In November 2015, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau asked Minister Carla Qualtrough to engage Canadians directly about what is needed in new legislation that would help remove barriers and prevent new barriers from being created for persons with disabilities.
In June 2016, Minister Qualtrough began her discussion with Canadians by launching a new website, Accessible Canada, where she asked all Canadians to think about what accessibility means to them and what it could mean for their communities.
Between June 2016 and February 2017, over 6,000 Canadians and over 90 organizations shared their ideas about an accessible Canada, marking the largest and most accessible consultation on disability issues that Canada has ever seen. The consultations reflected the spirit and hope that Canadians have toward the proposed legislation and strove to honour the disability community’s principle of “nothing about us without us.” Canadians were encouraged to share their ideas and were offered many different opportunities to do so.
- Over 4,300 people answered questions on-line and over 200 people shared their ideas via letters, emails, videos or phone.
- Over 90 reports were provided by disability organizations, unions, businesses and other levels of government.
- Over 1,400 people participated in 18 meetings held across Canada.
- 115 youth from across the country attended a one-day Youth Forum hosted by the Minister. These young leaders with disabilities worked together to share their ideas. The Prime Minister also attended and hosted a question and answer period with participants.
- Over 110 experts attended thematic roundtables hosted by the Minister on disability issues. At these meetings, specific accessibility topics were discussed such as how to make public spaces, transport and customer service more accessible.
The result of all of this work was this report.