Equal access to transportation for all


September is Guide Dog Access Awareness Month, a time to celebrate the important role that guide dogs play. Whether its avoiding obstacles, stopping at curbs and steps, or negotiating traffic, a guide dog fosters independence for someone who is blind or partially sighted. Its also a time for us at Uber to think about the best way for all Canadians to easily access a ride.

We believe in equal access to transportation for all. Thats why we are proud to continue our work with the CNIB (Canadian National Institute for the Blind) Foundation to raise this important issue and create more awareness on our platform so everyone has equal access to transportation with Uber.

This year, free CNIB blankets, lint rollers, and decals for vehicles will be available for drivers on the Uber platform across the country at select Greenlight Hubs and CNIB community offices while supplies last. We are also sharing new awareness videos with drivers like the one below:

It is against the law for drivers to discriminate against riders with service animals. Drivers can be fined by local law enforcement, or they can be subject to proceedings at provincial human rights tribunals. And we do not tolerate discrimination on the Uber platform. Drivers who knowingly refuse a rider because of their service animal or assistive devices will lose access to their Uber account.

We have a specialized team devoted to investigating complaints of service animal denials, and they will speak with every rider and driver when looking into a complaint. If a rider is denied a ride or faces an issue related to their service animal like harassment or improper cleaning fees, we encourage the rider to please report the issue to Uber through Support in the app. We will investigate and take appropriate action.

There is still much more work to do. Were committed to working with partners and listening to riders as we develop and implement more inclusive ways to ride with Uber.

VIDEO: Equal access to transportation for all | Uber

Written byUber Canada

Hong Kong – Appointment of Equal Opportunities Commission members

Appointment of Equal Opportunities Commission members


     The Government announced today (May 5) that the Chief Executive has appointed five new members and re-appointed nine incumbent members to the Equal Opportunities Commission (EOC) for a term of two years with effect from May 20, 2023.

The newly appointed members are:

Miss Lily Chow
Mr James Mathew Fong 
Mr Vishal Melwani
Miss Shirley To Shuk-yi
Dr Kitty Wu Kit-ying

The reappointed members are:

Ms Chan Lai-kwan
Mr Vincent Cheng Wing-shun
Ms Choi Yi-tak
Dr Theresa Cunanan
Dr Henry Shie Wai-hung
Ms Anna Thompson
Ms Linda Tsang Chi-man
Dr Rizwan Ullah
Mr Gary Wong Chi-him

     “We are grateful for the contribution of all incumbent members to the work of the EOC in the past two years. They have displayed enthusiasm and commitment in assisting with the promotion of equal opportunities. They have also provided valuable input to the various areas of work of the EOC,” said a Government spokesperson.
     “The membership of the EOC continues to represent a balanced mix of expertise and sectors, including women; persons with disabilities; ethnic minorities; members from the employment, social services, legal, accounting, academic and education sectors; and the community at large. Their experience and expertise will be instrumental to the work of the EOC in promoting equal opportunities.
     “We would like to take the opportunity to thank Professor Cecilia Chan Lai-wan, Professor Andy Chiu Man-chung, Mr Mohan Datwani, Miss Maisy Ho Chiu-ha and Miss Yim Chor-pik, who will be stepping down from the EOC. We are grateful for their staunch support for the work of the Commission.
     “We look forward to the continuous concerted efforts of the Chairperson of the EOC as well as its members in constructing a pluralistic and inclusive society in Hong Kong,” the spokesperson added.

Industry, Govt to be equal partner; India poised to lead world’s Start-Up ecosystem, J&K lagging behind

While addressing the first of its kind programme on ‘Industry participation in Startups’ organized by various Industry organisations of Jammu to promote local StartUps, Union Minister of State (Independent Charge) Science & Technology; Minister of State (Independent Charge) Earth Sciences; MoS PMO, Personnel, Public Grievances, Pensions, Atomic Energy and Space, Dr Jitendra Singh today said that under Prime Minister Narendra Modi, India is poised to lead the world’s StartUp ecosystem but regretted that Jammu & Kashmir is lagging behind. He said, ever since PM Modi had announced “StartUp India, StandUp India” from the ramparts of Red Fort in his Independence Day address of 2015, it picked up in a big way in across the country, but for certain reasons did not receive the same impetus in J&K even though things have begun to change after the new arrangement was introduced over here from 5-6 august 2019.

The Union Minister said, India with its vast unexplored potential and immense innovative, is destined to a frontline role in the world and emphasised sustainable StartUps for sustainable future growth. For this, he stressed the need for a wider integration and for industry and government to work as equal partners. He said, the demarcation between the public sector and private sector is fast becoming extinct and it has to be a partnership based on equal respect, equal stakes, equal participation and equal investment.

Dr Jitendra Singh said, greater integration and synergy among industry, Government departments, academia and independent institutions was crucial to create an enabling environment for growth of startups. He added that sustainable Startups would sustain the future economy of the India and give it a global visibility in the years to come.

Dr Jitendra Singh said that Prime Minister Narendra Modi soon after taking oath as Prime minister said that minimum Government maximum Governance would be the basic principle for delivering governance to people. PM Modi also said ‘government had no business to be in business and that the Government intends to create an enabling environment for various kinds of industries to flourish, he added.

True to this spirit the Government launched the Start-Up India and Stand-Up India Initiative in that spread a movement from Metros to various States and UTs. He added that due to this initiative the number of Start-ups in India have increased from 1100 in 2014 to 40,000 today, a huge jump, said the Minister

While talking about the pace of increasing Start-ups in the country Dr Jitendra Singh said that the Startup movement in Jammu and Kashmir has been slower compared to the rest of India due to various reason but now its impact can be seen through various agri-based startups, Purple Revolution and through startups in other fields like Pharma etc. The Minister said that youth from various parts of the UT were voluntarily giving up govt and corporate jobs to start their own ventures thereby increasing their income manifold.

While addressing the audience Dr Jitendra Singh said that repeated references to ‘Startups’ in many of PM’s speeches at regional, National and international stage is the declaration of the intent of the Government and the priority it attaches to startups.

While laying special emphasis on science-based startups the Minister said that science has today entered every household and every individual’s life. He said that Science based startups are the future of national and global economy. He added that there was no necessary correlation between the growth of startups and literacy rates and that the science based startups will grow regardless of the literacy rates. He further said that Indians have a scientific temper that can be instrumental in furthering startup movement in the country and that this capability only needs to be channelized in the right direction through greater awareness and change in mind-sets of various stakeholders.

While elaborating the need for Industry in the sustainable growth of Startups Dr Jitendra said that Industry needs to be partners with equal stakes and equal investment in the movement. He said that any partnership with the industry has to be meaningful and not just cosmetic that should include support, research, funding, training, hunt for ideas and taking up larger responsibility. He said that this was also a part of Social responsibility and provides the industrialists and opportunity to play a major role in Nation Building.

While talking about the challenge of creating sustainable start-ups Dr Jitendra Singh said that the start-ups need to be linked to livelihood. He said that Science based sectors, non-science sectors and academic institutions need to work together to link start-ups with livelihood. This he said could be done by exploring the unexplored local industry. He gave various examples of such local industries like Lavender in Doda, Bamboo- clusters being developed in Samba, Kathua and Reasi, Tele-medicine initiative called ‘Doctor on Wheels’,etc. He added that providing industry and Government support and constant capacity building were other important steps to create links for startups with livelihood.

Dr Jitendra Singh said that promoting Start-up culture in India required change of mind-set at three levels. Firstly, at the level of Government by considering Industry as an ally as pointed out by PM Narendra Modi.He said that the way in which Space-based startups have grown over the last few years is a best example of how the mind-set of the Government is changing where in a short span of time 50 startups have come up based on space technology.Secondly, he said that the change in mind-set is needed at the level of Industry by considering the mutual growth of start-ups and the industry /economy as a whole being dependent on each other. Thirdly and most importantly, liberation of youth from the “SarkariNaukri” mind-set and the change in mind-set of potential start-up initiators was needed that will propel the engine of startup movement and take it to new heights. This change was possible through rigorous awareness initiatives for boosting entrepreneurial spirit in society that is obsessed with Jobs especially Government Jobs to enable youth to become job creators rather than job seekers.

This change in mindset, he said, can be made possible through synergy of Industry, Government and Institutions and through awareness initiatives in form of workshops, capacity building initiatives, brainstorming sessions and local camps.

The programme was addressed by stalwarts of Industry in J&K and officials of Technology Development Board, Union ministry of Science & Technology and Department of Industries, J&K, including Rajesh Pathak, Anita Gupta, Satish Koul, Lalit Mahajan and others.



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Equal Opportunity Commission

The Government has made every section of the society an equal partner of progress with the commitment to “Development with Dignity” “Empowerment without Appeasement” and “Sabka Sath, Sabka Vikas, Sabka Vishwas” ensuring equal benefits to all sections of the society. Irrespective of his or her caste, religion, region and community is at the centre of welfare schemes of the Government. The Government has been treating all the sections of the society including the Muslims as an equal partner of the development process. Hence the Minorities in India are flourishing equally with all the other sections of the society with a sense of equality, security and prosperity. Ministry of Minority Affairs and other Ministries/Departments of the Government are implementing various socio-economic and educational empowerment schemes which are benefitting every section of the society including minority communities.

The Ministry of Minority Affairs is entrusted with the work related to improvement of the socio-economic condition of the minority communities through affirmative action and inclusive development efforts, so that every citizen has equal opportunity to participate actively in building a vibrant nation.

The Department Personnel & Training does not maintain separate community wise data on recruitment. This Ministry implements various schemes with objective to increase the participation of the disadvantaged/underprivileged children/candidates of notified minority communities and to improve the level of education, participation in employment, skill and entrepreneurship development, reducing deficiencies in civic amenities or infrastructure are implemented by this Ministry.

Further, the National Commission for Minorities(NCM) has also been set up by Government as per NCM Act, 1992  to (a) evaluate the progress of the development of minorities under the Union and States; (b) monitor the working of the safeguards provided in the Constitution and in laws enacted by Parliament and the State Legislatures; (c) make recommendations for the effective implementation of safeguards for the protection of the interests of minorities by the Central Government or the State Governments; (d) look into specific complaints regarding deprivation of rights and safeguards of the minorities and take up such matters with the appropriate authorities; (e) cause studies to be undertaken into problems arising out of any discrimination against minorities and recommend measures for their removal; (f) conduct studies, research and analysis on the issues relating to socio-economic and educational development of minorities;  (g) suggest appropriate measures in respect of any minority to be undertaken by the Central Government or the State Governments; (h) make periodical or special reports to the Central Government on any matter pertaining to minorities and in particular difficulties confronted by them; and (i) any other matter which may be referred to it by the Central Government.   Further, a brief of the schemes/programmers being implemented by the Ministry for the educational/economic empowerment of Minority students/candidates are as under:-

  1. Educational Empowerment
  1. Scholarship Schemes- Pre-Matric Scholarship, Post-Matric Scholarship and Merit-cum-Means based Scholarship. During the last 7 years, more than 4.52 crore beneficiaries have been provided different scholarships through the National Scholarship Portal (NSP) and Direct Benefit Transfer (DBT) out of which more than 53% beneficiaries are female.
  2. Maulana Azad National Fellowship Scheme, provides financial assistance to students from notified minority communities and whose annual income is below Rs. 6.0 lakh per annum from all sources, to pursue higher education such as M.Phil and Ph.D.
  3. In addition, the Maulana Azad Education Foundation implements the scheme viz. Begum Hazrat Mahal National Scholarship for meritorious girls belonging to notified minority  communities studying in Classes IX to XII.
  4. Naya Savera – Free Coaching and Allied Scheme which aims to enhance skills and knowledge of students and candidates from notified minority to get employment in Government Sector/ Public Sector Undertaking, jobs in private sector, and admission in reputed institutions in technical and professional courses at under-graduate and post-graduate levels. During last seven years about 69,500 candidates have benefitted from the coaching scheme of this Ministry.
  5. Nai Udaan – Support for notified minority community students, on clearing Prelims conducted by Union Public Service Commission (UPSC), State Public Service Commission (PSC) Staff Selection Commission (SSC) etc.
  1. Economic Empowerment
  1. Seekho aur Kamao (Learn & Earn): It is a skill development initiative for minorities and aims to upgrade the skills of minority youth in various modern/traditional skills depending upon their qualification, present economic trends and market potential, which can earn them employment or make them suitably skilled to go for self-employment. Since, 2014-15 approx. 3.92 lakh persons have been benefitted from  this employment oriented program.
  2. A mission has been launched by the Ministry of Minority Affairs under “Upgrading the Skill and Training in Traditional Arts/Crafts for Development (USTTAD)” scheme to give an effective platform to minority artisans and culinary experts from across the country to showcase and market their finest handicraft and exquisitely crafted products through “Hunar Haats” organized by the Ministry. Ministry has engaged institutions of national repute namely, National Institute of Fashion Technology (NIFT), National Institute of Design (NID) and Indian Institute of Packaging (IIP) to work in various craft clusters for design intervention, product range development, packaging, exhibitions and brand building etc. So far, Ministry has organised 28 “Hunar Haats” in which more than 5.5 lakhs artisans and people associated with them have been provided employment and employment opportunities, out of which more than 50% beneficiaries are women.
  3. Nai Manzil – A scheme to provide education and skill training to the youth from minority communities.
  4. Gharib Nawaz Employment Training Programme provides for short-term job oriented skill development courses to youths belonging to minority communities.
  5. National Minorities Development Finance Corporation (NMDFC) Loan Schemes provide concessional loans for self-employment and income generating activities for the socio-economic development of the ‘backward sections’ amongst the notified minorities.

In addition, another scheme namely Pradhan Mantri Jan Vikas Karyakram (PMJVK) is implemented by the Ministry of Minority Affairs, which aims to improve the socio-economic conditions and basic amenities in the identified Minority Concentration Areas. The major projects approved under PMJVK are in sectors of education, health and skill, and include Residential Schools, School buildings, Hostels, Degree Colleges, ITIs, Polytechnics, Smart Class Rooms, Sadbhav Mandaps, Health Centres, Skill Centres, Sports facilities, Drinking Water facilities, sanitation facilities etc. In the last 7 years, under the “Pradhan Mantri Jan Vikas Karykram” (PMJVK) more than 43 thousand basic infrastructure projects have been created such as residential schools, new schools, colleges, hostels, community centres, common service centres, ITIs, Polytechnics, Girls Hostels, Sadbhava Mandaps, Hunar Hubs, Smart Class Rooms etc in identified Minority concentrated areas across the country.

Further, under Prime Minister’s New 15 Point Programme for welfare of minorities, the Government ensures that the benefits of various government schemes for the underprivileged reach the disadvantaged and vulnerable sections of the minority communities also. Under the programme, it is provisioned that, wherever possible, 15% of targets and outlays under various schemes should be earmarked for minorities. Details of the schemes being implemented by Ministry of Minority Affairs is available at https://www.minorityaffairs.gov.in /en/schemes performance.

This information was given by the Union Minister for Minority Affairs  Shri Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi in a written reply in the Lok Sabha today.


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Equal Business Opportunities in Recruitment: Funnelting is Changing the Industry

Netherlands, Funnelting Technologies B.V., (funnelting.com) a Dutch-based startup, reinvented the staffing industry. With two Software platforms, they are changing a 500 billion dollar industry. This to provide equal business opportunities between companies, recruiters, and jobseekers.

The staffing industry is a very traditional industry. Since the financial crash back in 2009, the playing field in this gigantic market became very small. Large staffing agencies and job-board platforms monopolies two-third of the industry, where small, often home-based recruiters, could not afford the rising advertisement prices anymore. This resulted that most of them didn’t survive. And the hiring companies paying the price.

Funnelting noticed that this industry didn’t innovate. Staffing multinationals are adding more services, but not for the benefit of hiring companies. And the major job websites are now in the candidate business by collecting resumes and selling them.

The solution Funnelting came up with benefits not only hiring companies but also helps small recruiters and jobseekers. Also, individuals who are interested in (re)starting their own recruitment agency, have now the chance to build up a small business. Hiring companies support these small recruitment agencies and simultaneously saving up to 50% on their recruitment expenses. Founder and CEO Marlon van Horck; “Knowing that we help small businesses with a very easy solution and seeing that hiring companies want to help, proofs that the old industry needs to change. It is ridiculous that companies paying tens of thousands of dollars for just one candidate.”

Providing equal business opportunities with innovative technology is new in this industry. A second platform was designed especially for recruiters, where they don’t need to use traditional job board websites to avoid the costs. And yet, have still access to a larger candidate pool than anyone else in the market. With this platform, recruiters can search more specifically for candidates with no extra costs. This ultimately results that companies receive more qualified candidates where they can build a better talent pipeline with fewer expenses.

Funnelting Technologies B.V. started its business in late 2018 and added in 2020 the recruitment platform FunnelRecruit (funnelrecruit.com) to the business.