Minister Qualtrough reinforces the Government of Canada’s commitment to accessibility
Americas, March 6 2017
GATINEAU, QUEBEC: The Honourable Carla Qualtrough, Minister of Sport and Persons with Disabilities, joined world leaders at the 2017 International Initiative for Disability Leadership (IIDL) Conference on March 2, 2017, to share their experiences, knowledge and perspectives on this year’s theme: Contributing Lives, Thriving Communities.
During her keynote address to the IIDL, Minister Qualtrough highlighted Canada’s commitment and ongoing work towards building a more accessible and inclusive society. The conference, attended by world leaders, policy makers and social service providers, along with people with disabilities and their families, provided an opportunity for collaboration and the development of international partnerships. Other participating countries included New Zealand, Sweden, Ireland and the United States. Minister Qualtrough spoke about leading by experience and the calls to action that inspire leaders to work for the public good.
She also shared insights gained from a successful public consultation process she led this past fall with Canadians and stakeholders from coast to coast that will inform the development of planned federal accessibility legislation. This legislation will promote equality of opportunity and inclusion of people with disabilities and functional limitations in their workplaces and communities.
During her trip to Australia, Minister Qualtrough met with her Australian counterparts, including the Honourable Jane Prentice, Assistant Minister for Social Services and Disability Services, and the Honourable Christian Porter, Minister of Social Services, to discuss effective initiatives to promote attitudinal and culture change towards people with disabilities and how to build partnerships with the private sector to promote accessibility leadership.
She also sat down with Kate Palmer from the Australian Sports Commission to discuss disability policies, health and anti-doping in sports, as well as innovative ways of dealing with accessibility costs.
Minister Qualtrough concluded her visit to Australia on March 3 by meeting with Therese Campbell, Chair of WorkFocus Australia, to discuss issues including workplace rehabilitation, injury management and health services.
“Having an opportunity to join the conversation with partners from across the world, where we can share perspectives and best practices, is an important step towards the goal of achieving real solutions for a truly accessible society.”
– The Honourable Carla Qualtrough, Minister of Sport and Persons with Disabilities
“Minister Qualtrough’s presentations were a highlight of the international meeting. Her powerful and inspiring leadership journey spanned her early path as a champion Paralympic athlete, human rights lawyer and inclusion advocate, through to her ground breaking work as Canada’s first Minister for Persons with Disability. Her determination to tackle and eliminate systemic barriers to access and inclusion will be of great interest internationally and we welcome Canada’s ongoing involvement in the International Initiative for Disability Leadership.”
– Eddie Bartnik, Chair of the Sponsoring Countries Leadership Group for IIDL