Promoting a Culture of Accessibility and Inclusion

Promoting a Culture of Accessibility and Inclusion 

December 5, 2016

Chelsea Hotel, 33 Gerrard St W, Toronto, ON M5G 1Z4

Register Now

As part of the Accessibility Directorate of Ontario's EnAbling Change program, OMSSA's one-day forum will highlight new, exciting and innovative thinking and projects that promote accessibility and inclusion in our communities.

This forum will showcase emerging and best practices on building inclusivity in all aspects of our lives: work, community, the built environment and more. The forum will be of interest to public sector employees, stakeholders, partners, employers, business leaders, community developers, economic development, tourism, recreation and people interested in making their programs, services and communities more inclusive. 


Chelsea Hotel, 33 Gerrard St., Toronto, ON. Click on the "Accommodations" tab on the left to book your room on or before November 10 to be eligible for the group rate of $119 plus applicable taxes.

Keynote Speaker

Gil Penalosa, Founder and CEO of 8 80 Cities, an organization centred on a simple but powerful philosophy; if you create a great city for an 8 year old and an 80 year old, you will create a successful city for all people. A dynamic motivational speaker, Gil will inspire everyone in the room to help create change wherever they are.

Plenary Sessions

Beyond Compliance: Accessibility Self-Assessment Tool for Organizations

Profiles the online accessibility self-assessment tool developed by the Regional Municipality of York for public, private and voluntary sector organizations under the Government of Ontario’s EnAbling Change Program. Through a set of questions this tool helps organizations establish a baseline of accessibility, identify new initiatives and track organizational change over time. Attendees will come away with a practical understanding of the tool and best practice measures that an organization can do beyond compliance with legislation to create a culture of accessibility and inclusion. 

Enhancing Ability throughout the Lifespan through Physical Literacy: Andrea Carey, Canadian Sport for Life

Physical literacy is the gateway to physical activity, it is inclusive by definition, and it is a lifelong journey. By developing and maintaining physical literacy, we can enhance the quality of life for our citizens. This session will define and explain the concept and application of physical literacy, and look at how physical literacy enhances abilities of daily living, as well as increases the opportunities for an active and healthy lifestyle. Physical literacy is a prevention strategy, it is a rehabilitation strategy and it is an inclusion strategy. We will explore what this means, how to facilitate it in different settings and across the lifespan. We will also discuss what some of the key transition points are in terms of gaining or losing people from an active lifestyle, complete with information from research and recent publications to support this work and what we can do to attract and retain them on their physical literacy trajectory.  

Concurrent Sessions

Developmental Services Housing Task Force – Innovative Housing Solutions for Persons with Developmental Disabilities – Municipal Partnerships

In September 2013, the Housing Study Group of the joint Ministry of Community and Social Services/Developmental Services Sector partnership table released a report entitled “Ending the Wait – an Action Agenda to Address the Housing Crisis Confronting Ontario Adults with Developmental Disabilities.”

The Developmental Services Housing Task Force (DSHTF) has been meeting since September 2014 and has developed a multifaceted approach to fulfilling its goals. 

To promote a culture of accessibility and inclusion for persons with developmental disabilities, the panelists will present early findings from some of the 18 Pilot Projects on how they succeeded and/or struggled to remove barriers for persons with developmental disabilities to fully participate in the economic, social and community aspects of their lives.  Results from the CMSM and DSSAB survey of municipal funding that is targeted to the shelter andhousing needs of the Developmental Services sector, and DSHTF learnings since 2014 on how a 'whole of government' and a 'whole of community' approach will succeed in creating a culture of accessibility and inclusion.

Age-Friendly Communities: Building Accessible and Inclusive Communities for Older Adults in Ontario

Age-Friendly Communities (AFCs) promote healthy aging, independence, and inclusion by improving the built and social environments. Ontario’s AFC Planning Outreach Initiative is a partnership between the Ontario Seniors’ Secretariat and researchers at the University of Waterloo, Huntington / Laurentian University, Queen’s University and the Seniors Health Knowledge Network. Drawing on expertise in knowledge exchange, gerontology, geriatrics and urban planning, an interdisciplinary project team is piloting both local and provincial academic-community partnerships with over 56 communities across the province. In addition, Brantford and Brant County will present a case study success story.

Access for All – Innovation in the Municipal Sector

Municipalities are harnessing their create energy to enhance accessibility and inclusivity for all people regardless of age or ability. This workshop will hear from four innovators working in the municipal sector – Niagara region on increasing pedestrian traffic in shopping areas, designing and building accessible public spaces in the City of Kingston, innovative transit in York region, and a PATH system to assist blind and visually impaired people to navigate public spaces in the City of Vaughan.

Promoting a Culture of Accessibility, Adaptability, and Inclusion (AAI) in Public Sports and Recreation 

This session will include a discussion of best practices and trends in accessible, adaptive, and inclusive sports and recreation. This will include opportunities and challenges presented by AODA, as well as case study programs that focus on gaps and inclusion around mental health and programing for adults, youth, and children.

and more.....stay tuned for further details