June 2017
Inclusion Matters Newsletter Masthead
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Smiling family of five_ including son with an intellectual disability
Help End Exclusion in our Communities

Samantha Gregory, a self-advocate who self-identifies as having an intellectual disability, experienced exclusion and violence in her life. She now uses her experience to help others. Samantha is a shining example of what people with intellectual disabilities can achieve with adequate support and equal opportunity to contribute their skills and abilities. However, across Canada and around the world, violence against people with intellectual disabilities remains a problem. Children with intellectual disabilities are four times more likely to experience sexual violence, while 80% of women and 55% of men with disabilities will experience violence or abuse in their lifetime. These numbers are staggering - and CACL needs your help to change it.

CACL_s Tara Levandier_ with Canadian delegates at the UN COSP meeting in UN New York.
10th Conference of States Parties held at United Nations New York

The 10th Conference of States Parties took place June 13-15th at the United Nations in New York City, bringing together more than 90 country delegations and hundreds of civil society organizations to discuss progress on the implementation of the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD).

The Convention of States Parties (COSP) is an annual event where countries come together to discuss best practices, share experiences, and learn from others. Constructive dialogues are held between civil society organizations, state parties (countries that have signed the Convention), and the UN CRPD Committee.

Group of women at IRIS Victim_s Week meeting
IRIS Hosts Victims and Survivors of Crime Week Events Across Canada

IRIS received a grant to participate in and help organize nationwide events for Victims and Survivors of Crime Week which took place May 28 - June 3.

IRIS worked with their partners in Vancouver, Regina, Toronto, Moncton, and Saint John to organize four community meetings in each city that brought together key support providers for Indigenous, refugee women, and women living with intellectual and mental health disabilities.

Little boy with intellectual disability happily playing outside.
Help Us Celebrate Canada's 150th Birthday! 
While Canada has grown, CACL continues to flourish as well, creating a more inclusive nation for persons with intellectual disabilities and their families.

To celebrate Canada's 150 and how far we've come, we're looking for photos and videos that showcase inclusion and diversity across the country.

CACL in Action!
Highlights of our recent national and international work.

  • Krista Carr, CACL Executive Vice-President, travelled to Richmond, BC to speak at Inclusion BC's "Inspired by Love" conference and share CACL's ongoing work toward inclusion.
  • Tara Levandier, CACL Director of Policy & Program Operations, was at the United Nations in New York City for the 10th session of the Conference of States Parties to the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (COSP).
  • Tara Levandier participated in a McMaster Health Forum stakeholder dialogue on Enhancing Equitable Access to Assistive Technology for Older Adults.
  • CACL & IRIS staff met with community partners to develop work plans for the Human Flourishing initiative, a new project that celebrates the full lives of persons with disabilities.
  • Don Gallant, National Director of Ready, Willing & Able, met with program officials of federal Employment and Disability Programs to discuss RWA progress and achievements.
  • Dr. Gordon Porter, Director at Inclusive Education Canada, met with Community Living Ontario, ARCH Disability Law Centre and the Canadian Research Centre on Inclusive Education to discuss the experiences of parents within the Ontario school system.
  • Presidents and Executive Directors of provincial and territorial Community Living Associations met with CACL & IRIS staff in Toronto this month for a two day dialogue on shared priorities and strategies for the ACL Federation. 
  • CACL & IRIS staff met with provincial members and key community partners to continue the development of the My Home My Community initiative.

RWA Works poster_ Free courses for Canadian Businesses that want the benefits of an inclusive workplace.
RWA Works: All Free Courses Now Available Online

Inclusive hiring works. For most employers the only thing stopping the transition to an inclusive workplace can be a lack of knowledge.

RWA Works is a free resource hub, available on demand, providing the know-how and resources to support businesses in hiring employees with an intellectual disability or Autism Spectrum Disorder.
Woman walks past a memorial on a cloudy day.
Commentary: Assisted Dying and the Lessons of History
The following excerpt is taken from a Policy Options commentary written by Catherine Frazee. 
In mid-May, a respected physician and scholar stepped down as chair of a working group of the Expert Panel on Medical Assistance in Dying. The working group will study the issue of advance directives for medically assisted death...

Woman teaching refugee students with intellectual disabilities.
CACL Recognizes World Refugee Day

The United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees reports that there are now over 65 million forcibly displaced people across the globe, with one person fleeing their home every three seconds.
Refugees face growing racism, xenophobia and exclusion, and a global context of rising extremist political parties and movements that feed on these divisions.

Read more
Upcoming Dates and Events
June 20 - UN World Refugee Day
July 1 - Canada Day - CACL offices are closed Monday, July 3rd

CACL in the News