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Canada Isn’t Ready to Deal With Influx of Those Disabled From COVID-19: Advocates

Jeremiah Rodriguez CTVNews.ca Writer
Originally Published Tuesday, January 19, 2021

TORONTO — Based on what disability advocates have seen so far, Canadian cities arent ready for the influx of people temporarily or permanently disabled from COVID-19. Long-term effects include breathing problems, mobility limitations from fatigue, and neurological and sleeping difficulties.

This is a whole new source of disability, Mary Ann McColl, academic lead for the Canadian Policy Disability Alliance and an epidemiologist at Queens University, told CTVNews.ca in a phone interview.

COVID-19 long haulers, as theyre being called, could be dealing with long-term conditions such as neurological problems, pulmonary fibrosis, inflammation of the heart, and renal insufficiency.

His Dream: Running Blind and Running Free

By Matthew Futterman
New york Times, Dec. 26, 2020

A blind runner issued a challenge to technologists last year to find a way for him to run safely without a guide. They did.

Thomas Panek dreamed for years of running the way he did before he lost his sight, without fear and without a human or a dog tethered to his wrist as a guide.

That dream took Panek, 50, to the north end of Central Park one frigid morning last month, to test drive something that might one day liberate thousands of other people with severely impaired vision. As a camera crew and a team of technologists made some final adjustments, he stood on the downslope of West Drive. He straddled a painted yellow line and waited for the signal to go.

More Access Needed to Accessibility Services: Ramps, Home Care, Health Coverage Can Pose Challenges

by Trevor Wright
December 21, 2020

Some Nunavummiut living with disabilities say that more that can be done with regards to access to services.

Yugh Ahuja, 19, who has a rare genetic disease called Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD), has faced numerous accessibility challenges in Iqaluit, where he lives. DMD causes the muscles in the body to become increasingly weak over time before they eventually cease function, leading to mobility problems such as those Ahuja experiences every day.

Ahuja faces many challenges if he has to go somewhere alone: some handicap door buttons not working, navigating elevators, being able to access ATM machines and dealing with inadequate ramps that are sometimes put in just to fulfill the requirement.

Netflix’s ‘Crip Camp’ is One of the Most Important Films About Disability I’ve Ever Seen

This documentary proves we can tell human stories about disabled people and our lives. And through those stories, we can show both how far we’ve come and where we must go next. Originally Posted April 4, 2020
By Sara Luterman

I don’t remember the first time I met Judy Heumann, but I’ve only ever known her as an omnipresent elder statesman of the disability rights movement. A former President Bill Clinton and President Barack Obama appointee, the word that best describes Heumann, if I had to pick one, would be “dignified.”

If you want to marvel at human ingenuity, perseverance and triumph while you’re in quarantine, “Crip Camp” has you covered.

‘For many persons with disabilities ‘ social isolation is status quo,’ says support worker Carlos Sosa

Carlos Sosa
CBC News, Dec. 19, 2020

For many Manitobans, this holiday season will be very different from previous years.

In order to protect public health, it has been recommended that we restrict our contacts and gatherings to within households.

Over this last year as a society, we have all had to alter our lifestyles to lead a more isolated way of life due to the COVID’19 pandemic. Our entertainment options have been narrowed and restrictions have been placed on where we can gather.

This has left Manitobans feeling isolated and struggling with mental health issues.

Accessible Tourism Identified as ‘Game Changer’ for Destinations

3 Dec 20

Ensuring accessibility for tourists with specific access requirements can be a ‘game changer’ for destinations around the world as they look to bounce back from the impacts of the pandemic.

A new set of Inclusive Recovery Guides from the World Tourism Organization, produced in partnership with the European Network for Accessible Tourism (ENAT), the ONCE Foundation of Spain and Travability from Australia, makes clear the importance of placing inclusivity at the centre of recovery plans and provides key recommendations for achieving this.

Why Disability Advocates are Worried About Changes to Canada’s Medical Assistance in Dying Bill

Jeff Preston wants to know what governments are doing to help people with disabilities live Rebecca Zandbergen , CBC News
Posted: Dec 08, 2020

If Bill C-7 passes, the federal government will give many more Canadians access to medical assisted dying (MAID), particularly those in the disability community.

The legislation removes a requirement that a patient’s natural death be “reasonably foreseeable,” a change that would satisfy a September 2019 Quebec Superior Court ruling that deemed parts of the federal and provincial laws on assisted dying unconstitutional.

Government of Canada Fighting the Alliance for the Equality of Blind Canadians in Court

OTTAWA, ON (December 2, 2020)

The Government of Canada is fighting a small registered charity and not-for-profit organization in court and refusing to ensure that its websites are accessible to blind, deafblind and partially sighted Canadians.

In 2019, the Alliance for the Equality of Blind Canadians (“AEBC”) brought a human rights complaint against the Government of Canada because its websites are inaccessible to blind, deafblind and partially sighted Canadians. In particular, the complaint alleged that blind, deafblind and partially sighted Canadians were discriminated against in the context of a funding application process created by Employment and Social Development Canada (“ESDC”) specifically for organizations for people with disabilities.

China Has 8 Million Blind People, but Only 200 Guide Dogs

By Nectar Gan
CNN, November 23, 2020

Blind runner makes history with help from furry friends

At the age of 11, Yang Kang lost his vision due to a rare type of eye cancer. But he considers himself one of the lucky few among China’s millions of blind people — he has a guide dog.

Yang splits his time between living in Beijing with his wife and running a piano studio in his hometown Tangshan, a sprawling industrial city some 100 miles away.

Telehealth May Worsen Digital Divide for People With Disabilities(PWDs)

A recently published JAMIA paper argues that design, implementation and policy considerations must be taken into account when developing virtual care technology. By Kat Jercich
November 23, 2020

Much has been made of telehealth’s potential to bridge the accessibility gap for those who may be otherwise underserved by the healthcare systems.

But, experts said in a new paper published in the Journal of the American Medical Informatics Association this past week, telehealth may also exacerbate inequities faced by the disability community.

“There remains a pressing need to explicitly consider how changes in the prevalence and ubiquity of telehealth impact people with disabilities,” wrote the authors.