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    Advocate aims to inspire accessibility action

    Long-time disability rights advocate David Lepofsky will visit Queen’s on Jan. 22 to speak at an Accessibility Café event hosted by Accessibility Queen’s and the Equity Office. 

    “We are excited for David to share his insights and perspective with the Queen’s community,” says Andrew Ashby, Accessibility Coordinator in the Queen’s Equity Office. “I would encourage students, faculty and staff to attend and learn more about the ways in which they can help improve accessibility for 1.8 million Ontarians with disabilities.”

    [David Lepofsky]
    David Lepofsky, a long-time disability rights advocate, will speak at the Queen's Accessibility Café on Jan. 22.

    Mr. Lepofsky, a blind lawyer living in Toronto, has been involved in accessibility advocacy for many years. In the early 1980s, he participated in campaigns to get disability equality included in the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms and the Ontario Human Rights Code. From 1994 to 2005, he led the fight to win enactment of the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act (AODA).

    He currently serves with several organizations in addition to his work as a visiting professor of legal ethics and public interest advocacy at the Osgoode Hall Law School. Mr. Lepofsky is chair of the non-partisan group Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act Alliance as well as co-chair of Barrier-Free Canada, which is calling on the federal government to develop a national disabilities act.

    “It was through grassroots public forums and meetings like this upcoming Accessibility Café that we won the enactment of the AODA in 2005, and it will be through these kinds of events, and the tenacious energy that bursts from them, that we will get Ontario back on schedule for full accessibility,” Mr. Lepofsky says. “Each person can help, and my goal is to offer attendees tips on how they can quickly make a difference.”

    The Accessibility Café will take place on Friday, Jan. 22 from 1-3 pm in Robert Sutherland Hall, Room 202. Visit the Queen’s Accessibility Hub for more information about the talk.