FREDERICTON (GNB) – A second Economic Opportunities Summit on employment and entrepreneurship for people with a disability was held in Oromocto on Wednesday.

“Your government is listening, and we understand that enhancing employment for persons living with a disability supports economic growth and job creation in the province,” said Premier Brian Gallant. “We will continue to help New Brunswickers living with a disability access the workforce, as it strengthens our economy."

Supporting people with disabilities is highlighted in the New Brunswick Economic Growth Plan as a way to strengthen the province’s workforce. It is also part of the New Brunswick Family Plan framework document, with a focus on helping people lead productive lives through access to education, training and employment opportunities.

Summit participants included representatives from the Canadian Council on Rehabilitation and Work, CNIB New Brunswick, the Canadian Deafblind Association-New Brunswick, and the community inclusion network.

“I think this summit was an excellent government initiative,” said Christin Lanteigne, executive director of New Brunswick Employer Support Services. “Getting all the partners together to work on a common action plan is a great idea. My biggest concern is how things will unfold from now on. I would like to see the government take on the strategic leadership that has been initiated in the province. I am confident that the government will accomplish something, and I congratulate it for this initiative. The most important thing is to follow-up with concrete and common measures for our collective success.”

Discussions focused on actions implemented over the past year, including outstanding commitments from An Employment Action Plan for Persons with a Disability in New Brunswick 2012-2017. Participants also discussed opportunities for further collaboration among partners and stakeholders to promote growth and innovation in supporting people with disabilities.

The event was a followup to a series of Economic Opportunities Summits held throughout the province over the past two years to identify new prospects for job creation and economic growth.