Canada today became the key 20th nation to accede to the Marrakesh Treaty to Facilitate Access to Published Works for Persons Who Are Blind, Visually Impaired or Otherwise Print Disabled, which will bring the Treaty into force in three month’s time on September 30, 2016.
“This is great news for people with visual impairments and for the multilateral intellectual property system. The Marrakesh Treaty will, when widely adopted throughout the world, create the framework for persons who are blind and visually impaired to enjoy access to literacy in a much more equal and inclusive way,” said WIPO Director General Francis Gurry. “I urge as many countries as possible to ratify the Treaty so that its benefits can be widely enjoyed throughout the world,” he added.
“I am honored that Canada is counted among the countries that together are enabling the coming into force of the Marrakesh Treaty internationally. Together, we are creating a more accessible world for people living with disabilities,” said Canada’s Minister of Innovation, Science and Economic Development Navdeep Bains. “The coming into force of the Treaty will mark the last step of a long journey toward a more inclusive global community, where print-disabled and visually impaired people can more fully and actively participate in society and reach their full potential,” he added.
“Today is an historic day for Canada, as we become the 20th country to accede to the Marrakesh Treaty, which thus brings the Treaty into force. I am proud that our government is standing up for Canadians with disabilities and providing those with print disabilities more equitable access to alternative-format published materials,” said Canada’s Minister of Sport and Persons with Disabilities Carla Qualtrough. She added “As the coming into force of this treaty becomes a reality, Canadians will benefit from greater accessibility and opportunities in their communities and workplaces.”
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