Minutes from our meeting with Honourable Minister Todd Smith.

On September 20th 2019, the day of Ontario Disability Coalition (ODC) Queens Park rally “We are not red tape”, ODC advocates also had an opportunity to meet with senior ministry staff and the Honourable Minister Todd Smith. This was an opportunity for self advocates and their caregivers to share their hardships and experiences with Minister Todd Smith about growing up and living in Ontario with a physical and developmental disability.

They talk openly about why we need an Ontario Disability Program. Self Advocates open up, so we can move forward to a Barrier Free Ontario. Minutes for our meeting are posted below.

Front Row Brandon Colatosti, Lexi Tokhi, Ashley Caldwell and Dante Wellington
Backrow Kevin John-Head and Michael Madden. Posing outside the provincial legislature before meeting with Minister Todd Smith
Pictured is Minister Todd Smith and his staff seated at a large board table surrounded by self advocates children, youth and adults living with disabilities in Ontario. They shared their experiences and barriers they faced as they advocated for an Ontario Disability Program to ensure Ontario is Barrier Free.

One thought on “Minutes from our meeting with Honourable Minister Todd Smith.

  1. Thank-you for sharing these minutes of your meeting with the Minister.

    It is extremely discouraging to see that his responses did not promise any action. I think we need to make accessibility and services an election issue (at every level). With 22% of Canadians having a disability, I do not understand the ignoring of their needs. It seems to come down to ignorance.

    The Older Women’s Network’s Living in Place campaign is asking everyone in every riding to *ask all the federal election candidates:*

    *Question 1:* The federal government’s National Housing Strategy, the Accessible Canada Act, Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation, the wide variety of federal funding for housing projects across the country, and federal responsibility for all military and Indigenous housing all speak to the importance of housing at the federal level. However, there is no law requiring that any of this housing be accessible. Given that 22% of Canadians have a disability, *what will you do to ensure that every Canadian with a disability has appropriate fully accessible (universal design) housing?*

    *Question 2:* *Will you make it a priority to ensure that no tax dollars support housing which is not accessible to people with disabilities and their families?*

    In solidarity, Kate Chung for Older Women’s Network


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