A group of persons with disabilities are seeking a barrier-free Saskatchewan. We developed 14 principles that we desire to be the foundation of the Saskatchewan Accessibility and Inclusion Act because:
• Taxis , restaurants, and hotels are still telling us that our service dogs are not allowed in their establishments.
• Planning gathering with friends who are deaf-blind, blind, mobility disabled or persons in wheel chairs is difficult.
• Having an invisible disability, is misunderstood.
• At work you receive information that is not accessible to you. Requesting an alternate format, labels you as an inconvenience.
• You apply for a job and your interview has gone well. After the interview you declare you have a disability and the tone of the interview changes. You don’t get the job, but no one has legitimate answers.
• You need to get a prescription filled and you need to go for an X-ray. The doctor wants this done immediately. You can’t book access transit to go get the prescription or to get an X-ray for seven days.
• You try to get information off a provincial website or Crown Corporation, but the web pages are not accessible.
These are real experiences that we and our friends with disabilities face, and this is why we need an Act to address barriers we face each and every day. The principles address these and many other situations.
A Saskatchewan Accessibility and Inclusion Act would :
• ensure services offered would be accessible and inclusive;
• ensure “Duty To Accommodate” is in place;
• address systemic barriers to hire qualified persons with disabilities;
• ensure workforce for government and Crown Corporations are reflective of the population;
• ensure access transit is available to persons with disabilities;
• ensure provincial and Crown corporation web sites are accessible.
Please visit our webpage at: http:// barrierfreesaskatchewan.org/endorsements.html. Put your name on the endorsement page to show your support.
Brenda Edel, Core Member, Barrier Free Saskatchewan