Overview

The Office of the Advocate for Persons with Disabilities represents the rights, interests and well-being of Albertans with disabilities. The Advocate builds relationships with community members to understand the issues and concerns they face every day.

The Office helps children, youth and adults with disabilities find and get access to the supports and services available to them. By building relationships with people and stakeholders in the disability community, the Advocate can learn about and bring key issues and concerns to the government with recommendations.

This page will provide more information about the Office of the Advocate for Persons with Disabilities and how to get in touch with us.

Advocate for Persons with Disabilities, Tony Flores, meets with the Persons with Developmental Disabilities (PDD) Review Panel.

How the Advocate can help you

The Advocate’s Office acts as a point of contact between the community and government. You can contact the Office by emailing advocate.disability@gov.ab.ca or calling 1-800-272-8841.

The Advocate for Persons with Disabilities can help:

Resolve concerns

  • Guiding people to find available disability supports and services.
  • Helping to find resolutions to challenges.

Educate

  • Promoting the rights, interests and well-being of people with disabilities through awareness and education.
  • Bringing awareness of programs and services available to the community.

Inform

  • Engaging with the community and building partnerships to understand issues.
  • Identifying gaps in programs and services and delivering expert advice to senior leadership.
  • Collaborating with other provincial advocates and advisories.

The Office of the Advocate aligns with the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, which was ratified by Canada and supported by Alberta in 2010. The principles include full and effective participation and inclusion in society, respect for difference and acceptance of persons with disabilities as part of human diversity and humanity, equality of opportunity and accessibility.

Please note the role of the Advocate for Persons with Disabilities is unable to:

  • provide counselling for individuals
  • make decisions on behalf of another person
  • provide formal mediation services or represent individuals at a court or tribunal hearing
  • provide ongoing case management support

Applying for supports?
For help with applications or applying online for benefits and services, please visit an Alberta Supports Centre in your community.

About the Advocate

  • Photo of Tony Flores

    Tony Flores – Advocate for Persons with Disabilities

    Tony Flores is Alberta’s first Advocate for Persons with Disabilities. He has a Bachelor of Arts degree in economics and political science with extensive personal and professional experience working with people with disabilities, their support networks and stakeholders.

    As a self-advocate who believes strongly in empowering people with disabilities to reach their full potential, Tony Flores looks forward to being part of a team that will focus on improving the quality of life for people with disabilities.  Tony is an accomplished athlete, has extensive experience working with a non-profit organization and has volunteered – both locally and internationally – mentoring and coaching athletes with disabilities.

Connecting with Albertans

For a number of years, many Albertans have requested an advocate who could be the voice for people with disabilities. In 2018, after public consultation throughout the province, the Government of Alberta created the Office of the Advocate for Persons with Disabilities.

One of the top priorities identified for the Advocate was to build relationships with people living with disabilities.

The Advocate connects with Albertans with disabilities, their families and caregivers. Tony Flores and the Office of the Advocate for Persons with Disabilities are able to attend and present at disability-related events, such as community meetings, annual general meetings or discussion groups. Presentations cover the work of the Advocate specifically, or critical issues affecting Albertans with disabilities.

The office opened to the public November 21, 2018. Since then, the Advocate and staff have been building partnerships with community groups, advocacy organizations and people with disabilities to better understand issues and changes in disability supports in Alberta. Ongoing input from the public is used to provide information and advice to the Government with respect to the rights, interests and well-being of persons with disabilities.

Annual reports

The Advocate for Persons with Disabilities Act mandates that the Advocate prepare and submit to the Minister of Community and Social Services a report summarizing the activities for the previous calendar year. The Minister will present the report to the Legislative Assembly.

Contact

The Advocate or Advocate representatives can provide assistance with questions about disability programs and services. To connect with the Office of the Advocate for Persons with Disabilities or to make an appointment to meet with the Advocate or an Advocate representative:

Phone: 1-800-272-8841
Fax: 780-415-0097
Email: advocate.disability@gov.ab.ca

Address (please make an appointment):

Hours: 8:15 am to 4:30 pm (open Monday to Friday, closed statutory holidays)
Suite 1110, 10055 106 Street
Edmonton, Alberta  T5J 2Y2

If you would like the Advocate to visit your organization, please email advocate.disability@gov.ab.ca with more information.

Need immediate help?
Call 911 if you or someone you know is in an emergency situation.