Expanding the Circle: Aboriginal People with Disabilities Focus On Rights

This partnership is the first to prioritize dialogue and Indigenous knowledge in research regarding disability rights and monitoring by Aboriginal adults and youth with disabilities. Please join us!

Expanding the Circle: Aboriginal People with Disabilities Focus On Rights

Toronto , ON


While Aboriginal people with disabilities are diverse in terms of cultures, languages spoken, social and spatial locations, they share the legacies of colonialism - specifically, the oppression brought forth by the Indian Act and the multigenerational effects of the residential school system. Aboriginal people face a disproportionate burden of disability; experience disproportionately high rates of homelessness; and face greater barriers to local and culturally appropriate services, often having to move away from families and communities in order to access services. The words of Aboriginal persons with disabilities and of their communities have consistently been left out of efforts to monitor disability rights in Canada due to lack of resources, capacity and ingrained racism. Also lacking, are tools and training resources that advance Indigenous values in monitoring disability rights. The proposed partnership responds to this need by working collaboratively with Aboriginal people with disabilities and their organizations in the development and implementation of responsive practices to uncover and address their critical human rights concerns. The goals of this partnership are to build capacity within Aboriginal communities in the area of disability rights knowledge; and to develop a disability rights monitoring model consistent with Indigenous worldviews and protocols and led by Aboriginal people themselves. Disability rights monitoring, that involves collection, analysis, and mobilization of data and knowledge about the life circumstances of people with disabilities using human rights standards as benchmarks, is essential to ensure the equal enjoyment of human rights by Aboriginal persons with disabilities. Activities over three years are designed to create four strategic outcomes: "Indigenize" research on disability and rights monitoring; increase capacity of Aboriginal communities to own the processes of disability rights monitoring; change public policy; and increase public awareness. This partnership brings together universities, Aboriginal community groups, government representatives, and Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal scholars working in the fields of Indigenous studies, disability and disability rights monitoring. A partnership approach that involves this diversity of partners in all aspects of the research is most likely to have a synergistic effect in that the knowledge and expertise produced will be greater than the sum of individual knowledge and expertise. The Aboriginal partners and people with disabilities are directly involved in developing rights education materials that advance Indigenous values and in leading the rights education workshops and monitoring activities. Community and university partners will combine knowledge and experience to produce, translate and disseminate research through report cards, community-based initiatives, creative multi-media projects, articles in open access journals, and policy briefs. The partnership will also train students to conduct research in multi-cultural and multi-site contexts. The results and the experiences gained through this partnership piloted in Ontario have the potential to provide the basis for a larger study that can lead to creating a national coalition on disability rights and monitoring directed by Aboriginal communities.

General Info

Funders: SSHRC Partners: Marcia Rioux York University School of Health Policy & Management York Institute for Health Research Project Partners: Doreen Demas First Nations disABILITY Association of Manitoba Debora Lipscombe Grand Council Treaty#3 Cyndy Baskin Ryerson University School of Social Work Douglas Durst University of Regina Faculty of Social Work Nancy Davis Halifax York University Faculty of Health E. Celia Haig-Brown York University Faculty of Education Jon Johnson York University Social Science Bonita Lawrence York University Equity Studies David McNab York University Equity Studies Confirmed invited partners: Canadian Human Rights Commission Contact: Harvey Goldberg, Team Leader, Strategic Initiatives 8th Floor, 344 Slater Street Ottawa, Ontario K1A 1E1 Canada Web: http://www.chrc-ccdp.ca/default-eng.aspx Grand Council Treaty #3 Contact: Skip Gryschuk, Executive Director Box 1720 Kenora, Ontario P9N 3X7 Canada Web: http://www.gct3.net/ Historic Saugeen Metis Contact: Archie Indoe, President 204 High Street, Box 1492 Southampton, Ontario NOH 2L0 Canada Web: http://www.saugeenmetis.com/ Native Canadian Centre of Toronto Contact: Larry Frost, Executive Director 16 Spadina Road Toronto, Ontario M5R 2S7 Canada Web: http://www.ncct.on.ca/ Office des personnes handicapées du Québec Contact : Daniel Lavigne, Research Counsellor 39 Rue Brock Drummondville, Quebec J2B 1C5 Canada Web: http://www.ophq.gouv.qc.ca/index.htm York University Office of Research Services Contact: David Phipps, Director York Research Tower 920 4700 Keele Street Toronto, Ontario M3J 1P3 Canada Web: http://www.yorku.ca/research  Disability Rights Promotion International Contact: Rita Samson, Project Coordinator York University, 4700 Keele Street Suite 5021 TEL Building Toronto, Ontario M3J 1P3 Canada Web: http://www.yorku.ca/drpi/ LaMarsh Centre for Child and Youth Research Contact: Yvonne Bohr, Director 5022 TEL Building 4700 Keele Street Toronto, Ontario M3J 1P3 Canada Web: http://www.yorku.ca/lamarsh/ Confirmed other contributors The Ontario Research and Innovation Optical Network (ORION) 360 Bay Street 7th Floor Toronto, Ontario M5H 2V6 Web: http://www.orion.on.ca/index.html

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Hi Toronto! Expanding the Circle would like to invite Aboriginal people with #disabilities to share their stories. This project, run by Disability Rights Promotion International - DRPI is guided by a steering committee of Aboriginal people and their allies. It's aim is to increase human rights training and awareness among Aboriginal people with disabilities, and to collect and share their stories so that we can better understand the barriers they face. Participants may learn about resources available for disability rights support and ways other communities support people with disabilities. In addition, the results of the research will be shared with all communities and will be used to develop human rights education resources and tools that can support Aboriginal people with disabilities in monitoring their own rights and in taking an active role to impact social policy. Your voice is important. It's time to talk. Share your story with Expanding the Circle. Interviews/sharing your story is confidential. Contact: Melanie Moore 416 599- 2458 #222