We are doing this last push to invite you all to sign up for this exciting free on-line training through ARCH Disability Law Centre. The course is 4 hours one Saturday a month for four months starting last Sat in March. The National Coalition is one of the partners in developing the training with ARCH. The purpose is to develop advocacy skills and a strong knowledge about how implementing the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities can and will impact you locally. Its also about developing relationships and building a network of people to work with. There are video links below this email that will explain more.
What does that mean to you in your day to day and why is it important for you to consider taking this course?
1) Our Human Rights in Canada are based on us, the individual. Not a charity, not a business, not an agency, just us, the individual, we have standing in Human Rights law.
2) As a result, everything that is being decided on our behalf by Governments Local, Provincial and Federal, including funding to organizations that provide services on our behalf, fundraise on our behalf and sit at the decision making tables, impact us the individual, every day.
3) Nothing about us, without us, gets lost in translation when those that are invited to sit at the decision making tables are not us. They usually have no constituency in which to get advice and direction from and make sweeping decisions about us without us.
3) How involved do we want to be in making decisions that impact ourselves and each other on a daily basis? What knowledge do we need and how do we get it? Why spend 16 hours of my life over 4 months to take this course?
4) One example of why this is important, is when a simple process of developing training methods and standards for PTS Dogs for Veterans, was highjacked.
5) From early 2015 to April of 2017, two years of secret meetings and development by many unelected, non representative groups of people with no connection to us, developed standards that if adopted by the Federal Government, would have taken away our individual rights to choose and decide where we go to get our dogs and create a mandatory National Registry.
6) This National Registry of us under a certification model included people we don’t know inspecting our homes, going through our financials and taking our dogs away from us to test them. Then they would decide if they would certify our dogs and they would be allowed to work with us in Canada. Thinking back it is as ridiculous sounding as it was almost three years ago. But it happened and the Federal Government funded it. This was the misplaced thinking of people at the decision table secretly deciding what was best for us. .
7) That is when our Coalition began. We said no and through all of your hard fought advocacy, shut it all down by March 2018.
8) Unfortunately the almost half a million dollars that was spent, failed to produce any training methods and standards for PTS dogs for Veterans. That is what happens when people sit at tables without being responsible back to the people whom decisions impact and move their own agenda’s.
9) This is brewing to start up again, standards accreditation and certification Federally. The same people who started working on that standards fiasco mess since 2009 and almost pulled it off in 2017, are still committed to having it happen and we are constantly responding to their push to do it all over again.
10) why take this training? Because we need more of us to have the knowledge, capacity and skills to continue to protect our hard earned rights and push back when decisions are being made that are eroding them. The more understanding each of us have, we can catch the game way ahead of 2 years of development and stop it before it starts. That is why many of us worked with ARCH to develop this training and to continue with more.
As people who have already gone through round one of the standards debacle, I encourage you all to consider learning and preparing for no doubt another round that is coming our way in the next year, not to mention the provincial issues we are already dealing with. Understanding the legal protections of our Rights in the Convention will allow us, individually and together to articulate why these types of ideas are backwards thinking and do not promote a rights based one. We need to be able to argue from a position of strength and knowledge and we all deserve to have that knowledge.
Thanks everyone. The videos and further information are next with the information in French following.
National Coalition of People who use Guide and Service Dogs in Canada
Hands Off Our Harnesses, Hands Off Our Hounds H.O.O.H
From: ARCH Staff 1 <email@example.com>
I hope you are doing well.
As promised, I’m writing to let you know that we have the course dates confirmed.
OP Lab for OP Champions
· March 28, 12-4 PM (EST)
· April 25, 12-4 PM (EST)
· May 30, 12-4 PM (EST)
· June 27, 12-4 PM (EST)
OP Lab for Legal Experts
· April 21, 2-4 PM (EST)
· May 19, 2-4 PM (EST)
· June 16, 2-4 PM (EST)
Joint Meeting for OP Champions and OP Legal Experts
· September 15, 1-2 PM (EST)
We will be accepting applications until Friday, February 14, 2020, at 5:00 PM (EST). The information has been updated in our website:www.archdisabilitylaw.ca/initiatives/advancing-the-un-crpd/op-lab
Please share this as widely as possible, and as always let me know if you have any questions.
Thank you and have a great day,
Communications and Outreach Coordinator
OP Lab Project Coordinator
416-482-8255, extension 2221
Please consider the environment before printing this email.
As a reminder, here’s the promotional information for the project:
1. All information about ARCH’s initiative on the CRPD, and the OP Lab: https://archdisabilitylaw.ca/initiatives/advancing-the-un-crpd/op-lab/
2. People who want to participate in the OP Lab will need to submit anapplication here: https://www.surveygizmo.com/s3/5281955/OP-LAB-Application-Form
3. See attached a one-pager about the OP Lab, in English and in French.
4. Primer video about the CRPD, the Optional Protocol and the OP Lab: www.youtube.com/channel/UCBwozUKpvREOrGGzpMHTXCw
5. Factsheet about the CRPD and the Optional Protocol:https://archdisabilitylaw.ca/resource/factsheet-the-crpd-and-the-optional-protocol/
6. ARCH Alert article about the OP Lab: https://archdisabilitylaw.ca/resources/arch-alerts/
All of these were shared through ARCH’s social media:
· Twitter @archdisabilitylaw
· OP LAB activities, including networking, will be encouraged on social media through #OPlab.
Here are the links in French:
· Website/application form:https://archdisabilitylaw.ca/fr/la-mise-en-oeuvre-de-la-cdph-des-nations-unies/op-lab-apprendre-partager-agir/
· Youtube video primer:https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kQSU5WwWZdU&t=12s
· ARCH Alert article:https://archdisabilitylaw.ca/arch_alert/arch-alert-volume-20-issue-4/#lancement-op-lab
Thank you again,
Communications and Outreach Coordinator
OP Lab Project Coordinator
416-482-8255, extension 2221
Please consider the environment before printing this email.
Demain nous lancerons l’OP Lab: apprendre, partager, agir!, dans le cadre des célébrations de la Journée internationale des personnes handicapées.
Aidez-nous à promouvoir ce projet dans vos réseaux et médias sociaux!
Le lancement comprendra :
· un courriel que nous enverrons demain avec des informations sur l’OP Lab
· une vidéo sur la CDPH, le Protocole facultatif et l’OP Lab dans la chaîne YouTube d’ARCH :www.youtube.com/channel/UCBwozUKpvREOrGGzpMHTXCw
· un article sur l’OP Lab dans l’ARCH Alerte du 3 décembre : https://archdisabilitylaw.ca/resources/arch-alerts/
· une Fiche d’information sur la CDPH et le Protocole facultatif :https://archdisabilitylaw.ca/fr/resource/fiche-dinformation-la-cdph-et-le-protocole-facultatif/
Ceux-ci seront tous partagés demain via les médias sociaux d’ARCH :
· Facebook @ARCHdisabilityLawCentre
· Twitter @archdisabilitylaw
Toutes les activités d’OP Lab, notamment le réseautage, seront encouragées sur les médias sociaux à travers#OPlab.
Les personnes souhaitant participer à l’OP LAB doivent s’inscrire et nous souhaitons encourager autant de personnes que possible à s’inscrire. Vous trouverez le lien vers le formulaire d’inscription sur le site Web d’ARCH: www.archdisabilitylaw.ca/fr
Communications and Outreach Coordinator
1. ARCH Disability Law Centre
55 University Avenue, 15th floor
Toronto, ON, M5J 2H7
Tel: 416-482-8255 or 1-866-482-2724 (extension 2221)
TTY: 416-482-1254 or 1-866-482-2728
Fax: 416-482-2981 or 1-866-881-2723
ARCH’s office is physically accessible. ARCH is a scent-free environment. We try our best to keep our office and events free of scents and fragrances. These may cause health problems for staff and visitors. We ask for your cooperation by not wearing perfumes, aftershave, lotions or any other scented products when visiting us.
The information contained in this email may be legally privileged and confidential. If you are not the intended recipient, any disclosure, copying or distribution of this material is strictly prohibited. If you have received this email in error, please immediately destroy this message and kindly notify our office.
Please consider the environment before printing this email.
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Hi GTT Program Blog Ottawa participants. I forward this as a potential opportunity for those Ottawa residents who might be interested in participating face to face.
French to follow
En français à suivre
My name is Hillary Lorimer, I am a researcher working for the Canadian Digital Service. We are a government organization that designs and develops online government services. We are currently working with the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) on a new service that will help low-income Canadians access the tax benefits they are entitled to.
We want to make this service as accessible as possible. We are looking for people who are blind or low-vision who would be interested in trying an early version of this service and providing feedback on their experience.
We are scheduling research sessions starting early to mid-February. The sessions will take approximately one hour and we are offering 50 dollars as compensation for 1 hour of your time.
You do not need to have low income to participate and the research session will have no impact on your personal tax return.
If you are interested in participating or would like to learn more, please get in touch by calling Hillary Lorimer at 613-402-3085. You can also send an email to Hillary.Lorimer@tbs-sct.gc.ca . We get back to you with more details about the research.
We are looking forward to hearing from you.
Canadian Digital Service
Government of Canada
Giving the Canadian Digital Service (CDS) and the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) your contact information is completely voluntary.
If you respond to this opportunity, your email address, phone number, language preference, and name will be collected by CDS and CRA. This personal information will only be used to contact you about the study.
This personal information will not be used for any “administrative purposes”. This means that it will not be used to make any decisions that affect your access to Government of Canada services.
CDS is a program within the Treasury Board Secretariat (TBS) of Canada.
The collection and use of your personal information by TBS is authorized by the Financial Administration Act.
The collection and use of your personal information by CRA is authorized by the Income Tax Act.
Collection and use of your personal information for correspondence is in accordance with the federal Privacy Act. Under the Privacy Act, individuals have the right of protection, access to and correction or notation of their personal information.
Any personal information that may be collected is described in the Standard Personal Information Bank entitled Outreach Activities, PSU 938
If you have any comments or concerns about what you read here, or about your privacy rights, you may contact:
TBS Access to Information and Privacy Coordinator.
You have the right to complain to the Office of the Privacy Commissioner of Canada about the handling of your personal information.
Opportunité de participer à la recherche : Aidez à rendre les avantages fiscaux accessibles
Je m’appelle Hillary Lorimer. Je suis chercheure et je travaille pour le Service Numérique Canadien. C’est une organisation gouvernementale qui simplifie et rend plus accessible les services publics. Nous travaillons avec l’agence du revenu du Canada (ARC) sur un nouveau service qui permettra aux Canadiens qui ont un faible revenu d’accéder aux avantages fiscaux auxquels ils ont droit, plus facilement.
Nous voulons rendre ce nouveau service le plus accessible possible. Nous cherchons donc des gens qui ont 18 ans et plus et qui s’identifient comme étant aveugles ou malvoyant pour nous donner leur avis sur la version numérique du service en utilisant des appareils d’assistance, incluant les lecteurs d’écran.
Nous planifions organiser ces séances du début jusqu’à la mi-février. La séance durera une heure et nous vous donnerons 50 dollars pour cette heure de votre temps.
Si vous utilisez des appareils d’assistance, que vous êtes intéressé ou que vous voulez simplement en apprendre plus, appeler 343.548.9468 . Vous pouvez aussi envoyer un courriel à email@example.com Nous vous donnerons plus de détails par la suite.
Merci beaucoup et il nous fera plaisir d’entrer en contact avec vous!
Service numérique canadien
Gouvernement du Canada
Énoncé de confidentialité
Le fait de fournir vos coordonnées à l’équipe de recherche est entièrement volontaire.
En répondant à cette opportunité, vous comprenez que votre adresse électronique, votre numéro de téléphone, votre langue de préférence et votre nom seront recueillis par le SNC. Ces renseignements personnels ne seront utilisés que pour communiquer avec vous au sujet de l’étude.
Ces renseignements personnels ne seront pas utilisés à des « fins administratives ». Cela veut dire que vos renseignements ne serviront pas à prendre des décisions qui ont une incidence sur votre accès aux services du gouvernement du Canada.
Le SNC est un programme au sein du Secrétariat du Conseil du Trésor (SCT) du Canada.
La collecte et l’utilisation de vos renseignements personnels par le SCT sont autorisées en vertu de la Loi sur la gestion des finances publiques
La collecte et l’utilisation de vos renseignements personnels par l’ARC sont autorisées par la Loi de l’impôt sur le revenu
La collecte et l’utilisation de vos renseignements personnels aux fins de correspondance sont conformes à la Loi sur la protection des renseignements personnels du gouvernement fédéral. En vertu de la Loi sur la protection des renseignements personnels, vous avez droit à la protection, à l’accès et à la correction ou à la mention de vos renseignements personnels.
Toute information personnelle qui pourra être recueillie est décrite dans les Fichiers de renseignements personnels ordinaires qui figurent sous Activités de sensibilisation.
Si vous avez des commentaires ou des préoccupations concernant le présent énoncé ou vos droits en matière de protection de vos renseignements personnels, vous pouvez contacter :
Le coordonnateur de l’accès à l’information et de la protection des renseignements personnels du SCT
Courriel : ATIP.AIPRP@tbs-sct.gc.ca
Téléphone : 1 866 312-1511
Vous avez également la possibilité de déposer une plainte auprès du Commissariat à la protection de la vie privée du Canada quant à la façon dont vos renseignements personnels sont traités.
Téléphone : 1 800 282-1376.
Hello GTTProgram Blog Subscribers,
The Canadian Digital Service (CDS) is working with the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) to create an accessible website for reporting cybercrime to the police.
They’d like to speak to you if you, or a loved-one, have ever been phished, hacked or called by a scammer, etc. Especially if you have a disability and/or use assistive technology, and if you are interested in testing the website used to report the above, please contact,
for more information on how to get involved.
How you can help
The Canadian Digital Service can reach you via phone, video chat, or in-person to show you a work in-progress website and get your feedback on it. This will not take longer than 30 minutes, and they can reach you at a time that’s convenient for you.
You’re volunteering to take part in this research, so you can choose to stop participating at any time for any reason.
The Canadian Digital Service will make sure your responses are confidential, which means they will not be linked back to anyone.
Your participation and answers will not impact your relationship with the Canadian Digital Service (CDS), and the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP), or any part of the Government of Canada.
The Canadian Digital Service handles all personal information in accordance with the Privacy Act, and we’ll give you a copy of our Privacy Statement.
For any further questions about this research, please contact:
October 21, 2019
The 2019 Canadian Federal Election is upon us, so if you plan to vote and haven’t yet checked out what to expect in terms of accessibility, here is Election Canada’s website.
The partial text of the main page follows the link where you will find live links to all you need to know as you head for the Polls.
We work hard to make voting in the federal election accessible to all Canadians.
If you have a disability or know someone who does, we have many tools and services to make it easier to vote. Explore the options below.
Can’t find what you need? Call us at 1-800-463-6868 or 1-800-361-8935 (TTY).
Elections Canada also welcomes VRS calls. Visit Video Relay Service (VRS) to know more. (external link)
Check the accessibility of your polling place
Tools and services at the polls
Accessible polling stations
Information in other formats
- Voting hours across Canada
- Canada Elections Act
(Justice Laws website)
- Maps Corner
- List of political parties
- About federal elections
CCB Mysteries chapter:
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.
Audio mysteries for all ages –
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.
To contact me, send me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org and I’d be happy to respond.
Have yourselves a great day and see you next week.
By way of follow-up from the September 25, 2019 – Accessible Canada Act: Candidates’ Forum, co-hosted by Holland Bloorview Kids Rehabilitation Hospital and Reena, we are sharing a number of resources related to the event and preliminary survey results from the Accessible Canada Survey circulated by the two host organizations and Accessible Media Inc.
On the evening of October 17, 2019, CTV National News ran a lead story dealing with the hidden issue of the 2019 Election – Accessibility.
Link ß CTV National News – Video – Accessibility – The Hidden issue of the 2019 Federal Election
We are providing the preliminary side-by-side analysis of the Accessible Canada Act Survey; both results shared at the 9/25 Candidates Forum, as well as the results generated from a second publicity push from Accessible Media Inc.
Link ß (PDF) Survey Analysis 9/25 ACA Candidate’s Forum & 10/16 Snapshot of Accessible Media Inc. push of the survey.
For those with a visual impairment, we are attaching a Word document version without any graphics.
3 Major takeaways from the survey;
- More education is needed to explain ACA and to differentiate between Federal & Provincial responsibility
- A consensus is developing as to the priorities of Bill C-81 improvements, and suggested approaches
- There is a Canada-wide interest in improving the ACA / Bill C-81
Going forward, and independent of the results of the October 21, 2019 Federal election, insights generated from this survey will be relevant to the national effort to improve and strengthen Bill C-81, the Accessible Canada Act.
As discussed at the Accessible Canada Act: Candidates’ Forum on September 25, 2019, the AODA Alliance has been seeking election commitments on advancing the cause of “Accessibility” for over 6 million people with disabilities in Canada. Here is the progress made as of October 18, 2019 – 10AM. The table below is a summary;
|AODA Alliance – Seeking Election Commitments on Advancing the Cause of Accessibility|
|July 18, 2019|
|Party Responses as of October 17, 2019|
|Date||October 16, 2019||X||September 19, 2019||X||X|
|Indirectly||October 14, 2019|
|AODA Alliance – Summary of Federal Election Platforms – Issue by Issue Comparison|
|October 18, 2019|
- Link ß Letter 1 – Follow-up Actions – Sent September 26, 2019 (Includes preliminary survey results)
- Videos – Accessible Canada Act; Candidate’s Forum
- Link ß Post Session Podcast – Original Air Date September 26, 2019 – 9:20AM – Accessible Media Inc
If you have any questions, please direct them to email@example.com.
Please note… Neither Reena nor Holland Bloorview support or oppose any party or candidate in the upcoming Federal Election.
On behalf of the Reena and Holland Bloorview team that organized the Accessible Canada Act: Candidates’ Forum and the team that developed and deployed the ACA survey
Fred Winegust, MBA, BsC
Stakeholder Relations – Associate
927 Clark Ave West | Thornhill | L4J 8G6
w: (905) 763.8254 x3636 | f: (905) 763.8272
Information on Reena www.Reena.org
Information on Intentional Community Consortium: http://intentionalcommunities.ca/
Virtual Tour of Reena Community Residence: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iYRgeF6MYW4
This e-mail communication is CONFIDENTIAL AND PRIVILEGED. If you are not the intended recipient, please notify me at the telephone number shown above or by return e-mail and delete this communication and any copy immediately. Thank you. L’information apparaissant dans ce message électronique est PRIVILĖGIĖE ET CONFIDENTIELLE. Si ce message vous est parvenu par erreur, vous êtes en conséquence prié de nous aviser immédiatement par téléphone ou par courriel. De plus veuillez détruire ce message immédiatement. Merci.
*Note: This program is only available to British Columbia and Nova Scotia residents.
Government of Canada investing in teaching digital skills to Canadians who need them most
Date Written: May 20, 2019 at 5:00 PM
Date Saved: 5/28/19, 2:19 PM
Canadians needing fundamental digital skills training to benefit from this investment Digital skills widen Canadians’ access to a world of possibilities. All Canadians should have the necessary skills to get online by using computers, mobile devices and the Internet safely and effectively. That is why the Government is putting in place initiatives to ensure no one is left behind as the world transitions to a digital economy.
Today, the Honourable Joyce Murray, President of the Treasury Board and Minister of Digital Government, on behalf of the Honourable Navdeep Bains, Minister of Innovation, Science and Economic Development, announced an investment of $1.3 million in the Canadian National Institute for the Blind’s (CNIB) Connecting with Technology initiative. This initiative will deliver fundamental digital literacy skills training to participants in British Columbia and across the country.
CNIB’s Connecting with Technology initiative will be targeted at seniors who are blind or partially sighted. This initiative will reach about 750 participants, providing them with training in digital literacy and offering required assistive technologies.
This investment is being provided through the Digital Literacy Exchange program, a $29.5-million program that supports digital skills training for those known to be most at risk of being left behind by the rapid pace of digital technology adoption: seniors, people with disabilities, newcomers to Canada, Indigenous peoples, low-income Canadians, and individuals living in northern and rural communities.
The program aligns with the Government’s Innovation and Skills Plan, a multi-year strategy to create good jobs and ensure Canadians have the skills to succeed.
End of article.
Canada accedes to the Optional Protocol to the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities
December 3, 2018 Ottawa, Ontario Employment and Social Development Canada
The Government of Canada is working to create a truly accessible Canada. Today, as part of these efforts, the Honourable Carla Qualtrough, Minister of Public Services and Procurement and Accessibility, along with the ministers of Justice, Foreign Affairs and Canadian Heritage, announced that, with the support of all provinces and territories, Canada has acceded to the Optional Protocol to the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities.
Accession to the Optional Protocol means that Canadians will have additional recourse to make a complaint to the UN Committee on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, if they believe their rights under the Convention have been violated.
Along with the proposed Accessible Canada Act, which was recently adopted by the House of Commons and is now before the Senate, today’s announcement shows that the Government of Canada is taking another step towards creating a barrier-free Canada.
Recently released data from Statistics Canada reinforce the importance of a more inclusive and accessible Canada. The 2017 Canadian Survey on Disabilities shows that the prevalence of disabilities among Canadians is greater than many realize, with 22% of Canadians identifying as having a disability. The new data will be used by the federal government to help build a more inclusive society that benefits all people in Canada – especially persons with disabilities – through the realization of a Canada without barriers.
“Over the last year, our government has taken important steps to help realize a barrier-free Canada. Today, on the International Day of Persons with Disabilities, we celebrate those accomplishments and look towards the future of accessibility in Canada with optimism. Canada’s accession to the Optional Protocol of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities builds on our work and sends a clear message that we are committed to the rights of persons with disabilities and committed to giving all Canadians a fair chance at success.”
– The Honourable Carla Qualtrough, Minister of Public Services and Procurement and Accessibility
“Canada joining this UN convention is about protecting and promoting the rights and dignity of persons with disabilities. As a country, we need to ensure that everyone has access to the same opportunities and enjoys the same rights. Today is a step forward to making that goal a reality.”
– The Honourable Chrystia Freeland, P.C., M.P., Minister of Foreign Affairs
“I am proud that the Government of Canada is taking this step to advance the rights of persons with disabilities. Enabling the UN Committee on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities to consider complaints of violations of rights under the Convention is an important way to strengthen and protect the human rights of Canadians with disabilities.”
– The Honourable Jody Wilson-Raybould, P.C., Q.C., M.P., Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada
“Promoting and advancing human rights for everyone is a fundamental part of our Canadian identity. It is important that federal, provincial and territorial governments continue to work together to uphold the rights of persons with disabilities. I am proud of the intergovernmental consultation held in support of Canada’s accession to the Optional Protocol to the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities and I look forward to driving further change.”
The Honourable Pablo Rodriguez, Minister of Canadian Heritage and Multiculturalism
“This announcement regarding the Optional Protocol, along with this government’s intention to pass the proposed Accessible Canada Act, sends a strong message to Canadians with and without disabilities that this government truly believes in inclusion and equality for all. This is one positive step to ensuring that Canadians with intellectual disabilities have their voices heard and that we are one step closer to ensuring we are not the left behind of the left behind.”
– Kory Earle, President, People First of Canada
The United Nations (UN) Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (the Convention) is an international human rights instrument that requires State Parties to the Convention to promote, protect and ensure the rights of persons with disabilities. Canada ratified the Convention in 2010.
The Optional Protocol establishes two procedures. The first is a complaint procedure that allows individuals and groups to take complaints to the UN Committee on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities in the case of an alleged violation of their rights under the Convention. The second is an inquiry procedure that allows the Committee to inquire into allegations of grave or systematic violations of the Convention by a State Party.
The UN Committee on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities is a body of independent experts that monitors the implementation of the Convention by States Parties.
As of November 2018, there are 177 States Parties to the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, with 93 States Parties to the Optional Protocol to the Convention.
Under Bill C-81, approximately $290 million over six years would serve to further the objectives of the proposed legislation.
One in five people—22 percent of the Canadian population aged 15 years and over, or about 6.2 million individuals—had one or more disabilities, according to the 2017 Canadian Survey on Disabilities.
The survey also reports that people with severe disabilities aged 25 to 64 years are more likely to be living in poverty than their counterparts without disabilities (17 percent) or with milder disabilities (23 percent).
- Backgrounder: Optional Protocol to the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities
- Making an accessible Canada for people with disabilities
- Statement by the Prime Minister on the International Day of Persons with Disabilities
- United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities
- Optional Protocol to the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities
Director of Communications
Office of the Honourable Carla Qualtrough
The Canadian Council of the Blind
20 James St. Suite 100
Ottawa, ON. K2P 0T6
SDPP-D Federal Grant Updates – November 2018
Wednesday, November 14, 2018
*Note: This is a text version of the Federal Grant Updates page on the NNELS website, which can be accessed by activating this link. We thank CCB staff and all the other partners who worked on this project, as well as those who will work on the next stage. #AccessibilityMatters.
funds library network service expansion to make more published works
available in formats accessible for Canadians with print disabilities
From January to June 2018, NNELS worked on a series of special projects to enhance the production and availability of accessible-format material in Canada. The project was funded in large part by a grant from the Government of Canada’s Social Development Partnerships Program – Disability Component (SDPP-D). In September 2018, the BC Libraries Cooperative received an additional $1 million to carry out a series of new special projects to build on the momentum created from the previous grant work. New projects focus on three main areas: accessible publishing, accessible reading, and braille availability.
Summaries of these projects follow, and this page will be updated as the projects are carried out. For answers to your questions please write to
- Accessible Publishing
NNELS continues to work with partners to support publishers in creating born accessible material.
- a) Accessible Publishing Summit
This invitation-only summit will be held in Toronto on January 28th and 29th, 2019, and will include stakeholders in the ebook production, distribution, and reading chain. We will create and distribute a set of best practices for accessible EPUB relevant to communities along that chain; related documentation will be publicly available online. We are working with Laura Brady <https://twitter.com/LauraB7> to organize this event.
- b) Accessible Publishing Workshops
In February, Lisa Snider of Access Changes Everything will host ten, two-day accessible publishing workshops across Canada. We have invited publishers and publishers’ associations to contact us if they would like to host a workshop in their city. The two-day workshops will allow the first day to offer a theoretical grounding for hands-on, practical experience on the second day.
- c) EPUB Accessibility Reports/Audits
We will be working with Lisa Snider, Farrah Little, and our stellar team of accessibility testers to create accessibility reports for 60 EPUB files from 30 Canadian publishers. In the first week of November, we sent an invitation to publishers and have received a great response, especially from Ontario publishers. We hope to have all 60 files by December 1st. Publishers can sign up here.
- d) DAISY Consortium Partnership
We are funding the DAISY Consortium to develop and enhance their open-source, user-friendly version of the Ace by DAISY. To date, Ace by DAISY has been a command-line tool, but the new release has a graphical user interface. DAISY is also preparing the Accessible Publishing Knowledge Base
<http://kb.daisy.org/publishing/> and EPUBTest.org
<https://epubtest.org/> website for language localization,
And translating both Ace by DAISY and EPUBTest.org into French.
On November 6th, we were invited by DAISY to a conference call to review their latest version of a test book used at EPUBtest.org to test different reading applications. One of our accessibility testers was able to attend and wrote afterward, “It was so much fun to just talk our lingo for an hour with them. I learned a lot, too. I’m able to present more refined recommendations to cover images in my reports now, and I’ve finally figured out how page navigation is supposed to work! I couldn’t believe it when people started signing off. I almost said, “Hey wait a minute, this was supposed to last an hour,” then I checked the time and was astonished to see that it indeed had.”
DAISY is actively including our team in their work: we are learning so much from them and so grateful for this opportunity!
- e) Plugins for Publishers
Publishers have asked for plugins they can use with their ebook editing software to automate repetitive tasks and improve accessibility. We posted an RFP for a plugin developer which closed on November 2nd, and we are working on next steps.
- Accessible Reading
- a) Purchasing
We have approached eBOUND to inquire about purchasing titles published since our last round of funding, and to invite participation from publishers who did not work with us in the spring. We also sent an invitation through Canadian publishers’ associations to purchase their material directly from them or through their distributors.
We have agreements in place with two major digital audiobook vendors to purchase jointly with CELA/CNIB. Purchasing is beginning mid-November. We have budgeted a total of $100,000 for new content.
- b) Testing Library Reading Apps
Our team of accessibility testers are exploring the accessibility of library reading applications, with input from DAISY and CELA. The purpose of this project is to give vendors specific feedback about their reading apps so that audiobooks and accessible ebooks are available to all readers through those platforms. The team is currently testing the OverDrive app on a variety of platforms. NNELS will share the results with the vendors and the Canadian public library community.
- c) Partnership with Camp Bowen Society for the Visually Impaired
We are thrilled to continue working with the Camp Bowen Society for the Visually Impaired <https://campbowen.ca/> to further develop the beta version of their Production Tool, a tool that automates and streamlines the EPUB remediation process. As part of this process, Camp Bowen will create 18 accessible-format titles for the NNELS repository.
- d) National Requests
We are once again accepting nation-wide requests to produce books that are not currently available in accessible formats. A link to submit requests will be distributed and posted here soon.
- Braille Availability
- a) Print-Braille Childrens’ Books
In partnership with the Vision Impaired Resource Network (VIRN) in Manitoba, we are producing 5 titles in French to be distributed through every provincial and territorial Public Library Authority. Special thank you to staff at BAnQ for helping us select titles! This project builds on previous work done with VIRN to expand the Canadian print-braille collection.
- b) Hardcopy and Electronic Braille Pilot Project
Our Saskatchewan-based Braille Production Coordinator, Riane LaPaire, is coordinating the production of 50 hardcopy and 50 electronic braille titles for distribution through NNELS and Canadian public libraries. This pilot project will inform future decisions on choosing braille producers, braille quality, and distribution methods. This project is based on recommendations from the “Improving Braille Availability in Canadian Public Library.
Barrier Free Canada applauds the tabling of the Accessible Canada Act by the
Minister of Science, Sport, and Persons with Disabilities
OTTAWA (June 22, 2018) – Barrier Free Canada/Canada sans barrières (BFC/CSB)
is celebrating the introduction on Wednesday of the long-awaited federal
accessibility legislation, the Accessible Canada Act. It is hoped that the
legislation will help to make accessibility and inclusion a priority for all
federally-regulated and federally-funded organizations.
Over the past several years, BFC/CSB and a myriad of other charitable and
not-for-profit organizations have worked tirelessly holding consultations,
conducting research, and preparing recommendations and advisory reports to
inform the content of this federal legislation.
“Wednesday was a momentous day,” said Donna Jodhan, President and founder of
BFC/CSB. “Canadians with disabilities have long dreamt of the day when
accessibility and inclusion in government services would be clearly
mandated, and we are now one step closer to that full inclusion.”
In 2010, Canada ratified the United Nations Convention on the Rights of
Persons with Disabilities (UNCRPD), pledging to address the exclusion and
accessibility barriers that people with disabilities face in Canada. The
introduction of this legislation is a tangible step toward making this a
lived reality for Canadians with disabilities.
Legislation exists to protect the rights of Canadians with disabilities
within the federal sector, such as the Canadian Human Rights Code, the
Charter of Rights and Freedoms, and the UNCRPD itself. But as Anthony Tibbs,
Treasurer of BFC/CSB and a lawyer with Merchant Law Group explained, “These
tools are reactive and provide remediation for people whose rights have been
denied – but only if the person is willing or able to fight through a court
process. What Canada needs, and what we hope this legislation will offer,
are proactive standards (and meaningful oversight) to prevent the
discrimination from happening and take the enforcement obligation off the
backs of the people who are meant to be protected.”
Jodhan added, “A few years ago I was forced to take the federal government
to Court because government web sites and online services were needlessly
inaccessible to me as a person who is blind. I hope that federal legislation
mandating accessibility will avoid anyone else having to repeat that
adventure in the future.”
BFC/CSB will be reviewing the proposed law in detail in preparation for
hearings anticipated to be held after parliament returns by the committees
tasked with reviewing the legislation.
BFC/CSB is a non-partisan not-for-profit organization that has been
advocating for legislation to ensure accessibility and inclusion for
Canadians with disabilities at both the federal and provincial levels for
more than five years.
# # #
For more information, write to firstname.lastname@example.org or call Anthony
Hi GTT Program Blog Readers. I was asked by Karen McKay, Communications Manager, Centre for Equitable Library Access to distribute this statement.
Statement to CELA patrons and supporters
Over the weekend Global News released a story about the absence of federal funding for accessible book production in the 2018 federal budget. CNIB, one of our key production partners, raised the issue in letters to key members of the federal government which outlined the impact this decision would have for the estimated 3 million Canadians with print disabilities.
Federal funding for accessible book production is used to convert published works into accessible formats including human narrated audio, e-text, braille. Since its founding on April 1, 2014 CELA has been managing the collection guided by the CELA Collection Policy and library best practices. Without this funding for accessible book production, CELA’s ability to develop the collection and deliver new materials to patrons would be seriously constrained and would constitute a giant step away from the equitable library service we strive to deliver.
We fully support and thank the CNIB for their advocacy on behalf of Canadians with print disabilities. We were heartened to hear that the federal government has now reconfirmed its commitment to funding accessible book production and that it continues to work towards a long-term strategy for the production of accessible materials. CELA remains committed to providing accessible library services to our patrons through CELA member libraries across the country, and to working with the federal government and all stakeholders to devise a long-term solution.