CODC Newsletter #4
CODC logo - Central Okanagan Disability Coalition

Welcome!

Welcome! CODC is your resource for people with disabilities and their allies.

The Central Okanagan Disability Coalition brings together initiatives on accessibility, transportation and information. We believe that the more we share news, resources and good practices, the better life will be for people with disabilities in the Central Okanagan.

Don't miss out on our next edition - click here to sign up for the newsletter.

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Contents

Read on for information on:

  • Accessible Transit
  • Spotlight on TaxAid
  • Take Part - a summary of the places you can give your input to federal, provincial and local government.
  • Access the Central Okanagan - Participating in Art
  • Blogspot - The Summer of the Straw
  • News, ideas and links from near and far.
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HandyDART bus photo

Accessible Transit

The Accessible Transit Advisory Group meets quarterly with representatives of BC Transit and the City of Kelowna. 

Fare Equity

From August 1st, new prices are in place for handyDART tickets, bringing them in line with the cost of the regular bus system. Monthly passes are $70 while a book of 5 tickets costs $11.25

Thank you for taking part!

 In April, consultation took place on the handyDART service in the Kelowna Regional Transit Region. The survey response rate was encouragingly high (both in number of responses and socio/demographic profile of respondents). Thank you for all of your assistance in advertising the surveys and getting people to fill them in.

We have some preliminary results for you, with full results to follow in the fall. Satisfaction levels appear to be good in several areas:

  • Registration process
  • Safety
  • Courtesy
  • Cleanliness
  • Value

A few items were identified for review, including hours of operation and wait times. 

There will be a full release of survey results after the results are presented to handyDART participating Councils.

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TaxAid logo, with the words tax aid DABC below a blue wave logo that looks like a graph

Spotlight onTaxAid

TaxAid is an exciting new program, based in Kelowna, but serving the whole of the Interior. Read our spotlight blog that explains the excellent work of the team based at the Ki-Low-Na Friendship Society,  and the ways that they support disabled people on PWD to file their tax returns and claim the funds that are owed to them, with huge success.

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Speech bubble logo saying take part

Take Part - participate in government consultation!

Making sure that the viewpoint of people with disabilities is heard in all types of consultations is really important! All levels of government ask for our views, through a variety of surveys. Look through these links to see if there's something that interests you!

Federal - Government of Canada

The Consulting with Canadians page lists all open consultations and gives reports on those that have closed.

Provincial - Government of British Columbia

BC's citizen engagement opportunities are all listed in a page called govTogetherBC.

Local - City of Kelowna

Get Involved, Kelowna is the webpage that brings together all the citizen engagement opportunities for Kelowna.

Local - City of West Kelowna

Updates on when consultation is happening in West Kelowna can be found on their Civic Engagement webpage.

Local - District of Lake Country

Have Your Say explains how to express your opinion to council in Lake Country

Local - Westbank First Nation

Get Involved lists the ways you can have your say.

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the art colour wheel, a circle that goes around the primary and secondary colours, used by artists

Access the Central Okanagan - Participating in Art

Participating in the Arts is often a social event, that exercises the mind and the body, and is good fun to boot! Learn about accessible art opportunities in our blog post.

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blog logo

Blogspot - The Summer of the Straw

This summer, the world went crazy over banning plastic straws in an effort to save the oceans. Left behind, however, were disabled people who rely on plastic straws to drink. Michelle explored this in two blog posts. The first, Let's Ban Everything, explores the roots of the environmental cause behind the ban and the needs of disabled people who use straws.The second, Straws - it means Accessibility and Respect, explores the reaction disabled people have faced and the need for allies to understand the issue. As this issue continues to create headlines as an easy response to the global need to reduce single use plastics, disabled people need allies in the business community to support their accessibility needs.

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Logo of a globe with www and a finger about to click it!

News, Idea and Links from Near and Far

This newsletter brings you news on:

TWO IMPORTANT GRANT PROGRAMS.

- Do you work with a non-profit that has a project that promotes accessibility that needs funds? DABC is disbursing money from the provincial government, looking for projects that satisfy a wide range of criteria, with a deadline of OCTOBER 1st.

- Are you looking to improve the accessibility of you location, for non-profit organizations and businesses? The Rick Hansen Foundation is disbursing money from the provincial government that supports organizations in increasing the accessibility of their locations.

 

From news around the world, the country and the province:

- adapting equipment to making it work for you. Read the origins of the OXO brand of kitchen implements, beginning with making vegetable peelers work for arthritic hands.

- the Senate report on Disability Tax Credit, and the Accessible Canada Act. Expect to hear much more on these two items in the year ahead, but read here how one article describes the need for disabled people to have a voice at the table, while another article describes the "dawning of a new age for persons with disabilities."

- Special Olympics Canada, which celebrates its 50th anniversary this year.

- accessing the beach in Cape Breton, and Brampton's accessible water park.

- the Toronto Cat Cafe, a cafe that refuses entry to people in wheelchairs. Expect this story to roll on and on (pun intended) with challenges in through the AODA and in the Ontario Human Rights Tribunal.

- accessible hikes in BC. Fancy getting out and about, if the smoke goes away?

- accessibility in Prince George. A walk and a roll around the city highlighted areas that need addressing to make it accessible to all.

- an incredible story from Philadelphia of a intellectually disabled woman who tracked down the son who was taken from her at birth.

- human rights tribunals. While BC finally takes steps to bringing back its Human Right Commission, read an account of attending a human rights hearing in Nova Scotia, into the scandal of community housing there.

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logo of hands held up to volunteer

We need you!

CODC needs help to grow. Here's some of the ways you could volunteer:

- Spread the word - share the newsletter with friends, family and organizations you're involved with.

- Do you know of a great service or organization that deserves to have a spotlight? Let us know!

- Do you have ideas for articles - you can either pass the ideas on or write them yourself!

- Have you seen the resources list on the CODC website? Do you have suggestions or could you help to update it?

- Would you be interested in volunteering your time to help CODC grow in our community by being involved in its organization?

If the answer to any or all of these questions is YES, then email us at newsletter@codc.today.

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Stay In Touch!

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If you have questions, suggestions, ideas, please get in touch at newsletter@codc.today and we will get right back to you.

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Central Okanagan Disability Coalition

www.codc.today

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