Nellie’s Launches Position Paper on Accessibility


Nellie's is very proud to announce the launch of its position paper on accessibility titled Women with Disabilities and Deaf Women. This paper explores the issues impacting women with Disabilities and Deaf women.  It identifies challenges and emerging issues, from which strategies are developed for working with women and to ensure that services are accessible to all.

The paper highlights societal perceptions and personal biases about Disability. It explores the impact of ableism on various communities including immigrant and newcomer women, Aboriginal women and women of colour.  It also identifies key attitudinal shifts necessary for the development and implementation of policies and service provisions needed to ensure services are accessible to women with disabilities and women who are Deaf.
In 2011, through an analysis of current issues and trends, Nellies' Social Justice Committee recommended that Nellie's Board of Directors write a position paper exploring the issues of Accessibility and Ableism. Following this, the Social Justice Committee organized a subcommittee to develop that position. Upon consultation with key stakeholders regarding the direction of the paper, it was decided that Nellie's Social Justice Committee would draft the position and that feedback about it would be obtained from a focus group.  A draft position was written, and in June 2011 a focus group comprised of approximately 20 women provided feedback.  Their feedback along with that of other key stakeholders informed the final draft, which was approved in February 2013.
In March 2013, as a result of the position paper, the second cycle of “Women on the Move: A Psycho/Educational Support Group for Women with Disabilities” program began at Nellie's Community Support and Outreach office, in partnership with Springtide Resources. In addition, an accessibility policy was developed to meet the requirements of the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act (AODA).  The policy will serve as a way forward to improve accessibility for people with disabilities and to provide for their involvement in the identification, removal, and prevention of barriers to their full participation of life in Ontario.