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Canadian Human Rights Museum set to open in Winnipeg (September 20, 2014)


In January 2013, Stuart Murray CEO of the Canadian Museum for Human Rights (CMHR) announced the Museum had embraced an approach to inclusive design that would set new standards for universal accessibility. I doubt this bold commitment would have been realized if it weren't for the extensive and ongoing involvement of the Council of Canadians With Disabilities (CCD), and other disability experts.

Even before the first shovel went in the ground, Jim Derksen, John Rae, Laurie Beachell, Clare Simpson and others shared information with the CMHR, explaining how other museums were making their programming accessible to visitors with disabilities, and for the past two and a half years, the Inclusive Design Accessibility Committee has ensured that accessibility issues for individuals with various disabilities received high attention throughout the Museum's construction. It will continue to meet for at least a year after the Museum opens.

Set to open on September 20, 2014 in Winnipeg, this will be a rather different kind of museum - its focus will be on providing information, rather than an extensive inventory of artifacts, though there will be some items on display, too.

It will be the first national museum to be established since 1967 and the first outside the National Capital Region. It has been an exciting opportunity to participate in the development of this new Museum from the ground up, rather than trying to suggest retrofits after the building is fully constructed. I believe this is an example of how important extensive input from the community can be in making a facility more accessible to all visitors, volunteers, staff and participants alike.

For further information about its programs and collections, visit


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