Accessibility News December 31,2016 Update

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In this Issue

*AODA Alliance 2016 Highlights
*Many Ontarians With Mental-Health Issues Must Choose Between Food and Meds *Access Board Updates ADA Guidelines for Buses and Vans
*London Unveils Badge Program for People With Invisible Disabilities
*Individuals With Disabilities More Likely to Be Employed in States With Expanded Medicaid

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AODA Alliance 2016 Highlights:

1. Nine Years after the Ontario Government Promises to Review All Ontario Laws for Accessibility Barriers, the Wynne Government Proposes Modest Legislative Changes to 11 Laws , To Be Fast-Tracked Through the Legislature


2. Despite Ongoing Issues, Ontario Plans to Reduce Small Business Accessibility Requirements

For most people, hailing a cab is no big deal, but Diane Bergeron has a guide dog and she says that makes all the difference.
After a hotel doorman hailed a taxi for Bergeron, she said the driver refused to allow her guide dog Lucy on board.
He just said, No Im not taking a dog, even though I was in full view, said Bergeron, who works with CNIB, an non-proit rehabilitation agency for the visually impaired.


3. Toronto Star Reports on Wynne Government Weakening the 2007 Customer Service Accessibility Standard

and on Toronto Transit Commission Delays in Ensuring Accessibility of Public Transit in Canadas Largest City

Two important Toronto Star reports this week illustrate how far Ontario falls short of the Wynne Governments claim to be a global leader on disability accessibility. These news reports come just eight and a half years before the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Acts mandatory 2025 deadline for the Ontario Government to have led Ontario to become fully accessible to 1.8 million people with disabilities.


4. Wynne Government Holds Unneeded Pre-Consultation on Health Care Accessibility Barriers, Before It Sets Up Standards Development Committee to Consult on Health Care Accessibility Barriers

More Delays on the Road to an Accessible Ontario Health Care System The Wynne Government Announces Unnecessary Pre-Consultation on Health Care Accessibility Barriers, Before Appointing the Overdue Standards Development Committee to Consult on Barriers in Ontarios Health Care System


5. Premier Wynnes Throne Speech Offers 1.8 Million Ontarians with Disabilities Nothing new

The Wynne Governments new Throne Speech, read at Queens Park this afternoon, offers 1.8 million Ontarians with disabilities absolutely nothing new, as a point-by-point analysis, set out below, shows.



Many Ontarians With Mental-Health Issues Must Choose Between Food and Meds

Most must pay out of pocket for their prescription drugs. Not all of them can afford to.

Dr. Kwame McKenzie, CEO of the Wellesley Institute, says Ontario could be doing so much more for mental health.


Access Board Updates ADA Guidelines for Buses and Vans

The Access Board has issued a final rule updating sections of its accessibility guidelines for transportation vehicles covered by the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA).

The rule revises provisions in the guidelines that apply to buses and vans to enhance accessibility and to address industry trends and improvements in design and technology.


London Unveils Badge Program for People With Invisible Disabilities

Londons transportation department wants to help people with invisible conditions find a seat on public transportation. Starting September 12, Transport for London (TfL) will spend six weeks testing a badge program for people with invisible illnesses and disabilities. The badges, which say Please offer me a seat, are designed for people who are unable to stand, but appear like they can. Those who see someone wearing a badge will then be encouraged through campaigns and materials distributed by the TfL to offer up their seat.


Individuals With Disabilities More Likely to Be Employed in States With Expanded Medicaid

Individuals with disabilities are significantly more likely to be employed if they live in a state that has expanded Medicaid under the Affordable Care Act, a new study has found.


eSSENTIAL Accessibility: helping organizations reach, serve and empower people with disabilities.

The eSSENTIAL Accessibility assistive technology app gives those who have trouble typing, moving a mouse, or reading a screen due to a variety of conditions – such as stroke, paralysis or arthritis – the tools they need to navigate the Web. The app is free to the end-user and simple to use.

Organizations that feature the app on their websites are committed to making it easier for people with disabilities to access information online. For more info, please visit

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The views and opinions expressed throughout Accessibility News do not represent those of the various organizations or associated individuals and are exclusively those of the contributor and/or author of the specific article or commentary.

Accessibility News, since November 8, 2006