Guest Post: Barrier Free Canada Press Release, June 22, 2018

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 or call Anthony

Tibbs (514-248-7777).

Dear Members:

The Government of Canada has developed a new mobile app as part of their Job Bank. Below is an invitation for you to participate. If you are interested, please try the app and suggest any improvements. Further details on downloading the app and where to submit your comments are outlined below.

(French message follows)

Dear Friends and Colleagues,

We are writing to solicit your feedback on a new app the Government of Canada has developed as part of its Job Bank.

The mobile app helps users find employment by providing full access to the job opportunities found on the Job Bank website, and by including mobile features such as GPS location-based searching and push notifications for when new matching jobs become available. It also provides customized job searching with filters such as “persons with disabilities”, “youth” and “Indigenous people”.

The Government of Canada has done testing to help ensure accessibility standards are met and focused on the performance of mobile screen readers (testing: VoiceOver, TalkBack, Zoom, Colour Ratio, etc) and other assistive technology tools.

The Job Bank team is new to the mobile app space and so they invite you to try the app and suggest improvements. You can send your feedback through the in-app Contact Us feature or via this link. Your general feedback on Job Bank’s services to the disability community will also be welcomed on

The app is available on Google Play and the App Store.

Please also share this with your networks and encourage them to use it and to provide feedback.

For more information about how Job Bank services can help people with disabilities find employment and help employers hire persons with disabilities, you can visit:

And, as always, we encourage you to follow @AccessibleGC on Twitter, Accessible Canada on Facebook and follow the hashtag #AccessibleCanada and #AccessAbility for the latest information.


Krista Wilcox
Director General
Office of Disability Issues
Tel: 819-654-5577
Cell: 613-266-5676

Chers amis et collègues,

La présente vise à solliciter vos commentaires sur une nouvelle appli que le gouvernement du Canada a élaborée pour son Guichet-Emplois.

L’appli mobile aide les utilisateurs à trouver un emploi en offrant un accès complet aux possibilités d’emploi qui se trouvent sur le site Web du Guichet‑Emplois et comprend des fonctions mobiles comme la recherche géolocalisée par GPS et des notifications instantanées lorsque de nouveaux emplois correspondants deviennent disponibles. L’appli permet également de faire des recherches d’emploi personnalisées avec des filtres comme « personnes handicapées », « jeunes » et « Autochtones ».

Le gouvernement du Canada a effectué des essais pour s’assurer que les normes d’accessibilité sont respectées et axées sur les performances des lecteurs d’écran mobiles (essais : VoiceOver, TalkBack, Zoom, Colour Ratio, etc.) et d’autres outils de technologie d’assistance.

L’équipe du Guichet-Emplois en est à ses débuts dans l’espace des applications mobiles et vous invite donc à essayer l’application et à suggérer des améliorations. Vous pouvez nous envoyer vos commentaires au moyen de la fonction Contactez-nous de l’appli ou de ce lien. Vous pouvez aussi nous faire part de commentaires généraux sur les services offerts par le Guichet-Emplois à la collectivité des personnes handicapées à l’adresse

L’appli est disponible via Google Play et l’App Store.

Veuillez également partager le présent message sur vos réseaux et encourager vos contacts à l’utiliser et à fournir de la rétroaction.

Pour obtenir de plus amples renseignements sur la façon dont les services du Guichet-Emplois peuvent aider les personnes handicapées à trouver un emploi et aider les employeurs à embaucher des personnes handicapées, visitez

Comme toujours, nous vous encourageons à suivre @AccessibleGC sur Twitter, Canada Accessible sur Facebook et les mots-clic #AccessibleCanada et #AccessAbility pour obtenir les renseignements les plus récents.


Krista Wilcox
Directrice Générale
Bureau de la condition des personnes handicapées
Tel: 819-654-5577
Cell: 613-266-5676

***End of e-mail***


Dar Wournell
National Secretary
Alliance for Equality of Blind Canadians
Toll-Free: 1-800-561-4774

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You are receiving this message because our records indicate that you are an Active or Lifetime member of the Alliance for Equality of Blind Canadians. For more information, please call 1-800-561-4774 or e-mail

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Re-post: Statement to CELA patrons and supporters

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.


Guest Post: Minister Qualtrough introduces National AccessAbility Week to promote accessibility every day, everywhere in Canada

Minister Qualtrough introduces National AccessAbility Week to promote accessibility every day, everywhere in Canada

As Canada’s Minister responsible for Persons with Disabilities, I believe that our country’s diversity is our strength—and when we include people with disabilities, we create a stronger Canada for everyone.
It is my pleasure to announce that launching this spring, for the first time in many years, an annual national week devoted to inclusion and accessibility.
From May 28 to June 3, 2017, National AccessAbility Week will celebrate, highlight and promote inclusion and accessibility in our communities and workplaces across the country.
We’ve made great strides in promoting inclusion for Canadians with disabilities, but there is still much work to do.
To create a truly inclusive society, we need to change the way we think, talk and act about barriers to participation and accessibility—and we need to do it right from the start, not as an afterthought. An inclusive Canada is one where all Canadians can participate and have an equal opportunity to succeed.
National AccessAbility Week will aim to bring this perspective to the forefront for Canadians, and highlight some of the important initiatives this government and its partners are undertaking to bring about this change.
Please join us in celebrating National AccessAbility Week. I invite you to host events in your own local communities, and participate on social media. More information will be available in the coming weeks on, and I encourage you to follow @AccessibleGC on Twitter, Accessible Canada on Facebook and follow the hashtag #AccessibleCanada and #AccessAbility for the latest information.
Together, let’s continue working towards an Accessible Canada.
The Honourable Carla Qualtrough, Minister of Sport and Persons with Disabilities