Help Celebrate White Cane Week 2021: A Special Invitation

*All times Eastern Standard Time

Expo Forum Saturday February 13th  at 2:00 p.m.

Canadain Council of the Blind Expo Vision 2021 Virtual Forum Sat. Febraury 13 at 2pm.

Topic: Ontario’s Assistive Devices Program
Moderator: Dr. Keith Gordon (Senior Research Officer of the Canadian Council of the Blind); Panel: Ian White (President of the CCB Toronto Visionaries), Mike Potvin (Editor of White Cane Magazine), Samantha Moore (CCB Coordinator of Public Relations and Youth Programs), and Minette Samaroo (President of the Toronto Chapter of the Alliance for Equality of Blind Canadians)

Watch the event on YouTube:

ViewFBC’s View Point February 17 at 10:30 AM

Topic: Uncovering the Role of Vitamin D in AMD

Wednesday, February 17th at 10:30 a.m.

In this live session, we will be joined by FBC-funded researcher and ophthalmologist Dr. Jacob Rullo, who will speak about his research into the connection between vitamin D and age-related macular degeneration (AMD).

For the first half hour of the webinar, we will be joined by Stephen Ricci from CNIB Smart life. Ricci will showcase some of the latest and greatest accessible devices and technological aids for people living with vision loss.

There will be time for a Q&A session. Please send questions in advance to [email protected].

Vision Summit 2021, Wednesday February 17th  at 2:00 p.m.

Canadian Council of the Blind Vision 2021 Virtual Summit.  The Impact of COVID-19. Wednesday February 17 at 2pm.

Topic: The Impact of the COVID-19 Pandemic
Moderator: Dr. Keith Gordon (Senior Research Officer of the Canadian Council of the Blind); Panel: Louise Gillis (National President the Canadian Council of the Blind), Michelle McQuigge (Assistant News Editor at the Canadian Press), and Dr. Orla Galvin (Director of Research Policy at Retina International)

Watch the event on YouTube: 
CCB’s Vision 2021 Summit Discussion on The Impact of the COVID-19 Pandemic – YouTube

White Cane Week Vision Gala 2021 Thursday February 18th  at 2:00 p.m.

Canadian Council of the Blind Vision 2021 Virtual Gala Thursday February 18 at 2pm.

White Cane Week’s Annual Award Event-Enjoy CCB’s Annual Dinner Gala without the dinner. Highlighting annual awards and special speakers.

Host: Michael Baillargeon (Special Advisor to the Canadian Council of the Blind); Speakers and special guests: Louise Gillis (National President Canadian Council of the Blind), White Cane Person of the Year Award Recipient, President’s Award Recipient, David Errington (President and CEO at AMI), Peter Burke (VP of Marketing and Communications at AMI), musicians Lucas Haneman and Megan Laurence, Doug Earle (President and CEO at Fighting Blindness Canada), Dr. Keith Gordon (Senior Research Officer of the Canadian Council of the Blind), Ric Watson (Executive Chef and Director of Food Services at The Ottawa Mission), and more

Register here:

White Cane Week 2021 – BC Yukon Division Virtual Events

BC-Yukon Division

White Cane Week (WCW)

February 7 to 13, 2021

Please Join us

This year the CCB BC-Yukon Division is planning four virtual WCW events via a Zoom Webinar with special event host Fraser Hiltz

Webinar 1: Sunday February 7th at 1:00 PM PST

Topic: History of CCB & WCW

Presenter: Amy Amantea

Webinar 2: Tuesday February 9th at 10:00 AM PST

Topic: Evolution of Assistive Technology

Presenter: Albert Ruel

Webinar 3: Thursday February 11th at 7:00 PM PST

Topic: World Blind Union (WBU)

Presenter: Charles Mossop

Webinar 4: Saturday February 13th at 11:00 AM PST

Topic: Life Experience, A Success Story

Presenter: Betty Nobel

How to Connect with Us

Please click this link to join us:

(you will be asked to enter your email and name; and once connected, you will be automatically muted during the presentation)

Or join by using one-tap mobile:

Canada: +17789072071,,86809309057# or +12042727920,,86809309057#

Or join by telephone: (use the nearest area code)

Webinar ID: 868 0930 9057

(when phoning you will be required to punch in the webinar ID)

Canada: +1 778 907 2071 or +1 204 272 7920 or +1 438 809 7799 or +1 587 328 1099 or +1 647 374 4685 or +1 647 558 0588
US: +1 929 205 6099 or +1 253 215 8782 or +1 301 715 8592 or +1 312 626 6799 or +1 346 248 7799 or +1 669 900 6833

For more information email [email protected] or call 604-795-3885 or 1-800-874-4666

World Braille Day

[Photo Description: Large centered text reads “January 4 World Braille Day”. Uncontracted sim braille spelling “braille” horizontally separates the  words “World” and “Braille”.]

In celebration of World Braille Day, Braille Literacy Canada (BLC), the Canadian Council of the Blind (CCB), the Centre for Equitable Library Access (CELA), the Canadian Federation of the Blind (CFB), the National Network for Equitable Library Service (NNELS), and Vision Impaired Resource Network (VIRN) are organizing an online event on Monday, January 4, 2021.

This celebration of braille literacy is open to people of all ages who are curious about braille, either practically, professionally, or somewhere in between! Target audiences include new braille readers, users, library staff, and educators. The celebration will be conducted virtually on Zoom.

Canada Announces New Measures to Prevent Drug Shortages

November 28, 2020 – Ottawa, ON – Health Canada

Drug shortages remain a global challenge and COVID-19 has increased demand for certain drugs, adding to the complexity of ensuring drug supply where it is needed. The Government of Canada remains steadfast in its efforts to ensure Canadians have access to the medications they need, when they need them.

Canada is a small market, representing 2% of global drug sales, that sources 68% of its drugs internationally. The need for vigilance in maintaining the national drug supply continues.

In 2017, the Government of Canada added requirements for manufacturers to report drug shortages publicly. Today, the Honourable Patty Hajdu, Minister of Health, announces new measures to protect Canada’s drug supply from bulk importations that could worsen drug shortages in Canada.

Starting November 27, certain drugs intended for the Canadian market are prohibited from being distributed for consumption outside of Canada if that sale would cause or worsen a drug shortage. Companies will now also be required to provide information to assess existing or potential shortages, when requested, and within 24 hours if there is a serious or imminent health risk.

WBU Knowledge and Learning Platform

Request for Espressions of Interest for Developing an Accessible Online Platform

World Blind Union Logo

Reference: WBU/KLP/EOI/01
Closing Date and Time: 8th December 2020 at 23:59 EST

The World Blind Union (WBU) has recently secured funding to develop an accessible, online knowledge and learning platform for its members and is now inviting interested ICT companies and service providers to submit their Expression of Interest (EOI) to support in the delivery of this exciting initiative.

  1. About the World Blind Union
    The WBU is the leading global voice for an estimated 253 million blind and partially sighted persons worldwide. Our members consist of over 250 organizations in more than 190 countries.
    Our work is driven by our vision of a world in which we, as blind and partially sighted persons, can participate fully in any aspect of life we choose. We advocate for equal opportunities, and the protection and promotion of the fundamental human rights of all.
  2. Project background
    The availability of a one-stop platform where disability advocates from anywhere in the world can easily retrieve useful information and interact with peers is limited to non-existent at present, and yet the potential benefits are plenty. The WBU therefore seeks to offer its national and regional members access to an accessible, interactive online platform filled with rights-based tools and resources that can support them in their advocacy work, and help ensure our voices are heard. The platform, which will be trilingual (spanish, French and English), will serve as both a repository of digital content as well as a space for exchange between disability advocates. It will look to complement, rather than duplicate, existing learning and training platforms that are available to our members.
    An end user consultation is currently underway to finalise the required functionality and usability specifications for the platform, which will be structured around the following three proposed core features:
A pyramid comprising of 3 layers all pointing up to the top containing a box with an icon for an arow hitting a target. The bottom, broadest layer reads: any user - access to a repository of advocacy resources (with icons for multimedia resources). The middle layer reads: all users who have registered - opportunities to interactive with, and learn from peers (with an icon for online connectivity). The top layer reads: WBU members & allies - designated spaces for collaboration (with an icon showing 4 hands working together on a jigsaw puzzle).

3. Services Required
For this initiative, the WBU is looking to find a suitably qualified contractor to lead the platform design and build workstream, in accordance with the required specifications. The final deliverable should be guided by the principles of Universal Design for which, the contractor will be required to engage with a diverse range of WBU end users throughout the development process. The final product must also aim for the highest level of accessibility possible, successfully meeting at least WCAG (Web Content Accessibility Guidelines) 2.1 Level AA standards. During the assignment, the contracor will be expected to work collaboratively with the WBU project team, providing innovative and constructive advice, options and solutions that ensure a high quality product is achieved.

4. Eligitility Criteria

In order to progress to the next stage of the tendering process, suppliers must domonstrate that they have met the following requirements:
– Evidenced capability to deliver the assignment.
– Demonstrated experience in developing accessible, interactive onoine platforms which meet WCAG 2.1 Level AA standards or above.
– Documentary evidence of a commitment to equality and diversity.

5. Proposed Tendering Process and Timeframes

Stage 1 – This stage of the tendering process will include an evaluation of EOI submissions to determine which potential suppliers have the necessary capability and experience as well as desirable qualifications to provide the required service.

EOI release date24th November 2020
Deadline for receipt of EOI submissions8th December 2020 at 23:59 EST

Stage 2 – On completion of the initial end-user consultation, a formal request for proposals (RFP) containing the tender specification document will issued only to those suitably qualified suppliers that have been selected to participate in the subsequent procurement process.

RFP release date (only to shortlisted suppliers)14th December 2020
Deadline for receipt of RFP submissions23rd December 2020 at 23:59 EST
Notification of award of contract28th December 2020

6. How to subit your EOI
Interested potential suppliers are requested to forward their expressions of interest in an accessible format, including the following documents:
– A detailed company profile, including any relevant supporting documents.
– A capability statement with evidence of relevant experience in the delivery of accessible, interactive online platforms.
– A customer reference list with contact details for least three referees.
– Any quality management, accessibility, environmental or other relevant certificates of accreditation your company holds.
– If applicable, a declaration of any actual or potential conflicts of interest.
The above documents should be sent with a covering letter by email to [email protected], with a copy to [email protected], no later than 23:59 EST 8th December. Please include ‘WBU Knowledge Learning Platform – WBU/KLP/EOI/01‘ in the subject line.

After receiving your EOI, a confirmation of receipt will be sent to you via email. Only qualified suppliers that have submitted all the required documents and demonstrated full eligibility with the requirements of this assignment will be invited to participate in the next steps of this tendering process.

Please note that the WBU reserves the right to accept or reject any EOI. Nothing in this EOI shall be taken to form a binding legal contract.

Fighting Blindness Canada Fall Webinars

View Point: The Importance of Genetic Testing
Thursday, September 10, 2020, 4 p.m. – 5:30 p.m. ET

Are you living with an inherited retinal disease (IRD)? Do you have questions about genetic testing and if its right for you? View Point returns this fall with an exciting, extended webinar all about genetic testing and its importance in the development of new treatments for blinding eye disease. Joining the webinar will be a genetic counsellor and a person living with an IRD to discuss how the process works, why it’s important, and where to access resources.

Featured speakers will include: Dr. Cynthia Qian, Assistant Professor, Ophthalmology at Université de Montréal & VP of the Canadian Retina Society, Dr. Jill Dolgin, Head of Patient Advocacy, AGTC, Jill Beis, Genetic Counsellor, Maritime Medical Genetics Services and Shari Shaw, Health Information Officer, Fighting Blindness Canada.

A Q&A period will be included. Please email your questions in advance to [email protected]

Register here

Young Leaders: Accessibility & Accommodations at School and Work
Thursday, September 17, 2020, 7 p.m. ET

Whether you’re starting a new job or entering post-secondary education, figuring out what accommodations are available can be complicated and confusing. What are your rights and responsibilities? What should your school or employer be providing to you? In this panel discussion, we will talk to Human Resource and accessibility professionals and young leaders to learn what to expect and how you can self-advocate in order to participate fully in school or the workplace.

A Q&A period will be included. Please email questions in advance to [email protected]

Register here

View PointAll your questions about AMD answered!
Monday, September 21, 2020, 10 a.m. ET

Are you or someone you know living with age-related macular degeneration (AMD)? Did you know AMD is the leading cause of vision loss in people over the age of 50, affecting approximately 1.4 million Canadians?

In this View Point webinar, retina specialist Dr. Deepa Yoganathan will devote the entire webinar to answering your questions about living with AMD, including how it might affect you, treatment options, and new research.

You will have the opportunity to ask your questions in the session, or you can send them in advance to [email protected]

Register here

Accessibility of Insulin Devices Survey

CNIB’S advocacy team is conducting research about the accessibility of insulin pumps for people who are living with diabetes and sight loss.

As part of the research, they are launching a survey that will help everyone better understand the accessibility issues people face when administering insulin.

Responses welcome from people living with diabetes and sighte loss, their caregivers, medical professionals, people working int eh insulin device industry and anyone who has a connection to sight loss and diabetes. If you have diabetes and sight loss but currently administer insulin through a method that is not a pump, they would also like to learn more about your experiences throug this survey.

Although CNIB is a Canaian organization, they also welcome responses from people living outside of Canaa o the picture can be as omplete as possible of how this issue is affecting the international community.

Information about the survey and how the information collected will be used to advocate for change is included in the lin to the survery below:

Thank you in advance for your participation and for joining the international movement to make insulin pumps more accessible for people who are blind or partially sighted.

Le sondage dans la français, ici

Notices of Appointment Opportunities

(Le français suit l’anglais)

The Privy Council Office (PCO) has asked us to share two Notices of Appointment Opportunities for the positions of Member of the Natural Sciences and Engineering Council (NSERC) and Member of the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council (SSHRC). Links to the postings on the Governor in Council (GIC) website are below.

You are kindly asked to circulate these postings amongst your networks and associations. Please note that while candidates are encouraged to apply by the “application review date” of July 20, 2020, this is not a closing date for the process and applications may be considered up until an appointment is made.

While PCO asked us to share these two notices, other opportunities are available at the main GIC page: 

Selection processes are open to all Canadians, to provide them with an opportunity to participate in their democratic institutions by serving as GIC appointees. The aim is to attract qualified candidates who will also help to reflect Canada’s diversity in terms of linguistic, regional, and employment equity groups (i.e., women, Indigenous peoples, persons with disabilities, and members of visible minorities) as well as members of ethnic and cultural groups.

Thank you for your assistance in sharing these opportunities.


Jennifer Thomas
Director, Knowledge, Integration and Partnerships Division

Office for Disability Issues

Employment and Social Development Canada

[email protected]

Mobile telephone: 613-808-9430

Member, NSERC:

Member, SSHRC:

Le Bureau du Conseil privé (BCP) nous a demandé de partager deux avis de possibilités de nomination pour les postes de membre du Conseil de recherche en sciences naturelles et en génie du Canada (CRSNG) et du Conseil de recherche en sciences humaines (CRSH). Ci-dessous, vous trouverez les liens vers les annonces sur le site Web du gouverneur en conseil.

Nous vous demandons de bien vouloir faire circuler ces annonces au sein de vos réseaux et de vos associations. Veuillez noter que, bien que les candidats soient encouragés à présenter une candidature d’ici « la date d’examen des demandes », soit le 20 juillet 2020, cette date ne représente pas une date limite pour le processus et les candidatures peuvent être examinées jusqu’à ce qu’une nomination soit faite.

Bien que le BCP nous ait demandé de partager ces deux annonces, d’autres possibilités sont également affichées sur la principale page Web du gouvernement en conseil :

Les processus de sélection sont ouverts à tous les Canadiens afin de leur donner la possibilité de participer à leurs institutions démocratiques à titre de personnes nommées par le gouverneur en conseil. Le but est d’attirer des candidats qualifiés qui contribueront également à refléter la diversité du Canada en ce qui a trait aux langues, aux régions et aux groupes visés par l’équité en matière d’emploi (c.-à-d., les femmes, les Autochtones, les personnes handicapées et les minorités visibles) ainsi que les membres de groupes ethniques et culturels.   

Je vous remercie pour votre aide à partager ces possibilités.

Salutations distinguées,

Jennifer Thomas
Directrice, Division de la connaissance, de l’intégration et des partenariats

Bureau de la condition des personnes handicapées

Emploi et Développement social Canada

[email protected]

Téléphone mobile: 613-808-9430

Membre du CRSNG :

Membre du CRSH :