Some of Ontario’s most vulnerable citizens are getting a powerful advocate.
Former foreign affairs minister John Baird will be a volunteer strategic adviser to Community Living Ontario, which helps some 12,000 Ontarians with intellectual disabilities.
By: Robert Benzie Queen’s Park Bureau Chief, Published on Wed Aug 12 2015
“I’m really keen to try to help them,” Baird said Wednesday.
The one-time provincial community and social services minister, who boosted funding for developmental services during his 1999-2002 tenure at the department, said he wants to work with different levels of government to improve the lot of the intellectually handicapped.
Baird stressed he will take a “non-partisan role” in his advocacy, noting governments of all political stripes have wanted to boost the employment and inclusion opportunities for people with such challenges.
“We’ve come a long way in the last 50 years, but there’s a lot more work to do,” he said.
Since retiring from politics last March, Baird has taken a post as a senior adviser at the law firm Bennett Jones and as global strategic adviser to Hatch Ltd., the Canadian engineering giant.