National AccessAbility Week – May 31 to June 6, 2020

Together, let’s take action to build an inclusive and accessible Canada

National AccessAbility Week (NAAW) is an opportunity:

  • to celebrate the valuable contributions of Canadians with disabilities
  • to recognize the efforts of individuals, communities and workplaces that are actively working to remove barriers to accessibility and inclusion

We all benefit from a society and an economy without barriers to inclusion. When persons with disabilities can participate in all aspects of society, including accessing employment, resources and services, it enriches Canada’s economy.

In light of the COVID-19 outbreak, the Government is helping Canadians with disabilities maintain their health, safety and dignity. To this effect, this year’s celebration activities for NAAW will be virtual, to reflect public health instructions.

From the Minister

Video message from the Minister (transcript)

[Image showing: Coronavirus disease (COVID-19).

This footage was recorded prior to the Government of Canada’s social distancing guidelines. Canadians should continue to respect COVID-19 safety guidelines.]

[The Honourable Carla Qualtrough, Minister of Employment, Workforce Development and Disability Inclusion starts to speak.]

Hello everyone and happy National AccessAbility Week!

As Canada’s minister responsible for Disability Inclusion, it is my honour to launch this fourth annual week where we celebrate the contributions that persons with disabilities make to Canada. The work done by individuals, communities and workplaces to remove barriers to accessibility is critically important, and is needed now more than ever during COVID-19.

We are building on the momentum of the Accessible Canada Act by working with the disability community and Canadians across the country to find innovative ways to break down existing barriers to accessibility in order to become inclusive by design.

This is at the heart of the Government of Canada’s commitment to creating a truly inclusive and accessible Canada where everyone has equal rights and opportunities to contribute to their communities and workplaces. 

The COVID-19 pandemic has deeply affected the lives and health of all Canadians, and disproportionately affected Canadians with disabilities in particular. As we continue to address the pandemic, the Government’s priority remains enabling persons with disabilities to maintain their health, safety and dignity during these difficult times and beyond.

[While the Minister is speaking, a video sequence is playing in the background. The sequence includes a young man with Down syndrome wearing protective glasses and working in an electronic facility, a young woman typing on a computer. It also shows a young man on a wheelchair, directing customer in a home hardware store, three people in an office environment, a young man working in a coffee shop and two women laughing, the first standing up and the second behind a computer screen, in a waiting room area. The next sequence includes a person, wearing a cap working in a packing facility, two men rolling their wheelchairs in a home hardware store, and a woman leaving her job, walking on her crunches. The last sequence shows a woman and her guide dog at home. Her help care provider accompanied her in her kitchen.

The Minister resumes her speech.]

The creation of the COVID-19 Disability Advisory Group is an example of the Government’s approach to including the lived experiences and advice of persons with disabilities in our pandemic response. We will be making more announcements this week so stay tuned!

[For this following sequence, while the Minister speaks, a montage of photo is played in the background. The photos show two women posing, a women wearing glasses and a cap, a smiling receptionist and a standing young person with short hair. The sequence ends with the Accessible Canada Twitter dashboard.

The Minister finishes her speech.]

I encourage Canadians to get involved during National AccessAbility Week. Share your personal stories, photos and videos of disability inclusion using the hashtag #AccessibleCanada. I also invite you to also highlight an organization that is making accessibility a reality in your community.

We all benefit when everyone can participate equally in our economy, and society.

Together, let’s take action to build an inclusive and accessible Canada!

[Screens shows the vanity url

Video ends with the Canada Wordmark, including the waving flag.]

Get involved

Promotional tool kit

Services and information

Making an Accessible Canada for persons with disabilities
Find out how communities, workplaces and services can contribute to a Canada without barriers where everyone can participate fully.

Social Development Partnerships Program - Disability
Supports projects that help persons with disabilities to participate in all aspects of Canadian society.

Enabling Accessibility Fund
Supports community-based projects across Canada aimed at improving accessibility and safety in communities and workplaces.

Opportunities Fund for Persons with Disabilities
Contributes to projects that help persons with disabilities find jobs in Canada.

Canada Pension Plan Disability Benefit
A taxable benefit that individuals may be eligible for if they are unable to work because of a disability.

Registered Disability Savings Plan
A savings plan to help participants save for the long-term financial security of a person who is eligible for the disability tax credit.

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