AGM 2017 Results

Canadian Council of the Blind Voting Results

The following numbers are from all voting sources.

Question #1
I approve the slate, as listed by the nomination committee, for the Board of the Canadian Council of the Blind.
Sara Batt, Leo Bissonnette, Louise Gillis, Heather Hannett, Jerome Kuntz, Christina (Chris) Lewis, Sandra Poirier, Surander Singh, Jim Tokos, Mike Vrooman, Shane Wheeler.

Yes – 100 votes
No – 77 votes
Vote passed with 56.5%
Question #2
I ratify the By-Laws as approved by the Board of Directors on January 28, 2016.

Yes – 96 votes
No – 82 votes
Vote failed with 53.9%
Question #3
I confirm the acclimation of Louise Gillis as president of the Canadian Council of the Blind as nominated by the Nominating Committee.

Yes – 92 votes
No – 78 votes
Vote passed with 54.1%
Question #4
I confirm the appointment of the auditors, KPMG LLP, for the upcoming year.

Yes – 123 votes
No – 42 votes
Vote passed with 74.5%



The Organization


The World Blind Union (WBU) is an international not-for-profit, charitable organization representing the estimated 285 million people who are blind or have low vision worldwide.  The WBU is recognized as the international voice of blind and partially sighted persons speaking on their behalf at the United Nations, UN Agencies and other international organizations.  


Its mission is achieved with and through its members – organizations of blind and partially sighted persons and organizations providing services to blind and partially sighted persons in over 190 countries and through six Regional Unions.  The six WBU Regions are: Africa, Asia, East Asia/Pacific, Europe, Latin America and North America/Caribbean.


WBU’s vision is that “People who are blind or partially sighted can participate fully in any aspect of life we choose”. This is achieved through work in our four strategic priorities of: Human Rights & Representation; Capacity Building; Accessibility (Information, Technology & Environment); and Resource Sharing and Collaboration.


The Position


The World Blind Union is seeking a Chief Executive Officer who will replace the incumbent CEO upon her retirement.  The position is based at WBU’s international headquarters located in Toronto, Ontario Canada


Reporting directly to the President of the World Blind Union, the CEO will have the following responsibilities and requirements:



  • The CEO shall be responsible for the overall operational and financial management of the WBU including human resources, budgeting, monitoring and reporting on financial performance.
  • The CEO shall manage and monitor the legal requirements of the WBU Corporation in Canada, ensuring compliance with bylaws, remittal of required reporting and the like.
  • The CEO shall be responsible for supporting and communicating with the WBU Officers, Executive and its committees and arranging for their meetings.
  • The CEO shall provide organizational, planning and implementation support for the WBU quadrennial General Assembly of members.
  • The CEO shall maintain ongoing contact with the President, the Officers and the Regional Unions of the WBU, providing support and advice as required.
  • The CEO shall support the WBU Strategic Planning process, providing advice and support to the priority and objective leaders as required and supporting the development and monitoring of the quadrennial workplan.
  • The CEO shall develop and manage project proposals and support resource generation initiatives in cooperation with the Officers and the Resource Generation Committee.
  • The CEO shall be responsible for the membership of the WBU in cooperation with the Secretary General.
  • The CEO shall ensure adherence to all WBU policies, positions and procedures as well as the provisions of the WBU Constitution and will provide advice and input regarding these as appropriate.
  • The CEO shall be responsible for the coordination of all aspects of communications, including publications, social media and the WBU website, ensuring that communications to the membership and the public are provided in the WBU’s three working languages of English, French and Spanish.
  • The CEO shall liaise with external partners and represent the   WBU as appropriate and as requested.
  • The CEO shall perform those other such duties as deemed appropriate and delegated by the Assembly, the Executive and the President from time to time.




  • Post-secondary education in a related field.
  • At least five years relevant management experience.
  • Must have extensive experience related to blindness or low vision.
  • Must have an ability to travel independently at the international level and with reasonable frequency.
  • Must be an independent worker who can work to the President’s requirements taking advice as well as providing advice.
  • Can demonstrate organizational, administrative and financial expertise at a senior management level.
  • Can demonstrate experience in leading and mentoring staff, including those who may be located in other parts of the world.
  • Can demonstrate skills in research, information collection and presentation in both written and verbal form.
  • Can demonstrate experience and understanding of the disability sector environment and the ways in which a world-wide movement operates.
  • Can demonstrate a sound knowledge of blindness issues emanating from different cultures, income levels and geographic locations.
  • Can demonstrate experience in working with governance boards and committees.
  • Project management experience.
  • Experience in strategic planning, monitoring and evaluation.
  • Is comfortable both with providing high level direction and support as well as hands-on implementation and delivery.
  • Fluent English oral and written skills are essential; skills in one or both of WBU’s other working languages of French and Spanish are an asset.





Applicants should include a detailed curriculum vitae; the names and contact details of three (3) referees (which will only be contacted if the applicant is being considered for an interview and he/she will be notified of this in advance). We also request a letter of candidature indicating interest in and suitability for the position. All applications must be submitted in English and must be submitted electronically in MS Word format only.  Applications that have inaccessible attachments will be rejected.


People living with blindness or partial sight are strongly encouraged to apply.



Applications should be directed to;

Dr. Fredric K Schroeder

President, World Blind Union

[email protected]


Application Deadline: August 1, 2017


Start Date:  To be negotiated


Note: A detailed position description can be requested by interested candidates from the CEO of WBU at [email protected]

The Foundation Fighting Blindness’ fastest growing fundraiser

The Foundation Fighting Blindness’ fastest growing fundraiser is gearing up to host five action-packed for, one-day cycling events in 2017.

Living with vision loss? No problem. Low-vision and non-sighted riders are encouraged to participate by grabbing a partner and riding a tandem bike.

All riders must register and raise a minimum amount. Registration includes:
– Choice of distances
– Exclusive Cycle for Sight jersey (sizes not guaranteed)
– Personal webpage for easy online fundraising
– Well-marked route with directional signage
– Volunteer guides and support
– Bike mechanics and EMS
– Rest stops en route with unlimited snack and beverages
– Finish line celebration party with complimentary food and drinks
– Fundraising prizes and awards
– Rider gift bag

Visit to learn more about our 2017 events taking place in Langley, BC (June 3), Ottawa, ON (June 4), Creemore, ON (June 24), St. John’s, NL (July 30), Sylvan Lake, AB (September 9).

CRTC is listening! Please fill out the TTY & IP Relay Services Survey

The CRTC needs answers from Deaf, DeafBlind, and Hard of Hearing Canadians on their TTY, and IP Relay Service experiences. They want feedback so that they can make decisions about the future of these text-based relay systems in Canada.


Hello Deaf, DeafBlind and Hard of Hearing Canadians!

The CRTC needs answers from Deaf, DeafBlind, and Hard of Hearing Canadians on their TTY, and IP Relay Service experiences. They want feedback so that they can make decisions about the future of these text-based relay systems in Canada.

The Canadian Association of the Deaf-Association des Sourds du Canada (CAD-ASC), Deaf Wireless Canada Consultative Committee (DWCC) and the Canadian National Society of the Deaf-Blind (CNSDB) have been tasked to undertake a national survey to find out what TTY and IP Relay customers’ experiences have been.
If you are Deaf, DeafBlind, Hard of hearing, late deafened, or speech impaired, and still use your TTY to call hearing people using TTY Relay or use IP Relay Services, we would like to get your feedback!


This survey is available in four languages (English, French, American Sign Language-ASL and langue des signes québécoise-LSQ) and with 4 survey link options in each language. The four links provide options for people that require different accessibilities:


  1. Regular Survey:
  2. High contrast format for those who prefer this format when reading, with a black background and contrasting fonts:
  3. For hearing people only, it has less videos and has two added separate questions for hearing people that the CRTC wanted to ask. These hearing people will have experienced a Deaf, DeafBlind or Hard of hearing person calling them using text-based relay services:
  4. Document format for those who prefer adjusting font sizes, printing, and filling out and scanning for return via e-mail to: [email protected] Short URL:


Please take 10-15 minutes to complete the survey.


Note: We recognize that some of you might be TTY users, and not IP Relay users, or you do use IP Relay but not a TTY device or use TTY Relay, so the survey has been set up to skip questions in this way. Please answer all questions that apply to you as possible, thank you.


In the CRTC TNC 2017-33 proceeding, there were only 3 responses from TTY or IP Relay customers so it is very important that we get as many other Deaf, DeafBlind and Hard of hearing people to respond!  To clarify, you do not need to know sign language to answer these questions. These questions are for any TTY or IP Relay customer.


If you know people who don’t have online access, please feel free to go to the document download link and adjust font size then print off a copy (double-sided please) for your DeafBlind (or senior citizen) friends without internet access. Please return any documents in scanned format to [email protected]
CAD-ASC, DWCC and CNSDB kindly asks you to SHARE this survey to your members, to all the community members and people you have outreach with, we would like to see the greatest number of responses for this survey to give CRTC the answers from customers of these text-based relay services.
Copies of the survey results report will be available on June 30, 2017 on our websites: and


CAD-ASC, DWCC and CNSDB thanks you for the time you took to fill out the survey, and we look forward to presenting the results to the CRTC in June 2017.


Any questions can be sent to [email protected]


An Update from the Tele Town Hall Team

Hi everyone and as a follow up to our recent town hall meeting held on March
04, we are pleased to let you know that we are in the midst of planning our
next tele town hall meeting hopefully to be hosted some time in September
Over the course of the next few months we will be providing more details of
the format and content of this town hall along with announcements pertaining
to the date and time.
In the meantime, we will be sending out a summary of the March tele town
hall meeting to those who participated in both meetings.
Whether or not you participated in either or both Tele Town Hall meetings,
if you wish to receive  summaries of both meetings then you can send an
email to [email protected] and we will be pleased to send those
to you.
In the meantime, we wish you a super summer.
The tele town hall team
Richard Marion, Anthony Tibbs, Robin East, Albert Ruel, Louise Gillis, Kim
Kilpatrick, Melanie Marsden, Pat Seed, Jane Blaine, Paul Edwards, Donna

OC Transpo takes bus announcements outside 

On April 23, OC Transpo launched improvements to its next stop announcement system. Exterior bus announcements, which audibly announce the route and destination of the arriving bus, can now be heard by customers waiting at all bus stops and transit stations.

Some customers are unable to see or read the visual destination sign of an approaching bus – particularly, customers who are blind or who have vision loss. This affects their ability to identify the bus, and to use transit independently and safely. Exterior bus announcements will assist all customers in confirming they are boarding the correct vehicle, especially at stops and platforms served by multiple routes.

Generated from a speaker located outside the front door of the bus, this technology will automatically announce, in both official languages, the same information that can be seen on the exterior destination sign of the bus. When the operator opens the door, the bus will make the announcement – for example, “Route 95 Baseline, Circuit 95 Baseline.”

Announcement volumes have been set to be only a few decibels above the ambient or surrounding street-level noise at the stops. They are intended to be heard by those waiting at the stop. The volume of the exterior bus announcements will also vary depending on the time of day – getting quieter from 9 p.m. to 7 a.m.

The implementation of OC Transpo’s new exterior bus announcements has been guided by feedback from an eight-member community working group, composed of residents and stakeholders with an interest in the provision of a more accessible transit service. This group helped to initiate the project, provided OC Transpo staff with an enhanced understanding of the unique challenges faced by some customers, and assisted in the development of the announcement content and sounds. The community working group included representatives of the City’s Accessibility Advisory Committee, Canadian National Institute for the Blind (CNIB), Alliance for the Equality of Blind Canadians, Canadian Council of the Blindand Women’s Initiatives for Safer Environments.

For more information on OC Transpo’s exterior bus announcements or on the other accessibility features that make it easier for customers to use transit, please visit   or contact OC Transpo Information at 613-741-4390 (TTY 613-741-5280).

Unveiling of Commemorative Bank Note Marking ht 150th Anniversary of Canada

On Friday April 7th, 2017 Louise Gillis, president of the CCB, was invited to attend the unveiling of the new $10 note at the Bank of Canada. This note has been designed to commemorate Canada’s 150th anniversary.


a large copy of both sides of the new $10 note
The front of the note has Sir John A. Macdonald, Sir George-Étienne Cartier, Agnes Macphail, and James Gladstone, or Akay-na-muka (his Blackfoot name). This is the first time there have been four portraits on the same note. The back features 4 images of scenery from across Canada.


The event was well attended. Chief Perry Bellegarde attended in honour of James Gladstone, saying, “I lift up the Bank of Canada for honouring Senator Gladstone and highlighting the contributions of First Nations people as nation builders.”

Chief Perry Bellegarde rises from his seat.
Chief Perry Bellegarde


The CNIB was also represented by John Rafferty CEO and President of the CNIB.

John Rafferty and Louise Gillis stand side by side.
Louise Gillis and John Rafferty


Louise was honoured to attend this historic event on behalf of the Canadian Council of the Blind.

Louise Gillis and Stephen Poloz stand together, holding the new note.
Bank of Canada Governor Stephen Poloz and Louise Gillis