MFL Comes Out in Support of Accessibility Rights Legislation

November 4, 2010

Dear Premier Selinger:

Did you know that about 40% of complaints made to the Manitoba Human Rights Commission are related to the rights of Manitobans with disabilities? I know you find that as shocking as I do and will support the measures that the Manitoba Federation of Labour is undertaking in support of the advocacy group known as Barrier-Free Manitoba.

Barrier-Free Manitoba has worked hard to attract society’s and the government of Manitoba’s attention to the desperate need for accessibility rights legislation in Manitoba.

The key elements of effective accessibility rights legislation will:

  • Cover all disabilities.
  • Reflect a principled approach to equality.
  • Move beyond the complaints-driven system to comprehensively address discrimination and barriers.
  • Establish a definite target date to achieve a barrier-free Manitoba.
  • Require the development of clear, progressive, mandatory and datespecific standards in all major areas related to accessibility that will apply to public and private sectors.
  • Establish a timely and effective process for monitoring and enforcement of the standard
  • Incorporate ongoing leadership roles for the disability community.
  • Supersede all other provincial legislation, regulations or policies which provide lesser protections.
  • Not diminish other legal and human rights protections.

The Manitoba Federation of Labour supports their call and has undertaken to inform its affiliates about this issue and the importance of our tangible support for Barrier Free Manitoba’s work; to express our support when we meet or communicate with the Government of Manitoba; and to publicly promote the goals of effective legislation whenever possible. This legislation needs to be drafted and introduced sooner, rather than later, so that it can ease the way for the people it should be designed to benefit.

If you’d like to learn more about Barrier-Free Manitoba and its work, you can go to its website at

Thank you for your support.

In Solidarity,

Kevin Rebeck, President