Celebrating Our Accomplishments on UN Day of Persons with Disabilities

1 December 2011

For Immediate Distribution

On 3 December 2011, Canadians will be celebrating the United Nations’ Day of Persons with Disabilities. The history of advances in disability policy at the federal level is presented in a new book, called Celebrating Our Accomplishments, published last month by the Council of Canadians with Disabilities (CCD), a national organization of people with disabilities working for an inclusive and accessible Canada.

Celebrating Our Accomplishments chronicles the story of how Canada has become more inclusive and accessible because the voice of people with disabilities has been supported and heard. As the Hon. Diane Finley stated in the Foreword, “Significant progress has been made in Canada over the past 30 years for those with disabilities. And it has been a collective effort by individuals, business, government and organizations like CCD.”

In Celebrating Our Accomplishments, 61 community leaders explain how and why Canadians with disabilities have been moving steadily from the margins and into the mainstream of Canadian life. People with disabilities and their organizations have partnered with business, government and civil society organizations to develop and implement solutions to barriers preventing people with disabilities from contributing fully to Canadian society. The authors reveal how and why Canadians now enjoy inclusive education, community living opportunities, accessible transportation, the Registered Disability Savings Plan, to name only a few examples.

People with disabilities are sons and daughters, moms and dads, students, job seekers, workers and pensioners. We are you. Eventually, everyone will experience disability either personally or through the experience of a family member. Most Canadian families will access the disability policies and programs developed over the last 30 years. The work that has been, and is being, done on disability is for all Canadians.

“The Council of Canadians with Disabilities urges all Canadians to become a champion on disability issues. There are many issues waiting for a champion. Despite the progress recorded to date, we have issues that need to be resolved. Canadians with disabilities are seeking policy reform to promote access, participation in the labour market, economic security and full citizenship,” states Tony Dolan, CCD Chairperson.


For more information contact:

Tony Dolan, Chairperson, Tel: 902-569-2817
Laurie Beachell, National Coordinator, Tel: 204-947-0303