This morning, Flicka attended the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act (AODA) Alliance’s celebration at Queen’s Park to mark the 20th
anniversary of the birth of Ontario’s non-partisan movement for strong
disability accessibility legislation.
The AODA Alliance is a disability consumer advocacy group that works to support the full and effective implementation of accessibility standards in Ontario. Since 2005, the AODA Alliance has worked collaboratively with the disability community and with government to promote the interests of persons with disabilities. The Alliance works to advance the full participation of persons with disabilities in Ontario, through effectual accessibility standards development.
Following the event, the AODA Alliance issued a press release, which contained, in part, the following:
Today, from 10 to 11:30 a.m., the AODA Alliance held a wonderfully
successful gathering at Queen’s Park to celebrate the birth on November 29,
1994 of Ontario’s tireless grassroots movement for a fully accessible
Ontario. We went back to Queen’s Park, where it all started, to celebrate
our successes, and redouble our efforts. In the face of an Ontario
Government that so often fails to keep its promises on disability
accessibility, we rolled up our sleeves to kick-start our next round of
At this event well over 120 people came to the Legislature. Some had
advocated on accessibility for years. Some had never before been to an AODA
Our core message was this: We need to re-kindle the fire in the bellies of
MPPs in the Ontario Legislature for this issue. We heard from former MPPs
and from former Lieutenant Governor David Onley that we need to go to MPPs
one at a time, in every community, and in every party, to get them to press
the Premier and the Government to speed up stalled action on accessibility.
At this event, the AODA Alliance announced that it is now unveiling a new
campaign to do just that, to be rolled out over the next weeks. Stay tuned
to our AODA Alliance Updates for more information on this, and for action
tips on how you can help.
What we started twenty years ago seemed utterly impossible at the time. What
we now face, to get the Government to take accessibility far more seriously,
may seem daunting, but it is no more daunting than what we faced twenty
years ago when we started our accessibility campaign. In the interim, we
have won accessibility legislation and several accessibility standards. We
have produced a constructive roadmap for the Government to get Ontario back
on schedule for full accessibility. We are more organized than ever for
ongoing grassroots advocacy. We are ready for action. And we want you to be
part of it!
Below we set out:
* the AODA Alliance’s November 28, 2014 news release about this event.
* A time line on key events during the twenty-year campaign for accessibility in Ontario that began two decades ago tomorrow.
* the email of support we received from former Premier Dalton McGuinty, who could not attend today. We read this aloud during our event.
At our event we honoured a number of former public office-holders and
journalists whose efforts helped our cause over these two decades. Of those
listed in the news release, regrettably Cam Jackson and Ellen Waxman were
unable to attend.
In addition to those present, we also honoured the following people who were
not able to attend:
* Former NDP MPP Marion Boyd
* Former NDP MPP Frances Lankin
* Former Liberal MPP Dwight Duncan
* Former Liberal MPP Steve Peters
* Former Liberal MPP Ernie Parsons; and
* Former PC MPP and PC leader John Tory.
* former host of CBC Radio’s Metro Morning program, Andy Barrie
Each honouree had made a great difference for us. We did not single out
anyone from the disability community, as grassroots advocates, because we
honour EVERYONE who has taken up this cause in our community.
The media attended our event, and a news conference held at 11:30 a.m. right
after it at the Queen’s Park Media Studio. Several people were live-tweeting
We will later make available more about these events. For now, we thank all
who took the time to come, and all those who helped make this event