Lieutenant Governor Mme Lise Thibault to open seminar on disabilities


Published: 3Jun1998

This day-long seminar on disabilities is organized by McGill University’s School of Social Work.

Although at least 10% of Canadians are disabled and, given the aging nature of our population, most of us will either live with some disability or help care for someone with a disability at some point in our lives, Canadian universities have not devoted as much academic resources to disabilities studies as perhaps they should. Now, thanks to a generous donation by the Edward Bronfman Family Foundation, the McGill University School of Social Work is mounting a number of new activities in a concerted effort to help redress this situation.

The cornerstone of these initiatives is an annual day-long seminar designed for community advocates, consumers, professionals, parents and other caregivers. The inaugural seminar, this Friday, will have as its theme "Enriching the Lives of People with Disabilities: Partnerships, Collaborations and Mutual Problem Solving". Mme. Lise Thibault, Lieutenant Governor, Province of Quebec, will open the seminar, following a word of thanks by McGill Principal Bernard J. Shapiro to the Edward Bronfman Family Foundation. Mr. Edward Bronfman will attend the seminar.

Dr. Henry Enns, Executive Director, Canadian Centre on Disability Studies, and a world-renowned expert in the field, will deliver the keynote address. Respondents will include both service users and deliverers. Afternoon workshops will provide opportunities for presenters and participants alike to explore the seminar theme in dynamic sessions facilitated by seasoned, committed professionals.

The donation by the Edward Bronfman Family Foundation is also helping the School of Social Work to develop two new courses on disability and rehabilitation, one undergraduate, the other graduate. "It gives us satisfaction to know that the area of disabilities and rehabilitation is emerging as an important field of practice" commented Dr. William Rowe, Director of the School. "We are encouraged by a growing awareness of the rights and needs of the disabled, increased interest in exploring and breaking down barriers to integration in all kinds of settings, and remarkable student enthusiasm to pursue their studies and to make their unique contribution in this area."

"Enriching the Lives of People with Disabilities" will be held on the main campus of McGill University at Redpath Hall, 3461 McTavish, on Friday, June 5, from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. The language of the seminar is English.