On November 4th, 2021 Royal Assent was given to Bill 38 – An Act Respecting Accessibility. The “Accessibility Act” gives the Government of Newfoundland and Labrador authorization to establish accessibility standards and makes it the sixth Canadian province to pass a legislation to address accessibility and inclusion.
The Government of Newfoundland and Labrador has also set up a Disability Policy Office in an effort to ensure that people with disabilities are included in all aspects of society.
The main purpose of the Disability Policy Office is to:
- promote the inclusion of people with disabilities in all aspects of society
- engage people with disabilities and advocates in developing ways to identify and remove barriers
- help government departments make sure their policies and programs do not exclude people with disabilities
- promote positive attitudes
- raise awareness of disability issues
In addition to the Disability Policy Office, the Government of Newfoundland and Labrador created the Provincial Advisory Council for the Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities to advise the Minister Responsible for the Status of Persons with Disabilities on current issues and ways to make things better. The Council is made up of people with lived experiences with disabilities and knowledge in inclusion. They are from small and large communities across the province and have diverse backgrounds, cultures and perspectives.
The government also offers a number of grants to help individuals and organizations: https://www.gov.nl.ca/cssd/grants/
For more information about the work of the Government of Newfoundland and Labrador in the area of disability, visit: https://www.gov.nl.ca/cssd/disabilities/