take money from the machine, the suit claims. When Morales and Boyd left the store, they asked a bystander to read the receipt and realized

Morales was charged about $120.

 

They re-entered the store and called police, and the $40 was ultimately returned, according to the complaint.

 

“Money was stolen from one of our members and certainly we deplore that,” said Chris Danielsen, a spokesman for the National Federation of the Blind.

 

Danielsen said that even without the incident at Owings Mills, it’s “unacceptable” that sight-impaired patrons can’t serve themselves. “The technology

exists for Walmart and other entities that are using these kind of self-service kiosks,” he said.

 

Sheeder claims in the suit that she shops at Walmart at least once a week, and she and a friend attempted to use a self-checkout kiosk in July 2018. When

they were unable to operate it, they were directed to a full-service checkout lane, where they had to wait in line.

 

“We don’t tolerate discrimination, and we believe our checkout procedures comply with applicable law,” Randy Hargrove, a spokesman for Walmart, said in

an emailed statement late Friday. “When we learned of this specific situation with Ms. Morales, we looked into the matter and as a result, the associate

is no longer with the company. We take this matter seriously and will respond as appropriate with the court.”

 

Danielsen said he’s not aware of any large retailers that incorporate self-checkout kiosks that are fully accessible to blind people, but he pointed to

self-service software for machines such as ATMs, Amtrak ticket booths and taxicabs that allow blind people to operate the devices independently.

 

“We know that it’s possible to make a self-checkout kiosk accessible. It just has to be thought of at the design stage,” said Jessica P. Weber, an attorney

who is part of a team from the Baltimore firm Brown, Goldstein & Levy representing the plaintiffs. The lawsuit says the National Federation of the Blind

attempted to work with Walmart to address problems with the kiosks prior to filing suit.

 

“The civil rights of blind people can’t wait indefinitely and so we’re going to forge ahead,” Weber said.

 

smeehan@baltsun.com

 

twitter.com/sarahvmeehan

 

___

 

(c)2018 The Baltimore Sun

 

Visit The Baltimore Sun at

http://www.baltimoresun.com

 

Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC.

 

 

CCB Press Release: Accessible Canada Act

CCB Press Release: Accessible Canada Act
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Canadian Council of the Blind Logo
Press Release re Accessible Canada Act (Bill C-81):

As President of the Canadian Council of the Blind (CCB), it is a pleasure to send this message to inform you, about the proposed Accessible Canada Act. We
want to thank Minister Duncan for introducing the act, as well as Minister Qualtrough for the initial steps in the process. This Act has been through the
first reading and tabled until fall sitting.
Thank you to all of you who attended the consultations held in your communities over the past two years. We as an organization have had representation
in meetings with the Ministry of Disabilities, Sports and Science on this act as well. We are pleased with the bill once passed, and any amendments that
may come, will ensure that our shared spaces will be more accessible to all, job opportunities will increase and transportation improved.

Please read the letter from Government of Canada below for further details.

Sincerely,

Louise Gillis, National President
The Canadian Council of the Blind
100-20 James St.
Ottawa, ON
K2P 0T6

Minister Duncan introduces the proposed Accessible Canada Act

From:
Employment and Social Development Canada

News release

Most significant progress for people with disabilities in over 30 years

June 20, 2018                    Gatineau, Quebec
Employment and Social Development Canada

Today, following the most inclusive and accessible consultation with Canadians with disabilities and with the disability community, the Honourable Kirsty
Duncan, Minister of Science and Minister of Sport and Persons with Disabilities, introduced the proposed Accessible Canada Act to Parliament. This historic
legislation would enable the Government of Canada to take a proactive approach to end systemic discrimination of people with disabilities.

The goal of the legislation is to benefit all Canadians, especially Canadians with disabilities, through the progressive realization of a barrier-free
Canada. The act would establish a model to eliminate accessibility barriers and lead to more consistent accessibility in areas under federal jurisdiction
across Canada.

The bill outlines how the Government of Canada will require organizations under federal jurisdiction to identify, remove and prevent barriers to accessibility,
including in:

list of 6 items
• the built environment (buildings and public spaces);
• employment (job opportunities and employment policies and practices);
• information and communication technologies (digital content and technologies used to access it);
• the procurement of goods and services;
• the delivery of programs and services; and
• transportation (by air as well as by rail, ferry and bus carriers that operate across provincial, territorial or international borders).
list end

The Government of Canada is providing funding of approximately $290 million over six years that will further the objectives of the new legislation.

The act would strengthen the existing rights and protections for people with disabilities, under the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms, the Canadian
Human Rights Act and Canada’s approval of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities. It will do this through the development,
implementation and enforcement of accessibility standards, as well as the monitoring of outcomes in priority areas. These requirements will be enforced
by the new powers and enforcement measures needed to ensure compliance, and overall implementation will be monitored. No longer will Canadians with disabilities
be expected to fix the system through human rights complaints, instead, new proactive compliance measures will ensure that organizations under federal
jurisdiction are held accountable to ensuring accessible practices.

As the Government of Canada moves forward with the implementation of the proposed act, continued and meaningful participation by Canadians with disabilities
will be crucial towards realizing a barrier-free Canada.

The Canadian Accessibility Standards Development Organization (CASDO) will be Canada’s first-ever standards development organization exclusively dedicated
to accessibility issues and will be led by persons with disabilities.

In keeping with the objectives of the bill and respecting the Government’s approach to historic and modern treaties, we will also support the work of First
Nations leaders and communities to improve accessibility on reserve.

While this legislation is a significant first step in ensuring a barrier-free Canada for all Canadians, the Government of Canada will work collaboratively
with partners in both the public and private sectors to create opportunities for full participation by people with disabilities in their communities and
workplaces, and to help change the way society thinks, talks and acts about disability and accessibility.

Quotes
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“Society benefits when all Canadians can fully participate. The proposed accessible Canada act represents the most important federal legislative advancement
of disability rights in Canada in over 30 years. Thank you to the many community leaders and advocates who have worked for years and decades to make this
happen. With the proposed act now in Parliament, we are one step closer to our goal: to have a truly inclusive and accessible Canada.”

– The Honourable Kirsty Duncan, Minister of Science and Minister of Sport and Persons with Disabilities
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“Today’s announcement marks a significant milestone in improving accessibility for all Canadians. As a life-long advocate for disability rights and a person
living with a disability myself, I am proud to lead a portfolio tasked with enhancing accessibility in federal buildings and establishing an accessible
procurement resource centre. This important work will help ensure the goods and services purchased and offered by the Government of Canada are more accessible
for all Canadians.”

– The Honourable Carla Qualtrough, Minister of Public Services and Procurement
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Quick facts
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• In 2012, approximately 14 percent of Canadians aged 15 years or older reported having a disability.

• Between 2011 and 2016, disability-related complaints represented just over half of all the discrimination complaints received by the Canadian Human Rights
Commission.

• The 2012 Canadian Survey on Disability indicates that there are approximately 412,000 people with disabilities who had the potential and willingness
to work, but who were unable to secure or retain employment.

• According to the 2012 Canadian Survey on Disability, 49 percent of people with disabilities aged 25 to 64 were employed, compared with 79 percent of
Canadians without disabilities.
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Related products
list of 4 items
• Summary of the accessible Canada act
• Backgrounder: Tabling the proposed Accessible Canada Act – Engagement
• Backgrounder: Accessible Government
• Backgrounder: Opportunities Fund enhancements support recruitment and retention of persons with disabilities
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Associated links
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• Accessible Canada
• What we learned report
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