Mr. Bruce Smith, First Vice Chair, CCRW Board of Directors, presenting an award to Minister FinleyTORONTO, ONTARIO, October 18, 2010—The Honourable Diane Finley, Minister of Human Resources and Skills Development, emphasized Government of Canada initiatives that are helping Canadians with disabilities get into the workforce, during a speech at the Canadian Council on Rehabilitation and Work 2010 National Conference.

“Our government is creating new opportunities for all Canadians, including people with disabilities, to participate and succeed in the labour market,” said Minister Finley. “By supporting innovative programs such as the Opportunities Fund for Persons with Disabilities, we are helping Canadians with disabilities maximize their potential and independence.”

The federal government’s 2010 budget built upon existing initiatives that help people with disabilities and their families. One significant new investment is the three-year extension of the Enabling Accessibility Fund, which focuses on removing barriers and enhancing accessibility.

Each year, the Government invests close to $9 billion in programs such as the Opportunities Fund, the Registered Disability Savings Plan, the Disability component of the Canada Pension Plan, Labour Market Agreements for Persons with Disabilities and post-secondary education assistance measures for students with disabilities.

“People with disabilities want to work, and they have the skills to make an important contribution to our economy,” added Minister Finley. “Creating a truly inclusive society can only make us a stronger, more prosperous country.”

The Government of Canada works with partners to improve opportunities for people with disabilities as part of its ongoing effort to create a productive workforce and a stronger economy. The federal government is determined to break down barriers that prevent Canadians with disabilities from reaching their full potential with a wide range of policies, programs and services.

Reprinted from: Canada News Centre

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