People with intellectual and physical disabilities have the right to live free from discrimination, and to enjoy the same services, vocations, and education as every other citizen in the Province of Saskatchewan. They also have the right to enjoy the same level of inclusion and quality of life. The right to dignity and equality for all is outlined and protected under The Saskatchewan Human Rights Code. There are no exceptions.
It is the legislated mandate of the Saskatchewan Human Rights Commission to promote and protect the rights of all people through the enforcement of the Code. At the same time, the Commission understands that making mistakes is a part of human nature. The important thing is to identify, learn from, and correct mistakes.
The Commission believes in the importance of education, and can offer every municipality in this province the tools and information they need to avoid Code infractions. This is a key outreach activity for the Commission.
The Commission also believes in the power of dialogue, cooperation, and understanding. When we work together to correct mistakes and solve problems we grow as people, as municipalities, and as a province. It is important that, together, we continue to promote and protect the rights and dignity of all people who have historically been marginalized.
Disability is the norm in our society. An estimated one in five Canadians (or 6.2 million) aged 15 years and over self-reported one or more disabilities that limited them to their daily activities, according to new findings from the 2017 Canadian Survey on Disability.
The inclusion of people with disabilities in our public spaces, workplaces, and in our communities is essential.
Our provincial motto – “from many peoples, strength” – is more than just a saying. It has substance. We are stronger when we live and work together. It is imperative for municipalities throughout our province to embrace diversity, foster a sense of belonging, and stive for inclusion.
David M. Arnot, Chief Commissioner
Saskatchewan Human Rights Commission