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Thursday, December 3, 2009

International Day of Persons with Disabilities

Today, The City of Calgary is recognizing this day by hosting the International Day of Persons with Disabilities information booth show at the City Hall Atrium.

People with disabilities are an integral part of our culture and The City’s theme of empowerment is vital to increase awareness and understanding of the positive contributions people with disabilities make to our community.

Darlene Boyes, a disability outreach co-ordinator said accessible services are of utmost importance.

"Issues of accessibility are a concern of our society. It’s about more than just the built environment," she said. "The Corporate Accessibility Policy focuses on issues of concern to people with mobility, sensory and cognitive impairments and states that (City of Calgary) will establish performance measures to evaluate progress on elimination of barriers to both physical and communication access for people with disabilities."

According to the United Nation's website, the International Day of Persons with Disabilities aims to promote an understanding of disability issues, the rights of persons with disabilities and gains to be derived from the integration of persons with disabilities in every aspect of the political, social, economic and cultural life of their communities.

This year’s free event will be held from 10:30 a.m. until 2 p.m. The event is comprised of a number of local organizations that will display information booths, theatre, comedy and dance events.

In recognition to the contributions by people with disabilities, every year on Dec. 3, an Advocacy Award and Community Access Recognition Awards are presented by the Advisory Committee on Accessibility.

Fitting with the Empowerment theme for Calgary’s 2009 International Day of Persons with Disabilities, the following information and resources empower the lives of people with disabilities:
The Advisory Committee on Accessibility focuses on broad policy issues and advises City Council on access issues related to municipal properties, information and services.

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