Barrier-Free BC Bulletin – September 29, 2016
Delegates at the UBCM convention passed Resolution B62 (details below) on Wednesday afternoon. Our profound thanks is extended to Councilor Jeremy Loveday
and the City of Victoria for sponsoring this resolution and promoting its support amongst his fellow delegates. We also wish to thank the City of Victoria’s
Access Working Group under the leadership of Linda Bartram for distributing Barrier-Free BC handouts to UBCM delegates as they arrived at the convention
on Monday morning.
While the passing of this resolution is a giant leap forward and makes the reality of a British Columbians with Disabilities Act that much closer, we still
have a significant challenge ahead and we mustn’t let up on our resolve. More than ever now is the time to contact your MLA, be it by telephone, Twitter,
email or a personal visit to encourage their support for disability legislation.
One supporter of the Barrier-Free BC campaign wrote a very personal letter to each party leader which they emailed earlier this week. The very same day,
Dr. Andrew Weaver, leader of the BC Green Party wrote back a personal response the same day in which he said, “Thank you very much for your personal letter
regarding enacting a British Columbians with Disabilities Act. I agree that the barriers facing British Columbians with disabilities must be removed and
the creation of new barriers prevented. We support providing economic support and accessibility measures for people with disabilities and will integrate
this policy into our platform.” Dr. Weaver’s response is evidence that your personal letter or contact will make all the difference and assist us all in
achieving our goal. Please make the effort to make that contact today.
On behalf of The Barrier-Free BC Steering Committee
Text of Resolution
B62 – Legislation and Action for a Barrier-free BC – sponsored by the City of Victoria
Whereas British Columbians with disabilities encounter a variety of physical, sensory and technological barriers as well as ones related to communication,
education, employment, attitudes and many others on a daily basis;
And whereas the Government of British Columbia launched a non-mandatory, non-legislated initiative entitled “Accessibility 2024” in 2014 with the goal
of making BC the most progressive province in Canada for people with disabilities by the year 2024;
And whereas both the Province of Ontario and the Province of Manitoba have enacted disability legislation with the Province of Nova Scotia working toward
the introduction and enactment of disability legislation in 2016:
Therefore be it resolved that UBCM believes it is important to achieve a barrier-free province for all persons with disabilities and calls upon BC’s Legislative
Assembly to enact a strong and effective British Columbians with Disabilities Act.
Endorsed by the Association of Vancouver Island and Coastal Communities
UBCM Resolutions Committee recommendation: Endorse
UBCM Resolutions Committee comments:
The Resolutions Committee advises that the UBCM membership has not previously considered a resolution requesting specifically that the provincial government
enact a British Columbians with Disabilities Act. However, the Committee notes that members have consistently endorsed resolutions seeking to reduce barriers
and provide accessible places and services for individuals with disabilities (including but not limited to 2015-B8, 2015- B110, 2015-B118, 2014-B12, 2013-B55,
2013-B140, 2012-B43, 2011-A2, 2011-B62, 2011-B67, 2010-B70, 2010- B70, 2009-B145, 2009-B167, 2009-B174, 2008-B157, 2008-B158, 2008-B159, 2007-B106, 2007-B191,
2007-B199, 2006-B73, 2006-B132, 2002-B62, 2002-B94, 2000-B113).
If the Provincial Government were to proceed with legislation for a barrier free BC, UBCM would look forward to collaborating with the government to ensure
that the new legislation would provide communities with adequate flexibility and control to reflect local circumstances, and to ensure that local governments
are provided with adequate funding and other supports necessary to implement any new requirements.
Copyright © 2016 Barrier-Free BC, All rights reserved.
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