Removing Barriers – Celebrating the work of SARC Members 

by Don Epp SARCNational AccessAbility Week, May 28-June 3 

National AccessAbility Week is an opportunity to celebrate strides forward in removing barriers and making Saskatchewan and Canada a more accessible and inclusive place to live for people of all abilities.   

SARC Members have inclusion and accessibility written into their collective DNA. Vision statements of Members across the province have a common theme of working towards “people of all abilities reaching their full potential”. For more than 50 years, SARC Members have removed barriers to accessibility, created more inclusive communities, and expanded potential.   

Accessibility and the removal of barriers in SARC Member buildings has evolved over the years. Not only are enhancements being made to access the physical building, but also in terms of how they are being used to meet the changing needs of the people who live in and/or use them. This also creates accessibility. The addition of sensory rooms and changes in furniture or lighting are all great examples of making spaces more accessible. SARC Members focus on these details and the incorporation of personal touches throughout homes and day centres (such as artwork created by people they support) in order to create an inclusive and welcoming environment for everyone.  

Many Members are making conscious efforts to increase their visibility within the community, including but not limited to: 

  • Relocating and/or expanding day centres in locations that are more centrally located and accessible within the community 
  • Operating restaurants or other businesses and selling products from their social enterprises 
  • Supporting people experiencing disability to participate more fully in community programs, services, and activities 
  • Supporting people experiencing disability to find employment in their community and encouraging local businesses to hire more inclusively  

With this visibility, SARC Members aim to demonstrate what is possible and encourage others to consider the ways they can contribute to a more accessible and inclusive society. Accessibility features in public buildings are becoming more commonplace and society in general is more aware and appreciative of the importance and value of such features.  Accessibility is part of community inclusion, and that is the ultimate goal. 

To achieve true community inclusion, the Disability Service sector needs the support of government funding partners, dedicated employees, and our neighbours. That is why SARC has recently launched our Start With Hello campaign toward increased public awareness of the value and importance of the sector and its 4,000 employees supporting 6,000 people experiencing disability across Saskatchewan. SARC Member organizations and their staff are incredibly dedicated to those they support and work hard to remove barriers, increase accessibility, and open doors to opportunity. 

National AccessAbility Week is a wonderful time for all of us to reflect on the significant benefits of inclusion realized by the entire community and the vision, work, advocacy, and influence of SARC Members towards this.  


Please Note: The included information is for reference only, and SARC and its Members, their employers, officers, and Directors assume and accept no liability for any consequences arising from the use, non-use, accuracy, or legal compliance of any of the information, tools, or resources provided.

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