• All students deserve respect in classroom

    Inclusivity for all diverse learners warrants a clear and concise commitment to support teachers, support staff and administrators, with the appropriate continuous professional learning and resources to ensure success… statements from parents… serve as a call to action to ensure that no child feels excluded because of their learning need or exceptionality. The diversity of learners in today’s classroom is the norm and no longer the exception.

  • Quebec to inject $3 billion into anti-poverty program

    Individuals with a limited capacity to work… By 2023… will see their annual government assistance jump from $12,749 to $18,029, which will bring their income up to the poverty threshold. Quebec will pay a total of $1.2 billion to provide them with a basic income (or guaranteed minimum income), separate from rules imposed in the social assistance program. People deemed fit to work will continue to operate under the current social assistance system, with training and job search bonuses subsidized to varying degrees.

  • All branches of government must rally together for Canadians with disabilities

    By creating standardized metrics that allow us to measure accessibility and have those anchored by global standards, we can measure progress and plan for improvements that will give us a consistent lens grounded in the principles of universal design so that a uniform manner of determining accessibility can be applied… By becoming inclusive and accessible in our built environment we create opportunity, liberate potential, maximize our labour pool and drive vibrant economic growth.

  • The radical ex-hippie who infiltrated Ontario’s health-care establishment

    His improbable trajectory has taken him from firebrand to respected senior hospital executive. Along the way, he has established himself as one of Canada’s strongest advocates for disadvantaged patients… a skilled, hard-working, team-playing professional. He is credited with using his leadership roles to help develop a multitude of programs and services for disenfranchised patients. But when conventional means of addressing gaps in their care didn’t work, a different Philip Berger would emerge

  • It’s been wrong for Canada to separate families

    Under section 38(1)c of the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act, Immigration Canada can refuse any applicant who might “cause excessive demand on health or social services.” Immigration Minister Ahmed Hussen announced Wednesday that the government will be looking at how to let go of the excessive demand provision. “From a principled perspective, the current excessive demand provision policy simply does not align with our country’s values of inclusion of person with disabilities in Canadian society.”

  • Canada has the highest rate of multiple sclerosis. Now St. Michael’s Hospital is launching a $30M centre to fight MS

    “The intent is to build the best clinical facility for MS in the world… And the way you do that is you make sure it’s a facility that offers the best in education and research as well.” … The facility will be known as the Barlo MS Centre — after John and Jocelyn Barford and Jon and Nancy Love, who donated $10 million per family to the project… “It’s the most frequent cause of disability in young adults in a number of western countries,”

  • Ontario urged to make ending child poverty an election issue

    Children and families who are Indigenous, racialized, newcomers, living with disabilities or in lone-parent, female-led households experience much higher rates of poverty, according to the 2016 census… almost 16 per cent of children in Canada were living in poverty in 1989 when Parliament unanimously pledged to end child poverty by 2000. But due to lack of federal action on the promise, child poverty in Canada rose to 22.3 per cent in 2000.

  • Province to include adult children with disabilities in child support law

    Ontario has introduced an amendment to the Family Law Act that would make all adult children with disabilities — including those whose parents were never married — eligible for child support… “The proposed change would update Ontario’s Family Law Act to more closely align Ontario’s child support legislation with the Federal Divorce Act as well as with the child support laws in the majority of other Canadian provinces and territories,”

  • There is a prescription for poverty’s punishing impact on health in Ontario

    One of the reasons poverty is expensive is because people living in poverty have higher rates of chronic disease, including diabetes, cancer and heart disease. Children in low-income families are at higher risk of diagnosed mental health problems, nutritional deficiencies, asthma and injury… Aside from being inadequate, our social assistance programs are dysfunctional… With the cost of poverty at more than $32 billion per year in Ontario, we can’t afford to continue with the same flawed system…

  • Don’t link mental illness with violent crime

    We concluded, as have others before us, that public fears of the mentally ill greatly exceed the actual risk of violence posed by such persons. A small number of people may pose an increased risk to others, but this risk is a result of acute symptoms that can respond to treatment. Policies of social inclusion, stigma reduction and providing people with care are the most important steps to advance the well-being of individuals with mental illness; this may facilitate an even lower risk of violence to others.