Consultation status: Closed March 31, 2018
Ministry responsible: Community and Social Services

Overview

Alberta is one of the first jurisdictions in the country to establish an advocate specifically dedicated to persons with disabilities. Albertans were invited to help identify the advocate’s role, responsibilities and priorities for the first year of work.

Establishing an advocate was a recommendation from Albertans with disabilities during the PDD Safety Standard Consultation in 2016. Advocacy was identified as critical within the PDD community to ensure people with disabilities are supported to lead fulfilling lives.

The Advocate for Persons with Disabilities Act was proclaimed into law in the spring of 2018 to allow the government to better support persons with disabilities and their families by:

  • naming an Advocate for Persons with Disabilities
  • assigning staff to support the work of an Advocate
  • empowering the Advocate to represent the rights, interests and viewpoints of persons with disabilities

Public engagement

In March 2018, more than 1,300 Albertans with disabilities, families, service providers and support organizations provided input on the planned role and responsibilities of the advocate as outlined in the act.

Participants identified the following top priorities for the advocate's first year of work:

  • identify different needs and issues of people with disabilities
  • establish relationships with people living with disabilities

Additional findings from the engagement will be posted once they're available.

Outcomes

Input from Albertans informed the roles and responsibilities of the advocate and its focus for the first couple of years.

The advocate's mandate is to enhance the well-being and quality of life for Albertans with disabilities. Its role is to support youth and adults with varying abilities by raising awareness of their rights and the services available to them and their families, resolving issues and promoting inclusion.

Tony Flores was selected as Alberta’s first Advocate for Persons with Disabilities through an open competition process. The advocate will report to the Minister of Community and Social Services and will be required to submit an annual report.

Learn more about the Advocate for Persons with Disabilities.

Contact

For general questions about the advocate, contact the Ministry of Community and Social Services at advocate.disability@gov.ab.ca