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Prince George’s New Fully Accessible Pool Welcomed by People With Disabilities, Advocates

Canfor Leisure Pool replaces 50-year-old facility that failed to meet accessibility needs Jason Peters, CBC News
Posted: Nov 15, 2022

A new community pool in downtown Prince George, B.C., with a host of accessibility features is being welcomed by people with disabilities and their advocates after it opened to the public on Monday.

The $39-million Canfor Leisure Pool replaces the 50-year-old Four Seasons Leisure Pool, which had several accessibility and safety shortcomings, according to a 2016 Aquatic Needs Assessment Report.

The report cited issues such as poor or non-existent accessibility inside and outside the facility, slippery tiles on all decks, and a lack of accessible and family change room space.

11-Year-Old Uses Wish to Get Accessible Playground for Everyone

By Erin Wilson Kentucky
PUBLISHED Nov. 10, 2022

LOUISVILLE, Ky. – The Kentucky School for the Blind cut the ribbon to their brand new playground. A playground thanks to a fourth-grade student who used his wish to make sure everyone was included.

From the outside looking in, it may look like just an ordinary playground at the Kentucky School for the Blind. To Cierra Martin, it’s a dream that has been four years in the making.

“I am just so excited that the first thing he said was, ‘Let’s play,'” Martin said. “That just made my heart overflow. I feel like my heart grew three sizes today,”

Tofino Offers New Beach Mobility Chairs, Launches Accessibility Guide

CTV News Vancouver Island
Updated Nov. 4, 2022

Hitting the beaches in Tofino, B.C., has gotten easier for those with mobility issues thanks to new beach wheelchairs that the region is offering guests.

The chairs assemble in minutes and are stored in transportation bags that you can toss into your vehicle.

The chairs are loaned out for free for up to three days when you provide a deposit, and they’re providing access to beaches and trails where it wasn’t previously available.

“We actually had one woman who hasn’t been out on the beach with her husband for years, just because of accessibility issues of getting out on the beach,” said Jody Kirk, Tofino Tourism visitor and member service manager.

Editorial: Carleton’s School of Architecture Needs to Expand Universal Design Teachings

By The Charlatan – November 5, 2022

Carleton University’s Azrieli School of Architecture and Urbanism must provide its students a proper education in universal design.

By definition, universal design is “the design of buildings, products or environments to make them accessible to all people, regardless of age, disability or other factors.”

Experts and advocates and students say architectural schools are partly to blame for the lack of normalization universal design has received in practice.

In 2017, 22 per cent of the Canadian population over the age of 15 identified as having a disability. However, accessibility in the built environment continues to be regarded as a niche issue in the architecture world.

Accessibility Advocate Draws Attention to Issues with Spring Garden Road Development Work

Michael Gorman, CBC News
Posted: Sep 23, 2022

Frustration is an all too familiar feeling for Gus Reed as he navigates the streets of Halifax.

For years, the accessibility advocate has brought attention to barriers people face as they make their way through Nova Scotia.

That could be trying to use the bathroom in restaurants housed in buildings constructed years before people took into account that not everyone can navigate steps, or just trying to move about in a city where new buildings seem to be going up on a weekly basis.

Universal Design Takes Backseat in Architecture Education: Experts

By Makayla Morgan -September 19, 202293

Doors that swing silently open and hit you in the face. Guide rails through hazardous terrain that stop abruptly, leaving you stranded. Fire alarms that rely solely on the sound you cant hear.

Those are just some of the barriers that people with disabilities face when they try to navigate buildings, transit systems and other parts of our exclusionary built environment. Even in recent city developments, such as Ottawas LRT system, blind passengers are left fumbling to find the train doors.

Call for Proposals Launched to Increase Disability Inclusion and Accessibility in Communities, Workplaces and Early Learning and Child Care Facilities

Employment and Social Development Canada
Sep 07, 2022

Organizations have until November 1 to apply for funding for infrastructure and communication technology projects

GATINEAU, QC, Sept. 7, 2022 /CNW/ – Persons with disabilities must be able to access spaces, communities, and workplaces that are barrier-free and built to include everyone. For this reason, the Government of Canada continues to invest in programs that prioritize disability inclusion, increasing accessibility and the full participation of persons with disabilities.

Thousands of People With Disabilities are Waiting for An Accessible Home in B.C.

Long waits are forcing many to live in homes without accessible bathrooms or kitchens, advocate says Baneet Braich, CBC News
Posted: Sep 01, 2022

Kyle Jacques has one wish before his 29th birthday this month – to find an accessible home.

Jacques uses a wheelchair and has spent the past nine months looking for an affordable, accessible home in Vancouver. At his current rental, he grapples with everyday tasks such as getting his wheelchair inside the house, cooking a meal and using the bathroom.

“Some days I feel hopeless, other days I just keep pushing. I’m really trying to find something, but that’s difficult,” said Jacques, adding that he has contacted community groups and B.C. Housing for help.

After Months Stuck in Her Bedroom, St. John’s Woman Finally Moves Into Accessible Apartment

Garrett Barry, CBC News
Posted: Aug 30, 2022

A St. John’s woman who spent months stuck in her bedroom is finally stretching her legs – in a new apartment in the city.

Phyllis Churchill, a 65-year-old woman who has cerebellar ataxia, spent almost two years waiting for a more accessible apartment from the Newfoundland and Labrador Housing Corporation.

About two weeks ago, she got it – a basement apartment that, barring staircases in and out, means Phyllis can walk around on her own.

“It’s such a big improvement, because Mom can walk from here to the bathroom, to the bedroom,” said her daughter Samantha, who lives with her. “She’s doing a lot better.”

Inclusive Play: University of Toronto Researcher Studies Playground Experiences of Children With Disabilities

How do Canadian children with disabilities and their families experience playgrounds? What about adjacent areas such as parking lots and pathways? How can educators and rehabilitation specialists use playground spaces?

These are some of the topics explored by Kelly Arbour-Nicitopoulos, an associate professor studying disability and physical activity in the University of Toronto’s Faculty of Kinesiology and Physical Education (KPE).

Since 2018, Arbour-Nicitopoulos and her research team have been working with Canadian Tire Jumpstart Charities (Jumpstart) to evaluate the impact of the playgrounds built through the charity’s Inclusive Play initiative. The initiative works in partnership with local municipalities to bring large-scale inclusive play infrastructure to communities across Canada in an effort to ensure children of all abilities have equal and equitable access to participation in play.