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Accessible UFV


Ableism: A view or attitude that treats people without disabilities as “normal” and those with disabilities as “abnormal,” “inferior,” or “other.” Ableism can be both intentional and unintentional. [i]

Accessibility: Having programs, services, and environments that enable everyone to participate fully in society without barriers. [ii]

Accommodation (Educational): Providing support for the purpose of accessing services, courses, or courses of study, programs, making exceptions to any regulations, policies, or standards of practice, or making modifications to physical environments to the extent necessary to address discrimination against a student based on any Protected Grounds. [iii]

Accommodation (Employment): The employer’s responsibility to tailor the workplace to meet the needs of the individual employee under the BC Human Rights Code. The purpose of accommodation is to provide access to employment opportunities and fair treatment in the workplace. [iv]

Adaptability: The ability to evolve in response to changing services, technology, and attitudes.[v]

Barrier: Anything that hinders the full and equal participation of a person with an impairment. Barriers can be (a) caused by environments, attitudes, practices, policies, information, communications, or technologies, and (b) affected by intersecting forms of discrimination. [vi]

Collaboration: The exercise of working together and sharing responsibility for promoting access and inclusion.[vii]

Disability: An inability to participate fully and equally in society as a result of the interaction of an   impairment and a barrier.[viii]

Discrimination: Is any form of unequal adverse treatment of a person or group, whether intentional or not, on the basis of one or more prohibited grounds set out in the British Columbia Human Rights Code, namely: age, ancestry, colour, family status, marital status, physical or mental disability, place of origin, political belief (applicable to employment advertisement and employment), race, religion, sex (including gender identity), sexual orientation or criminal conviction unrelated to employment or program of study; and which has the effect or purpose of unreasonably interfering with that person’s or group’s access to the employment or educational opportunities, benefits and advantages available to other members of society. [ix]

Impairment: includes a physical, sensory, mental, intellectual, or cognitive impairment with is permanent, temporary, or episodic. [x]

Inclusion: Is an attitude and approach that embraces diversity and differences and promotes equal opportunities for all. Inclusion is not just about people with disabilities. When our communities include and embrace everyone, we are ALL better able to reach our full potential. [xi]

 Intersectionality: A term coined by black feminist legal scholar Dr. Kimberlé Crenshaw to describe the ways in which people's lives are shaped by their multiple and overlapping identities and social locations (such as race, gender, class, ability, etc.) and these can come together to produce different experiences and interdependent systems of Discrimination (definition above) or disadvantage. [xii]

Self-determination: Empowering people with disabilities to make their own choices and pursue the lives they wish to live. [xiii]

Universal Design: The Centre for Excellence in Universal Design defines Universal Design as the design and composition of an environment so that it can be accessed, understood, and used to the greatest extent possible by all people regardless of their age, size, ability or disability.[xiv]



[i] Government of Canada, “Consulting persons with disabilities - Annex: Inclusive language considerations,”

[ii] Government of Canada (Employment and Social Development Canada), “Towards an Accessible Canada”, modified 2023-01-23,

[iii] UFV Policy 93: Accommodation of Students with Disabilities, created 2016.

[iv] Government of B.C., “Managing Employee Accommodation in the Workplace”, modified 2019-04-23,

[v] British Columbia Framework for Accessibility Legislation,

[vi] Government of BC, Accessible British Columbia Act, 2021, Accessible British Columbia Act (

[vii] Ibid 3.

[viii] Ibid 4.

[ix] UFV Policy 18: Discrimination, Bullying and Harassment Prevention, created 2015.

[x] Ibid 4.

[xi] Inclusion BC ( )

[xii] Crenshaw, Kimberle () "Demarginalizing the Intersection of Race and Sex: A Black Feminist Critique of Antidiscrimination Doctrine, Feminist Theory and Antiracist Politics," University of Chicago Legal Forum: Vol. 1989: Iss. 1, Article 8. Available at: 

[xiii] Ibid 3.

[xiv] Centre for Excellence in Universal Design,