Watch the Archived Video of the August 22, 2017 Policy Experts Conference on What Canada’s Promised National Accessibility Law Should Include – And – Canada’s Federal and Provincial Governments Should Use All the Levers of Power They Have to Promote Accessibility

August 27, 2017


1. Any Time You Wish, You Can Enjoy the August 22, 2017 Online Policy Experts Conference on What Canada’s Promised National Accessibility Law Should Include

Did you miss the August 22, 2017 online Policy Experts Conference on What Canada’s National Accessibility Law Should Include? No problem! It’s available online and will continue to be available on a permanent basis. To watch the three-hour Conference on What Canada’s National Accessibility Law Should Include, visit

ASL and captioning were included in the conference. We want to alert you that for the first 20 minutes, the audio of the conference host, AODA Alliance Chair David Lepofsky, is a bit over-modulated. That gets fixed about 20 minutes into the conference. The other speakers are all fine from the very start.

The Alliance on an Inclusive and Accessible Canada, which held this conference with the phenomenal help of OCAD U’s Inclusive Design Research Centre and a grant from the Federal Government, is working on post-production of the video. There may be a way in that post-production effort to address that audio issue. But the initial posting is still worth watching. Share it with your Member of Parliament and others in your community.

2. AODA Alliance Releases a List of Levers of Power that the Federal Government Should Use to Help Achieve an Accessible Canada

For years, advocating at the provincial level, the AODA Alliance has urged the Ontario Government to ensure that public money is never used to create or perpetuate disability accessibility barriers. To its credit, the Wynne Government promised just that in the 2014 Ontario general election. Premier Wynne’s May 14, 2014 letter to the AODA Alliance, setting out her Government’s 2014 election pledges, included this:

“D. Ensure taxpayers’ money is never used to create or buttress disability barriers

  1. We will continue to ensure that taxpayer dollars are not used to create or perpetuate barriers against Ontarians with disabilities. Our current mandate fully supports responsible governance and we will continue to pursue objectives that align with this belief. The Progressive Conservative Party of Ontario has explicitly called for the elimination of 1/3 of all regulations, which could threaten enforcement of the AODA. By contrast, the Ontario Liberal Party believes that greater accessibility means greater opportunity and prosperity for Ontario.”

Unfortunately, the Wynne Government has broken that commitment, e.g. in its Presto Smart Card for paying public transit fares.

As the Federal Government works on developing its promised national accessibility law, it has a great opportunity to take action on this front. We call on the Federal Government to identify all the levers of power it now has right at hand, that it can easily use to help action on accessibility. We call on provincial governments, like the Ontario Government, to do the same.

The Federal Government is looking for areas where it can take prompt action to get the ball rolling on accessibility, while time is taken to develop new national accessibility standards under the promised national accessibility law. These levers of power are a great start.

To help, we set out below a long and helpful list of programs now operating under the Federal Government, where the Federal Government could consider imposing accessibility strings on recipients of federal grants, loans and other payments. This list is just a start. There no doubt are more such levers of power.

We encourage the Federal Government to start with this list, and to search out, find, make public and use any and all other levers of power that it can use. We encourage the Accessibility Directorate of Ontario to do the same for action at the provincial level.

What kinds of accessibility strings could the Federal or Ontario Government attach? It could, for example, include in the application form for each kind of grant, loan etc., set out below, a statement that the applicant’s actions and commitments on disability accessibility will be taken into account when deciding on the application and a requirement that

* An applicant commit that no public money will be used to create or perpetuate disability accessibility barriers in its workplace, services goods or facilities.

* An applicant commit to increase efforts at recruiting people with disabilities for employment opportunities within the organization;

* an applicant identify what new actions it is prepared to take to make its workplace, goods, services or facilities accessible for people with disabilities;

* an applicant report to the Federal Government on what actions it takes on disability accessibility in employment and in the accessibility of its goods, services or facilities, as a result of receiving the grant, loan or other federal money.

Of course, the Federal Government would need to examine each program, listed below, and any others it identifies, to tailor any accessibility strings to fit the specific goals and focus of that funding program. It is not enough for applicants to agree to comply with the Canada Human Rights Act or the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms. They must be prepared to do more if they want the benefit of receiving federal funds. The Federal Government should make it clear to the public through its websites, public announcements, etc., that where permissible, the accessibility commitments that an applicant made will be a significant factor in deciding whom, among applicants, will be successful when applying to programs such as those listed below.

The AODA Alliance is indebted to our volunteer Julie Goldstein who researched and prepared the list that we set out below.

At the end of this update, after our list of available levers of federal power, we set out a passage on this topic written by AODA Alliance Chair David Lepofsky in his august 2016 Discussion Paper on what Canada’s promised national accessibility law should include. We also set out links to key background information, and again remind you how to sign up or unsubscribe from AODA Alliance Updates.


Partial List of the Federal Government’s Levers of Power Where Accessibility Strings Can and Should Be Attached

  1. Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada
  1. Agricultural Greenhouse Gases Program
  • Funding for projects that address a need for either more research or better technology transfer with a goal of developing beneficial management practices that reduce greenhouse gas emissions in the areas of livestock systems, cropping systems, agricultural water use efficiency and agroforestry.
  1. Agricultural Youth Green Jobs Initiative
  • Funds internships for post-secondary graduates working in the agriculture industry. These internships would include activities or projects that benefit the environment.
  1. AgriInnovation Program
  • Industry-led Research and Development Stream

o   Provides funding and/or resources to organizations supporting pre-commercialization research, development and knowledge transfer leading to innovative agriculture, agri-food and agri-based practices, processes and products.

  • Enabling Commercialization and Adoption Stream

o   Provides repayable funding to for-profit corporations and cooperatives to facilitate the pre-commercial demonstration, commercialization and adoption of innovative agri-based products, technologies, processes or services.

  1. AgriInsurance
  • Provides producers with cost-shared insurance for natural hazards in order to minimize the financial implications of production and/or asset losses.
  1. AgriInvest
  • A national farm program that provides matching contributions to producers who make annual deposits to an AgriInvest account, to help manage income declines or make investments to mitigate risks or improve market income.
  1. AgriMarketing Program
  • Market Development Stream

o   Provides project-based funding to non-profit organizations and small to medium enterprises (SMEs) for promotional and market development activities.

  • Assurance Systems Stream

o   Provides project-based funding to non-profit organizations in order to develop Canadian national assurance systems or standards.

  1. AgriRisk Initiatives
  • Provides financial and technical assistance to facilitate the development and adoption of private-sector or other producer-paid agricultural risk management tools.
  1. AgriStability
  • A national whole farm program that provides income support to producers who experience a large margin decline.
  1. Canadian Agricultural Adaptation Program (2014-2019)
  • Provides project-based funding to non-profit organizations in the agricultural sector responding to new and emerging issues and opportunities.
  1. Canadian Agricultural Loans Act Program (CALA)
  • Provides financial loan guarantees to farmers and agricultural co-operatives in order to establish, improve, and develop farms.
  1. Career Focus Program
  • Provides funding to organizations for the creation of agricultural internships that provide career-related work experiences.
  1. Dairy Farm Investment Program
  • Dairy farmers can receive up to $250,000 for targeted investments in farm technologies and upgrades to equipment that improve productivity.
  1. Dairy Processing Investment Fund
  • Dairy processors can receive up to $10 million to support investments in equipment and infrastructure and up to $250,000 to access expertise.
  1. Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency
  1. Atlantic Innovation Fund
  • Encourages partnerships among private sector firms, universities, colleges and other research institutions to develop and commercialize new or improved products and services.
  1. Business Development Program
  • an help you set up, expand or modernize your business. It can also provide funding to develop your innovative ideas, improve your competitiveness, and develop your clean technology projects. Focusing on small- and medium- sized enterprises, this program offers repayable assistance. Non-profit organizations providing support to the business community may also qualify.
  1. Canada 150 Community Infrastructure Program
  • supports projects that rehabilitate existing community facilities across Canada, ensuring a lasting impact for the 150th anniversary celebrations of Confederation in 2017.
  1. Innovative Communities Fund
  1. Seed Capital Initiative
  • If you are a young entrepreneur (between 18 and 34) living in MonctonSaintJohn,FrederictonHalifaxor St. John’s, the Seed Capital Initiative may be able to help you start, expand or modernize your business. Older than 35 and looking to start up a new business in these cities? The Seed Capital Initiative may also be able to help. Eligible clients of all ages may also access business training and counselling.
  1. Canada Council for the Arts
  1. Explore and Create
  • Funds Canadian artists, artistic groups and organization to support research, development, creation and production of work, as well as professional development for artists.The following grants are available under this category:

o   Professional Development for Artists – up to $10,000

o   Research and Creation – up to $25,000 (max. $50,000 over 2 years)

o   Concept to Realization – up to $100,000

o   Artist-Driven Organizations – up to 60% of total annual revenues averaged over last 3 years

  1. Engage and Sustain
  • Funds organizations dedicated to developing excellence in arts practice, advancing arts through programming, and exposing a diverse public to a range of artists and creative works.The following grants are available under this category:

o   Artistic Catalysts – up to 50% of total annual revenues averaged over last 3 years

o   Artistic Institutions – up to 25% of total annual revenues averaged over last 3 years

  1. Creating, Knowing and Sharing: The Arts and Cultures of First Nations, Inuit and Métis Peoples
  • Funds to support artistic activities that respect and encourage First Nations, Inuit and Métis self-determination and vitality of Indigenous artistic practices and communities.The following grants are available to First Nations, Inuit and Métis individuals, groups, and organizations under this category:

o   Travel – up to $30,000; remote community allowance may be available in addition

o   Small-Scale Activities – up to $3,000; remote community allowance may be available in addition

o   Short-Term Projects (up to 1 year) – up to $100,000; remote community allowance may be available in addition

o   Long-Term Projects (1 to 3 years) – up to $300,000; remote community allowance may be available in addition

o   Indigenous Organizations – determined by group category

  1. Supporting Artistic Practice
  • Funds Canadian arts professionals, groups, and arts organizations that champion the Canadian arts sector, boost capacity for artists to realize work and advance the conditions of creation.The following grants are available under this category:

o   Professional Development for Arts Professionals – up to $10,000

o   Sector Innovation and Development – project requests up to $100,000; composite requests up to $100,000 per year (to a max. of $300,000 over 3 years)

o   Literary Publishing Projects – publication of books up to $30,000; publication of magazines up to $5,000

o   Literary Publishers – book publishers up to $250,000 per year; magazine publishers up to $120,000 per year; book and magazine publishers up to $300,000 per year

o   Support Organizations – up to 60% of total annual revenues averaged over last 3 years

o   National Arts Service Organizations – up to 60% of total annual revenues averaged over last 3 years

  1. Arts Across Canada
  • Funds foster exchanges between artists and Canadian public, can apply to share works with diverse communities, engage more deeply with the public and develop a stronger national profile.The following grants are available under this category:

o   Travel – travel costs generally based on fixed amounts up to $30,000

o   Representation and Promotion – travel costs generally based on fixed amounts up to $30,000

o   Translation – up to $25,000 for each translation, plus an Annual Supplement for targeted costs

o   Circulation and Touring – Generally up to 50% of eligible costs, up to a maximum of $200,000

o   Foreign Artist Tours – up to $75,000

o   Public Outreach – Composite up to $100,000 per year (to a maximum of $300,000 over 3 years); Project up to $100,000

o   Arts Festivals and Presenters – up to 60% of total annual revenues averaged over last 3 years

  1. Arts Abroad
  • Funds support artists to enhance international exposure and help bring Canadian works to the world.The following grants are available under this category:

o   Travel – travel costs generally based on fixed amounts up to $30,000

o   Representation and Promotion – travel costs generally based on fixed amounts up to $30,000

o   Translation – up to $20,000 for each translation

o   Circulation and Touring – Generally up to 50% of eligible costs, up to a maximum of $200,000

o   Residencies – up to $20,000

o   Co-Productions – up to 50% of eligible costs, up to a maximum of $50,000

  1. Canada Economic Development for Quebec Regions
  1. Canada 150 Community Infrastructure Program
  • Supports projects that rehabilitate existing community facilities across Canada, ensuring a lasting impact for the 150th anniversary celebrations of Confederation in 2017.
  • Funding up to $500,000 per project
  1. Local Investment Initiative
  • Supports renovation and improvement, including expansion, of existing community halls in communities of fewer than 2000 people
  • Funding up to $100,000 per project
  1. Canadian Initiative for the Economic Diversification of Communities Reliant on Chrysotile
  • Helps communities and businesses in the Des Sources and Des Appalaches RCMs make the transition to new economic activities
  • Funding up to 50% authorized costs for SMEs, up to 90% for NPOs
  1. Economic Recovery Initiative for Lac-Megantic
  • Aid in economic and commercial recovery of town of Lac-Megantic in aftermath of rail accident July 6, 2013
  • $35 million budget allocation divided into 3 components:

o   City reconstruction projects ($20 million)

o   Support for SMEs and organizations ($10 million)

o   Investment funds ($5 million)

  1. Official Languages Economic Development Initiative
  • Aims to foster economic development of official language minority communities through range of activities including innovation, entrepreneurship, partnerships and economic diversification
  • Funding up to 50% of authorized costs for SMEs, up to 90% for NPOs
  1. Canada Pension Plan Investment Board
  1. Investment Process
  • Professional investment management organization that invests the funds of the Canada Pension Plan on behalf of its 20 million contributors.Investment-only mandate with singular objective – to maximize long-term investment returns without undue risk, taking into account the factors that may affect the funding of the Canada Pension plan and its ability to meet its financial obligations.  Assesses ESG (environmental, social, governance) factors in determining whether to make a potential investment in key governing document “Our Approach to Sustainable Investing.”
  1. Canadian Heritage
  1. Aboriginal Peoples’ Program
  • The Aboriginal Peoples’ Program promotes Indigenous languages, strengthens cultural identity and increases Indigenous participation in Canadian society.
  1. Athlete Assistance Program
  • The Athlete Assistance Program supports high-performance Canadian athletes who are preparing for and participating in international sport.
  1. Building Communities Through Arts and Heritage
  • Building Communities Through Arts and Heritage supports community celebrations, such as festivals, events and projects.
  1. Canada 150 Fund
  • The Canada 150 Fund supports opportunities for Canadians to participate in local, regional and national celebrations that contribute to building a sense of pride and attachment in Canada.
  1. Canada Arts Presentation Fund
  • The Canada Arts Presentation Fund provides financial assistance to organizations that professionally present arts festivals or performing arts series (arts presenters) and organizations that offer support to arts presenters.
  1. Canada Arts Training Fund
  • The Canada Arts Training Fund supports the training of artists with high potential through organizations that offer high-calibre training.
  1. Canada Book Fund
  • The Canada Book Fund promotes a strong book industry that publishes and markets Canadian-authored books.
  1. Canada Cultural Investment Fund
  • The Canada Cultural Investment Fund encourages private sector investment, partnership and sound business practices to help arts and heritage organizations be better rooted and recognized in their communities.
  1. Canada Cultural Spaces Fund
  • The Canada Cultural Spaces Fund supports the improvement of physical conditions for artistic creativity and innovation.
  1. Canada History Fund
  • The Canada History Fund supports the development of learning materials and activities that contribute to increasing Canadians’ knowledge about Canada.
  1. Canada Media Fund
  • The Canada Media Fund encourages the creation of popular, innovative Canadian content and software applications.
  1. Canada Music Fund
  • The Canada Music Fund supports a wide range of musicians and entrepreneurs who create, produce and market original and diverse Canadian music.
  1. Canada Periodical Fund
  • The Canada Periodical Fund provides financial assistance to Canadian print magazines, non-daily newspapers and digital periodicals.
  1. Canada Travelling Exhibitions Indemnification Program
  • The Canada Travelling Exhibitions Indemnification Program assists eligible Canadian art galleries, museums, archives and libraries by assuming financial responsibility for loss or damage to objects or appurtenances in eligible travelling exhibitions.
  1. Canadian Conservation Institute internship programs
  • The Canadian Conservation Institute offers paid post-graduate internships and curriculum internships that provide learning opportunities for the conservation community in Canada and abroad.
  1. Canadian Film or Video Production Tax Credit
  • The Canadian Film or Video Production Tax Credit supports Canadian programming and the development of an active domestic production sector.
  1. Celebrate Canada
  • Celebrate Canada provides funding for activities organized on National Aboriginal Day, Saint-Jean-Baptiste Day, Canadian Multiculturalism Day and Canada Day.
  1. Commemorate Canada
  • Commemorate Canada provides financial support to initiatives that commemorate Canada’s significant people, places, achievements and life events.
  1. Community Fund for Canada’s 150th
  • The Community Fund for Canada’s 150th supports community foundations offering initiatives and activities in celebration of Canada’s milestone birthday.
  1. Community Infrastructure Program
  • The Community Infrastructure Program supports the rehabilitation or improvement of cultural and community facilities across Canada.
  1. Court Challenges Program
  • The Court Challenges Program provides financial support to Canadians to bring cases of national significance related to constitutional and quasi-constitutional official language rights and human rights before the courts.
  1. Destination Clic — French Enrichment Bursary Program
  • Destination Clic is a summer bursary program for francophone students who attend a French-as-a-first-language school and live outside of Quebec.
  1. Documentary Heritage Community Program
  • The Documentary Heritage Community Program ensures that Canada’s continuing memory is documented and accessible to current and future generations by adopting a more collaborative approach with local documentary heritage communities.
  1. Economic Development Initiative
  • Learn about the funding available for activities related to business and economic development that encourage growth in Northern Ontario’s Francophone communities.
  1. Exchanges Canada
  • The Exchanges Canada program helps youth to enhance their knowledge and understanding of Canada, while connecting with other young Canadians.
  1. Explore — Second Language Bursary Program
  • Explore is a five-week, intensive language immersion bursary program.
  1. Film or Video Production Services Tax Credit
  • The Film or Video Production Services Tax Credit promotes Canada as a location of choice for film and video productions employing Canadians.
  1. Inter-Action: Multiculturalism Funding Program
  • The Inter-Action: Multiculturalism Funding Program supports the socio-economic integration of individuals and communities and helps them to contribute to building an integrated, socially-cohesive society.
  1. Movable Cultural Property Grants
  • Movable Cultural Property Grants help designated organizations acquire cultural property of outstanding significance and national importance to Canada.
  1. Museums Assistance Program
  • The Museums Assistance Program supports heritage institutions and workers in the preservation and presentation of heritage collections.
  1. Odyssey — Language-Assistant Program
  • Odyssey is a bilingual, paid work experience that provides opportunities for post-secondary students to travel to another province.
  1. Official Languages Funding Programs
  • Official Languages Funding Programs promote French and English languages in Canadian society and encourage the development of Francophone and Anglophone communities in minority situations.
  1. Sport Canada Hosting Program
  • The Sport Canada Hosting Program assists sport organizations to host the Canada Games and international sports events in Canada.
  1. Sport Support Program
  • The Sport Support Program supports the development of Canadian athletes and coaches.
  1. Young Canada Works
  • Young Canada Works offers a variety of summer job and internship programs to job seekers and employers.
  1. Youth Take Charge Program
  • The Youth Take Charge Program supports youth-led projects that exemplify the ability to strengthen youth attachment to Canada
  1. National Research Council Canada
  1. Research programs and collaboration opportunities
  • Our collaborative research projects span a very broad spectrum of activities and business structure models. Access to NRC expertise and equipment provides our collaborators with the opportunity to accelerate their commercial development timelines, while a focus on industrial applications provides NRC with insights into commercial direction for research and technology development activities.
  • NRC research and business partnership opportunities are available to the following industries:

o   Agriculture and aquaculture

o   Astronomy and astrophysics

o   Construction

o   Defence and security

o   Energy, mining and environment

o   Health sciences

o   Information & communications technology

o   Measurement science

o   Transportation

  1. Industrial Research Assistance Program (IRAP)
  • Through its industrial technology advisors, IRAP offers financial assistance to eligible firms under different programs:
    • Technology innovation projects
    • Youth employment strategy programs
      • Provides SMEs with financial assistance to hire young talent
  • Firms must have the objective to grow and generate profits through development and commercialization of innovative, technology-driven new or improved products, services, or processes in Canada.
  1. Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Canada
  1. Strategic Partnership Grants for Projects Competition
  • Awards a variety of grants, loans, scholarships, and prizes to undergraduate, postgraduate, and postdoctoral students, and faculty to pursue scientific/engineering research.
  1. Polar Knowledge Canada
  1. Northern Science Award
  • Presented annually to individual or group who have made significant contribution to knowledge of Canadian north and transformed knowledge into action.
  • Award of $10,000.
  1. PPP Canada
  1. P3 Canada Fund
  • Merit-based program designed to encourage governments to consider P3s for public infrastructure procurements.Has invested $1.3B to 25 projects across the country.
  • Not currently accepting new proposals.
  1. Public Sector Pension Investment Board (PSP Investments)
  1. Investment Process
  • One of Canada’s largest pension investment managers, with $135.6 billion of net assets under management as of March 31, 2017.Invests funds for the Public Service, the Canadian Armed Forces, RCMP, and the Reserve Force.  Subject to a Responsible Investment Policy which takes environmental, social and governance into account.
  1. Public Services and Procurement Canada
  1. Procurement Process
  • Purchasing agent, property manager, pay and pension administrator for federal departments and agencies.Central resource for government tenders/RFPs, subject to “Integrity Regime” policy for ethical procurement practices.
  1. Shared Services Canada
  1. Procurement Process
  • Procurement of IT infrastructure services and supplies through market-based competition, engage with private sector to reduce government expenditures.
  1. Build in Canada Innovation Program
  • Helps Canadian companies move products from laboratory to marketplace
  • Funds up to $500,000 for non-military innovations and up to $1,000,000 for military innovations
  1. Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada
  1. Insight Development Grants
    • Funds to enable the development of new research questions, as well as experimentation with new methods, theoretical approaches and/or ideas.
    • Grants are valued at between $7,000 and $75,000 over one to two years.
  1. Insight Grants
  • Funding is available to both emerging and established scholars for long-term research initiatives. Insight Grant research initiatives may be undertaken by an individual researcher or a team of researchers working in collaboration. Applicants choose from one of two streams, depending on the amount of funding required:

o   Stream A for requests between $7,000 and $100,000 over two to five years; or

o   Stream B for requests between $100,000 and $400,000 over two to five years.

  • In both streams, a minimum request of $7,000 is required in at least one of the years. A maximum of $100,000 is available in a single year.
  1. Partnership Engage Grants
  • Short-term support to partnerships between a postsecondary-based researcher and a single partner organization from the public, private or non-profit sector.
  • These grants are valued at $7,000 to $25,000 over one year.
  1. Partnership Development Grants
  • Support to foster new research and/or related activities with new and/or existing partners; and to design and test new partnership approaches for research and/or related activities.
  • These grants are valued at $75,000 to $200,000 over one to three years.
  1. Partnership Grants
  • Support to new or existing formal partnerships for initiatives that advance research, research training and/or knowledge mobilization in the social sciences and humanities.
  • These grants are typically valued at $500,000 to $2.5 million over four to seven years.
  1. SSHRC Impact Awards
  • SSHRC Impact Awards recognize outstanding researchers and students by celebrating their achievements in research, research training, knowledge mobilization and outreach activities funded partially or completely by SSHRC.
  • Postsecondary institutions eligible to administer SSHRC funding are invited to put forward nominations for the following awards:
  • Gold Medal ($100,000)
  • Talent Award ($50,000)
  • Insight Award ($50,000)
  • Connection Award ($50,000)
  • Partnership Award ($50,000).
  1. Status of Women Canada
  1. Women’s Program
  • The objective of the Women’s Program is to achieve the full participation of women in the economic, social and democratic life of Canada. Funding is provided to eligible organizations in support of projects at the local, regional and national levels that address the following three priority areas:

o   Ending violence against women and girls

o   Improving women’s and girls’ economic security and prosperity

o   Encouraging women and girls in leadership and decision-making roles

  • Funds indirect/administrative expenditures including salaries, benefits, professional fees, office equipment, etc. but must not exceed 20% of total amount for direct delivery expenditures
  1. Telefilm Canada
  1. Development
  • This program supports Canadian production companies looking to finance the development stage of their feature film project(s).
  • Funds up to $100,000 for English-language market
  • Funds up to $150,000 for French-language market
  1. Production
  • This program supports Canadian production companies looking to finance the production and/or post-production stage of their feature film project(s).
  • Funds up to $500,000 for films with budget below $2.5 million
  1. Micro-budget production
  • This program supports the development, production, digital distribution, and the promotion of a first feature film or web content project.
  • Maximum available depends on length and format of project
  • Funds up to $127,500 for feature films or narrative web-based projects of 75 minutes or longer
  • Funds up to $112,500 for narrative web-based projects under 75 minutes in length
  1. Theatrical documentary
  • This program, in partnership with Rogers Group of Funds, supports Canadian production companies looking to finance feature-length documentary projects in production and post-production.
  • Telefilm and Rogers both individually will (recoupable) fund up to lesser of 49% or up to $125,000 of production costs for English-language productions
  • Telefilm will (recoupable) fund up to lesser of 49% or up to $125,000 of production costs; Rogers will fund up to $62,500 for French-language productions
  • Telefilm and Rogers will fund up to lesser of 49% or up to $75,000 of post-production costs for English and French-language productions
  1. Marketing
  • This program supports Canadian distribution and production companies looking to finance the marketing and distribution of their feature film project(s).
  • Funds up to 75% of marketing costs up to $50,000
  1. International marketing
  • This program supports Canadian production companies looking to finance the promotion and international marketing of their productions officially selected at an international festival, as well as producers invited to an international coproduction forum.
  • Level of financing depends on length of film and festival, to cumulative max. of $40,000 per project
  1. Export assistance
  • The Export assistance program aims to support the promotion and international marketing strategy of Canadian productions by providing financial support to Canadian and foreign distribution companies acquiring Canadian feature films for exploitation on selected territories.
  • Funds up to $45,000
  1. Promotion
  • This program supports Canadian organizations active in film, television, or digital media; financial support for events open to general public or industry professionals.
  • Funding varies based upon event and location, up to maximum $125,000 per fiscal year for all activities of applicant
  1. Virtual Museum of Canada
  1. Virtual Exhibits Investment Program
  • The program helps Canadian museums and heritage organizations develop online products that engage audiences of all ages, interests and abilities in Canada’s history, heritage and culture.
  • Provides funding up toa maximum of $250,000.00 (excluding applicable taxes) per production.
  1. Community Stories Investment Program
  • The program helps smaller (no more than 5 permanent full-time staff) not-for-profit Canadian museums and heritage organizations work with their communities to develop virtual exhibits that engage online audiences in the stories, past and present, of Canada’s communities.
  • Provides funding up to a maximum of $10,000 per production.
  1. Western Economic Diversification Canada
  1. Western Innovation (WINN) Initiative
  • $100 million five-year federal Initiative that offers repayable contributions for small- and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) with operations in Western Canada to move their new and innovative technologies from the later stages of research and development to the marketplace.
  1. Western Canada Business Service Network
  • Integrated organizations that provide entrepreneurs with services and resources to help western Canadians start, grow and expand their businesses. This network of more than 100 offices across the West includes the following sources of funding:

o   Community Futures offer a variety of services to rural entrepreneurs (business counselling, loan programs and services targeted to entrepreneurs with disabilities) and to communities (planning and community economic development services).

o   Women’s Enterprise Initiative offices provide loans, business counseling and skills training specifically for women entrepreneurs.

  1. Canada 150 Community Infrastructure Program
  • Supports projects that rehabilitate existing community facilities across Canada, ensuring a lasting impact for the 150th anniversary celebrations of Confederation in 2017.
  1. The Economic Development Initiative
  • Investment of $3.2 million in the West over five years to support business and economic development that encourage sustainable growth in Western Canada’s Francophone communities.
  1. The Strategic Partnerships Initiative (SPI)

Program designed to increase Indigenous participation in complex economic development opportunities. SPI is administered by Indigenous and Northern Affairs Canada, with WD providing an active role with 13 other federal departments in investment decision-making and implementation of projects under the program.

Excerpt from the Discussion Paper on What Canada’s Accessibility Law Should Include, Written by AODA Alliance Chair David Lepofsky

  1. k) Ensuring that Public Money is Never Used to Create, Perpetuate or Exacerbate Accessibility Barriers

The Federal Government can promote progress towards accessibility, by making sure that no one uses public money to create, perpetuate or exacerbate disability barriers. This requires no increase in federal spending.

Four areas of federal spending should be targeted:

First, the Federal Government annually spends billions on capital and infrastructure projects, including projects built by the Federal Government, provinces, municipalities or others.

Second, the Federal Government annually spends billions on procuring goods and services, for use by the Federal Public Service and the public.

Third, it spends large amounts on business development grants and loans, and on research grants for universities and other organizations.

Fourth, the Federal Government makes large transfer payments to provinces/territories for programs, like health care.

This gives the Federal Government substantial leverage to promote accessibility. Barrier-Free Canada’s principles include:

“10. The Canadians with Disabilities Act should require that the Government of Canada ensure that no public money is used to create or perpetuate barriers against persons with disabilities. For example, all federal departments, agencies, and crown corporations should be required to make it a strict condition of funding any program, or any capital or other infrastructure project, or of any transfer payment, subsidy, loan, grant (such as research grants) or other payment of public funds, that no such funds may be used to create or perpetuate barriers against persons with disabilities. They should also be required to make it a condition of any procurement of any services, goods or facilities, that these be designed to be fully accessible to and usable by persons with disabilities. Any grant (including for example, research grant), loan, subsidy, contract or other such payment which does not so provide is void and unenforceable by the grant-recipient or contractor with the department, agency, or crown corporation in question. The Government of Canada should be required to monitor and enforce these requirements and to periodically report to the public on compliance.”

The CDA should require the Federal Government and federal agencies to attach clear, strong and enforceable accessibility strings to all this federal spending. Any infrastructure or other capital project built in whole or in part with federal money should be required to be fully accessible. For example, no federal money should be given to improve a building, if that improvement is located in a part of a building that is inaccessible, unless that part of that building will become accessible.

When the Federal Government purchases or rents goods, services or facilities for its or the public’s use, it should ensure that those goods, services or facilities are accessible to and useable by people with disabilities. Any bid on a procurement project should be required to specify that the goods, services or facilities are accessible, or commit to steps that the vendor will take to make them fully accessible. The Government should give this significant weight, in a procurement competition.

If an organization applies for any other Government grant or loan, or a subsidy for business development, the Government should make it clear that a preference will be given to applicants who ensure that their workplace, goods, services and facilities are accessible, or who stipulate accelerated deadlines for achieving accessibility.

Research grants that include public funding should impose a condition that people with disabilities will be properly included in the research. Any research should ensure, where possible, that test subjects are not solely people without disabilities.

When federal public money is used to fund a province’s health care system, that provincial health care system must fulfil federal disability accessibility requirements, just as it must meet other federal requirements.

These together would create a substantial incentive to produce accessible goods, services, facilities and capital projects, and to operate accessible programs and workplaces. Once a recipient ensures that their goods, services or facilities are accessible, they can serve a much larger market. That vendor can also meet the unmet demand across Canada and around the world, for accessible goods, services and facilities. There are an estimated one billion persons with disabilities around the world, a huge untapped market.

Far more organizations compete for federal loans, grants or contracts than the Government ultimately chooses to give federal funds. By making accessibility an important, highly visible factor, applicants will try to out-bid each other on their accessibility commitments.

If the federal government just makes this a policy, rather than an enforced law, it won’t be consistently obeyed. If it is just made a policy, a future government can kill or gut it without Parliament’s approval.

Strings attached to federal money mustn’t just require that accessibility will be considered or that the CDA will be obeyed. Detailed standards outlining the accessibility requirements attached to federal funding must be developed and enforced under the CDA. Each Federal Government department and agency should not have to reinvent the wheel when setting accessibility conditions for capital, infrastructure, procurement or other like spending.

Ontario experience shows this must be clearly legislated, monitored and enforced. There has been limited success in getting some new Ontario laws enacted and policies adopted. They lack needed visibility, strength and enforcement. They have not had the impact needed. The Ontario Government has missed out on huge opportunities to generate greater accessibility.

In 2011, the Ontario Government unveiled a Ten-Year Infrastructure Plan, setting policies and principles to govern Ontario infrastructure spending. As a result of grassroots disability advocacy, mandatory accessibility requirements were enshrined in this ten-year plan. However, the Ontario Government has made public no plans to effectively implement, monitor and enforce this requirement.

Unenforceable provisions in the weak Ontarians with Disabilities Act 2001 (ODA), [i] the AODA’s precursor, also addresses accessibility requirements when the Ontario Government spends on capital or procurement. Ontario accessibility standards include requirements for Ontario public sector organizations to procure accessible goods, services and facilities, including electronic kiosks. [ii]

Despite these, Ontario public money continues to be used to create, perpetuate or exacerbate accessibility barriers. For example, in 2010, the Ontario government unveiled the Presto Smart Card, for paying public transit fares, replete with accessibility barriers. The machines to check a card balance at transit stations only provided information on a screen. There was no audio output for people with vision loss or dyslexia.

The Ontario Government built huge new courthouses in Durham Region and Kitchener. Fully three quarters of all their courtrooms have inaccessible judicial daises.

More Background from the AODA Alliance

To read the Federal Government’s report on its public consultation on promised federal accessibility legislation.

To read the Federal Government’s summer 2016 Discussion Guide for this consultation, released last summer.

To read the Discussion Paper on what the Canadians with Disabilities Act should include, which AODA Alliance Chair David Lepofsky made public in August, 2016.

We encourage you to forward this Update to your Member of Parliament in Ottawa. Urge them to ensure that the promised Canadians with Disabilities Act will address the issues in this analysis, and not just those conclusions in the Federal Government’s consultation report.

You can always send your feedback to us on any AODA and accessibility issue at

Have you taken part in our “Picture Our Barriers campaign? If not, please join in! You can get all the information you need about our “Picture Our Barriers” campaign by visiting

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We encourage you to use the Government’s toll-free number for reporting AODA violations. We fought long and hard to get the Government to promise this, and later to deliver on that promise. If you encounter any accessibility problems at any large retail establishments, it will be especially important to report them to the Government via that toll-free number. Call 1-866-515-2025.

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