The government continues to build momentum in creating a barrier-free Ontario, but a lot of work still needs to be done to make the province accessible for everyone. When a society is inclusive and barrier-free, people can fully participate in their communities. Making Ontario a province where communities and businesses are accessible for everyone benefits us all.
That is why our government has developed a new framework- Advancing Accessibility in Ontario, informed by the recommendations made by the Honourable David C. Onley in the third legislative review of the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act, as well as input from key partners, organizations and people with disabilities. The new framework will make a positive difference in the daily lives of people with disabilities.
This is a cross-government framework that will help focus the province’s work in four key areas:
- breaking down barriers in the built environment
- government leading by example
- increasing participation in the economy for people with disabilities and
- improving understanding and awareness about accessibility
Breaking down barriers in the built environment
The government has introduced numerous initiatives to break down barriers in the built environment. Some of them include:
- Providing $1.4 billion in funding for the 2019-20 school year to help school boards provide safe and healthy learning environments for students, such as installing important accessibility features like elevators and ramps.
- Partnering with the Ontario Building Officials Association to enhance its curriculum and training on accessibility, helping to ensure that new and existing buildings can be planned and built to be more accessible.
- Ensuring better access for people with disabilities throughout Ontario by continuing to require that all public transportation vehicles bought with provincial funding be accessible.
We know that making Ontario accessible is a journey and we have a long way to go. This work cannot be completed overnight or alone. By working together, we are creating a more accessible Ontario today and for future generations.
To learn more about Advancing Accessibility in Ontario, please visit: http://news.ontario.ca/m/55522.