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1997-7: Rehabilitation

WHEREAS quality rehabilitation is essential if blind people are to achieve their potential for independence and self support, and

WHEREAS Canadians with physical disabilities currently receive publicly funded rehabilitation services as part of the medical system but blind individuals are generally sent to the Canadian National Institute for the Blind a private agency which relies heavily on charitable contributions for its funding, and

WHEREAS the best rehabilitation for blind people has as its foundation the philosophy of blindness espoused and practised by the National Federation of the Blind, and

WHEREAS the most outstanding current examples of good, long term rehabilitation training anywhere in North America are the Louisiana Centre for the Blind, the Colorado Centre for the Blind, and Blind Incorporated in Minnesota, and

WHEREAS no program of comparable scope and quality exists anywhere in Canada,

now therefore BE IT RESOLVED by the National Federation of the Blind: Advocates for Equality that publicly funded quality rehabilitation ought to be available to blind Canadians as a matter of right, and

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that this organisation on every level encourage the development of rehabilitation centres operated according to Federation philosophy and dedicated to partnership with the organized blind movement, and

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that we call upon the provinces and the federal government to fully fund comprehensive rehabilitation of the blind, either through direct provision of service or through arrangements made with private service providers, and

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that until quality centres operated according to federation philosophy are available in Canada we call upon funding agencies to sponsor the attendance of blind Canadians at the Colorado Centre of the Blind, the Louisiana Centre for the Blind and BLIND Inc.