By Victor Schwartzman
April 1, 2014
Eric Hoskins, Minister responsible for the implementation of the AODA access legislation, recently called a media conference to announce his new policy for implementing AODA, which includes cancelling AODA implementation in the Oakville and Mississauga ridings.
Our new policy on AODA is entirely new, Minister Hoskins began. We have never done before what we are doing now which earlier versions of us have done before at times according to allegations which have not been proven in court.
Minister Hoskins patiently continued despite apparent confusion on the part of some of the media, who were searching for translation earphones to better help them understand the language Minister Hoskins was using, which was neither English nor French but Politease.
We want AODA to work. Where can it best start? We have looked at AODA implementation riding by riding in Ontario. We have listened to the feedback of those in each riding who would be impacted by AODA. We then pulled together a final review, just before, unluckily, all the project hard drives were somehow wiped.
I hasten to add that the final review was not conducted by political staff. In fact, the final review was conducted by the Fisheries Department, although we did joke that maybe that was why the review smelled fishy.
Anyway, we respect the results of the review on AODA which was conducted by the access experts in the Fisheries Department. As a result of the review, and after careful deliberation, the Ontario Government has decided to cancel AODA in Oakville and Mississauga.
We are trying this as a test, to see how well AODA nonimplementation will go in those ridings, especially during the next election.
The implementation of AODA has gotten many people upset, Minister Hoskins noted, shaking his head. The disabled people, Im sorry people with disabilities, anyway those people are certainly disappointed by their hopes being raised with no result after almost ten years. Their family and friends are concerned and angry as well. And the advocates who believed in access and worked to support the legislation, and arent they wonderful?, they again are among the disappointed.
Frankly, none of that matters.
But a lot of businesses were very disappointed by the idea we werent just talking about access but might actually do it. And a lot of municipalities were no longer our pals! And an election is coming up and, frankly, community advocates never pony up, come donation time to campaigns. These are just facts.
We need AODA. But it has to go where people will want it, if it is to succeed. So in a careful analysis of how best to proceed with AODA implementation, we decided to not proceed at all in those two ridings. We will test AODA nonimplementation, in particular during the upcoming election. If the results are a success, we will follow up with more nonimplementation, riding by riding, throughout Ontario.
Once we identify all the nonimplementatable ridings, we can then work on developing a strategy to implement AODA. The budget for the process will be about $230 million, although the auditor says it will be more like $1 billion. It is expensive but a small price to pay for any politician who wants to stay in power. Minister Hoskins blinked. Ooops! I wasnt supposed to be honest!
Then he stepped down from the podium, saying Sorry its been a gas! and apologizing for his and the Ontario Governments ongoing flatulence problem, which the UN has identified as being large enough to create a significant hole in the ozone layer.
Next: Minister Hoskins Finds A Friend In Beano.
Victor Schwartzman contributes this weekly satiric column to Accessibility News nothing in these columns is true except what they are about. His graphic novel (where each chapter is one issue of a community newspaper) is serialized on the great Canadian lit site, http://www.redfez.net. He also contributes a monthly poetry review to http://www.targetaudiencemagazine.com. and does an on-air review monthly for the World Poetry Café on CFRO-FM in Vancouver. He has had poetry and short fiction published, and has edited novels. His email is firstname.lastname@example.org.