Feb. 19, 2002
FREDERICTON (CNB) - Premier Bernard Lord today announced the composition of the New Brunswick Disability Framework Working Group, which will be co-chaired by Kirk MacDonald (MLA-Mactaquac) and Jean-Guy LaForest (MLA-Grand Falls).
The working group, which also includes representatives from government and disability advocacy organizations, will develop a Disability Framework within the context of Long-term Care Services and within the allocated financial parameters to address the needs of adults with disabilities. Long-term Care Services refers to a range of personal support, physical, social and mental health services required by individuals who, because of long term functional limitations, need assistance to function as independently as possible.
"With the creation of this working group, we are taking immediate action to put in place a framework to provide the best support possible for New Brunswickers with disabilities and their families," Lord said. "Today's announcement represents our commitment to establish a new framework for long-term care services for persons with disabilities separate from that of seniors."
The working group will also include representatives from the departments of Family and Community Services, Training and Employment Development and Education, and from the Premier's Council on the Status of Disabled Persons, NB Association for Community Living, Canadian Mental Health Association - NB, Canadian Paraplegic Association - NB and South East Deaf and Hard of Hearing Services. The working group may also seek input from other departments and stakeholders as needed.
"Consultations with the disabled community and disability advocates made it very clear to us that the existing framework for long-term care was not meeting the needs of persons with disabilities," Family and Community Services Minister Joan MacAlpine said. "I am confident this working group will develop a framework that will meet our collective goal of improving supports for New Brunswickers with disabilities."
The working group will begin its work immediately and will present its recommendations to government within six months.
MEDIA CONTACT: Amanda Harpelle or Étienne Allard, communications, Office of the Premier, 506-453-2144.