The International Day of Persons with Disabilities (IDPD) is a UN day recognized annually on December 3.
This is a day for us to consider what part we play in ensuring our daily interactions and social movements are inclusive to those with disabilities and whose ways of working, living, and playing often differ from the mainstream majority.
It is important to remember that many disabilities are not visible or easily recognizable. For example, in Canada, two of the most common types of disability are chronic pain and mental health-related disabilities.
People with disabilities are often ignored, intentionally or unintentionally, and their needs are usually the last to be considered. They are held back, not because of their disabilities but because of barriers and a lack of accessibility.
- According to a 2021 survey, 73% of Canadians with disabilities reported that they experienced at least one barrier in the previous two years. Those include barriers in accessing transportation, information technology, and communication barriers, among others.
- Four in ten workers with disabilities did not receive the workplace accommodations they required to be able to fully participate in the workplace, according to the Canadian Survey on Disability.
- Barriers for people with disabilities who are racialized, Indigenous, LGBTQ2+, recent immigrants, and for women with disabilities are greater due to intersectional experiences of discrimination. For example, people from marginalized groups experience health inequity, and this can cause or worsen disabilities and negatively impact their ability to participate in society.
CEIU strongly advocates for the inclusion and empowerment of people living with disabilities. Inclusiveness and acceptance provide a safe space for all workers and union members to be part of our community and to be able to be contributing, active members of our union.