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Statement on The Discovery of a Mass Gravesite in Kamloops

IRIS joins other Canadians and Indigenous communities in acknowledging the horrific and unimaginable loss that has come to light with the unmarked buried remains of 215 children found at the site of the former Kamloops Indian Residential School in British Columbia. While shocking and painful, it is not surprising. Canada’s history and ongoing legacy of … Continued

IRIS supports Wowen’s Shelters Canada in their campaign to end violence against women and gender-based violence in Canada

IRIS is a proud partner of Women’s Shelters Canada / Hébergement femmes Canada in their campaign to end violence against women and gender-based violence in Canada. Doris Rajan, IRIS’ Director of Social Development was invited to be actively engaged in the work that Women’s Shelters Canada is doing linked to advancing Canada’s National Action Plan … Continued

Justice Denied: People with Disabilities Face Multiple Barriers in Accessing Justice

IRIS recently completed a community-driven access to justice initiative (https://irisinstitute.ca/resource/access-to-justice-for-indigenous-and-racialized-victims-and-survivors-of-crime-with-intellectual-psychosocial-and-cognitive-disabilities/) and hosted an online forum “Access to Justice for Marginalized People with Disabilities” (https://irisinstitute.ca/2020/12/11/panel-presentation-videos-access-to-justice-for-indigenous-racialized-and-2slgbtq-people-with-disabilities/).   The Justice Denied infosheet presents the findings of IRIS research on access to justice for people with disabilities and policy options for safer and more inclusive communities.

Panel Presentation Videos: Access to Justice for Indigenous, Racialized and 2SLGBTQ+ people with disabilities

On November 27, 2020, IRIS and Warriors Against Violence Society hosted an event for Victims & Survivors of Crime Week entitled: Access to Justice for Indigenous, Racialized and 2SLGBTQ+ people with disabilities. There were over 150 participants in attendance.  You can watch each of the panel presentations below. Doris Rajan, Director of Social Development at IRIS introduced the session with a … Continued

Victims & Survivors of Crime Week: A Virtual Panel Discussion and Community Conversation

ACCESS TO JUSTICE FOR INDIGENOUS, RACIALIZED & 2SLGBTQ+ PEOPLE WITH DISABILITIES: BARRIERS & PROMISING PRACTICE Friday November 27, 2020 1-2:30pm ET This online session will share information on the issues of access to justice for Indigenous, racialized and 2SLGBTQ+ peoples with disabilities – specifically those living with mental health and addictions, cognitive disabilities and intellectual … Continued

IRIS releases a new Policy Primer on the federal government’s plan to introduce the ‘Canadian Disability Benefit’

IRIS is excited to launch a new policy primer for disability communities and the general public about the federal government’s plan to introduce a national disability income benefit. In her blog post (below), author Sherri Torjman introduces the primer, and points to some of the reasons why we need to start conversations in our communities today about this major addition to federal income security programs.   As Torjman says in the primer “Community voices must … Continued

New Survey: measuring progress on the transition from sheltered work to inclusive employment

IRIS is pleased to be working with People First of Canada and Chronicle Analytics to launch an important and timely survey. The survey’s aim is to gain insights about the transition from sheltered work to inclusive employment in communities across Canada. Background to this Survey:  People with a developmental disability have among the lowest employment rates of any population group in Canada – only 30% of working-age adults … Continued

Where to now? Re-imagining community and inclusion for a post-pandemic world

How might the community living sector might build on the radical changes implemented to respond to the COVID-19 pandemic – for example, closing day programs, looking for individualized options, etc. – to advance the inclusion agenda? Might this be an opportunity to achieve the kinds of ‘transformation’ in supports and services so often imagined, but … Continued

National AccessAbility Week Video

For National AccessAbility week, IRIS Director of Social Development, Doris Rajan, partnered with the Native Women’s Resource Centre of Toronto, to ask disability and Indigenous community allies what accessibility means to them.

Policy Brief: The Equal Right to Decide in Canada – Closing the Gap

May 2020 Over 50,000 Canadians are currently under guardianship – a system that takes away their power, choice, and control over their own lives. Many more Canadians who rely on decision-making supports and accommodations are vulnerable to losing their equal right to decide because assisted approaches are not supported in law and public policy. This policy brief outlines findings … Continued