News Release – Mayor John Tory proclaims October Disability Employment Awareness Month in Toronto

September 26, 2019 — Following a request from the Ontario Disability Employment Network (ODEN), Toronto Mayor John Tory has proclaimed October “Disability Employment Awareness Month” in the City of Toronto.

“This is a big ‘first’ for ODEN. The mayor’s voice adds to the celebration of the workplace accomplishments of people across Toronto who have a disability. It also adds strength to the ongoing call for more Toronto businesses to move towards increased employment opportunities for skilled people from the disability talent pool,” says Jeannette Campbell, CEO. “When businesses don’t source qualified people from this pool, they’re missing out.”

Every October is National Disability Employment Awareness Month in Canada. It’s the time for acknowledging and celebrating the workplace contributions of people who have a disability; and business successes and benefits stemming from hiring with a focus on diversity and inclusion.

“Those benefits include increased productivity, overall growth, and improved profitability,” says Campbell.

According to Statistics Canada, employee retention rates for businesses are 72% higher among staff who have a disability.

And in a January 2018 Deloitte Review article, The Diversity and Inclusion Revolution — Eight Powerful Truths, co-authors Juliet Bourke and Bernadette Dillon noted that organizations with inclusive cultures are “eight times more likely to achieve better business outcomes.”

“This proclamation for Ontario’s largest municipality, where there are over 93,000 businesses, is an important step towards getting more of those businesses to move more progressively and proactively on diversity and inclusion,” says Campbell. “We want businesses in Toronto — and across the province — to practice intentional diversity and inclusion of people who have a disability in their workforce every day, not just take a few moments to think about it during National Disability Employment Awareness Month.”

Visitors to Toronto City Hall will see the mayor’s proclamation in the main lobby. It is posted on the digital sign board near the main reception desk. The proclamation can also be viewed on the City of Toronto’s proclamation website.

About ODEN:

The Ontario Disability Employment Network (ODEN), created in 2008, is a professional body of more than 130 employment service providers united to increase employment opportunities for people who have a disability. Members are from every corner of the province and support people of all disability types. Beyond Ontario, ODEN ( has connections with organizations in most provinces and territories of Canada.

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