Federal Budget continues Ready, Willing, and Able Across Canada

For Immediate Release

March 19th, 2019

OTTAWA, ON – Federal Budget 2019 commits a $12 million investment to Phase 2 of the Ready, Willing, and Able program (RWA). RWA is a national employment program for persons with intellectual disabilities or Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD). The Government of Canada has made a 3-year investment in RWA to continue its work with employers and community agencies across the country to generate employment opportunities for people with intellectual disabilities and ASD.

In response to the budget news, Cynthia Carroll, Chairperson of CASDA said, “This signals the government’s commitment to an inclusive and accessible Canada. This investment allows RWA to continue working toward the vision of an inclusive and effective labour market with an employment rate for people with intellectual disabilities and ASD on par with the national average.”

Based on outcomes and evaluation, the award winning RWA is one of the most successful national employment initiatives of its kind in the history of the country. It has drastically changed the quality of life for persons with an intellectual disability or autism and has supported a more competitive labour market in Canada.

Krista Carr, Executive Vice-President of CACL, declared, “We are grateful for this investment from the federal government, which will allow us to continue to demonstrate that with targeted support, community involvement and employer leadership, job seekers with an intellectual disability or ASD can obtain and retain employment within the labour market. Real work for real pay.”

RWA has brought real outcomes and has empowered thousands of job seekers with an intellectual disability or ASD who previously were unable to enter or remain in the competitive labour force while providing employers with a source of talent that was previously overlooked. Recognizing the government’s strong commitment to supporting persons with disabilities, the funding announced in Budget 2019 for RWA will ensure this critical initiative continues to contribute to an inclusive and accessible Canada. We look forward to continued conversations with government to expand and grow RWA.

Please visit http://readywillingable.ca/ to  to learn more about the Ready, Willing, and Able initiative and keep up-to-date as Phase 2 is rolled out across the country.

 

Media Contact: Kurt Goddard, Director of Public Affairs, CACL, kgoddard@cacl.ca

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About the Canadian Association for Community Living

CACL is composed of ten provincial and three territorial associations, with over 400 local associations across the country and more than 40,000 members. CACL leads the way in helping Canadians build an inclusive Canada by strengthening families, defending rights, and transforming communities into places where everyone can belong.

About the Canadian Autism Spectrum Disorders Alliance

The Canadian Autism Spectrum Disorders Alliance (CASDA) is a coalition of organizations and individuals developing a comprehensive National ASD Framework. CASDA is committed to ensuring the implementation of a comprehensive National ASD Strategy that addresses critical gaps in funding and policies, which are preventing individuals with ASDs and their families from exercising their equal rights as Canadians. CASDA includes over 55 national, provincial, and local autism organizations as well as individual members.