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Watch our 60th Anniversary video that honours and remembers the civil rights history of people with intellectual disabilities in BC. Read more about our history here.

Press Release: December 3, 2014 is the International Day of Persons with Disabilities

Summary: 
December 3 marks the International Day of Persons with Disabilities, a global day of action for an inclusive world where everyone is welcomed, supported, and included.

December 3, 2014; New Westminster, B.C. December 3 marks the International Day of Persons with Disabilities, a global day of action for an inclusive world where everyone is welcomed, supported, and included.

As people around the world celebrate and raise awareness of the gains derived from the inclusion of persons with disabilities in every aspect of life, Inclusion BC is sharing a video that honours and remembers the civil rights history of people with developmental disabilities in BC. The stunning new video showcases rare historical footage and photos from our archives to produce a compelling celebration of human perseverance and courage. 

 

“Today, we celebrate the gains people with developmental disabilities and their families have made in the face of what seemed like insurmountable barriers. Institutions still exist around the world, including Canada, and today we join in the international fight for inclusion, human rights and the closure of institutions” says Faith Bodnar, Executive Director of Inclusion BC.

As people take their rightful place in homes across the province, we remember Jo Dickey, a mom who put her foot in the door of Woodlands institution, refusing to leave without her son.

As we advocate for a ban on the use of restraint and seclusion on students with special needs in schools, we remember the parents who fought so hard to have their children attend public school along with their peers.

As we work to give employers the tools they need to hire people with developmental disabilities, we remember sheltered workshops and self advocates who fought for Real Work For Real Pay.

We owe a great debt to these families, who not only started a sweeping movement for human rights for people with developmental disabilities, but a movement that has advanced the rights of us all.
 

Inclusion BC looks forward to continuing our 60-year legacy building on the success and courage of individuals and families who faced immense barriers. We join hands with the people, families, organizations, communities, and governments around the world who celebrate December 3rd as the International Day of Persons with Disabilities who help us to realize our vision of welcoming inclusive communities where children, youth and adults with developmental disabilities and their families can live full and contributing lives. 

 

Contact:
Faith Bodnar, Executive Director
604.777.9100 x. 516 (office)
604.764.2591 (cell)
fbodnar@inclusionbc.org

Danielle Kelliher, Director of Communications
604.777.9100 x. 527 (office)
dkelliher@inclusionbc.org

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Inclusive Employment

UN Enable (the official website of the Secretariat for the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities) issued this statement about creating inclusive employment and work environments:

The right to work is a fundamental human right. However, persons with disabilities are often not considered in employment due to negative perceptions regarding their ability to contribute or the high cost of accommodating their disability or inaccessible workplaces. … When employers undertake measures to identify and eliminate barriers to the employment, advancement and retention of persons with disabilities, they promote a workplace culture based on fair practices that safeguard allow persons with disabilities to be treated with dignity and respect and to enjoy equal terms and conditions of employment. The International Day of Persons with Disabilities can be used to draw attention to the available technologies and measures that can be adopted to create work environments that are open, inclusive and accessible to allow persons with disabilities to fully participate and contribute to the workforce.

Resources:

Inclusion BC’s employment program, Ready, Willing & ABLE recently launched an initiative that matches people with developmental disabilities and business leaders for a one-day mentoring experience. Mentorship is a great way for employers to understand the value those with developmental disabilities can bring to the labour market.

 

How you can commemorate IDPD 2014

Include: Observance of the Day provides opportunities for participation by all stakeholders – Governments, the UN system, civil society and organizations of persons with disabilities – to focus on issues related to the inclusion of persons with disabilities in society and development, both as beneficiaries and agents of change.

Organize: Hold forums, public discussions and information campaigns in support of the themes of IDPD 2014 to find innovative and promising ways in which technology can lead to a greater inclusion and integration of persons with disabilities in the lives of their societies.

Celebrate: Plan and organize performances everywhere to showcase - and celebrate - the contributions made by persons with disabilities as agents of change in the communities in which they live.

Take Action: A major focus of the Day is practical action to highlight how technology can impact the inclusion and contribution of persons with disabilities in social life and development on the basis of equality. Highlight best practices, innovative technological solutions for the full inclusion of persons with disabilities in their societies.