February 2017
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Inclusive Education Canada Partners with Microsoft to Strengthen Inclusive Education

In celebration of National Inclusive Education Month, Inclusive Education Canada has partnered with Microsoft Canada to provide free professional development workshops and resources for educators to help drive the most effective learning for students. The partnership highlights the commitment between both organizations to make learning more inclusive and accessible.

"Inclusive Education Canada is very excited to be partnering with Microsoft Canada on this important initiative. By giving teachers, administrators, parents, and students the knowledge and skills they need to make education equitable, we are creating stronger, more inclusive classrooms for everyone," said Dr. Gordon Porter, Director of Inclusive Education Canada.

CACL Appoints Krista Carr as
Executive Vice-President
CACL is very pleased to announce the appointment of Krista Carr as Executive Vice-President, effective April 17, 2017. 

In undertaking a comprehensive search for a new EVP, CACL sought a candidate who meets and exceeds our highest standards: passionate and dedicated commitment to the beliefs and values of full citizenship and inclusion of people with intellectual disabilities; demonstrated experience in turning those values into real change in people's lives and communities; and, visionary and strategic leadership with exceptional expertise in fund development, government and public relations. CACL has found that candidate in Krista Carr. We are honored to announce that she has accepted this appointment and we warmly welcome Krista to this leadership role.

CACL in Action!
Highlights of our recent national work.

  • Tara Levandier, Director of Policy & Program Operations, participated in civil society and government roundtable discussions regarding Canada's upcoming appearance before the United Nations Committee on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities.
  • Michael Bach, CACL EVP, attended discussions with the Coalition on Alternatives to Guardianship, in anticipation of the Law Reform Commission of Ontario final report and recommendations for changes in Ontario.
  • Michael Bach participated in government facilitated roundtable discussions on the proposed Federal accessibility legislation.
  • Michael Bach joined partners in Newfoundland and Labrador in his capacity as Managing Director of IRIS, regarding plans to develop law reform proposals for the right to legal capacity.
  • Between October 2016 and December 2016, Ready, Willing & Able achieved 129 new hires, and 177 commitments from employers to hire persons with an intellectual disability or Autism Spectrum Disorder. This reporting period brings the total number of hires under RWA since launching to 1,332 hires.

Commentary: National Study on "How Much Money Euthanasia will Save" Threatens All of Us 

The following is a commentary by CACL distinguished associate, Audrey Cole, in response to a National Post article titled, Euthanasia may save $139M, study says.

Back in the '90s, in Ontario, a Minister of Health was forced to resign from Cabinet because of the inadvertent naming in the Provincial Parliament of a patient with extremely high medical costs. People were shocked to realise not only that individual names and personal health costs to the last cent were identifiable by government but also that such information could be disclosed by government to the public at large.

That was certainly not an expectation of socialised medicine as we understood it! In fact, the opposite was and remains, true! As we were told after that unfortunate disclosure, such information is collected in Ontario only for the purpose of paying doctors for their individual services to individual patients.

Government of Canada: Court Challenges Program Reinstatement
On February 7, 2017, the Government of Canada announced the reinstatement and modernization of the Court Challenges Program (CCP). The CCP will combine the former Program and the Language Rights Support Program with a more streamlined approach. The Program will provide financial support to Canadians to access the courts for the litigation of precedent-setting test cases of national significance that help clarify certain constitutional and quasi-constitutional official language rights and human rights in Canada.

The modernized CCP will cover a broadened scope of rights, thereby ensuring that the Program's scope reflects societal and demographic changes, as well as the evolution of rights jurisprudence. In light of this, the Government of Canada has now expanded the grounds for Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms challenges to include fundamental freedoms, democratic rights, and rights with respect to life, liberty and security of the person.

We Need Your Input!

The Alliance for an Inclusive and Accessible Canada is a group of national disability organizations consulting Canadians with disabilities, their families, and stakeholders, about the Government of Canada's proposed federal accessibility law. CACL is an active member of the Alliance.

The Government of Canada has committed to adopting a strong federal accessibility law. The new accessibility law will cover areas that are under the power of the federal government. This includes areas such as railways, airlines, banks, postal services, radio, television, telephone and internet providers, employment insurance (EI), immigration, Aboriginal lands and rights, the military, and criminal law.

Over the next year, the Alliance will be consulting Canadians about the Government of Canada's proposed new accessibility law. Consultations will include online surveys and public sessions across the country, as well as online and telephone discussion groups.

Please complete a short online survey to tell us about the barriers faced by persons with intellectual disabilities in Canada. If you are located in Brandon (MB), North Bay (ON), or Saint John (NB), please consider participating in the pilot public consultations. More information can be found here.

Upcoming Dates and Events
February is Inclusive Education Month!  Check your Provincial-Territorial & local ACL for events
February 20  - Family Day in AB, SK, & ON: CACL head office closed
February 22 - Pink Shirt Day in support of anti-bullying
March 8 - International Women's Day