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Human Resources, Labour and Employment
February 9, 2010

Minister Marks First Meeting of the Provincial Advisory Council
for the Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities

The Provincial Advisory Council for the Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities, a group comprising leading advocates in the advancement of persons with disabilities, held its inaugural meeting today at the Capital Hotel in St. John’s. The Honourable Susan Sullivan, Minister of Human Resources Labour and Employment and Minister Responsible for the Status of Persons with Disabilities, was on hand to kick-off the two-day session and welcome council members.

“I am very pleased to see this new advisory council in action, and I am eager to benefit from the insights of this diverse and knowledgeable group,” said Minister Sullivan. “With this council now in place, I believe we are well positioned to make positive and enduring change for persons with disabilities throughout the province.”

The provincial advisory council was created in partnership with the community of persons with disabilities to advise the Provincial Government as it develops strategies and recommendations to advance inclusion. The council will be instrumental in advising the Provincial Government as it takes action to ensure people with disabilities have the same opportunities as people without disabilities, by removing existing barriers and ensuring that policies, programs and services are inclusive. The 16 members of the advisory council were announced this past November, having been chosen from a pool of over 80 applicants. Joanne MacDonald was appointed chair of the council.

“I am honoured to have been asked to chair the new Provincial Advisory Council for the Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities,” said Ms. MacDonald. “This is an exciting time and one which I believe has opportunities and great potential. I look forward to working with council members and the minister as we collectively look at how this province can become one that is accessible and without barriers.”

The Provincial Advisory Council for the Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities will meet for two days to discuss issues that have been put forward by stakeholders and explore ways to address these issues. The establishment of the advisory council follows the launch of the Disability Policy Office last June, which was created to ensure policies and planning put forward by all departments respect the principle of inclusion. For more information about the Provincial Advisory Council for the Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities or the Disability Policy Office, please visit: www.hrle.gov.nl.ca/hrle/disabilities/DPO.html

Photo #1: The Provincial Advisory Council for the Status of Persons with Disabilities held its inaugural meeting on February 10, 2010.

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Media contacts:

Jennifer Collingwood
Director of Communications
Department of Human Resources, Labour and Employment
709-729-0753, 690-2498
jennifercollingwood@gov.nl.ca
Joanne MacDonald
Chair, Provincial Advisory Council for the Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities
709-576-0303
jmacdonald@nl.rogers.com

2010 02 09                     9:40 a.m.
 


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