Minister Jaczek Visits Community Living Ontario
Community Living Ontario was pleased to welcome the Minister of Community and Social Services to its new Toronto office last Thursday (January 28).
Accompanied by Assistant Deputy Minister Karen Chan and Senior Policy Advisor Jonathan Bradshaw, Minister Helena Jaczek met with staff and toured the office space before sitting down for an hour-long discussion on various topics, including Community Living Ontario’s budget submission (click here to read our recommendations) to the Standing Committee on Finance.
Board Treasurer Patrick Grist, Council Chair James Taylor and Peter Sproul, Chair of the Provincial Executive Directors’ Group and Executive Director of Community Living Kingston and District, joined Chief Executive Officer Chris Beesley as part of the discussion.
Minister Jaczek provided an update on developments related to provincially-funded sheltered workshops. She acknowledged that people possess a broad spectrum of abilities and there cannot be a one-size-fits-all solution to transitioning people from sheltered workshops. Karen Chan stated that Ministry representatives have been consulting with service providers across the province regarding sheltered workshops and that engagement sessions were likely to take place beginning in March. In the meantime, the Ministry is encouraging the agencies’ Boards to meet with families around the issue.
Read the full story here.
Municipalities, Businesses Encouraged to do the ‘Smart Thing’ and Hire People with Disabilities
“It’s not charity. It’s social justice,” Sarnia Mayor Mike Bradley told Community Living Ontario regarding his ongoing efforts to stimulate employment for people with disabilities in the province.
He’s made some changes to the Mayor’s Challenge he issued to municipalities across Ontario in 2010, in which he urged towns and cities to hire people with disabilities.
During his keynote speech at the Informing the Roadmap for Work Disability Policy in Canada Conference back in November, Mayor Bradley relaunched the campaign with renewed vigour and a revised slogan. While he initially suggested municipalities and businesses ‘Do the right thing’ and hire people with disabilities, the motto has now been changed to ‘Do the smart thing.’
At least 60 people with intellectual disabilities, including 13 last year, have been placed in meaningful jobs with the City of Sarnia since the program began, in fields such as general maintenance, clerks, and data entry. That’s not to mention the successes in the private sector. For instance, Community Living Sarnia-Lambton placed 86 students in 100 summer positions in 2014. Another 75 young people were placed in 90 jobs this past summer.
Read the full article here.