FREDERICTON (GNB) – The provincial government has changed the name of the Premier’s Council on the Status of Disabled Persons to the Premier’s Council on Disabilities.

The name change was initially announced by Premier Brian Gallant on May 30 in celebration of the 30th anniversary of Disability Awareness Week at the annual Disabilities Awareness Week Legislative Breakfast.

“The Premier’s Council on Disabilities has an important role to play in improving the lives of persons with a disability,” said Gallant. “We know educational, training and employment opportunities will help break down barriers faced by persons living with a disability. This will help increase their ability to live independently.”

The Premier's Council on Disabilities is a body for consultation, study and information sharing, which was created to advise the provincial government on matters relating to the status of persons with disabilities. The council reports directly to the premier.

“Although this change may seem small, it is important,” said Brian Saunders, executive director of the Premier’s Council on Disabilities. “This new name better reflects appropriate disability language, bringing New Brunswick in line with other jurisdictions. It also provides a more complete picture of the work the council does.”

The council is already using its new name. Legislative changes will be made at a later date to reflect these changes.

It is the provincial government’s position that providing support for people living with a disability ultimately benefits all New Brunswickers. That is why one of the seven pillars of the New Brunswick Family Plan focuses upon the following five areas for persons living with disabilities:

  • Removing barriers to living a healthy, engaged and well-balanced life.
  • Removing significant barriers to finding and maintaining employment.
  • Preparing for successful transitions and improving access to employment or further education or training.
  • Enhancing public awareness and promoting best practices that can help individuals achieve their goals.
  • Reducing barriers to access.

More information on the council is available online.