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ODA Committee Update
dated January 8, 2005
posted March 4, 2005


Media Coverage Of Upcoming Public Hearings On Bill 118 - And Other Good News

January 8, 2005


In Helen Henderson's January 8, 2005 biweekly Toronto Star column on disability issues, she includes a part that publicizes the upcoming public hearings on Bill 118, the proposed Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act. (See excerpt below)

We have also received a letter from Citizenship Minister Dr. Marie Bountrogianni, encouraging everyone to take part in the public hearings on Bill 118. See the text of her letter below.

We encourage you to:

* Contact the Ontario Legislature's Standing Committee on Social Policy
before their January 12, 2005, 5 p.m. deadline to ask to make an oral
presentation at the public hearings on Bill 118. There are only 5 days left
to send in your request! The details of how to contact the Standing
Committee are set out in the news article and the Minister's letter below.
Please note that the Standing Committee on Social Policy, and not the
Citizenship Ministry, should be contacted about the hearings on Bill 118,
since it is the Standing committee that runs those hearings.

* Send the ODA Committee your feedback on our draft brief which proposes
amendments to Bill 118 to improve that bill. Send your feedback to us by the
end of Friday, January 14, 2005. People have already started sending in good
ideas. If you need us to send you a copy of that brief, either pasted into
an email message, or sent as an MS Word attachment, or to send us your
feedback on the brief, write us at:


* Plan now to attend the public hearings in your community, even if you are
not going to make a presentation.

Also, we are delighted to let you know that back in December, the ODA committee was notified that the Toronto District School Board's Special Education Advisory Committee passed a resolution recognizing the tenth anniversary of the establishment of the ODA Committee. See the text below. We thank that body for their kind words.




Toronto Star Life, Saturday, January 8, 2005, p. L04

What do you think of the proposed Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act?

You'll have a chance to air your views between Jan. 31 and Feb. 11 when the
Standing Committee on Social Policy holds hearings in Toronto, Niagara

London, Thunder Bay and Ottawa.

If you'd like to make an oral presentation, you must contact the committee
clerk, Anne Stokes, by 5 p.m. Wednesday. Written submissions must be sent by

5 p.m. on Tuesday, Feb. 8, to Anne Stokes, Room 1405, Whitney Block, Queen's
Park, Toronto, Ont. M7A 1A2.

Telephone: 416-325-3515; TDD: 416-325-3538. Collect calls will be accepted.
For more information, see www.ontla. on.ca/committees, click on social
then scroll down to Bill 118..



January 7, 2005

Dear Friend:

I am writing to let you know about the next steps in the Ontario Legislature's consideration of Bill 118, the proposed Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act, 2004.

As you may recall, on December 2, the bill received approval in principle on Second Reading, and was referred to the Standing Committee on Social Policy for further review. The committee confirmed it would hold public hearings on the bill, and would provide a list of dates and locations.

Hearings are to be held in five communities:

January 31 - Toronto

February 1 - Toronto

February 2 - Niagara Falls

February 3 - London

February 7 - Thunder Bay

February 8 - Ottawa

All sessions will be accessible to people with disabilities. Details about times and places and how to participate will be posted on the committee's page on the Legislative Assembly Web site at:


In addition to holding public hearings, the committee has indicated it will also accept written submissions on the bill from the public. The deadline for submissions is Tuesday, February 8, 2005, and details on how to make a written submission can also be found at the above Web address.

For further information, please contact the committee clerk at the following address:

Anne Stokes
Standing Committee on Social Policy
Room 1405, Whitney Block
Queen's Park
Toronto ON M7A 1A2

Tel : (416) 325-3515 Fax : (416) 325-3505 TTY : (416) 325-3538

I hope you will take advantage of these opportunities to provide your views on the provisions of this historic bill. The committee's work is the next stage in moving toward an accessible Ontario.



Dr. Marie Bountrogianni


Special Education Advisory Committee (SEAC)
5050 Yonge Street Toronto, Ontario
M2N 5N8

December 6, 2004

David Lepovsky, Chair
Ontarians with Disabilities Act Committee
Via e-mail

Dear David Lepovsky,

Members of the Toronto District School Board's Special Education Committee
(SEAC) have followed with interest the developments and progress of Bill
118, the proposed Accessibility for Ontarians with Disability Act and its
predecessor the Ontarians with Disabilities Act.

We acknowledge with respect the great part that the Ontarians with
Disabilities Act Committee, under your leadership, has played in bringing
this important legislation along to where it is today. We realize that while
there is much yet to be accomplished and wish you continued success.

We would like to advise you that at the Toronto District School Board SEAC
meeting on Monday, November 29th, 2004 the following motion was adopted
marking the 10th anniversary of the Ontarians with Disabilities Act

Moved by Trustee Elizabeth Hill and seconded by Merle Fedirchuk;

That the Toronto District School Board Special Education Advisory Committee
recommends that sincere congratulations and appreciation be extended to the
Ontarians with Disabilities Act Committee on the occasion of their 10th
anniversary in their campaign for a barrier-free Ontario.


Michelle Worley
Scott Bridges



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