Useful Links and Resources About Police Accountability

Check out our growing collection of useful links and resources about police accountability, including related organizations, government resources, guides, and legal information. Is there something that should be on this list, but isn’t? Contribute at talkrights [at] ccla [dot] org.

Oversight Agencies

You can find a listing of Canada’s Police Oversight Agencies here. Note that the only police service that operates in the territories is the Royal Canadian Mounted Police.

Guides and Resources: How to File a Complaint

RCMP

Ontario

Quebec

British Columbia

Alberta

Manitoba

New Brunswick

Newfoundland and Labrador

Nova Scotia

Prince Edward Island

Saskatchewan

Northwest Territories

Nunavut

Yukon

Assistance with Filing Complaints

Note that most legal clinics will also be able to help you fill out a police complaint. Find a list of organizations that might be able to help here.

Publications, Research and Further Reading

Racial Profiling

Use of Force

Carding

Kettling

Talk Rights

Understanding Bill C-36, the Protection of Communities and Exploited Persons Act

Because the Learn section of TalkRights features content produced by CCLA volunteers and interviews with experts in their own words, opinions expressed here do not necessarily represent the CCLA’s own policies or positions. For official publications, key reports, position papers, legal documentation, and up-to-date news about the CCLA’s work check out the In Focus section of our website.

Where did Bill C-36 come from?

In 2013, the Supreme Court of Canada decided Canada (Attorney General) v. Bedford. In Bedford, the Court declared that the three provisions of the Criminal Code concerning activities related to prostitution were unconstitutional. Parliament was given one year to introduce new legislation regarding prostitution, and subsequently introduced Bill C-36 (the Bill). The Bill became law on December 6, 2014.

What is in the Bill?

Parliament’s concerns and objectives

The preamble of the Bill identifies the concerns Parliament has with regard to prostitution. These concerns include, but are not limited to, the exploitation and risk of violence to those who engage in prostitution, and the social harm caused by the objectification of the human body and commodification of sexual activity. The preamble also identifies that Parliament is seeking to discourage prostitution, for it has a negative effect on human dignity and equality, and a disproportionate impact on women and children.

The preamble also identifies the objectives of the Bill, which include the denunciation and prohibition of the purchase of sexual services, encouragement of those who engage in prostitution to report incidents of violence and to leave prostitution, and to protect communities from the harms associated with prostitution.

New Offences

The Bill introduces 4 offences, some of which have never appeared in Canadian law, and some of which represent modifications to the provisions of the Criminal Code that were struck down in Bedford.

Offence for purchasing sexual services, and communication for that purpose

The Bill makes it an offence to purchase sexual services, as well as any communication for that purpose. This is the first time purchasing sexual services has been made illegal in Canada.

Offence for communication for purposes of providing sexual services

The Bill makes it an offence to communicate with any person for the purposes of offering or providing sexual services in a public place, or a place in public view, that is next to a school ground, playground or daycare centre.

Offence for advertisement of sexual services

The Bill makes it an offence to advertise sexual services. There is an exemption from this offence for those advertising their own sexual services, however, this provision would affect any organization that hosts or publishes a prostitute’s advertisement. “Advertisement of sexual services” includes any material including photos, films, video, audio or other recordings, a visual representation or any written material used to advertise sexual services.

Offence for knowingly receiving a material benefit from sexual services

The Bill makes it an offence to receive a financial or other material benefit, knowing that it is obtained by or derived directly or indirectly from prostitution.

There are four exceptions to this offence, including where the person receives the benefit in the context of a legitimate living arrangement with the prostitute, as a result of a moral or legal obligation of the prostitute, or as payment for a service or good that they offer to the prostitute. This means that individuals such as spouses or bodyguards of a prostitute would be exempt from the offence.

These exceptions will not obtain where the person receiving the benefit used or threatened violence, intimidation or coercion, abused a position of trust, or provided a drug, alcohol or other intoxicating substances to the prostitute. Most notably, the exceptions will not apply to a person who derived a material benefit in the context of a commercial enterprise that offers sexual services for money.   

Definitions

The Bill also amends the definition of “common bawdy-house,” to remove the reference to prostitution. With this amendment, prostitution indoors is no longer an offence, unless the activities occurring within the house amount to acts of indecency.

ISSUES

Civil Liberties Issues Arising from Bill C-36

The Supreme Court of Canada’s decision in Bedford

In Bedford, the Supreme Court of Canada declared that prostitution, or the selling of sexual services, is still legal. The Court found that the provisions that criminalized certain activities relating to prostitution – the offences of keeping a common bawdy-house, living on the avails of prostitution, and communication in public for the purposes of prostitution – were unconstitutional. The Court found that these offences violated Section 7 of the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms, which protects the right to security of the person, as they prevented prostitutes engaging in the legal activity of prostitution from taking steps to protect themselves from the risks characteristic of that activity. Many of the issues generated by the provisions that were struck down in Bedford are still present in Bill C-36, and some of the new provisions in the Bill generate additional civil liberties issues.

Offence for purchasing sexual services, and communication for that purpose

The offence for purchasing sexual service is new to the Bill and was not addressed in the Bedford case. However, prohibiting the purchase of sex and communication in public regarding that purchase may endanger the security of prostitutes, as those seeking to purchase sexual services may be motivated to meet in more secluded areas to avoid criminal sanction. This provision has the potential to jeopardize the safety of prostitutes, and may violate section 7 of the Charter.

Offence for communication for purposes of providing sexual services

In Bedford, the Court declared the total ban on communication in public for the purposes of providing sexual services made it more difficult for prostitutes to screen their clients, which jeopardized their safety. As the Court stated in Bedford, face-to-face communication is an essential tool for protecting prostitutes, as it allows them to screen clients for things such as intoxication and predisposition to violence, and enables them to set the terms for safe sexual practices such as the use of condoms or safe houses. The offence in Bill C-36, which makes it illegal to communicate for the purposes of selling sexual services in or next to a school ground, playground or daycare centre, still generates these safety concerns, even if it is to a lesser degree. This offence may also violate section 2(b) of the Charter, which protects freedom of expression.

Offence for advertisement of sexual services 

As stated above, prostitutes are exempt from the prohibition on advertising for the purposes of offering or providing sexual services for consideration. However, this offence makes it more difficult for prostitutes advertise their own sexual services, as it would prohibit them from posting advertisements on the internet, or in print publications, as the third parties responsible for hosting or publishing the advertisement would open themselves up to criminal sanction. This offence would make it nearly impossible for prostitutes to safely generate business, as prostitutes would have to solicit their business on the street, and as already discussed, such public negotiations already endanger prostitutes. This offence might also amount to an infringement of prostitutes’ freedom of expression.

Offence for knowingly obtaining a material benefit from sexual services

In Bedford, the Court found the provision criminalizing living off the avails of prostitution to be invalid, as the provision did not distinguish between those who exploit prostitutes and those who help to ensure the safety of prostitutes, such as drivers, managers, bodyguards, nurses or assistants.  The same concerns are present in the new material benefit regime, as the exceptions from the offence do not apply to people receiving the benefit in the context of a commercial enterprise. This would make it more difficult for prostitutes to arrange the provision of their services in an organized manner, and denying prostitutes safeguards in the form of individuals who see to their well being has the potential to jeopardize their security in an unconstitutional way.

Overall, Parliament has introduced legislation that seeks to eliminate and discourage prostitution, rather than create safer conditions for prostitutes who engage in the legal activity of selling sexual services, as was demanded in Bedford. It remains to be seen if and when a constitutional challenge will be brought against these provisions of Bill C-36.

Understanding Bill C-50, the Citizen Voting Act

Because the Learn section of TalkRights features content produced by CCLA volunteers and interviews with experts in their own words, opinions expressed here do not necessarily represent the CCLA’s own policies or positions. For official publications, key reports, position papers, legal documentation, and up-to-date news about the CCLA’s work check out the In Focus section of our website.

BILL C-50: An Act to Amend the Canada Elections Act

Bill C-50 (“the Bill”), also called the Citizen Voting Act, is sponsored by the Minister of Democratic Reform, Pierre Poilievre (“the Minister”) (read it on Parliament’s website here). It has reached its second reading in the House. The Bill amends the Canada Elections Act (“CEA”), which deals with elections and by-elections for federal government in Canada(see the Canada Elections Act here). In particular, the Bill creates new restrictions for Canadian citizens living abroad who want to vote in federal elections. It raises important civil liberties concerns: non-resident Canadians already face obstacles to exercising their right to vote in federal elections, and the Bill makes this exercise harder still. The Bill also limits the types of documents that voters in Canada and abroad can use to prove identity and residence.

Background

The CEA currently sets out conditions under which Canadian citizens living abroad can vote by mail in federal elections. There are two general conditions under which this can happen. First, all Canadian citizens who have been away for less than five consecutive years and intend to return may vote. Second, Canadian citizens who fit into one of the listed groups – including public servants posted outside Canada, members of the Canadian Forces, and various others – may also vote, however long they have been outside Canada (CEA).

The effect of the CEA is that Canadians who have lived abroad for more than five years and do not fit into one of the exempted groups cannot vote in federal elections. After the CEA was passed, two Canadians who had been non-resident for over five years challenged this restriction in court. They argued that the loss of their right to vote violated s. 3 of the Charter of Rights and Freedoms, which says: “Every citizen of Canada has the right to vote in an election of members of the House of Commons or of a legislative assembly and to be qualified for membership therein.” Justice Penny of the Ontario Superior Court of Justice agreed. In Frank et al. v AG Canada, he struck down the restricting provisions of the CEA – in effect extending the right to vote in federal elections to all Canadian citizens abroad. Elections Canada then began allowing these Canadians to register to vote (a request for a stay pending appeal was refused by the ONCA: Frank v Canada (Attorney General), 2014 ONCA 485. The response of Elections Canada can be found here).

Later that year, the Canadian government introduced Bill C-50, which also relates to voting by non-resident citizens. But the Bill does not address the unconstitutionality of the five-year restriction. It does not change the provisions struck down in Frank. In fact, the government is appealing Frank in an attempt to defend the restrictive provisions.

What is in the Bill?

The Bill makes several major changes to the CEA:

(1) Canadians living abroad must re-apply for a special ballot for each federal election after the writ has been issued (Clause 8).

(2) Special ballots for non-resident Canadian voters can only be issued for the address where the voter last resided in Canada, and applications for special ballots must include proof of Canadian citizenship, identity and residence. (Clause 9 and 14)

(3) Documents used for proof of identity and reference – for special ballots or ordinary voting – must be issued by a Canadian government or an entity formed in Canada. (Clause 4)

(4) The Minister of Citizenship and Immigration may share information with Elections Canada to remove non-citizens from the voting register. (Clause 2)

(5) Certain new criminal offences are created. (Clause 16 and 17)

The Bill does not change the five-year requirement, which was declared invalid in Frank.

What are the civil liberties concerns?

The Bill makes it harder for Canadians who live abroad to vote. Under s. 3 of the Charter, Canadian citizens have the right to vote in federal elections. Courts have struck down restrictions on voting by prisoners and by those who have lived abroad for more than five years (see Sauvé v Canada (Chief Electoral Officer). The right to vote “lies at the heart of Canadian democracy.”

The Bill does not repeal the now-invalid rule that Canadians who have lived abroad for more than five years cannot vote by mail. The government has appealed the Frank decision to defend this rule (see link). Instead, the Bill may create additional obstacles for non-resident Canadians who wish to vote.

The changes listed under (1), (2) and (3) above all raise specific issues:

(1) The Bill requires Canadians living abroad to apply for a special ballot in a given election only after the writ has been dropped. This is a new requirement. Currently, the CEA allows non-resident Canadians to register at any time – including before the writ is issued – and it does not require them to re-apply for a special ballot at every election. Bill C-50 shortens the length of time during which potential voters can apply for, receive and send back their special ballot. It raises the worry that some Canadians will not be able to submit their applications and receive their ballots in time to vote.

This change makes it harder for non-resident Canadians to exercise their right to vote than those who live in Canada. Only those living abroad will have to wait until the writ is issued before registering to vote and to re-register for every election. (Those in Canada can register to vote at any time, though they must wait for the writ to be issued if they wish to vote by mail.) It is unclear what the reason is for this requirement. The government’s backgrounder (available here) suggests that special ballots might be sent to residences where the voter no longer lives, but provides no evidence that this has happened or that fraud has occurred.

(2) Under the present CEA, non-resident voters have to provide their “place of ordinary residence” and vote in that riding. This can be the last place they lived in Canada, but it can also be the residence of a spouse, family member or someone else who the voter would live with if they were not abroad. Under the Bill, non-resident Canadians can only register to vote in the riding where they last lived in Canada. The Bill also requires these Canadians to provide proof of their last place of residence (Clause 9).

The government has defended this provision of the Bill on the ground that it will prevent “riding shopping”. This is the possibility that non-resident Canadians might choose to vote in ridings to which they have no personal connection – or even that large numbers of voters abroad will conspire to all vote in one particular riding. There is no evidence that this has occurred (see Frank). 

The requirement to prove residence creates a major problem: some Canadians abroad may have proof of citizenship but no proof of their former address in Canada. They may not still have a Canadian driving license or other government-issued ID. The Bill makes it harder for these Canadians to vote and may prevent them from voting altogether.

For those who do not have proof of residence, there is a procedure for taking a written oath and having your address attested to instead (Clause 3). But the person doing the attesting must (i) know the voter personally, (ii) not have their own address attested to, (iii) be qualified to vote in the same riding and (iv) only attest to one voter’s address. This may not be possible for some voters. Even if it is, the requirement to re-apply every time an election is called means that some voters may not get attestations submitted in time.

(3) The Bill puts new restrictions on the kinds of documents that can be used to prove identity and residence. This change applies not just to Canadians living abroad but also to those living in Canada and voting at polling stations. Previously, the CEA allowed for (a) photo ID issued by a Canadian government or (b) any other type of document authorized by the Chief Electoral Officer (CEA). Under (b), the Chief Electoral Officer can authorize any type of document “regardless of who issued the document”. Bill C-50, however, prohibits the authorization of documents that are not issued by a Canadian government or “an entity that is incorporated or formed by or under an Act of Parliament or of the legislature of a province or that is otherwise formed in Canada” (Clause 4). In short, documents that come from an entity not “formed in Canada” are not allowed.

By reducing the kinds of document that can be authorized as proof of identity and residence, the Bill makes it harder for some Canadians to vote. This will particularly affect those who live outside of Canada and do not have anyone to attest to their residence. The scope of the new rule is also uncertain as it is not clear what kinds of entities will count as “formed in Canada”. It might turn out that some documents – like credit card statements or letters from universities – will not count if the company or university is based outside Canada (Both of these types of documents are currently accepted by Elections Canada).

In sum: Bill C-50 does not repeal the restrictions on non-resident voting that were declared unconstitutional in Frank. It creates several new obstacles to voting by those who live abroad: it forces them to re-apply in a short time period for every election, demands proof of past residence, creates a difficult attestation procedure and reduces the kinds of documents that can be used as proof. By making it harder for some Canadians to vote, the Bill threatens a fundamental right.

Related resources

Dara Lithwick, Library of Parliament, “Legislative Summary of Bill C-50: An Act to Amend the Canada Elections Act

Althia Raj, “Bill C-50, Citizen Voting Act, Would Suppress Votes, NDP Say”, Huffington Post.

Craig Scott MP, “Why make it hard to vote?”, National Post.

Kira Demendeev, CCLA Rights Watch, “The Right to Vote as an Expatriate.”

Colin Perkel, “Feds fight to deny long-term expats right to vote as case heads to appeal”, Globe and Mail.

Useful Resources for People with Disabilities Related to Employment…

Want to learn about disability rights and access to employment in Canada, but don’t know where to begin? Here’s a list of resources and organizations to get you started.

Because the Learn section of TalkRights features content produced by CCLA volunteers and interviews with experts in their own words, opinions expressed here do not necessarily represent the CCLA’s own policies or positions. For official publications, key reports, position papers, legal documentation, and up-to-date news about the CCLA’s work check out the In Focus section of our website.

Overview

In December 2013, David Lepofsky addressed a room full of lawyers at the Advocates’ Society’s 50th Anniversary Symposium during a talk entitled: Advocacy Against the Odds. Lepofsky, a lawyer who is blind, won two cases against the Toronto Transit Commission that resulted in the calling out of subway and bus stops after a thirteen-year battle that finally ended in 2007. He began his talk by asking a few simple, but poignant, questions to be answered by show of hands. Addressing a mostly able-bodied audience, Lepofsky knew that he did not need to see to know that the entire room would raise their hands in response to the following question: How many of you know with any certainty that you will never become disabled?

It is only once Canadians realize that everyone is vulnerable, yet also capable, in their own way that we will ever fully realize the benefits of ensuring that people with disabilities can participate in society to the fullest extent possible. People with disabilities face barriers in many aspects of their lives, and seeking and maintaining employment is no exception.

The following information is intended to provide context on the barriers people with disabilities face in seeking and maintaining jobs, together with resources to help people with disabilities overcome obstacles to accomplish goals, participate in their own success and be able to be heard and contribute to society.

The information is broken down into three main sections:

  • Systemic Barriers and Challenges People with Disabilities Face When Seeking (and Keeping) Employment;
  • Available Resources for Funding and Support for People with Disabilities to Prepare for and Obtain Employment; and
  • Job Search Portals.

This information is primarily geared toward those with physical and sensory disabilities who are looking for work, or are trying to enhance their work experience, not those with mental health issues. Of course a lot of the resources and support systems overlap and are relevant to those who face either or both categories of disability. For people whose disability prevents them from working at any job on a regular basis, they may qualify for other support, such as the Canada Pension Plan Disability Benefits.

Systemic Barriers and Challenges People with Disabilities Face When Seeking (and Keeping) Employment

Based on 2006 data from Statistics Canada there are approximately 4.4 million children and adults with disabilities in Canada. Also according to this data, the employment rate for working-age adults with disabilities is significantly lower than the employment rate for working-age adults without disabilities (53.5% versus 75.1%). The average employment income for working-age adults with disabilities was 22.5% lower than the average income of working-age adults without disabilities. These are real discrepancies that can, and should, be minimized.

There are numerous barriers that people with disabilities face when seeking and keeping employment to explain these gaps. In broad strokes, a few major challenges are: (1) the physical disability itself; (2) the monetary cost of accessibility; (3) the lack of access to education, related training, employment and networks; and (4) the stigma attached to disability.

Finding the funding to pay for assistive devices and services can sometimes be oppressive. For example, there are over 86,000 people living with spinal cord injuries in Canada, and each of these individuals needs access to mobility solutions. This is where cost can become a barrier. The average cost of a manual wheelchair is $4-5,000, and the average cost of a power wheelchair is $10-15,000.

Perception by society is yet another challenge. Despite much lobbying and education, there are still those who see disability as something to be “fixed”. Through this lens, disabled people may be seen as “defective” rather than as differently abled. For example, the question of whether to undergo a cochlea implant is controversial within the Deaf community because of its implication that deafness is something that needs to be fixed rather than embraced. Instead, there is an entire culture of support and a separate language that can be used for communication. 

The implications of stigma and discrimination are far reaching. For fear of facing repercussions from their employers, employees with “invisible” disabilities may choose not to disclose their disabilities. Unfortunately, this limits those employees from participating in support programs or in the labour market and can ultimately negatively affect career progression.

The Parliamentary Information and Research Service backgrounder entitled, “Persons with Disabilities in the Canadian Labour Market: An Overlooked Talent Pool” enumerated the following additional barriers to employment:

  • Lack of access to accessible education and training to be job-ready;
  • Social isolation that limits access to the right network;
  • Conscious and subconscious misperceptions by employers, leading do discrimination regarding capacity to work;
  • Inaccessible work spaces, which manifests not only in physical space, but also in computer software, communication methods and environmental sensitivities;
  • Employers’ lack of knowledge of duty to accommodation, how to accommodate, or how to seek funding and support;
  • Lack of contact with people with disabilities for recruitment purposes; and
  • Lack of support once people with disabilities have the job to ensure that they can do their job with all of the support they need.

Increasingly, there are standards expected of all employers, including public, private and not for profit organizations, to ensure that these barriers are removed. There are also increasing efforts to provide support for people with disabilities from the education and training standpoint. Part of that education component is raising awareness of those who do not face barriers so that we can try to avoid stigma altogether, or remove it as early as possible. Perhaps part of that education component is ensuring that everyone realizes the collective value in developing the skills and employing people with disabilities because ultimately, it could at any time affect anyone. Disability does not discriminate. As Marie Ryan, the Chairperson of Council of Canadians with Disabilities’ Social Policy Committee said, “Disability happens – to anyone at any time – at birth or through illness and injury – regardless of economic status, background, health, religion, sexual orientation, and culture.”

Undoubtedly there are costs associated with accommodation, so the following section provides government and not-for-profit resources to make accessibility possible.

Available Resources for Funding and Support for People with Disabilities to Prepare for and Obtain Employment

This section is dedicated to identifying resources available across Canada, as well as within the individual provinces and territories, to help employers and people with disabilities prepare for, obtain and maintain employment or self-employment. The resources vary in terms of intended audience in terms of providing assistance geared toward employers and employees.

Helping people with disabilities find work has numerous tangible benefits. Not only does it have a positive impact on each individual in terms of his or her own morale and self-sufficiency, but as demonstrated by BC’s Ministry of Social Development and Social Innovations Connecting People with Disabilities project, it adds fiscal value as well. The pilot project, which ended in July 2014, tracked the tax revenues generated, disability supports reduced, health care savings and volunteer hours donated to help measure the additional social and financial benefits of the program.

(a) Nationally Available Resources

Resource: Canadian Employers Disability Forum

Summary: The forum will be managed by employers, for employers, to support education, training and sharing of resources and best practices concerning the hiring and retention of people with disabilities. Employers will help to promote and further the invaluable contributions that persons with disabilities can make to their business through the forum.

Resource: Labour Market Agreements for Persons with Disabilities (LMAPD)

Summary: LMAPDs are the Government of Canada’s largest investments in regard to helping Canadians with disabilities get jobs. As of 2013, the Government introduced a new generation of LMAPDs, which represents a federal investment of $222 million per year. Through the framework of the LMAPDs, provinces and territories are responsible for the design and delivery of the following employment programming:

  • education and training;
  • employment participation;
  • employment opportunities;
  • connecting employers and persons with disabilities; and
  • building knowledge.

Provinces and territories report each year on programs and services. The following list includes the most recent reports available for each region :

Alberta 2013-2014 report

Manitoba 2013-2014 report

New Brunswick 2012-2013 report

Nova Scotia 2013-2014 report

Ontario 2013-2014 report

Saskatchewan 2012-2013 report

Newfoundland 2013-2014 report

PEI 2013-2014 report

BC 2013-2014 report

(There was no information about a Quebec agreement)

The Yukon agreement was signed February 19, 2014

The Northwest Territories agreement was signed February 20, 2014

The Nunavut agreement was signed in September 2014

Resource: Service Canada’s Opportunities Fund for Persons with Disabilities (OF)

Summary: The OF program helps people with disabilities prepare for, obtain and maintain employment by providing for assistance with, for example: (1) skills development; (2) wage subsidy; (3) self-employment; (4) financial support to employers to encourage them to hire persons with disabilities; (5) on-going group and individual mentoring and support; (6) enhanced employment assistance services; and (7) employer awareness. Economic Action Plan 2013 announced a $10 million increase in ongoing funding, to $40 million annually starting in 2015-16.

Resource: Workplace Accessibility Stream of the Enabling Accessibility Fund

Summary: This project provides funding to eligible recipients for projects that improve accessibility in workplaces across Canada. To be considered eligible for funding, projects must be directly related to maintaining or creating job opportunities for people with disabilities. Budget 2013 announced that the Government would continue to provide ongoing annual funding of $15 million.

(b) Newfoundland & Labrador

Resource: Employability Assistance for Persons with Disabilities

Summary: As part of the LMAPD, this program is designed to assist individuals with a disability acquire the skills, experience and support necessary to succeed in the work force. Services include employment counselling and assessment, employment planning, pre-employment training, post-secondary education, skills training, technical aids and other supports to assist individuals obtain access to job opportunities and training.

(c) Prince Edward Island

Resource: The PEI HR Toolkit: Considerations of a Diverse Workplace

Summary: This site provides some factors human resources departments should consider when hiring people with disabilities to ensure that the workplace is inclusive and accessible.

(d) Nova Scotia

Resource: Employment Support Services (ESS)

Summary: ESS helps people on Income Assistance to become more self-sufficient. They have policies and programs to support people in many ways, including those who want to create their own income, helping those who have barriers to employment to integrate themselves into employment and society and wage subsidy to provide support while finding work that will result in a lasting job.

Resource: Entrepreneurs with Disabilities Network (EDN)

Summary: Since 1995, EDN has provided support, inspiration, networking, and learning opportunities to thousands of entrepreneurs with disabilities across Nova Scotia. EDN is dedicated to supporting entrepreneurs, living with any type of disability, in every stage of business development.

Resource: Services for Persons with Disabilities – LAMPD

Summary: Through Nova Scotia’s LAMPD, people with disabilities have access to funding and support for skills work, workplace attendant support and funding for the services provided by Horizon Achievement (Employment Development Program), Futureworx, Solutions Learning Centre Work Activity Program, Metroworks, Peopleworx, and the South Shore Work Activity Program. These agencies assist Nova Scotians experiencing employment barriers, including persons with disabilities.

Resource: reachAbility

Summary: Although based in Nova Scotia, reachAbility is a cross-disability advocacy organization with jobs, career, and employment services and resources for all provinces and territories.

(e) New Brunswick

Resource: Career Development Opportunities for Persons with Disabilities

Summary: This program provides career development opportunities to help New Brunswickers with disabilities who are receiving social assistance, achieve their goals.

Resource: Disability Support Program

Summary: This program provides personalized, flexible support for persons with disabilities in the development of their personal support plans. There is no cost for the general facilitation services.

Resource: NB Employer Support Services to Employers

Summary: Through this service, employers can receive free consultation regarding the recruitment, hiring and retention of persons with disabilities. The NBESS can also link employers to local employment/vocational programs and services in their geographic area.

Resource: Workforce Expansion Program – Employer Wage Incentive

Summary: This is a collaborative effort to bring unemployed New Brunswickers together with employers. The program builds employer/employee relationships that promote the development of the unemployed by gaining skills that ultimately result in long-term sustainable full-time employment.

(f) Quebec

Resource: Emploi-Quebec: Persons with Disabilities

Summary: Like all Québec job seekers, people with disabilities have access to Emploi-Québec’s wide range of programs, as well as coverage for the cost of services or equipment needed to participate in training activities.

(g) Ontario

Resource: Centre for Research on Work Disability Policy (CRWDP)

Summary: Based in Ontario, the CRWDP will lay the foundations for a national, evidence-informed, coordinated approach to supporting people with work disabilities in Canada. The centre’s overall objective is to identify how people, when disabled, can be better retained and integrated into the Canadian labour market.

Resource: Handbook for Accessible Employment: Under the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act

Summary: This guide provides employers the economic, human side and legal incentives, realities and reasons for going through the process of recruiting and employing people with disabilities. It also provides templates and accommodation solutions.

Resource: Ontario Disability Support Program (ODSP)

Summary: Currently, ODSP includes the following mandatory benefits: (1) Employment training and start-up benefits; (2) Employment Transition Benefit; and (3) Work-related Benefit. However, these will phase out in April 2015, and will be replaced by the new discretionary Employment-Related Benefit. There will be an extra six-month transition period for Work-Related Benefit only for people with disabilities (not their qualifying family members).

(h) Manitoba

Resource: Ability Axis

Summary: This organization provides the following list of organizations that deliver employment services to people with disabilities in Manitoba. The ones listed below are the sites that provide funding and support services:

Resource: Entrepreneurs with Disabilities Program

Summary: This program helps entrepreneurs with disabilities across Western Canada build their business future. Business services EDO provides includes mentoring and one-on-one counselling services, access to business training and development, business loans and identifying requirements for specialized equipment.

Resource: Income Assistance for Persons with Disabilities

Summary: This program provides financial and employment assistance for enrolled adults with a disability. The funding is provided to assist with additional costs associated with living in the community as a person with a disability.

(i) Saskatchewan

Resource: Assistance for People with Disabilities – Office of Disability Issues

Summary: This office works with provincial ministries and the disability community to identify and resolve issues of concern in various areas, including employment.

Resource: Entrepreneurs with Disabilities Program

Summary: This program helps entrepreneurs with disabilities across Western Canada build their business future. Business services EDO provides includes mentoring and one-on-one counselling services, access to business training and development, business loans and identifying requirements for specialized equipment.

Resource: Guide to Hiring Persons with Disabilities for Saskatchewan Employers

Summary: This guide provides employers the economic, human side and legal incentives, realities and reasons for going through the process of recruiting and employing people with disabilities.

Resource: Workforce Development for Persons with Disabilities

Summary: This program provides funding to assist adults with disabilities to prepare for, secure and maintain employment. This includes: (1) training on the job; (2) vocational and work assessments; (3) psycho-educational assessments; (4) job coaching; (5) support for employers; and (6) disability-related costs for a wide variety of post-secondary education and training programs.

(j) Alberta

Resource: Alberta Employment First Strategy

Summary: This program calls on governments, employers, agencies, and Albertans to work together to welcome more people with disabilities into our workplaces. As part of this, Alberta’s Human Services department has recently created an Employment First Innovation Fund and Employment First Internship Program to create more employment opportunities for people with disabilities.

Resource: Alberta Learning Information Service

Summary: This department provides information about how to address issues in the work place for people with disabilities. 

Resource: Disability Related Employment Supports (DRES)

Summary: DRES provides assistance to Albertans in overcoming the barriers to employment created by their disability in three areas, (1) Job Search Supports, (2) Workplace Supports, and (3) Educational Supports.

Resource: Entrepreneurs with Disabilities Program

Summary: This program helps entrepreneurs with disabilities across Western Canada build their business future. Business services EDO provides includes mentoring and one-on-one counselling services, access to business training and development, business loans and identifying requirements for specialized equipment.

(k) British Columbia

Resource: Advocacy Access Help Sheet: BC Disability Benefits

Summary: This help sheet provides an overview of employment, education and training programs available for people with disabilities. This includes the following sections:

  • Employment Plans for People with Disabilities
  • Employment Incentives for People with Disabilities
  • Earnings Exemptions
  • The Self-Employment Program
  • Equipment and Assistive Devices
  • Education and People with Disabilities
  • Job Training and People with Disabilities

Resource: British Columbia Aboriginal Network on Disability (BCAND)

Summary: The BCAND provides the following list of employment-related resources available in BC, together with summaries of their services:

Resource: Entrepreneurs with Disabilities Program

Summary: This program helps entrepreneurs with disabilities across Western Canada build their business future. Business services EDO provides includes mentoring and one-on-one counselling services, access to business training and development, business loans and identifying requirements for specialized equipment.

Resource: WorkBC

Summary: Under the umbrella of BC’s Ministry of Social Development and Social Innovation, WorkBC provides a range of services and programs to help people with disabilities find work, provide assistive devices and training.

(l) Northwest Territories

Please refer to the programs that have branches in each province and territory, including the LMADP.

(m) Yukon

Resource: Yukon Council on disABILITY

Summary: Employment and Training Services are provided to assist eligible adults to pursue and secure employment through vocational training, restorative services, employment placement and follow up. Individuals are referred to appropriate services that may be contracted out to a variety of non-government organizations to provide job readiness and training.

(n) Nunavut

Resource: Nunavummi Disabilities Makinnasuaqtiit Society

Summary: The organization strives to achieve independence, self-determination and full citizenship for all Nunavummiut living with disability. Among its goals is to promote employment opportunities for persons with disabilities.

Job Search Portals

Given the barriers and different realities faced by people with disabilities, job searching can be challenging. The following are useful links and resources specifically geared toward assisting people with disabilities with their job search. These are also resources for employers who want to ensure their job recruitment process is as inclusive and accessible as possible.

(a) Nationally Available Resources

Resource: Canadian National Institute for the Blind

Summary: CareerConnect Canada is a free resource for Canadians who are blind or partially sighted to connect, network and build their careers.

Resource: WORKink

Summary: WORKink provides job search tools, career guidance and resources pertaining to education and employment for Canadians with disabilities for job seekers and employers alike.

Resource: Bender Consulting Services of Canada

Summary: Their mission is to recruit and hire people with disabilities for competitive career opportunities in the public and private sectors.

Resource: Canadian Council on Rehabilitation and Work

Summary: The CCRW provides links to resources employers can use in each province. Among the available options are:

The Partners for Workplace Inclusion Program, which provides job seekers with disabilities with tools to prepare for a career or secure employment (available in BC, SK, MB, ON, NB and NL).

The Ready to Work Inclusion Program, which supports ‘job ready’ people with disabilities to access first time employment or to re-enter the work force (available in SK, ON and NS)

Workplace Essential Skills Partnership, which is designed specifically to provide job seekers with disabilities with a professional view of the world of work & the Ontario Workplace Inclusion Program, which supports job seekers with disabilities enhance their essential skills to prepare for wage subsidy, work experience and ultimately employment (both only available in Ontario)

Youth the Future, which is a 20-week pre-employment skills development program that provides youth with disabilities the pre-employment skills necessary to enter today’s workforce (ON, NB and NL)

(b) Newfoundland & Labrador

Resource: Avalon Employment Inc.

Summary: The organization provides job search assistance and support to adults with barriers to employment in the St. John’s, Conception Bay South, and surrounding areas.

Resource: Disability Employment Programs & Services – Employment Programs

Summary: This site provides resources for opening doors, Career Development Initiative for Agencies, Boards, Commissions and Crown Corporations, the Wage Subsidy Initiative, Student Summer Employment and information for managers and employers.

Resource: Disability Employment Programs & Services – Finding a Job

Summary: This site provides resources for the application process, employment programs available, employment counselling and a link to careers in the provincial government.

Resource: LMIworks

Summary: This site provides labour market and career information for people in Newfoundland & Labrador. The links provided lead to resources available for useful information about adaptive equipment, career planning, employment and other disability related sites.

Resource: Spinal Cord Injury Canada

Summary: Most provinces have their own chapter of this organization, and these chapters provide resources for employers and job seekers with spinal cord injuries to help them connect.

(c) Prince Edward Island

Resource: PEI Council of People with Disabilities – Employment Services

Summary: This department has provided assistance, support, instruction and referral for persons with disabilities to find and retain employment and/or access training and educational opportunities. Job seekers are assisted with job search skills, career assessments, access to training and educational opportunities, resume building and employment maintenance skills. Employers are assisted with worksite assessments, information on hiring/working with persons with disabilities, referring qualified individuals to available positions and setting up work placements and referral to wage subsidies.

(d) Nova Scotia

Resource: Collaborative Partnership Network (CPN)

Summary: The CPN is a group of 9 non-profit employment agencies creating employment partnerships between individuals with disabilities and Nova Scotia employers. Through their website, potential employees and employers can find information about the return to work employment process, access resources to prepare for employment, and support the employment of Persons with Disabilities.

Resource: Spinal Cord Injury Canada

Summary: Most provinces have their own chapter of this organization, and these chapters provide resources for employers and job seekers with spinal cord injuries to help them connect.

(e) New Brunswick

Resource: Equal Employment Opportunity (EEO) Program

Summary: The objective of this program is to provide a more balanced representation of qualified designated group persons in the public service by helping individuals find meaningful employment with opportunities for advancement.

Resource: Spinal Cord Injury Canada

Summary: Most provinces have their own chapter of this organization, and these chapters provide resources for employers and job seekers with spinal cord injuries to help them connect.

(f) Quebec

Resource: Spinal Cord Injury Canada

Summary: Most provinces have their own chapter of this organization, and these chapters provide resources for employers and job seekers with spinal cord injuries to help them connect.

(g) Ontario

Resource: The Canadian Hearing Society

Summary: CHS’s employment services’ focus is on the unique employment challenges of people who are culturally Deaf, oral deaf, deafened or hard of hearing across Ontario.

Resource: Coalition for Persons with Disabilities

Summary: EmpAcc is a one-stop employment service for all persons with disabilities in Ontario who wish to access assistance in preparing for, obtaining and maintaining competitive employment. They provide employment counselling, job search and post hiring support for up to a year after obtaining a job.

Resource: PATH Employment Services

Summary: Based in Ontario, PATH originated as the first community agency in Canada solely dedicated to assisting individuals with disabilities in finding employment. PATH offers numerous employment services, including job placement and one to one employment counselling, workshops, accessibility training and human resources services and solutions.

Resource: Spinal Cord Injury Canada

Summary: Most provinces have their own chapter of this organization, and these chapters provide resources for employers and job seekers with spinal cord injuries to help them connect.

(h) Manitoba

Resource: Ability Axis

Summary: This organization provides the following inventory of organizations that provide employment services to people with disabilities in Manitoba. The ones listed below are the sites that provide job search guidance:

Resource: Society for Manitobans with Disabilities – Employment Services

Summary: This service links the business community with people with disabilities. For employers, they can assist with human resource recruitment, hiring and follow-up needs. For job seekers, they provide assessment, training, placement assistance, counselling, literacy upgrading and computer training.

Resource: Spinal Cord Injury Canada

Summary: Most provinces have their own chapter of this organization, and these chapters provide resources for employers and job seekers with spinal cord injuries to help them connect.

(i) Saskatchewan

Resource: Partners in Employment

Summary: This program offers an extensive range of professional employment services to both individuals and employers. For job seekers, their services are geared toward finding and maintaining employment. For employers, they collaborate with the employers to match qualified candidates to job vacancies.

Resource: Saskatchewan Association of Rehabilitation Centres (SARC)]

Summary: This is a not for profit representing community-based organizations that provide many services, including employment support, to individuals with disabilities. Their employment program helps people with disabilities find employment in their community through the assistance of a job coach. SETI is in place to encourage community-based organizations to develop, build capacity or enhance current supported employment services in their communities.

(j) Alberta

Resource: Alberta Disability Workers Association (ADWA)

Summary: ADWA’s mission is to advocate for, represent and support a professional workforce for people with disabilities. The organization provides a job board, training and education, events and many other helpful resources.

Resource: Alberta Learning Information Services – Persons with Disabilities – Working

Summary: This site provides extensive information and resources for getting ready to seek work, the process of looking for work, succeeding with self-employment and other resources for persons with disabilities.

Resources: Community Disability Services

Summary: This site provides a job board, and community agencies support individuals with disabilities to find and maintain meaningful roles in community and places where their own unique abilities can make a contribution.

Resource: Employ Abilities

Summary: This is one-stop employment service for all persons with disabilities in Alberta who wish to access assistance in preparing for, obtaining and maintaining competitive employment.

(k) British Columbia

Resource: Spinal Cord Injury Canada

Summary: Most provinces have their own chapter of this organization, and these chapters provide resources for employers and job seekers with spinal cord injuries to help them connect.

(l) Yukon

Resource: Where Disability Works

Summary: As the active branch of the Yukon Disability Employment Strategy and a feature of the Yukon Labour Market development initiative, this site is the Yukon’s go-to place for disability employment information, resources, and services.

Resource: Workplace Diversity – Services for People with Disabilities

Summary: This department provides employment programs for people with disabilities provide education, job-seeking assistance, computer training, work experience programs, leadership classes, temporary on-call placements and, in some cases, special funding and accommodation solutions.

(m) Northwest Territories

Resource: EmployABILITY

Summary: This organization works with the Yellowknife business community to create training and job opportunities and to promote disability awareness encouraging diversity in the workforce. The program continues its assistance to employers once employment is established.

(n) Nunavut

Please refer to the nationally available resources.

Legal Resources, Clinics, and Referral Information

Below you’ll find a list of organizations across Canada that provide legal support, information, advice or representation. Some are public education and advocacy organizations that produce online or print materials that might help to meet your legal needs. Other organizations on the list are legal clinics, non-profit organizations that provide access to legal information and advice for people who might otherwise face barriers to accessing legal support. Their work is typically conducted or supervised by lawyers and funded by donation or the provincial government that hosts them.

The CCLA is a national organization that works to protect and promote fundamental human rights and civil liberties. To fulfill this mandate, the CCLA focuses on litigation, law reform, advocacy and public education. Our organization is not a legal clinic. As such, we are typically not in a position to provide members of the public with legal advice or direct legal representation. However, we do try to provide general legal information and appropriate referrals where possible.

If you have questions about this list or want to suggest new organizations to include, we welcome you to reach out to publicenquiries [at] ccla [dot] org.

General Legal Information in Ontario

Legal Clinics in Ontario

To find a legal aid clinic in your community, follow the “Legal Aid Ontario” link below. Additional clinics may be found below.

Kingston

London

Ottawa

Toronto

Windsor

Other Specialized Clinics and Legal Organizations in Ontario

Specific Communities

Family Law Offices

Human Rights

Human Rights Legal Support Centre

Landlords & Tenants

Linguistic Communities

Refugees

Workers

Miscellaneous

General Legal Information in Quebec

Legal Clinics in Quebec

To find a legal aid clinic in your community, follow either the “Legal Aid Quebec” or “Pro Bono Quebec” link. Additional clinics may be found below.

Montreal

Other Specialized Clinics and Legal Organizations in Montreal and Quebec

General Legal Information in British Columbia

Legal Clinics in British Columbia

To find a legal aid clinic in your community, follow the “Legal Aid British Columbia” link below. Additional clinics may be found below..

Victoria

Vancouver and Province-Wide

Other Specialized Clinics and Legal Organizations in British Columbia

General Legal Information in Alberta

Legal Clinics in Alberta

To find a legal aid clinic in your community, follow the “Legal Aid Alberta” link below. Additional clinics may be found below.

Calgary

Edmonton

Red Deer

Lethbridge

Other Specialized Clinics and Legal Organizations in Alberta

General Legal Information in Saskatchewan

Legal Clinics in Saskatchewan

To find a legal aid clinic in your community, follow the “Legal Aid Saskatchewan” link. Additional clinics may be found below.

Saskatoon

General Legal Information in Manitoba

Legal Clinics in Manitoba

To find a legal aid clinic in your community, follow the “Legal Aid Manitoba” link below. Additional clinics may be found below.

Winnipeg

Other Specialized Clinics and Legal Organizations in Manitoba

General Legal Information in New Brunswick

Legal Clinics in New Brunswick

To find a legal aid clinic in your community, follow the “New Brunswick Legal Aid” link below. Additional clinics may be found below.

Fredericton

General Legal Information in Newfoundland and Labrador

Legal Clinics in Newfoundland and Labrador

To find a legal aid clinic in your community, follow the “Newfoundland and Labrador Legal Aid Commission” link below. Additional clinics may be found below.

St John’s

General Legal Information in Nova Scotia

Legal Clinics in Nova Scotia

To find a legal aid clinic in your community, follow the “Nova Scotia Legal Aid” link. Additional clinics may be found below.

Halifax

General Legal Information on Prince Edward Island<h/4>

Legal Clinics in Prince Edward Island

To find a legal aid clinic in your community, follow the “Prince Edward Island Legal Aid” link. Additional clinics may be found below.

General Legal Information in the Northwest Territories

Legal Clinics in the Northwest Territories

To find a legal aid clinic in your community, follow the “Legal Aid Commission” link.

General Legal Information in Nunavut

Legal Clinics in Nunavut

To find a legal aid clinic in your community, follow the “Legal Services Board of Nunavut” link.