Advocate group urges overhaul of proposed N.S. accessibility legislation

Nova Scotia advocates for the disabled have told lawmakers that proposed accessibility legislation needs to be significantly strengthened.

Bill 59 was delayed last fall after heavy criticism from the groups it was supposed to help and is currently before the legislature's law amendments committee.

Gerry Post, who represents a coalition of 35 disabled groups, says the legislation needs some teeth, including a broader definition of disability.

Post also says provisions of the bill that would allow for an economic analysis of any changes would render it "stillborn."

He says making the province more accessible should be seen as a driver for business with about 20 per cent of the population living with disabilities.

Post says that figure is projected to grow to around 30 per cent by 2026.

Barry Abbott, a visually impaired man, says if given the chance, the disabled can contribute to the economy.

He made no bones about the fact they are simply looking for equal treatment under the law.