Carleton University International Summit on Accessibility 2014

Speaker Presentation

Slide 1 - Title Page

Event: 2014 International Summit on Accessibility
Host: Carleton University, Ottawa
Date: July 12-15, 2014
Time: Sunday, July 13, 2014 - 10:45AM to 12:15PM
Session: Improving Community Access through Innovative Technologies.
Topic: Accelerating Progress through Global Standards, Systems and Tools.
Description: Learn how to capitalize on innovative technologies and platforms to re-think and improve. Are common frameworks and language critical for accelerating progress to a more accessible and inclusive world for persons with disabilities? In this session, speakers will discuss the pros and cons of whether a universal framework, including global standards, systems and tools enable effective planning, information sharing and accountability for outcomes.

Slide 2 - Introduction

Business and Educational Services in Technology

BEST A11y Consulting

David Best, Accessibility IT Specialist

Slide 3 - Content

Slide 4 - Objective

To achieve the desired level of an inclusive society, it is critical to understand the importance of effective planning, information sharing and organizational accountability, through universal frameworks of global standards, tools, and best practices.

Slide 5 - Purpose

Statement: "Improving Community Access through Innovative Technologies."

Goal: To achieve a fully inclusive society through effective accessibility implementation of standards and best practices.

Slide 6 - Impact

Performance factors (Measuring the growth and maturity of progress):

Market trend (Moving toward a global digital economy by seamlessly integrating machines and people):

Slide 7 - Question

Are common frameworks and language critical for accelerating progress to a more accessible and inclusive world for persons with disabilities?

To answer this question we need to compare past events with current activities, and then exstrapulate future probabilities.

The digital transformation, sweeping the world, is connecting people and machines together in such a way that we now live in a virtual global village. However, the ability to use new emerging technologies is currently at the heart of social inclusion, with those excluded being left out of many work, entertainment, communication, healthcare and social benefits.

How is your organization preparing to compete in a rapidly changing world of compliance standards and inclusion best practices? Comparing past events and current activities will provide a greater understanding for future global economic trends and changing societal expectations. A paradigm shift in society, driven by miniaturization, cloud sourcing, and wireless mobile devices, is placing greater power in the hands of consumers. A society of smarter consumers is shaping the corporate enterprise of the future.

Slide 8 - People Trends

Slide 9 - Technology Trends

Slide 10 - People Collaboration

Slide 11 - Technology Collaboration

Slide 12 - Business

Slide 13 - Summary

Measuring Progress

Slide 14 - Conclusion


Summit seeks solutions for job issues faced by people with disabilities ("Making it Happen, From Intention to Action"), through showcasing innovation, celebrating best practices and enable collaborative dialog; To achieve action toward accessible and inclusive communities.

Technology has improved community access through digital connectivity, but community access progress has been impeded by people attitudes, systemic barriers, and overall ineffective organizational best practices. We can improve Community Access through Innovative Technologies by shifting focus of progress from digital advancement to healthy living. This has little to do with accessibility, and a great deal more with productivity and human capacity.

Our Challenge




Slide 15 - Evidence (Education)

Why does the unemployment rate for highly skilled disabled people continue to grow, and why does the increasing need for qualified skilled workers in Canada continue to grow? We know that getting a good job, and sustaining a successful career, correlate with one's level of educational attainment.

The recent HEQCO (Higher Education Quality Council of Ontario) Access to Education and Training report found that higher levels of continuing education disengagement are observed for visible minorities, aboriginals, respondents identifying a disability, and immigrants. With regard to work environments, higher levels of engagement are observed for workers in unionized jobs, and employees of larger firms. The report revealed that workers in occupations unique to primary industry, processing, manufacturing and utilities were the least engaged in job related education and training. Employment in the private sector was also associated with higher probabilities of disengagement compared to employment in the public sector.

Slide 16 - Evidence (Business)

Business analyst reports show that a hierarchy of management is expensive in todays digital age. the typical management structure increases the risks of large calamitous decisions, because the most powerful managers are the ones furthest from the front line, and most dangerous when the decision-makers power is uncontestable. A multi-level management structure means more approval layers and slower responses, and that impedes decision-making. The advent of globalization, the Internet, and social media has changed the way we do business, and the result on management-driven hierarchical bureaucracies is devastating. Management should be a process that encourages employee engagement. An organization must be built upon the quality and passion of the people within it.

Business studies of why large companies, like Nortel Telecoms and Block Buster, have failed over the past ten years show two key factors: A Culture of arrogance and Systems Blindness. Management was unwilling to accept advice and adopt change in best practice strategies for the emerging digital age. Management power struggles shutdown effective communication processes between business units, and accountability was unchallenged. More than 70% of private organizations are reported to be in violation of the AODA, and have not been challenged by the Ontario government. Provincial ministries and obligated sectors continue to plan, select, permit and fund inaccessible barriers despite the Charter of Rights, Ontario Human Rights Code, the AODA, and common decency and sound planning.

The total cost from mental health problems and illnesses to the Canadian economy is significant. In 2011 the Mental Health Commission of Canada (MHCC) study reported that the economic cost to Canada is at least $50 billion per year. This represents 2.8% of Canada's 2011 gross domestic product. It cost business more than $6 billion in lost productivity (from absenteeism, presenteeism, and turnover) in 2011. In any given year, one in five people in Canada experiences a mental health problem or illness and it affects almost everyone in some way. The report shows that the impact of mental health problems and illnesses is especially felt in workplaces and among working aged people. About 21.4% of the working population in Canada currently experience mental health problems and illnesses, which can affect their productivity. Mental health problems and illnesses account for approximately 30% of short and long-term disability claims and are rated one of the top three drivers of such claims by more than 80% of Canadian employers.

According to a 2013 Morneau Shepell study conducted in conjunction with Queen's University, workplace stress levels in Canada have doubled since 2009, and financial stress has tripled. Furthermore, mental health issues accounted for one out of the four inquiries to the company's employee assistance program (EAP) services. Employers need to focus on the relationship between mental health and productivity moving forward. More and more employers are facing employees that are on the job but, because of illness or other non-health-related issues, are not very productive. This issue is called presenteeism. Presenteeism is a productivity and performance related issue that is receiving increased attention and concerns from employers.

According to Statistics Canada, the average days absenting per employee per year is 7.5 days or 3% of salary. Studies of some chronic conditions and health risk factors found that lost productivity from presenteeism was 7.5 times greater than productivity loss from absenteeism. For some stress related health problems such as heart disease, hypertension, migraines, and neck or back pain, the ratio increased 15 times greater.

Slide 17 - Glossary Of Terms