May 9, 2009
A delegation from the Government of China has been in Canada this week, hosted by the Government of Canada, to learn what is being done in Canada to promote accessibility for persons with disabilities. The AODA Alliance’s Chair, David Lepofsky, was approached to meet with this delegation, to offer our perspective on this issue. The Chinese Government delegation included officials working on disability issues in China.
The meeting took place in Toronto on Thursday May 7, 2009 for about one hour. The discussion focused on the need for strong, effective, mandatory and enforceable legislation to achieve a barrier-free society for persons with disabilities. It addressed our efforts over the past 15 years to advocate for strong legislation, including the importance of grassroots advocacy, pressuring the Government, holding public meetings and forums, and getting our message out to the public via the news media. We discussed progress to date on accessibility, and our concerns about the Ontario Government’s implementation of the AODA to date.
The meeting was warm, pleasant and positive. On behalf of the AODA Alliance, David Lepofsky said we would welcome the chance to discuss these matters with Chinese officials in the future.
This is another important signal of the recognition of the AODA Alliance as an informative source of ideas and strategies for promoting a fully-accessible society.
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