Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act Alliance Update
United for a Barrier-Free Society for All People with Disabilities
New AODA 7-Minute Video kicks Off Blitz to get the Senate to Strengthen Bill C-22, the Canada Disability Benefit Act – Watch Trudeau Government Flip-Flop on Whether the Bill has Needed Amendments
January 27, 2023
Check out the new 7-minute AODA Alliance online video, showing the Trudeau Liberals’ flip-flopping on whether it is good or bad to make amendments to Bill C-22, the proposed Canada Disability Benefit Act. The video is at https://youtu.be/EoOYYY6ki6k
A New Online Video!
Please watch and widely share a brand new 7-minute online video that the AODA Alliance just released. It kicks off our campaign over the next weeks to press the Senate of Canada to strengthen the weak Bill C-22, the proposed Canada Disability Benefit Act. Bill C-22 is supposed to lift hundreds of thousands of people with disabilities out of poverty. However, it doesn’t ensure that anyone will ever be lifted out of poverty.
We will be calling on the Senate to make amendments to Bill C-22, to strengthen it. The Trudeau Government will try to get the Senate not to make any amendments. It will also try to get disability organizations to just pass the bill without amendments! Our new video helps respond to any suggestion that any amendments to Bill C-22 would be a bad thing.
Last fall, when Bill C-22 was being considered by the House of Commons, we and many others from the disability and anti-poverty communities said that Bill C-22 was too weak. The Trudeau Government tried to argue that the bill was just fine as is, and should be passed with no amendments at all. They tried to get disability organizations, appearing at Standing Committee hearings last fall, to support their position.
However, when it came time last fall for that House of Commons Standing Committee to vote on amendments that the opposition parties proposed, the Trudeau Liberals did a major flip flop. They went from saying that there should be no amendments, to applauding several opposition amendments as “excellent”. This video shows their flip-flop from their own mouths, for all to see.
Eventually, the House of Commons passed nine amendments, only one of which the Liberals opposed. Those changes were helpful to a point, but in the end, the bill is still too weak. The resulting text of Bill C-22 still falls far short of what people with disabilities need to ensure that they are lifted out of poverty.
Remember what is in this video when Bill C-22 reaches the Senate in the next weeks, and when the Liberals flip-flop again, saying that amendments to the bill are a bad thing. The Liberals have pulled a 180 degree turn on the issue of amending this bill before. They can do it again!
Take 7 minutes to watch the video and judge for yourself! Get others to do the same. Share it on social media. Send it to any news reporters you can reach.
We know that the video’s captions need to be tweaked a bit. Our volunteers are going to get that done as quickly as we can.
What’s Next for Bill C-22
What comes next for Bill C-22? The House of Commons returns from its holiday break on Monday, January 30, 2023. It has to vote for Bill C-22 on Third Reading. Everyone expects that it will pass. We and many others call on the Government to schedule the Third Reading debate as quickly as possible, so that the bill can get to the Senate for its consideration.
We have called on the House of Commons to pass a simple but important amendment during Third Reading to fix a screw-up with the bill’s start date, that the House of Commons Standing Committee created. We have alerted the Trudeau Government and all MPs to this concern. If the Government wants to do this, they can easily seek agreement from the opposition parties, who should, we hope, be agreeable. The Government has not answered us on this issue. You can read more about this in the December 19, 2022 AODA Alliance Update.
Once the Senate passes the bill on First and Second Readings, it is expected to send the bill for public hearings in the Senate. We will ask to present at those hearings.
We are busily working on the amendments that we will propose to the Senate. Stay tuned for more on this in the coming days.
Send us your feedback. Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org
For More Background
To learn more about these issues, explore:
- What Bill C-22 says now, after all the amendments that were passed in the House of Commons so far.
- The December 12, 2022 AODA Alliance Update that gives a detailed analysis of the first day of HUMA’s clause-by-clause review of Bill C-22, on December 7, 2022.
- The December 19, 2022 AODA Alliance Update that gives an analysis of the second day of clause-by-clause review of Bill C-22.
- The 21-minute captioned video of AODA Alliance Chair David Lepofsky’s November 14, 2022 testimony at HUMA. It tells you all you need to know. Its concerns about the bill remain valid even after HUMA’s amendments.
- The November 14, 2022 open letter on Bill C-22, originally signed by 37 organizations (now increased to 41) from six provinces across Canada, that the AODA Alliance tabled with the House of Commons Standing Committee on Human Resources, Skills and Social Development and the Status of Persons with Disabilities.
- The 15 amendments to Bill C-22 that the AODA Alliance has requested.
- The AODA Alliance’s guest column in the November 7, 2022 edition of the Toronto Star, and the powerful Toronto Star editorial that day that cites the AODA Alliance’s concerns with Bill C-22.
- The AODA Alliance website’s Bill C-22 page, which shows our efforts to strengthen this proposed new law.