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Just a Little of Your Time Helps Our Non-Partisan Election Campaign for a Fully Accessible Ontario for Ontarians with Disabilities

Use Our ew 2011 Eelection Action Kit!

September 16, 2011

Please help our non-partisan 2011 election campaign for a fully accessible Ontario. We just ask for a few minutes. If you have more time to give, you can accomplish even more.

Below is our brand-new 2011 Election Action Kit. It offers different ways you can help. If you pick just one of these suggestions, that is wonderful. If you can do more, that is even better. If you circulate this Action Kit to others, you help get more people involved in our effort.

Our past successes on the road to a fully accessible Ontario have been built on just these kinds of efforts by people like you! Let us know what you can do. Write us at aodafeedback@gmail.com

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Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act Alliance 2011 Election Action Kit

September 16, 2011

OUR GOAL

As in the last four elections, our non-partisan coalition does not try to elect or defeat any party or candidate. Our goal is to ensure that no matter who is elected, Ontario promptly and effectively moves forward towards Ontario becoming fully accessible by 2025. 2025 is the deadline the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act requires.

The Liberal Party, New Democratic Party and Green Party each made specific commitments on this goal. To date, the Conservative Party has declined to make any specific commitments to action to move us forward. They are also the only party that has not committed not to cut gains in the law we have made.

Our non-partisan campaign now focuses on getting the Progressive Conservative Party to commit not to cut gains we’ve made. We also want them to agree to specific, meaningful action to get Ontario on schedule for full accessibility by 2025.

This Action Kit gives you easy-to-use ways to help, even if you have very little time to spend. Some of these take less than 15 minutes! We first tell you about tools that make this easy. We then give six key action tips. Again, if you just do one thing we suggest, you are really helping!

THE 3 TOOLS TO USE WITH OUR ACTION TIPS

We have three tools available right now on line that you can use:

(1) Our 2-page September 13, 2011 Letter to Tim Hudak

We crystallized our message in our short 2-page September 13, 2011 letter to PC leader Tim Hudak. You can read it on line, or download it in MS Word format at http://www.aodaalliance.org/strong-effective-aoda/09132011.asp

In this election, we are using this letter as our campaign leaflet. It says everything that anyone needs to know about these issues. Someone who knows nothing about our issues is quickly brought up to speed by this short letter. It has helpful links to more background information.

Our campaign is totally non-partisan even though this letter is addressed to only one party. This is because the other parties have already made specific commitments to us. Our aim is for the PC party to meet or beat the other parties’ commitments.

(2) The Video and Audio of our September 2, 2011 Queen’s Park Election News Conference

We have posted our September 2, 2011 Queen’s Park news conference on YouTube. That is where we kicked off this year’s election strategy and unveiled the election pledges we got from the parties. For those who want more background than is squeezed into the September 13, 2011 letter to Mr. Hudak, the presentation at this news conference by AODA Alliance chair David Lepofsky can help.

The 30-minute news conference is in three parts. YouTube now helpfully makes available a captioning feature that you can click on, if you need it to follow the audio. YouTube’s captioning is automated, and thus has some errors. It is still helpful. Here are the links:

First part
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ALDLd85ACug

Second part:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DzdrWZieyvA

Third part:
http://wwwttyoutube.com/watch?v=MMr0F-3a4JQ

(3) The Parties’ Actual Election Pledge Letters to Us

The parties’ positions on our issues are not set out in their formal campaign platforms on their websites. They are set out in letters to us! Visit: http://www.aodaalliance.org/strong-effective-aoda/090220116.asp

ACTION TIP #1: CIRCULATE OUR SEPTEMBER 13, 2011 LETTER TO TIM HUDAK

This letter quickly informs voters from any political party, and those with no party allegiance, of the election’s disability accessibility issues. It also lets voters know how to reach the AODA Alliance’s website to learn more.

In addition to the tips we list here regarding that letter, we also encourage you to widely circulate the letters that all parties have sent us, and our
chart, posted on our website, that compares them on an issue-by-issue basis.

* Paste our September 13, 2011 letter to Tim Hudak into an email. Send it to your friends and family. In your email’s subject line, you might say “Read About this Election’s Disability Accessibility Issues.” In your email you might suggest that the recipient forward it on to their friends and family.

* Print up copies of our 2-page September 13, 2011 letter to Tim Hudak. It can be formatted to fit on both sides of one page.

* Give hard copies of our September 13, 2011 letter to Tim Hudak to your friends and family. Keep a pile in a handy place at home to give to visitors.

* Post a copy of our September 13, 2011 letter to Tim Hudak on public bulletin boards.

* Bring copies of our September 13, 2011 letter to Tim Hudak with you to community organization meetings and social gatherings. Hand them out, or leave them on a table where others make leaflets and other such things available for the public.

* Drop copies of our September 13, 2011 letter to Tim Hudak at neighbours’ homes. If you live in an apartment, leave it at neighbours’ doors or in their mail slots.

* If you are a student, bring copies of our September 13, 2011 letter to Tim Hudak to give out to students in your classes or dorm.

* If you use public transit, bring copies of our September 13, 2011 letter to Tim Hudak to a bus or subway station. Hand it out to passengers while you wait for your bus or subway. If you use para-transit, make copies available in the para-transit vehicle you ride.

ACTION TIP #2: USE SOCIAL MEDIA LIKE FACEBOOK AND TWITTER TO SPREAD THE WORD

Use the incredible power of social media to spread the word on our election issues.

* If you use Facebook, visit our Facebook page. It is called “Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act Alliance.”

* Click on your Facebook page that you “like” our Facebook page, so your Facebook friends will learn more about us.

* Click on your Facebook page that you “like” our specific postings on the Ontario election.

* Post a direct link on your Facebook wall to our September 13, 2011 Letter to Tim Hudak. Again, that link is: http://www.aodaalliance.org/strong-effective-aoda/09132011.asp

* If you use Twitter, be sure to follow us. We are at www.twitter.com/aodaalliance. Our chair David Lepofsky is at www.twitter.com/davidlepofsky. We use both feeds to share the same updates. Following either will ensure that you get the latest news. In addition to tweeting our AODA Alliance Updates that you can get via email, we also use Twitter to share other quick bits and bites of information that may not find their way into our email AODA Alliance Updates.

* Encourage others to follow us on Twitter. Re-tweet our AODA Alliance tweets. Use Twitter to widely circulate the link, given above, to our September 13, 2011 letter to Tim Hudak.

* Use Facebook and Twitter to let others see and hear our September 2, 2011 Queen’s Park News Conference on the Ontario election’s disability accessibility issues. Post links to them in a tweet, and on your Facebook wall. The links to the 3 parts of that news conference on Youtube are set out earlier in this Action Kit.

ACTION TIP #3: RAISE OUR ISSUES AT ALL CANDIDATES DEBATES AND OTHER ELECTION EVENTS IN YOUR COMMUNITY

* Publicly ask the candidates questions about the commitments we sought from the parties. Ask each candidate to personally commit that they won’t cut gains we’ve made, and that they will support specific actions we need towards getting Ontario back on schedule for full accessibility by 2025. Let them know about issues we raise in our September 13, 2011 letter to Tim Hudak.

* Bring many copies of our September 13, letter to Tim Hudak to hand out at these events.

ACTION TIP#4: RAISE OUR DISABILITY ACCESSIBILITY ISSUES WITH THE CAMPAIGN OFFICES OF CANDIDATES IN YOUR COMMUNITY

* Contact the campaign offices of the candidates running in your riding. Email or fax them our September 13, 2011 letter to Tim Hudak. Ask them what their position is on this issue. Urge them or their campaign workers to support our non-partisan call that the next Ontario Government make faster progress towards full accessibility by 2025, and not cut any gains we’ve made to date.

ACTION TIP #5: BRING OUR MESSAGE TO THE MEDIA

* Contact your local media and urge them to cover this issue. Email or fax them our September 2, 2011 letter to Tim Hudak. Send them the links, set out above, to our news conference and the parties’ election promises to us. Urge them to cover these election issues that concern over 1.5 million Ontarians with disabilities, as well as their families and friends. Remind them that the number of persons with disabilities in Ontario is growing as the population ages.

* If you know any reporters, columnists or editors in your community, contact them to urge them to cover this issue.

* Call into phone-in radio shows to yourself bring our issue to the public’s attention. Use this as a way to educate the audience.

* If a candidate or party leader is on a phone-in program, call to ask about our issue.

* If you have more time to offer, write a guest column or letter to the editor on our issue for your local newspaper. Feel free to cut and paste as much as you want from our AODA Alliance Updates, and from our letter to Mr. Hudak.

ACTION TIP #6: COMMUNITY ORGANIZATIONS — HELP SPREAD THE WORD THROUGH YOUR NETWORKS!

* If you are a staff member, volunteer or board member of a community organization, or are on a Municipal Accessibility Advisory Committee, please get your organization to use its network to spread the word on these issues through these action tips.

* Get your organization to link its website to ours. Make this link directly to:
http://www.aodaalliance.org/strong-effective-aoda/default.asp

Your link might say “Learn about the campaign to make Ontario fully accessible for over 1.5 million people with disabilities.”

* It would be especially helpful if your organization would take the steps we list earlier regarding social media.

CONTACT US:

Email: aodafeedback@gmail.com
Web: www.aodaalliance.org
Twitter: twitter.com/aodaalliance
If you don’t now receive our updates directly from us, sign up for AODA Alliance e-mail updates by writing to our new email address: aodafeedback@gmail.com
Follow us on Twitter and get others to do so as well! Twitter.com/aodaalliance
Learn more at: www.aodaalliance.org
UNITED FOR A BARRIER-FREE ONTARIO