The Learning Disabilities Association of Canada Shocked by B.C. Supreme Court Ruling on Learning Disabilities



    OTTAWA, March 4 /CNW Telbec/ - The Learning Disabilities Association of
Canada (LDAC) is shocked and disappointed in the appeal decision of the B.C.
Supreme Court in the Jeffery Moore case.
    In the courts since 2001, the case concerns Jeffrey Moore, who was
identified in the mid-1990's as having severe Learning Disabilities (LD), and
did not receive the support he required in the public school system. Once in
private school, he received support for dyslexia and thrived; however, this
was at a staggering cost to his parents of $100,000 over 9 years. LDAC, an
intervenor in the case, hailed it as a landmark case that would have signalled
a major victory for people with Learning Disabilities across Canada. However,
on February 29, the B.C. Supreme Court overturned the 2005 Human Rights
Tribunal Ruling that B.C.'s Education Ministry and the North Vancouver school
board discriminated against students with LD when it failed to give Jeffrey
proper support.
    "The systemic issues in this case are important to children with LD
across Canada, particularly their right to meaningful access to resources and
trained professionals within the school system that is provided to
non-disabled children," said Judy Kerr, Executive Director of The Learning
Disabilities Association of Canada. "LDAC commends the Moore family for not
settling their case when the opportunity presented itself, and for pursuing it
on behalf of the 1 in 10 Canadians who have Learning Disabilities."
    The ruling is especially damning given the most recent numbers on LD from
Statistics Canada. The most alarming findings of the 2006 Participation and
Activation Limitation Study (PALS) are:

    
    - Learning Disabilities joined chronic conditions as the most common form
      of disability for children aged 5 - 14.
    - The number of Canadians aged 15 and over with Learning Disabilities
      rose by almost 40% in 2006.

    "The court ruling in the Moore case is deplorable. Canada's education
system is broken," said Judy Kerr. "Bright, talented students with LD are
falling through the cracks, because they do not have equal access to
education. It's a question of governments investing in the education system
now so that individuals with LD can succeed and contribute to the Canadian
economy, or investing in social, health and mental health services later."
    The Learning Disabilities Association of Canada's 2007 groundbreaking
study, Putting a Canadian Face on Learning Disabilities (www.pacfold.ca),
uncovers the reality of living with a Learning Disability:

    - Over one-quarter of Canadians with LD aged 22 to 29 (28.3%) reported
      less than a high school certificate as their highest academic
      achievement, compared to 14.9% in the general population.
    - Young people with Learning Disabilities are 2 - 3 times more likely to
      suffer from depression and mental health issues.
    - The employment rate for individuals with LD is 51%, compared to 89% in
      the general population.
    

    About Learning Disabilities

    A Learning Disability is a neurological condition that interferes with a
person's ability to store, process, or produce information.
    Learning Disabilities can affect one's ability to read, write, speak,
spell, compute math, reason and also affect a person's attention, memory,
coordination, and perceived social skills and emotional maturity. Although
people with Learning Disabilities have average or above-average IQs, their
disabilities are evident in academic and social situations.

    About the Learning Disabilities Association of Canada (www.ldac-taac.ca)

    Since 1963, the Learning Disabilities Association of Canada has provided
support to people with Learning Disabilities, as well as their families, their
teachers and other professionals who help them.
    LDAC is a volunteer-led association representing a network of
10 provincial and 2 territorial Learning Disabilities Associations. From these
extends a network of chapters in some 55 communities across the country with
more than 7,000 members across Canada.




For further information:

For further information: Claudette Larocque, (613) 238-5721 ext. 202,
information@ldac-taac.ca; Suki Lee, (416) 529-7979,
inbox@inboxcommunications.com

Organization Profile

LEARNING DISABILITIES ASSOCIATION OF CANADA (LDAC)

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