October is Community Inclusion Month
October is Community Inclusion Month. Every year at this time, the Community Ventures Society (CVS) and Community Integration Services Society (CISS) celebrate the contributions that people with developmental disabilities make in the Tri-Cities communities. We think that inclusion should happen in childcare, in education, in the community, volunteering and in workplaces. Working is one of the best ways in achieving inclusion so that people are included in our economic system as workers, consumers and taxpayers. As important, workplaces are social systems where it is very likely that people will make friends and develop relationships and that provides social inclusion. Below are positive examples of inclusive employers in the Tri-Cities.
Our first example is the Tri-Cities Branches of Vancity who are intentional about giving people with developmental disabilities the opportunity to contribute and show that they can be valuable employees and contribute to public service.
Vancity was recognized by the Employment Roundtable of the Tri-Cities who awarded the Inclusive Employer Award to Vancity at the Mayor’s BBQ on September 7. Vancity’s work on diversity and inclusion is organization wide and is rooted in its organizational values. We very much appreciate the efforts of Vancity Savings Credit Union and they very much deserve this award.
Another shining example of an inclusive employer is at Gabi & Jules Bakery, where they employ several people with developmental disabilities. Owners Lisa & Peter Beecroft were awarded the Peter Hulbert Award at the City of Port Moody Volunteer Appreciation Night.
In December, the Employment Roundtable of the Tri-Cities presented an Inclusive Employer Award at the annual Christmas Rotary Luncheon (all 4 Rotary Clubs in the Tri-Cities) to Paul Droulis who owns the Canadian Tire in Coquitlam. Paul hired 2 people with developmental disabilities to work at Canadian Tire.
Community Ventures Society and Community Integration Services Society asks you to reflect on these exemplars of inclusion in the Tri-Cities and we invite you to join us in celebrating Community Inclusion Month. Over the next year, we ask that you think about how you can help people with disabilities be more included in our schools, places of play, in the arts, in workplaces and at the ballot box.