Released on December 2, 2016
The Government of Saskatchewan has joined the world in recognizing and celebrating December 3, 2016, as International Day of Persons with Disabilities.
Proclaimed annually by the United Nations, this year’s theme is “Achieving 17 Goals for the Future We Want” and notes the recent adoption of 17 Sustainable Development Goals that have a role in building a more inclusive and equitable world for persons experiencing disabilities.
“We are pleased to proclaim our commitment to improving the supports and services for individuals experiencing disability on International Day of Persons with Disabilities,” Social Services Minister Tina Beaudry-Mellor said. “This important day advocates for the rights of those experiencing disabilities so they can live the dignified life they choose. The Saskatchewan Disability Strategy is the framework for this work in Saskatchewan.”
The Government of Saskatchewan announced its six priority areas for the Disability Strategy which includes: transportation, respite, accessibility legislation, residential services, service co-ordination and navigation, and awareness/understanding of the rights of people experiencing disabilities. Since the release of the Disability Strategy in 2015, progress has been made on a number of recommendations.
Some highlights include:
“Our government is proud to support many programs and services for individuals experiencing disabilities,” Beaudry-Mellor said. “I know there are many community events being held to celebrate this important day, and I am pleased that Saskatchewan citizens are showing such commitment to this work.”
- opening supportive housing initiatives in La Ronge and Prince Albert;
- developing the self-directed funding option;
- initiating Text911 for those with hearing and speech impairments;
- creating accessible print formats for public library patrons experiencing vision impairments;
- leading a universal design workshop to create residential and community spaces that function well for all people regardless of age, ability or disability.
The International Day of Persons with Disabilities was first proclaimed by the United Nations in 1992 to increase awareness and understanding of disability issues and trends, and to mobilize support for practical action by, with and for persons with disabilities. The 17 Sustainable Development Goals set forth by the UN are broad and include a vision to end poverty, combat climate change and achieve gender equality, among others.
The full list of the goals can be found at www.un.org/sustainabledevelopment/sustainable-development-goals/.
For more information, contact: