Children, Seniors and Social Development
December 3, 2018

Provincial Government Recognizes International Day of Persons with Disabilities

The Honourable Lisa Dempster, Minister Responsible for the Status of Persons with Disabilities, today signed a proclamation to celebrate the International Day of Persons with Disabilities.

The International Day of Persons with Disabilities, celebrated around the world annually on December 3, promotes the rights and well-being of persons with disabilities and increases awareness of their situation in every aspect of political, social, economic and cultural life. This year’s theme focuses on empowering persons with disabilities as part of the United Nations’ 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development that pledges to “leave no one behind.”

The Government of Newfoundland and Labrador is committed to safe and sustainable communities, with a key component being to ensure inclusion for all people. Work is well underway with advocacy groups and community stakeholders such as the Provincial Advisory Council for the Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities and the Coalition of Persons with Disabilities Newfoundland and Labrador to lead a review of existing legislation and regulations in the province in order to introduce new inclusion-based accessibility legislation. The intent of the new legislation is to provide an enhanced framework to remove barriers to inclusion throughout the province.

A public engagement process is currently being finalized in consultation with the Provincial Advisory Council for the Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities and the Coalition of Persons with Disabilities Newfoundland and Labrador. The process will provide members of the community of persons with disabilities and groups representing municipalities, business, health care, unions and professional and trade organizations with the opportunity to share their input in order to inform the development of the new legislation.

This initiative delivers on commitments in The Way Forward to deliver better services and better outcomes for residents. The Way Forward outlines all actions the Provincial Government is taking to achieve a strong, diversified province with a high standard of living, and can be viewed at thewayforward.gov.nl.ca.

Quotes
"The Government of Newfoundland and Labrador is pleased to join people from around the world to recognize today as International Day of Persons with Disabilities. We know that people in our province still experience barriers that exclude them from participating in society on a daily basis. As a government, we are creating environments that promote greater participation in our communities, and equitable access to employment opportunities and public services. We look forward to continuing our work with the Provincial Advisory Council for Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities and the Coalition of Persons with Disabilities to finalize the upcoming engagement process, which will inform the development of new inclusion-based accessibility legislation.”
Honourable Lisa Dempster
Minister of Children, Seniors and Social Development

“December 3 is a day to not only recognize the many and varied issues which impact persons with disabilities, but also the valuable contributions that we make in our many roles as workers, students, parents and leaders in our communities.”
Marie Ryan
Chair of the Provincial Advisory Council for the Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities

“The International Day of Persons with Disabilities is an important day for the disability rights community in our province. This is a day to celebrate how far we have come and to reflect on how much more there is to achieve. An estimated one in five Canadians over the age of 15 have one or more disabilities. In our province, that means 20 per cent or 105,763 people are facing barriers every day. The theme for this year is Empowering Persons with Disabilities and Ensuring Inclusiveness and Equality. In order to do that we all need to hold the responsibility to make that change. It is our day, collectively, to make sure there are no more barriers, no more exclusions or oversights in the policies, programs and services, and regulations that shape our lives and our communities. This is a day to unite us all.”
Emily Christy
Executive Director of the Coalition of Persons with Disabilities Newfoundland and Labrador

- 30 -

Learn more

International Day of Persons with Disabilities external link icon

Provincial Advisory Council for the Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities

Coalition of Persons with Disabilities Newfoundland and Labrador external link icon

Follow us on Twitter: @GovNLexternal link icon and @CSSD_GovNLexternal link icon

Media contacts
Gina MacArthur
Children, Seniors and Social Development
709-729-3768, 730-2977
ginamacarthur@gov.nl.ca

Marie Ryan
Provincial Advisory Council for the Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities
709-725-0701
mryan@ggi.nf.ca 

Emily Christy
Coalition of Persons with Disabilities Newfoundland and Labrador
709-722-7011
ed@codnl.ca

2018 12 03                              12:05 p.m.