Rick Hansen to talk about business accessibility at Richmond luncheon

Richmond icon Rick Hansen will give a speech at a Richmond Chamber of Commerce luncheon on Tuesday, April 30. The speech will discuss why it's important to make businesses and workplaces accessible to customers and employees.

“Rick Hansen is truly an international leader, an international hero and his (Rick Hansen) Foundation is based here right in Richmond. So we are absolutely honoured to work with the foundation and Rick,” said Matt Pitcairn, CEO of the chamber.

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“I think their work on a global level is ground-breaking and truly sets the standard for building accessible spaces and makes it easier for builders to truly build accessible and inclusive developments.”

Hansen, a Canadian Paralympian, activist, and philanthropist for people with disabilities, is best known for his Man in Motion World Tour, when he undertook an epic 26-month, 40,000-kilometre journey around the world in his wheelchair to promote accessibility in the 1980s.

During the luncheon, Hansen will talk about how having an accessible open business is not only good for businesses but also good for society, according to Pitcairn.

“The talk will also be encouraging people to look at labour shortages, which is a big challenge in Richmond and throughout the region," said Pitcairn.

"There is a lot of potential in people with disabilities who would be an amazing addition to the workforce.

"But often people don’t have accessible workplaces or have challenges in being able to bring in people with disabilities. So we encourage all businesses to be more inclusive. It will be great if we could address some of the workforce challenges.”

The luncheon will take place from 12:05 to 1:45 p.m. on Tuesday at Vancouver Airport Marriott Hotel. The door opens at 11:30 a.m. Tickets are $59 for the public and $44 for chamber members.

For more information, check http://www.richmondchamber.ca/.

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