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New Award Honours Leaders in Accessibility

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New Award Honours Leaders in Accessibility

Province Celebrates Ontarians Who Break Down Barriers

Ontario is recognizing individuals and organizations who demonstrate leadership in accessibility and disability issues through the new David C. Onley Award for Leadership in Accessibility.

The first David C. Onley Award for Leadership in Accessibility awards will be given out in May, 2015 during National Access Awareness Week.

The Honourable David C. Onley, Ontario's outgoing Lieutenant Governor, has long been a champion for disability and accessibility issues, adopting accessibility as the overarching theme of his mandate.

This new annual award supports the government's ongoing efforts to provide all Ontarians with a more inclusive society where everyone has the opportunity to contribute to, and benefit from, economic growth and prosperity.

Quick Facts

  • 2015 marks the 10th anniversary of the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act, legislation that underscores Ontario’s commitment to creating an accessible province by 2025.
  • One in seven people in Ontario has a disability. That number is expected to rise to one in five by 2036, as the population ages.
  • Ontario is one of the first jurisdictions in the world to move to a modern regulatory regime that mandates accessibility through the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act and one of the first jurisdictions in Canada with legislation that sets out a goal and timeframe for accessibility.
  • Accessibility is good for the economy, with the potential of generating up to $1.6 billion in new spending for Ontario’s tourism sector, up to $9.6 billion in additional retail revenue and an increase of up to $600 per annum to the province’s GDP per capita.
  • Barriers to accessibility go beyond physical barriers and also include technology, information, employment and attitudinal barriers.

Additional Resources


“This award celebrates the individuals and organizations who remind us that true accessibility occurs when people with disabilities can actively participate in, and contribute to, the social, cultural and economic fabric of Ontario.”

Hon. David C. Onley

Lieutenant Governor of Ontario

“As we break down barriers and make Ontario more accessible to people of all abilities, our economy grows stronger, our communities become more vibrant, and our future grows brighter.”

Brad Duguid

Minister of Economic Development, Employment and Infrastructure

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