PRESS RELEASE LAUNCH OF A NATIONAL EMPLOYER AWARENESS CAMPAIGN: The HIRE for TALENT campaign aims to increase small business awareness and confidence regarding hiring people with disabilities

Campbellton, New Brunswick – October 18, 2017 –

Today, the Restigouche CBDC is launching a pan-Canadian employer awareness campaign to increase employers’ confidence in hiring persons with disabilities.

The HIRE for TALENT campaign will provide a free Employer Toolkit to help employers tap into this talent pool during their search for skilled workers. By understanding how to create inclusive workplaces, employers will discover the corporate and business advantages of hiring people with disabilities.

The campaign will direct employers to the HIRE for TALENT website ([ featuring the Employer Toolkit, videos of employer and employee testimonials speaking to the benefits of hiring people with disabilities. On the Website, employers will also have access to a network of organizations offering services and programs that can help businesses recruit, hire, train and retain people with disabilities.

As explained by Reno Michel Haché, Designer and Developer of the HIRE for TALENT Employer Toolkit: “This project is very important for Canada’s labour market considering that Canadian employers are facing increasing employee recruitment challenges. HIRE for TALENT finds its roots in showcasing the skills and competencies that persons with disabilities can bring to the workforce.” According to a 2015 Statistics Canada survey, an estimated 411,600 individuals with disabilities are not currently employed but have the potential to work, and almost half of these qualified workers are post-secondary graduates.

Many companies are discovering the business advantages of hiring people with physical and mental disabilities. Employers often find that workers who identify as having a disability have unique abilities, and tend to work harder to prove themselves, as testifies Dave Demers, Co-owner, The Works in Ottawa: “The workforce is changing, and we’ve found great success with people with disabilities, they really take ownership of their role.”

“By supporting a project like Hire for Talent, the Government of Canada is demonstrating that all workers, including those with disabilities, can make a valuable contribution to the success of Canadian businesses and the growing Canadian economy. Considering that Canadian employers are currently reporting tangible difficulties finding workers, this is an excellent opportunity to tap into this skilled workforce,” said the Honourable Kent Hehr, Minister of Sport and Persons with Disabilities.

The HIRE for TALENT awareness campaign and resources were developed in close collaboration with over 20 partnering organizations, including supported-employment partners, subject matter experts, and disability service providers. The project’s National Advisory Committee is composed of the following six groups who participated in today’s press conference, broadcast live at seven different sites across Canada:

•“We recognize the unique needs employers have in various sectors and the Hire for Talent online toolkit and website can support these needs,” from Maureen Haan, President and CEO, Canadian Council on Rehabilitation and Work (CCRW), St.John’s, NL

•“Effective inclusive hiring practices can result in increased productivity, higher rates of retention, improved employee engagement and an inspired corporate culture,” from Danny Soucy, Executive Director, New Brunswick Association for Community Living, Fredericton, NB.

•“We are very proud to participate in the Hire for Talent campaign that offers an interactive toolkit that will allow you to greet and include a wider diversity of employees while maximizing their full potential within your business”, from Roger Albert, Executive Director, Independent Living, Montreal, QC

•“The Hire for Talent project and website have delivered an outstanding awareness raising suite of resources for employers, showing the true value, talent and skills of persons with disabilities in the Canadian workforce,” from Frank Smith, National Coordinator, National Educational Association of Disabled Students (NEADS), Ottawa, ON.

•“Hire for Talent is a user friendly website that can answer many of your questions or curiosities as well as connect you with the free services available to you”, from Tracy Williams, past president of the Canadian Association for Supported Employment (CASE), Saskatoon, SK.

• “We believe in the power of strong, collaborative partnerships between the government, employment service providers, and employers. Thanks to the advanced and innovative online toolkit, together we can create a more supporting culture and inclusive workplace for people with disabilities”, from Tom Burnell, Chief Executive Officer, Open Door Group, Vancouver, BC

Participation in this employer awareness campaign also includes organizations from the Community Futures Network of Canada —a national network of 268 not-for-profit organizations that provide small business services to entrepreneurs of rural communities. Those organizations will help spread the word to rural Canadian businesses.

The HIRE for TALENT promotional activities, the online Employer Toolkit, and the project’s unique network of partnerships, will enable the awareness campaign to reach the largest possible number of employers across Canada, and offer them support in their efforts to hire and maintain successful employment of people with disabilities.


The HIRE for TALENT project is funded by the Government of Canada's Opportunities Fund for Persons with Disabilities.

Restigouche CBDC:

This project is delivered by the Restigouche Community Business Development Corporation (CBDC), based in Campbellton, New Brunswick. Part of the Community Futures Network of Canada, the Restigouche CBDC delivers a range of small business support programs, as well as innovative programs and projects in the areas of online training, research, HR management and career counselling.

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For more information or press inquiries, contact: Restigouche CBDC - Delivering the Project Aysleigh Lefurgey Communications Coordinator (506) 753-3344 | 1.888.351.3344