Business Breakfast –> Learn About Accessibility (June 17, 2010) Oshawa, Ontario

Local business owners invited to learn about accessibility

As part of the Durham Region Accessibility Expo, The Regional Municipality of Durham, Economic Development and Tourism Department, will be hosting a breakfast session to educate local business owners on accessibility compliance requirements.

WHEN: Thursday, June 17 from 7:30 a.m. to 10 a.m.

WHERE: Durham College/UOIT Campus Recreation and Wellness Centre, 2000 Simcoe St. N., Oshawa

WHY: The Business Breakfast event is open to business owners who want to learn more about the requirements contained in the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act, 2005. Under this legislation, all businesses within the Province of Ontario must take measures to provide accessible customer service to those with disabilities by Jan. 1, 2012.

NOTE: Limited seating is available. Two representatives from each business will be accommodated Kerri King Tourism Manager The Regional Municipality of Durham Economic Development and Tourism 605 Rossland Road East Level 5 PO Box 623 Whitby, ON L1N 6A3

Direct Line: 905.668.4113 ext. 2606
Fax: 905.666.6228
Toll Free: 800.413.0017


Durham Region Accessiblity Expo (June 17, 2010 10am – 8pm) Oshawa, Ontario

Accessibility Logo - Celebrating Abilities. Celebrating Life.Learn about the new law in Ontario called Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act, 2005 (AODA).

The Accessibility Expo is the first of its kind in Durham where the Regional and local municipal Accessibility Advisory Committees have partnered with the Region of Durham Economic Development & Tourism Department to bring our community an important event on new legislation, accessibility and abilities.

An Accessibility Marketplace will feature over 100 exhibitors showcasing products and services.
An exciting lineup of extraordinary speakers and performers including:

Robert Pio Hajjar, a charismatic, motivational speaker, who travels widely as living proof of what is possible when you include and encourage people with intellectual disabilities.

Dr. Mark Nagler’s ambition and perseverance is told with humour that
will motivate.

Speaking from experience, Paul Rosen, Paralympic Gold Medalist & Sledge Hockey Goaltender, joins us to inspire through his story of courage.

Special performance and speaking engagement by Justin Hines… his words and music will move you.

Click here for more information

Proposed Accessibility Standard for Information and Communications

The proposed Accessibility Standard for Information and Communications outlines how businesses and organizations will have to create, provide and receive information and communications in ways that are accessible for people with disabilities.

On May 31, 2010, the Ontario government announced that it will integrate three standards into one streamlined regulation. The three standards are:

  1. Employment Information and
  2. Communications, and
  3. Transportation.

Read more about proposed accessibility standard for Information and Communications.

Disability Doorway — A new Durham Region portal to assist people deal with disabilities is a new web portal that assists people with disabilities, or their families, by providing information on resources and services that could help improve their qualities of life in one place.  Durham Region wrote an article about it called “Durham man helps open doors to accessibility“.

What an awesome and well needed website Paul Feldman (Computing By Voice) – great idea!  Way to go DREN (Durham Region Employment Network) and DRLTB (Durham Region Local Training Board) for recognizing a good idea and working together to make it happen.

Be proud – you have made Durham Region and even better place to live, work and play. Way to go!

The Accessibility for Ontarians With Disabilities Act

The Accessibility for Ontarians With Disabilities Act became law on June 13, 2005 and is making the Province of Ontario accessible by the year 2025, mandating rules that businesses and organizations will have to follow. Standards are in place for customer service now, and others including; transportation, employment, the built environment, information and communcations will be phased in over the new six months.


  • Public sector organizations need to comply with the standard by January 1, 2010.
  • Private and non-profit organizations must comply by January 1, 2012.

For more information on making Ontario accessible, visit

Are You Creating Barriers For Your Visitors?

Captchas are a common method of limiting access to services made available over the Web, but many rely on visual verification of a bitmapped image which presents a major problem to users who are blind, have low vision, or have a learning disability such as dyslexia.

The W3C Note Inaccessibility of CAPTCHA examines potential solutions to test that users are human, not software robots, in a way that is accessible to people with disabilities.

World Wide Web Consortium announces new accessibility standards

Today W3C (World Wide Web Consortium) announced a new standard that will help Web designers and developers create sites that better meet the needs of users with disabilities and older users. Drawing on extensive experience and community feedback, Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) 2.0 improves upon W3C’s groundbreaking initial standard for accessible Web content, applies to more advanced technologies, and is more precisely testable.

God Lives Under the Bed

Don’t start reading this one until you’ve got more than 3 or 4 minutes to just “scan” over it. It deserves some time for reflection.


I envy Kevin. My brother Kevin thinks God lives under his bed. At least that’s what I heard him say one night.

He was praying out loud in his dark bedroom, and I stopped to listen, “Are you there, God?” he said. “Where are you? Oh, I see. Under the bed…”

I giggled softly and tiptoed off to my own room. Kevin’s unique perspectives are often a source of amusement. But that night something else lingered long after the humor. I realized for the first time the very different world Kevin lives in.

He was born 30 years ago, mentally disabled as a result of difficulties during labor. Apart from his size (he’s 6-foot-2), there are few ways in which he is an adult.

He reasons and communicates with the capabilities of a 7-year-old, and he always will. He will probably always believe that God lives under his bed, that Santa Claus is the one who fills the space under our tree every Christmas and that airplanes stay up in the sky because angels carry them.

I remember wondering if Kevin realizes he is different. Is he ever dissatisfied with his monotonous life?

Up before dawn each day, off to work at a workshop for the disabled, home to walk our cocker spaniel, return to eat his favorite macaroni-and-cheese for dinner, and later to bed.

The only variation in the entire scheme is laundry, when he hovers excitedly over the washing machine like a mother with her newborn child.

He does not seem dissatisfied.

He lopes out to the bus every morning at 7:05, eager for a day of simple work.

He wrings his hands excitedly while the water boils on the stove before dinner, and he stays up late twice a week to gather our dirty laundry for his next day’s laundry chores.

And Saturdays-oh, the bliss of Saturdays! That’s the day my Dad takes Kevin to the airport to have a soft drink, watch the planes land, and speculate loudly on the destination of each passenger inside. “That one’s goin’ to Chi-car-go!” Kevin shouts as he claps his hands.

His anticipation is so great he can hardly sleep on Friday nights.

And so goes his world of daily rituals and weekend field trips.

He doesn’t know what it means to be discontent.

His life is simple.

He will never know the entanglements of wealth of power, and he does not care what brand of clothing he wears or what kind of food he eats. His needs have always been met, and he never worries that one day they may not be.

His hands are diligent. Kevin is never so happy as when he is working. When he unloads the dishwasher or vacuums the carpet, his heart is completely in it.

He does not shrink from a job when it is begun, and he does not leave a job until it is finished. But when his tasks are done, Kevin knows how to relax.

He is not obsessed with his work or the work of others. His heart is pure.

He still believes everyone tells the truth, promises must be kept, and when you are wrong, you apologize instead of argue.

Free from pride and unconcerned with appearances, Kevin is not afraid to cry when he is hurt, angry or sorry. He is always transparent, always sincere. And he trusts God.

Not confined by intellectual reasoning, when he comes to Christ, he comes as a child. Kevin seems to know God – to really be friends with Him in a way that is difficult for an “educated” person to grasp. God seems like his closest companion.

In my moments of doubt and frustrations with my Christianity I envy the security Kevin has in his simple faith.

It is then that I am most willing to admit that he has some divine knowledge that rises above my mortal questions

It is then I realize that perhaps he is not the one with the handicap . I am. My obligations, my fear, my pride, my circumstances – they all become disabilities when I do not trust them to God’s care

Who knows if Kevin comprehends things I can never learn? After all, he has spent his whole life in that kind of innocence, praying after dark and soaking up the goodness and love of God.

And one day, when the mysteries of heaven are opened, and we are all amazed at how close God really is to our hearts, I’ll realize that God heard the simple prayers of a boy who believed that God lived under his bed.

Kevin won’t be surprised at all!

When you receive this, say a prayer. That’s all you have to do.. There is nothing attached. This is powerful.

Just send this to four people and do not break this, please. Prayer is one of the best free gifts we receive. There is no cost, but a lot of rewards.


On June 13, 2005, the government passed the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act, 2005

About 1.85 million people in Ontario have a disability. That’s one in seven people. Over the next 20 years as the population ages, the number will rise to one in five Ontarians.

Find out what you need to know…
Making Ontario accessible | Ministry of Community and Social Services.