CCD Chairperson's Update - April 2014

Basic Income – This concept continues to spark interest from Canadians thinking about how to improve income security.  Michael Prince, one of the Principal Researchers directing the Disabling Poverty/Enabling Citizenship research project, is writing a paper which will summarize the policy options developed during the project.

Financial Consumer Code Roundtable with Minister Sorenson - On 17 April 2014, Laurie Beachell participated in a roundtable focused on the financial needs of "vulnerable" Canadians.  Participants challenged the language of vulnerability.  Laurie encouraged the adoption of access regulations, universal design and plain language by the providers of financial services.

Loss of a Champion – In March, the Hon. Jim Flaherty resigned as Finance Minister and then in April, he passed away suddenly in Ottawa.  Like others in the disability community, CCD commented on the former minister's legacy on disability policy.  Laurie Beachell, Michael Bach, and Michael Prince wrote articles that were carried in newspapers across Canada and Tony Dolan was interviewed by As It Happens, Power and Politics and the Ottawa Citizen for his views on Flaherty's record.  Andre Picard's article. " Disability community ‘has lost a true champion’ in Jim Flaherty" in the Globe and Mail included the following comments from Laurie Beachell, CCD National Coordinator, " 'The disability community in Canada has lost a true champion,' said Laurie Beachell, co-ordinator of the Council of Canadians With Disabilities.  'What we appreciated most was that people with disabilities were a central part of his message and his actions. It was not an add-on or tokenism.'”

Not One But Many Champions Needed – Disability touches everyone; thus, we need all members of civil society and elected officials to play a role in creating access and inclusion.  In the coming weeks, CCD will be encouraging MPs to follow the lead of the late Hon. Jim Flaherty and to work actively for barrier removal. 

Transition Project – Goss Gilroy continues to explore with leaders at IL Canada and CCD the two groups' vision for the future.

The Same Mandate But on a Reduced Budget – For CCD, April is like the beginning of a new school year, because it marks the start of our new fiscal year.  Regrettably, Employment and Skills Development reduced CCD's budget by 65% this year.  CCD has a new project focused on developing new resources for CCD.