A national policy process in Canada is in it’s initial stages to produce federal accessibility legislation. Only 5 provinces/territories have accessibility legislation in Canada. The policy process to date, consists of private and public consultations, an online survey for the public, and online outreach to the public, offering ways for the public to provide input.
The state of accessibility for disabled people, Deaf people and older adults is extremely varied and based on the area of Canada the person is from. Someone in Vancouver or the Prairies could have 100% access to public transit, while in Montreal or the Maritimes, this same person would only have 50-60% access. Someone in Quebec can have access to home care services allowing them to stay at home after an accident, however someone in Manitoba or Ontario would be automatically redirected to institutional living. Federal legislation on accessibility could harmonize these differences and ensure equal access for all people in Canada – regardless of region. Or, as critics say, this legislation could be another well-written piece of paper, but will not translate to on the ground changes in the quality of life of disabled and Deaf people.