Vaughan recognizes local accessibility champions

Celebrating International Day of Persons with Disabilities (IDPD)

International Day of Persons with Disabilities (IDPD) — recognized on Dec. 3 — is an annual United Nations sanctioned day that aims to promote an understanding of persons with disabilities and encourage support for their dignity, rights and well-being. The day seeks to increase awareness of the benefits of the integration of persons with disabilities in every aspect of political, social, economic and cultural life.

IDPD aligns with the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act (AODA). The goal of the AODA is to make Ontario accessible by the year 2025. IDPD is recognized in communities across the world. The day reminds us of the many contributions of persons with disabilities. It also reminds us of the physical, social, economic and attitudinal barriers that may exclude them from participating fully and effectively as equal members of society.

In keeping with the spirit of IDPD, Vaughan residents Olga Dosis and Ron Wiskin were presented with the Association of Municipal Clerks and Treasurers of Ontario (AMCTO) AODA 10th  Anniversary Accessibility Champion Award at a Committee of the Whole meeting on Dec. 1. Ms. Dosis and Mr. Wiskin received this award for their efforts in advancing accessibility and improving the quality of life of people with disabilities. Congratulations to both of them!

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Persons with disabilities are more likely to face barriers as a result of the environment in which they live in, rather than their impairment. The inclusivity of citizens with disabilities is a corporate-wide vision shared by the City of Vaughan. The City plays an important role in ensuring access for residents and visitors with disabilities and through the Vaughan Accessibility Advisory Committee (VAAC). The role of the VAAC is to advise Council to support the City’s work in identifying and removing barriers to lay the foundation for a barrier-free, inclusive City.

The City of Vaughan provides a number of programs and services for persons with disabilities and regularly identifies and creates new opportunities to reflect the diverse and growing program needs of the community. Opportunities for persons with disabilities are vast and include the creative arts, health and wellness, life and social skills, performing arts, sports and leadership programs. In addition, Vaughan’s Accessibility Plan outlines corporate and departmental objectives related to addressing accessibility issues and services.

Warren Rupnarain
Accessibility and diversity co-ordinator
City of Vaughan

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Visit the City of Vaughan’s website at vaughan.ca.

 

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