BRAMPTON, ON (Nov. 15, 2007) – Peel Regional Council has proclaimed Dec. 3 as the International Day of Disabled Persons (IDDP) in the Region of Peel at today’s Regional Council meeting. Peel’s IDDP coincides with the United Nations IDDP, which is aimed at mobilizing support for the dignity, rights and well-being of persons with disabilities. The theme for this year is Decent Work for Persons with Disabilities, which highlights opportunities and initiatives for the economic integration of persons with disabilities.
“Regional Council’s proclamation reflects its continued support for its citizens and Regional staff with disabilities,” says Regional Chair, Emil Kolb. “Through collaboration with the Joint Peel-Caledon Accessibility Advisory Committee (AAC), the Region is committed to promoting awareness and addressing the needs of persons with disabilities in the Region.”
To observe this year’s IDDP, a series of activities are planned to engage the community and Regional staff, such as a special meeting of the AAC, learning sessions and a leadership forum featuring guest speaker Kaye Leslie, Manager of Workforce Diversity at Scotiabank.
“This is an opportunity to acknowledge diversity within Peel and foster changes in attitudes towards persons with disabilities,” says William Goursky, Chair of the AAC. “Awareness of accessibility issues will help the Region build on its efforts to prevent and remove barriers to full participation by persons with disabilities.”
Members of the public are invited to attend a special meeting of the AAC featuring keynote speaker Tracy MacCharles, Acting Chair of the Accessibility Advisory Council of Ontario. The AAC will also present Accessibility Awards to Regional staff, whose efforts have improved accessibility to Regional programs, services and facilities.
The meeting will take place on Tuesday, Nov. 27 from 1 to 3 p.m. in the Regional Council Chambers at 10 Peel Centre Dr. in Brampton. The public can also listen to the meeting through live audio webcast at www.peelregion.ca.
“I commend the AAC for its dedication and commitment to improving accessibility for individuals with disabilities,” says Richard Paterak, Regional Councillor and member of the AAC. “The leadership provided by AAC members has been instrumental in our efforts to make Regional services and programs barrier-free.”
The AAC meeting will include a presentation about the ten20 Action program––an initiative to challenge businesses to ensure 10 per cent of new hires are comprised of persons with disabilities by the year 2020. There will also be a presentation about the Practice Firm, which provides virtual job experience for persons with disabilities. Information booths will be set up to provide insight into employment initiatives and enhancements underway for persons with disabilities.
Although the meeting is free, participants are requested to send a registration form to firstname.lastname@example.org or fax to 905-791-3990 by Nov. 20. Registration forms are available at www.peelregion.ca/corpserv/makingway or by calling 905-791-7800, ext. 4778.
The AAC consists of 11 members who meet once a month to assist the Region in its efforts to incorporate accessibility into the services and programs it provides. For more information about the Accessibility Planning Program, please contact Meenu Sikand, Accessibility Planning Specialist, at 905-791-7800, ext. 4778 or visit www.peelregion.ca/corpserv/makingway.
The Regional Municipality of Peel was incorporated in 1974 on the principle that certain community and infrastructure services are most cost-effectively administered over a larger geographic area. The Region of Peel serves more than one million residents in the Cities of Brampton and Mississauga and the Town of Caledon.