Accessibility Program

Logo of Accessibility Inititiative

Le français suit l'anglais.

About the Accessibility Initiative

Moving to a new country presents many challenges and opportunities for newcomers. The settlement process can be especially challenging for newcomers with disabilities, who are further marginalized due to disability-related barriers in our communities and workplaces.

Learning who newcomers with disabilities are, how to welcome and accommodate them is something the settlement sector is becoming more aware of. While our broader understanding of disability has led to the enhancement of legislations and programs; when it comes to the unique obstacles facing newcomers with disabilities, service delivery has not been able to effectively address their needs.

OCASI is committed to supporting the settlement sector to create welcoming, positive and inclusive spaces for all.

The Accessibility Initiative (AI) is a national bilingual project that aims to enhance the knowledge and skills of settlement sector professionals so that they are better equipped to serve newcomers with in/visible disabilities. A range of online professional development activities, tools, and resources will be created to assist organizations serving newcomers in creating accessible and inclusive spaces for all newcomers. Also addressed is the need for agencies to comply with national, regional laws and legislations related to accessibility, while providing effective settlement services to newcomers with disabilities.

The project aims to strengthen the sector's capacity to assist newcomers with both visible and invisible disabilities by:

  • Building strategic partnerships & relationships.
  • Providing self-directed online courses in English and French.
  • Providing webinars for front line settlement sector professionals and management in English and French.
  • Creating an online national discussion group that fosters community interaction and discussions to share and exchange knowledge, expertise, and solve issues regarding service delivery to newcomers with both visible and invisible disabilities.
  • Recruiting 'Allies in Accessibility' (AiA) across Canada with the aim of assembling a wide group of individuals who have an interest in creating accessible workplaces.

A propos de l’Initiative pour l'Accessibilité

Déménager dans un nouveau pays présente de nombreux défis et opportunités pour les nouveaux arrivants et le processus d'établissement peut être particulièrement difficile pour les nouveaux arrivants en situation de handicap, qui sont davantage marginalisés en raison des obstacles liés au handicap dans nos communautés et nos lieux de travail.

le secteur de l'établissement est de plus en plus conscient de l'importance d’apprendre qui sont les nouveaux arrivants en situation de handicap, comment les accueillir et les accommoder. Bien qu’une meilleure compréhension de l’handicap ait conduit à l'amélioration des législations et des programmes; la prestation de services en ce qui concerne les obstacles uniques auxquels sont confrontés les nouveaux arrivants en situation de handicap n'a pas été en mesure de répondre efficacement à leurs besoins.

OCASI est engagé à soutenir le secteur de l’établissement pour créer des espaces accueillants, positifs et inclusifs pour tous.

L'Initiative pour l’Accessibilité vise à renforcer les connaissances et les compétences des professionnels du secteur de l'établissement afin qu'ils soient mieux outillés pour servir les nouveaux arrivants ayant un handicap visible ou invisible. Une gamme d'activités, d'outils et de ressources de développement professionnel en ligne sera créée pour aider les organisations au service des nouveaux arrivants à créer des espaces accessibles et inclusifs pour tous. Sera également abordée la nécessité pour les agences de se conformer aux lois nationales et régionales et à la législation relative à l'accessibilité et à la lutte contre la discrimination, tout en fournissant des services d'établissement efficaces aux nouveaux arrivants en situation de handicap.

Le projet vise à renforcer la capacité du secteur pour mieux servir les nouveaux arrivants ayant un handicap in/visible par :

  • Etablir des partenariats et des relations stratégiques
  • Offrir en ligne les cours auto-dirigés en anglais et en français.
  • Offrir des webinaires aux intervenants de première ligne et aux gestionnaires du secteur de l'établissement en anglais et en français.
  • Créer un groupe national de discussion en ligne qui favorise l'interaction et les discussions communautaires pour partager et échanger des connaissances, de l'expertise et résoudre les difficultés relatives à la prestation de services aux nouveaux arrivants en situation de handicap visible ou invisible.
  • Recruter des «Alliés de l’Accessibilité» partout au Canada dans le but de rassembler un large groupe de personnes dévouées à créer des lieux de travail accessibles.

Project model
Download the AI Project Model [PDF]

Staff Bios

Sihem Ait Hammouda (she, her)

Sihem Ait Hammouda is the Bilingual Coordinator, Accessibility Initiative at OCASI. She is a trained facilitator, an inclusive educator and professional with over 15 years in facilitating training and developing curriculum. Sihem holds a Master's degree in Law from the University of Tunis and Project Management Diploma from Collège Boréal. As an experienced community researcher who works primarily on equity and diversity issues using an anti-racist anti-oppressive framework, she strives to empower newcomers with disabilities as well as strengthen the capacity of the settlement sector to better serve this vulnerable population. Her work has focused on access issues and the creation of inclusive communities for people with disabilities.

Joselynn Crosby (she, her)

Joselynn Crosby is the Coordinator, Accessibility Initiative at OCASI. She brings a diverse perspective, having worked in the settlement sector for 9+ years in Windsor, ON, as well as having worked with OCASI on two of their initiatives throughout the years, the Accessibility Initiative and the Positive Spaces Initiative. She is an ever-evolving facilitator, learning new techniques and ways of breaking down complex theories and thoughts for the consumption of participants with every training. She is completing her undergraduate in Women’s Studies, Social Justice, and Political Science, with an aim to pursue law afterward. Her drive and passion compel her to continue to learn and unlearn as well as delve deep into the complexities of identities and how they inform our experiences.

 

 Contact our coordinators for more information