Plan identifies accessibility barriers and lays out actions to prevent and remove them
CHARLOTTETOWN, PE, Dec. 22, 2022 /CNW/ - Today, Veterans Affairs Canada (VAC) released its first Accessibility Action Plan. The Plan lays out the Department's commitment to improve accessibility by identifying barriers and the actions that VAC can take to prevent and remove them.
VAC has a long history of serving clients with disabilities, as Veterans are more likely to have physical and mental health conditions when compared to the general population, according to VAC's Life After Service Studies.
The accessibility barriers in this Action Plan were identified in consultation with persons with disabilities, putting the "nothing without us" principle into practice. VAC conducted an external consultation using Let's Talk Veterans and also consulted internally with its Employee Accessibility Network.
The Action Plan identifies accessibility barriers in several priority areas and outlines more than 40 concrete, measurable actions to address them, such as:
VAC will monitor the progress on these actions and publish an annual progress report. An updated accessibility action plan will be produced every three years.
The Accessible Canada Act requires all federally-regulated entities, such as VAC, to publish their first accessibility action plans by 31 December 2022. The purpose of the Act is to achieve a barrier-free Canada by 2040.
"It's so important to be breaking down barriers for persons with disabilities, especially here at Veterans Affairs Canada. I'm so pleased to see the publication of the Accessibility Action Plan. A tremendous amount of consultation and planning has gone into this document. This plan will help remove barriers, making VAC a more accessible service provider and a more inclusive workplace."
The Honourable Lawrence MacAulay, Minister of Veterans Affairs and Associate Minister of National Defence
SOURCE Veterans Affairs Canada