Government of Canada invests in projects to improve access to services for persons with disabilities in Cumberland and Colchester

News release

June 3, 2021              Cumberland - Colchester, Nova Scotia              Employment and Social Development Canada

COVID-19 has had a disproportionate impact on persons with disabilities and has shed light on the number of Canadians that continue to face barriers to being fully included in their communities and workplaces. One of the many ways the Government of Canada is taking action to break down those barriers is through funding programs like the Enabling Accessibility Fund (EAF).

Today, in celebration of National AccessAbility Week (NAAW) 2021, the Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Employment Workforce Development and Disability Inclusion, Irek Kusmierczyk, and the Member of Parliament for Cumberland—Colchester, Lenore Zann, on behalf of the Minister of Employment, Workforce Development and Disability Inclusion, Carla Qualtrough, hosted a virtual event to highlight four projects led by organizations in Cumberland-Colchester that received over $317,000 in EAF funding. Funding through the Small projects components of the Enabling Accessibility Fund (EAF) will support Factory 58 Holdings Inc., the Village of Bible Hill, Rath Eastlink Community Centre, and the Municipality of the County of Colchester.

The EAF is a federal grants and contributions program that supports construction projects across Canada that improve the accessibility, safety and inclusion of persons with disabilities in our communities. The program helps provide vital accessible infrastructure such as ramps, automatic doors and accessible washrooms. It directly supports organizations so they can offer programs, services and employment opportunities to persons with disabilities.

The projects announced today involve renovations of all sizes, from making two floors fully wheelchair accessible for the Municipality of the County of Colchester to installing a lift allowing access to another floor at Factory 58 Holdings. These projects are excellent examples of how, by working with organizations, the Government of Canada is helping to break down barriers to accessibility and disability inclusion. 

PS Kusmierczky and MP Zann also highlighted the upcoming launch, on Friday June 4, 2021, of two calls for proposals under the EAF Mid-sized projects and Youth Innovation components. The Mid-sized projects component of the EAF provides contributions of up to $1 million to support larger retrofit, renovation or construction projects in facilities that house programs and services that help to increase social participation and labour market opportunities for persons with disabilities in Canada. The Youth Innovation component seeks to engage and challenge youth between 15 and 30 years of age, to volunteer and collaborate with local organizations in their communities to secure funding of up to $10,000 for accessibility projects. More information will be available on June 4 at Funding - Canada.ca.

Quotes

“When barriers to accessibility and inclusion are removed, Canadians with disabilities can participate fully, helping our communities thrive and our economy prosper. This is why I am so excited to see so many organizations working to help improve accessibility and further disability inclusion in the Cumberland-Colchester region. In many ways the projects supported by the Enabling Accessibility Fund make a world of difference to persons with disabilities, and help us move forward together towards a more disability inclusive Canada.”
- Minister of Employment, Workforce Development and Disability Inclusion, Carla Qualtrough

“Building a more inclusive Canada takes work, and we are committed to getting the job done. Thanks to the Enabling Accessibility Fund, the Government of Canada has been able to support organizations in the Cumberland-Colchester region that are working hard to make their community more accessible for persons with disabilities. Improving accessibility and promoting inclusion benefits all Canadians.”
- Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Employment, Workforce Development and Disability Inclusion, Irek Kusmierczyk

“It’s wonderful to see so many local organizations working to improve inclusion and accessibility in our community.  The Enabling Accessibility Fund’s Small projects component is helping us build a stronger and more accessible Canada today – as we all grow older as well as for future generations.  Together, we are working hard to make Cumberland-Colchester a more accessible place for persons with disabilities.”
– Lenore Zann, Member of Parliament for Cumberland—Colchester

Quick facts

  • May 30 to June 5, 2021, is National AccessAbility Week (NAAW), a time when accessibility and inclusion are promoted across Canada. It is an opportunity to highlight the contributions of Canadians with disabilities and recognize all efforts to remove barriers and ensure persons with disabilities participate fully in all aspects of Canadian society.

  • The Government of Canada has funded over 4,700 projects, since the establishment of the Enabling Accessibility Fund (EAF) in 2007, helping thousands of Canadians gain access to their communities’ programs, services and employment opportunities.

  • The Small projects component of the EAF funds projects that may enable a child with a visual impairment to participate in community activities, or make it possible for a person who uses a wheelchair to access his or her place of work.

  • Two new EAF calls for proposals will be launched on Friday, June 4.

    • Under the 2021 Mid-sized component, organizations will be able to submit project proposals for funding from $350,000 up to $1 million. The call for proposals will remain open until July 29, 2021.
    • Under the 2021 Youth Innovation component, expressions of interest from youth will be accepted until October 29, 2021. The deadline for organizations working with youth to submit their proposals will be November 30, 2021.
  • Budget 2021 committed $100 million over two years, starting in 2021-22, to triple funding for the EAF and support small and mid-sized projects with not-for-profit organizations, women’s shelters, municipalities, Indigenous organizations, territorial governments, and businesses of all sizes. An additional $29.2 million was committed over two years to help children with disabilities by supporting childcare centres to make physical upgrades to improve the accessibility of their facilities.

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Contacts

For media enquiries, please contact:


Marielle Hossack
Press Secretary
Office of the Minister of Employment, Workforce Development and Disability Inclusion, Carla Qualtrough
marielle.hossack@hrsdc-rhdcc.gc.ca


Media Relations Office
Employment and Social Development Canada
819-994-5559
media@hrsdc-rhdcc.gc.ca
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