Letter from Deputy Minister Paddy Meade



April 4, 2007

Mr. Glenn O’Farrell
President & CEO
Canadian Association of Broadcasters
306-350 Sparks Street
Ottawa, Ontario
K1R 5S2


Dear Mr. O’Farrell:

Mr. R. J. Fessenden, Deputy Minister of Advanced Education and Technology, forwarded your February 26, 2007 letter to Deputy Ministers of ministries participating in the Alberta Labour Market Agreement for Persons with Disabilities. I appreciate the opportunity to respond.

It is very encouraging that organizations such as the Canadian Association of Broadcasters, which can exercise significant influence over public attitudes and perceptions, are highlighting the positive contributions of persons with disabilities and raising awareness about the kinds of jobs available in the field of broadcasting. I commend you on your Public Service Announcement initiative entitled Open Your Mind which is directed at influencing a positive shift in public attitudes and encouraging employers to think openly about hiring persons with disabilities in a variety of occupational fields. It is important to recognize the ability in a person with a disability.

Alberta Health and Wellness funds regional health authorities that provide supports for employment through vocational rehabilitation programs. These programs provide an integrated and clinical approach to the delivery of vocational rehabilitation services to people with severe and persistent mental illness, who often face significant challenges as they integrate into various work environments. Vocational rehabilitation approaches include: vocational counseling, volunteer work experiences, skills training, paid work crews, day programs, transitional employment and supportive employment.

Thank you for your advocacy on behalf of persons with disabilities.


Sincerely,

(Original signed by)

Paddy Meade, Deputy Minister