Celebrate National AccessAbility Week (May 30 – June 5) to recognize and honour the valuable contributions of Canadians with disabilities and promote the benefits of inclusion and diversity within our workplaces and communities. The national virtual event is also a time to highlight the efforts of individuals, communities and organizations that are actively working to remove barriers to accessibility and inclusion, while encouraging and inspiring others to do the same.
When barriers are removed, Canadians with disabilities can participate fully in society and workplaces, helping our communities thrive and our economy prosper. While progress has been made, there is ongoing work we all must do to counter discrimination against people living with disabilities and promote a culture of inclusion.
In line with public health restrictions, activities to celebrate National AccessAbility Week will be virtual, so we encourage you to utilize your social media platforms as much as possible. You can find suggested messaging and promotion visuals in the NAAW 2021 Stakeholder Toolkit and join the conversation by following and sharing posts from @AccessibleGC and @AccessEmployers on Twitter, and from Accessible Canada on Facebook. Remember to use the hashtags #AccessibleCanada and #AccessAbility.
Mark your calendars for Wednesday, June 2, which is Red Shirt Day, an Easter Seals initiative to raise awareness and promote dialogue about accessibility and inclusion. By wearing red on Red Shirt Day, you can help create a visible display of solidarity to show support for persons and families who are living with disabilities, celebrate their achievements, and pledge your commitment to help create a fully accessible and inclusive society that values the contributions of people of all abilities.
Destination BC continues to work to support a province that is accessible, inclusive and welcoming to all. Our “Toward an Inclusive and Accessible British Columbia Tourism Industry” is a three-year strategic framework and action plan that aims to build capacity within the industry and champion meaningful tourism employment opportunities for people with disabilities.
The deliverables within this plan include the development of educational resources on DestinationBC.ca to help tourism businesses build a better understanding of accessible travel needs and the benefits of hiring people with diverse abilities, and improving and enhancing accessibility planning and travel information on HelloBC.com. We encourage you to browse both these resources to help champion inclusion and accessibility throughout BC.
You can also read about Bill 6 – 2021: Accessible British Columbia Act, which the BC Government introduced into Legislature earlier this month. If passed, it will allow Government to establish standards to identify, remove and prevent barriers to accessibility and inclusion in areas ranging from employments and delivery of services to the built environment.
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