A Call to Action for Canada’s AAC Community

May 26, 2021 – An ISAAC-Canada Webinar

Presenters:  Barbara Collier, Glenda Watson Hyatt, Colin Phillips

The federal government’s mantra for the roll out of the Accessible Canada Act is “Nothing about us without us”. Yet people who use AAC, family members, and clinicians are often missing in discussions about accessibility laws that could significantly improve their access to essential community services such as healthcare, justice, safety and financial services.

At this time, accessibility laws and guidelines are being developed as part of the rollout of provincial, territorial accessibility and human rights legislation, as well as the federal Accessible Canada Act and the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities. Input from the disability community is at the core of the development of all of these laws. No input means that the needs of people who use AAC will not be reflected in these laws. It is imperative that the AAC community is engaged in the process.

In this webinar, Barbara will describe how accessibility laws and guidelines have the potential to increase access to essential services for people who use AAC. She will share a “Call to Action” that has been delivered to the federal government about the need to include input from people who use AAC, their allies, and clinicians and share a number of CDAC online resources that people can use to educate others about communication access for people who use AAC.

Glenda will provide suggestions on how people can use social media to increase awareness.

Colin will describe his experiences on providing input to the Parliamentary Precinct Committee on Accessibility.

There will be opportunities to discuss how the AAC community can participate and advocate for increased communication access to goods and services.

Participants will learn about:

• Canadian accessibility and human rights laws
• How to contribute to development of laws about communication accessibility
• Communication Access CDAC resources