National AccessAbility Week – May 30 to June 5, 2021

Disability Inclusion 2021: Leaving no one behind

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Join us from May 30 to June 5, 2021 to celebrate:

  • the valuable contributions of Canadians with disabilities
  • the accomplishments of individuals, communities and workplaces to remove barriers to accessibility and inclusion, and
  • the ongoing work we all have to do to counter discrimination against persons with disabilities and promote a culture of inclusion.

When barriers are removed, Canadians with disabilities are able to participate fully in society and workplaces. This helps our communities thrive and our economy prosper, so all Canadians benefit.

This year’s theme “Disability Inclusion 2021: Leaving No One Behind” is in line with the Government of Canada’s plan to build back better. It expands on the disability-inclusive approach, initiatives and measures the Government has taken throughout the COVID-19 pandemic.

As we plan ahead for an inclusive recovery, we encourage all Canadians to join us. It is only by working together that we will achieve a truly accessible and inclusive Canada that leaves no one behind.

This year, celebration activities for National AccessAbility Week will be virtual, in line with current public health instructions.

Message from the Minister

Minister Qualtrough launches National Accessability Week 2021

Transcript of video

Title: Minister Qualtrough launches National Accessability Week 2021

[Image shows the National AccessAbility Week background, composed of different coloured shapes and four photos. The photos include one indigenous man wearing dark glasses, a young woman smiling, one woman swimming in a pool and another woman speaking in sign language. The background also includes the following text:

National AccessAbility Week May 30 to June 5, 2021

Disability Inclusion 2021: Leaving No One Behind

The background ends with the accessibility icons and the Canada Wordmark at the bottom right].

[The Minister of Employment, Workforce Development and Disability Inclusion, Carla Qualtrough, starts to speak. Throughout the video, an ASL interpreter signs at the top left corner]

Hello everyone –

I am so pleased to launch the fifth annual National AccessAbility Week!

Each year, during the last week in May, we celebrate the contributions of persons with disabilities and highlight the work done by individuals, communities, and workplaces to remove barriers to accessibility and to foster disability inclusion in Canada.

We also acknowledge the discrimination and barriers that Canadians with disabilities continue to face, and recommit to an accessible and inclusive Canada.

This year, the theme is “Disability Inclusion 2021— Leaving No One Behind”.

[For the following sequence, while the Minister speaks, a video plays in the background. The video footage includes a young woman with Down syndrome working at a computer, in her office. It also includes a young man with Down syndrome at home, a woman on a wheelchair giving food to her dog and finally, a woman working at a grocery store, placing meat products then closing boxes.]

As part of our pandemic response, we worked tirelessly to put a disability lens on decision-making, ensuring that our supports and relief measures were disability-inclusive. And as we move forward, we are more committed than ever to a disability-inclusive economic recovery that truly leaves no one behind.

[The Minister returns to the screen.]

We have made significant strides in supporting Canadians with disabilities through and beyond this pandemic. With health, safety and economic security top of mind, the principle that guides everything we do continues to be: “Nothing without us”.

[For this following sequence, while the Minister speaks, a screenshot of the proposed Accessible Canada Regulations web page scrolls in the background.

The Minister continues her speech.]

Our work has continued on the implementation of the Accessible Canada Act, with the recent release of the first set of proposed regulations that will require federally regulated entities to incorporate accessibility measures into their operations.

And this is just the beginning.

For the following sequence, while the Minister speaks, a video plays in the background. The sequence includes a woman cleaning a desk then some furniture, then a young man with Down syndrome wearing protective glasses and working in an electronic facility. The sequence continues with a childcare facility seen from the outside, and then on the inside, one daycare provider holds the door with four children chatting around her. Then, a man wearing dark glasses works at his computer and a woman scans a document at her desk. The sequence continues with a man on a wheelchair using assistive technology, pointing with his mouth to access his mobile phone. Finally, a young man on a wheelchair working in a home hardware store places products.]

Budget 2021 included targeted investments like $100 million under the Enabling Accessibility Fund to remove barriers in the built environment, along with broad based investments, like the commitment to a childcare system that is inclusive from the start.

As we move toward recovery together, the Government will continue to work towards systems and programs that are inclusive by design.

Our Government is moving forward on our plan to develop Canada’s first-ever Disability Inclusion Action Plan that includes a new disability benefit, a robust employment strategy, and a better process to assess eligibility for Canadians with disabilities for federal programs and benefits.

[The Minister finishes her speech.]

I am very excited and can’t wait for us to build this great plan together.

This week, I invite all Canadians to join the conversation around disability inclusion and to ask yourself: how can I champion disability inclusion in my everyday life? How can I be a better ally to persons with disabilities?

Follow me and Accessible Canada as we embark on an amazing week of conversations with Canadians across the country.

Happy National AccessAbility Week everyone!

[The screen shows the National AccessAbility Week background again, which includes the following text:
National AccessAbility Week
Disability Inclusion 2021: Leaving No One Behind
Visit Canada.ca/accessability-week]

[This is followed by the Coronavirus sequence, which mentions the following: Portions of the footage used were recorded prior to the Government of Canada’s social distancing guidelines. Canadians should continue to respect COVID-19 safety guidelines.

The screen closes with the Canada Wordmark with its the waving flag]

Get involved

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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 activities from social not-for-profit organizations 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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