Minister Qualtrough on Canada's Appearance before the UN Committee on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities

GATINEAU, QC, April 1, 2017 /CNW/ - The Honourable Carla Qualtrough, Minister of Sport and Persons with Disabilities, today issued the following statement:

"Canada is honoured to be appearing before the UN Committee on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, for the very first time, on April 3 and 4 in Geneva, Switzerland.

As Canada's Minister dedicated to Persons with Disabilities, I take personal pride in our commitment under the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities.

All Canadians should have the chance to reach their full potential. The Convention is an important tool for ensuring that Canadians with disabilities have equal access to economic, cultural and social opportunities.

Our country is a leader on the world stage, with a very robust human rights system. We've made great strides in fostering an inclusive society for people with disabilities. But there is still work to be done.

We are currently developing new accessibility legislation that will promote equality and the full participation of Canadians who have disabilities or functional limitations.

This year, we've also begun the process toward Canada's potential accession to the UN Optional Protocol to the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, which establishes procedures aimed at strengthening the implementation and monitoring of the Convention.

Our appearance before this important Committee gives us the opportunity to highlight Canada's many achievements, talk about how we're shifting attitudes and the culture around accessibility, and address areas where we can continue to make improvements.

I believe that our country's diversity is our strength — and when we increase the inclusion of people with disabilities, we create a stronger Canada. I look forward to continuing this journey towards a truly accessible Canada."

Canada's delegation will include officials from the Governments of Quebec and Ontario. Several representatives of national and provincial disability organizations will also be present for this important discussion.

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SOURCE Employment and Social Development Canada

For further information: For media enquiries, please contact: Ashley Michnowski, Press Secretary, Office of the Minister of Sport and Persons with Disabilities, 819-934-1122 / TTY: 1-866-702-6967; Media Relations Office, Employment and Social Development Canada, 819-994-5559,

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