Accessibility means different things to different people! We recently asked our team what accessibility meant to each of them and got a variety of responses. Here are some of their interpretations:
Amanda: Creating programs and environments that are free from barriers and proactive in providing supports. Every person is included and their possible needs are considered and accommodated. Jake: Striving to create a world where EVERYONE’S freedom of movement, use of public spaces, and ability to participate in their communities is an absolute right, not an accommodation! Lisa: No physical, financial, or other barriers to participation. Julie: Open to EVERYONE. ALL are WELCOME. Brock: Products, programs, and information are usable by people with the widest possible range of ability. Stella: The ability to use, obtain, or participate without any kinds of barriers Lindy: Barrier-free, able to participate and obtain available resources, programs, and support.
We know there are many resources pertaining to accessibility and hope that we are able to highlight some of them you may find useful. If you know of resources that aren’t mentioned here but should be included please contact us!
Sensory Friendly and Accessible Spaces
Have you read Mac Walsh’s AutismBC Connects? Maybe they will inspire you to bring a dog into your family to make spaces less overwhelming and more accessible?
Pacific Assistance Dog Society (PADS) was Canada’s first fully accredited Assistance Dog International school and they breed, raise, train, and partner dogs with individuals with diverse-abilities (PADS, 2018).
Earlier this year, we partnered with TransLink on a Mobility Guide and Accessible Transit Tool. You can read about it here.
Do you know if you qualify for ICBC discounts? Find out here.
Flying can be challenging for people with diverse-abilities. Each airline has its own policies, but all will require a form from your doctor, so please check the appropriate policy before you book your flight.
Did you know that of BC’s International Airports, YVR—Vancouver and YLW—Kelowna, have partnered with CAN to help support members of the autism community? Now you do! Simply click on the airport’s name to learn more.
Revelstoke Mountain Resort allows CADS members and their helpers to each get 50% off its window tickets. To qualify for this discount, the CADS member must show their valid CADS card at RMR Guest Services when purchasing lift tickets. Revelstoke also has an adaptive snow sports program called Revelstoke Adaptive Sports and can be reached here (Revelstoke Mountain Resort, 2020).
Big White offers a diverse-ability discount for disabled skiers that require a caregiver to ski. For more information, you can email here (Big White Ski Resort, 2020).
Autism Tax and Registered Disability Savings Plan (RDSP) in BC
David Taylor, AutismBC's board member and a knowledgeable expert in the area of autism money matters, has presented many groups with his “Autism and Taxes” talk and spent many years navigating all the funding options for kids on the spectrum. In this video, David will be answering some Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) regarding Autism Tax and Finance he's come across over the years. If you missed David's presentation in our community support groups last Friday and Saturday, this is a chance for you to get your questions about autism and taxes answered!
David has been working with autistic individuals and their families since 2006. He has taken a special interest in family finances and has worked to broaden knowledge of tax issues with respect to autism. David has presented many family network groups with his “Autism and Taxes” talk. He has an autistic son who is doing well hugely as a result of the support the family received in the early days of the autism diagnosis. An Autism BC board member since 2014, David now wishes to give back to the Autism community and assist those who are at the beginning of their journey.
Inclusive Education and Advocacy with Family Support Institute BC
Tracey Beckett of Family Support Institute BC will be joining Lisa to discuss inclusive education.
Find out more about:
1) How to advocate for your child
2) What you need to know about IEPs
3) What does inclusive education look like