B.C. Lawmaker Promises To Introduce Canadians With Disabilities
By Dave Reynolds, Inclusion Daily Express
January 20, 2006
VANCOUVER, BRITISH COLUMBIA--Peter Julian, a member of Canada's parliament, is telling his British Columbia constituents that, if he is reelected next week, he will introduce a Canadians with Disabilities Act, similar to the 1990 Americans with Disabilities Act.
A former director of the Western Institute for the Deaf & Hard of Hearing, Julian told Vancouver's Georgia Straight weekly that his measure would guarantee access to services and employment opportunities, which he says current Canadian law does not address adequately.
But Julian's plan is not endorsed by all disability groups.
The BC Coalition of People with Disabilities, for instance, told the Georgia Straight that Julian's proposal would harm existing rights under the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms. Section 15 of that charter guarantees "equality" under the law for Canadians that have disabilities.
Julian, who uses some sign language, responded: "That [American legislation] is not perfect by any means, but they are still significantly ahead of Canada. I think it is to our shame that we have not moved to put similar legislation in place, both federally and provincially."
"Julian drafts disabilities bill" (Georgia Straight)