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Walking the talk? Models of disability and discourse in employment policy for Canadians with disabilities 2011

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 WALKING THE TALK? MODELS OF DISABILITY AND DISCOURSE IN EMPLOYMENT POLICY FOR CANADIANS WITH DISABILITIES  by  John W. Vellacott  B.A. (Psychology), The University of Calgary, 1978 M.Ed. (School and Community Psychology), The University of Calgary, 1985  A THESIS SUBMITTED IN PARTIAL FULFILLMENT OF THE REQUIREMENTS FOR THE DEGREE OF  DOCTOR OF EDUCATION  in  THE FACULTY OF GRADUATE STUDIES  (Educational Leadership and Policy)  THE UNIVERSITY OF BRITISH COLUMBIA  (Vancouver)   August 2011   © John Vellacott, 2011   ii ABSTRACT The research undertaken in this thesis facilitated an examination of the dominant discourses contained in several disability policy documents, the ideological underpinnings driving the discourses and the influence of particular models of disability. This investigation demonstrated that there were in fact two dominant discourses common to all the policy texts, namely a discourse of Independence and a discourse of Employability. These evolved from a status of being overtly referenced within the policy texts to becoming an underlying “given” or “truth”. While the language of various models of disability were used in the texts, there is little evidence to suggest that any particular model had any singular influence. Rather, the use of the language of various models of disability appeared to be “tactical” in nature, and used simply to enhance the legitimacy of the particular discourses or arguments being presented. As the texts appeared to be grounded within a neoliberal policy orientation, the use of the language of the models, particularly the social model of disability, was of value in providing legitimacy to concepts that are in many ways antithetical to some of the core precepts of the models. Lastly, the analysis suggests that the actors with the greatest degree of power and influence during the drafting and implementation of the policy texts remained government officials, and the influence of people with disabilities or their advocates was at best subordinate, or in many cases nonexistent.  iii Through this type of research, policy researchers, advocates and impacted individuals with disabilities who endure the effects of policy, have powerful tools with which to expose these dominant discourses. Often these dominant discourses have evolved into unspoken and taken for granted "truths". Foregrounding such discourses can facilitate the development of counter discourses or strategies to negate or at least minimize the negative impacts that result from policy and program decisions grounded in these discourses. Such a capacity could go a long way in leveling the playing field, and at least to some degree equalize the power differential between government and “others” when presented with skillfully written and often dissembling policy texts.  iv TABLE OF CONTENTS ABSTRACT ....................................................................................................................................ii TABLE OF CONTENTS .............................................................................................................. iv GLOSSARY ..................................................................................................................................vii ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS ........................................................................................................viii 1: INTRODUCTION...................................................................................................................... 1 1.1 Statement of the Problem ........................................................................................................ 1 1.2 Research Questions ................................................................................................................. 3 1.3 Rationale for the Study............................................................................................................ 3 1.3.1 Importance of Models of Disability ............................................................................ 4 1.3.2 Why Employment Policy for People with Disabilities? ............................................. 7 1.4 Relevance to Practice ............................................................................................................ 10 2: POLICY CONTEXT ............................................................................................................... 13 2.1 The Concept of Employability and People with Disabilities ................................................ 14 2.1.1 History of the Concept .............................................................................................. 15 2.1.2 Current Applications of Employability in Labour Market Policy ............................ 17 2.2 History of Employment Policy for People with Disabilities in Canada................................ 19 2.3 Federal/Provincial/Territorial Government Approaches to Disability Policy....................... 27 2.3.1 Constitutional and Jurisdictional Authority .............................................................. 31 2.3.2 Collaborative Federalism .......................................................................................... 32 2.3.3 Evolution of Canadian Disability Employment Policy............................................. 33 2.3.4 Federal – Provincial Relations .................................................................................. 36 2.3.5 Changes to Federal – Provincial Funding Arrangements ......................................... 39 2.3.6 The Social Union ...................................................................................................... 41 2.4 Community Stakeholders and Disability Employment Policy.............................................. 43 2.5 International Perspectives on Disability Employment Policy............................................... 46 2.6 Employability Assistance for People with Disabilities (EAPD) Policy Framework ............ 50 2.7 Current Situation ................................................................................................................... 51 3: THEORETICAL CONSTRUCTS.......................................................................................... 57 3.1 Models of Disability.............................................................................................................. 57 3.2 Key Models ........................................................................................................................... 61 3.2.1 Medical Model .......................................................................................................... 62 3.2.2 Functional/Environmental/Economic Model of Disability....................................... 64 3.2.3 Social Model of Disability ........................................................................................ 67 3.3 Disability Policy Analysis Approaches................................................................................. 70 3.3.1 Limitations of the Rationalist Approaches to Policy Analysis ................................. 74  v 3.3.2 Ball’s Critical Policy Sociology................................................................................ 74 3.3.3 Taylor’s Critical Policy Analysis.............................................................................. 76 3.3.4 Goldberg’s Critical Policy Discourse Analysis (CPDA) .......................................... 78 3.4 Definition of Discourse ......................................................................................................... 82 3.5 Discourse Theory and Disability Policy Research ................................................................ 84 3.5.1 Discourse and Power in Structuring Policy .............................................................. 85 3.5.2 Ideology and Policy .................................................................................................. 87 3.5.3 Neo-liberal Ideologies............................................................................................... 89 3.6 Discourse and Disability Policy: A Personal Narrative ........................................................ 93 4: METHODOLOGY AND RESEARCH DESIGN ................................................................. 97 4.1 Critical Discourse Analysis: Background to the Methodology............................................. 97 4.2 Critical Discourse Analysis in Policy.................................................................................. 101 4.3 Application of Critical Discourse Analysis to the Study .................................................... 103 4.3.1 Socio-cultural Practices........................................................................................... 105 4.3.2 Discourse Practice................................................................................................... 107 4.3.3 Text Analysis .......................................................................................................... 108 4.4 Selected Policy Texts .......................................................................................................... 108 4.4.1 In Unison: A Canadian Approach to Disability Issues........................................... 109 4.4.2 Employability Assistance for People with Disabilities (EAPD) Multilateral Framework ............................................................................................................. 111 4.4.3 Canada-Alberta Bilateral Agreement on Employability Assistance for People with Disabilities.......................................................................................... 111 4.4.4 Disability Related Employment Supports (DRES)................................................. 113 4.4.5 Production/Distribution of the Documents ............................................................. 116 4.4.6 Text Availability ..................................................................................................... 118 4.4.7 Text Relevance........................................................................................................ 118 4.5 Critical Discourse Analysis ................................................................................................. 119 4.5.1 Contextual Analysis ................................................................................................ 121 4.5.2 Discourse Practice................................................................................................... 121 4.5.3 Text Analysis .......................................................................................................... 122 4.6 Analytic Process .................................................................................................................. 123 4.7 Limitations of the Methodology.......................................................................................... 124 4.7.1 Role of the Inside Researcher ................................................................................. 124 4.7.2 Reliance on Documents .......................................................................................... 125 5: DISCURSIVE ANALYSIS AND INTERPRETATION..................................................... 127 5.1 A Discourse of Independence.............................................................................................. 128 5.1.1 In Unison  - Part One – Independence as a Global and Social Construct............... 129 5.1.2 In Unison – Part Two - Independence as Economic Self Sufficiency .................... 132 5.2 A Discourse of Employability............................................................................................. 137 5.2.1 Independence and Employability............................................................................ 138 5.2.2 Multilateral Framework on Employability Assistance for People with Disabilities (EAPD) – Moving the Discourses From the Overt to the Implied ................................................................................................................... 141 5.2.3 Canada-Alberta Agreement on Employability Assistance for People with Disabilities – Applying the Dominant Discourses in Policy.................................. 151 5.2.4 Disability Related Employment Supports (DRES) Policy Manual ......................... 160  vi 5.2.4.1 From Implicit to a ‘Given’: The Pervasiveness of the Discourse of Employability in DRES .................................................................................. 161 5.2.4.2 Web-enabled Presentation: Using Inclusive Technology to Exclude ............. 163 5.2.4.3 Elaborating the Discourse of Employability ................................................... 167 5.3 Models of Disability and the Dominant Discourses............................................................ 173 5.4 Neoliberal Ideological Underpinnings ................................................................................ 188 5.4.1 The Changing Policy Environment and the Inappropriateness of Previous Policy Responses.................................................................................................... 189 5.4.2 Neoliberal Ideological Orientations in the Policy Texts......................................... 192 5.4.3 Neoliberal Policy Constructs .................................................................................. 203 5.4.3.1 Preeminence of the Marketplace..................................................................... 204 5.4.3.2 Accountability ................................................................................................. 206 5.4.3.3 Individualism .................................................................................................. 210 5.4.3.4 Targeting: The “Deserving” and “Undeserving” Disabled............................. 213 5.5 Power and the Dominant Discourses................................................................................... 221 5.5.1 Who are the Audiences of the Policy Texts? .......................................................... 221 5.5.2 Presentation of the Dominant Discourses to the Audiences: Who has the Power and How is it Reflected in the Dominant Discourses?................................ 228 5.5.3 Role of the Models of Disability in Affirming, Maintaining or Providing the Illusion of Power .................................................................................................... 237 6: DISCUSSION ......................................................................................................................... 240 6.1 Whatever Works: The Tactical Use of Language to Further Neoliberal Policy Agendas ............................................................................................................................... 240 6.2 Out with the Old: The Denigration of Prior Policy Approaches and the Extolling of a New Policy Reality........................................................................................................... 243 6.3 The Voice of People with Disabilities: Missing in Action or Effectively Silenced? .......... 246 7: INSIGHTS FROM THE RESEARCH AND CONCLUSION........................................... 253 7.1 Value of the Methodology................................................................................................... 253 7.2 Insights for Practitioner-Scholars Within the Public Service.............................................. 255 7.3 Insights for Canadians with Disabilities and Their Advocates ........................................... 256 7.4 Conclusion........................................................................................................................... 257 REFERENCE LIST ................................................................................................................... 262 APPENDICES............................................................................................................................. 296 Appendix A: In Unison: A Canadian Approach to Disability Issues ........................................... 297 Appendix B: Multilateral Framework on Employability Assistance for People with Disabilities (EAPD)................................................................................................. 341 Appendix C: Canada-Alberta Agreement on Employability Assistance for People with Disabilities............................................................................................................... 349 Appendix D Disability Related Employment Supports (DRES) Policy Manual ......................... 365   vii GLOSSARY DRES Disability Related Employment Supports EAPD Employability Assistance for People with Disabilities MRSS Forum of Ministers Responsible for Social Services VRDP Vocational Rehabilitation for Disabled Persons   viii ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS There are a number of individuals and organizations/institutions who contributed to the successful completion of this thesis. I would like to recognize the contributions made by Dr. Kjell Rubenson and Dr. Mona Gleason. For over four years they selflessly took time from extraordinarily busy schedule's to review drafts, provide constructive input and suggestions, and provide continuing support to a student who was often struggling with ill health, missed deadlines and a very hectic schedule in his other, non- academic life. Without their support and insight, this thesis would never have been completed. I would also like to acknowledge the kindness and support of my father-in-law and mother-in-law, the late Dr. Ronald Burwash and Ruth Burwash. They have provided me with endless encouragement during the course of my doctoral studies. Ruth’s abilities as a proof reader and copy editor are unsurpassed, and contributed greatly to the readability of this thesis. Most importantly, I would like to acknowledge the contribution of three extraordinary women who together are the primary influences that enabled this thesis to be completed. First of all, I would like to recognize the contribution of my mother, the late Anne Vellacott (nee Squires). My mom embedded in me a love of knowledge, the strength and discipline to continue in the face of adversity, and the courage to persevere in the completion of life-long dreams despite whatever obstacles are thrown at you. Her  ix ability to overcome hardships and transcend obstacles that would have shattered many others remains the strongest inspiration I have. Secondly, I would like to acknowledge the tremendous contribution made by my supervisor, Dr. Michelle Stack. I knew that I wanted Michelle as my supervisor after the first class I took in her policy studies course. Throughout the next six years Michelle provided unparalleled support and encouragement, stood with me when my research efforts were paralyzed due to ill health, provided insightful comments and suggestions that contributed immeasurably to improving this thesis, and was always there when I needed her. My gratitude for her support and encouragement can never be expressed fully. I am honoured to have been able to work with such a fine scholar, mentor and colleague! Lastly, and most importantly, I must knowledge the contribution of my love, my soulmate, my best friend and dearest companion, my spouse Susan Burwash. Throughout this journey she has been the bedrock upon which my life has rested. Susan's loyalty, love and guidance are the driving force behind this thesis. Through both good and tough times she has stood with me, providing unflinching support and gentle encouragement when it seemed this thesis would never be finished. An outstanding scholar in her own right, Susan was always there when I needed to bounce ideas off someone, discuss theoretical perspectives or postulate on just what is meant by this strange term "qualitative research". Our three-hour breakfast conversations at B’s Diner will live warmly in my memory forever. Despite a punishing workload and the pressures of her own doctoral research, Susan was always there for me and my love and gratitude can never be adequately expressed.  1 1: INTRODUCTION This study examines the dominant discourses present in a national Canadian employment policy framework targeted at persons with disabilities, and the influence of particular models of disability. The author contends that through the identification of the discourses and the evaluation of the presence/absence/emphasis of language drawn from various models of disability, insights can be obtained into ideological “drivers” within the policy documents, and the relative power/dominance/subordination of key actors within the policy processes. 1.1 Statement of the Problem Stakeholders within the community of persons with disabilities in Canada have expressed increasing concern about the incongruity between what is said in national disability policy texts and how the policies are subsequently operationalized and implemented. In other words, the policies seem to say one thing but do another (Battle, Torjman, & Mendelson, 2003). Often the documents seem to imply policy directions that are not reflected in actual programs and services. This study explores the actual dominant discourses present within a set of employment policy texts for Canadians with disabilities, and asks how they are used to promote particular policy and ideological agendas. There are three aspects to this problem. First, the study will explore what these discourses are, and the commonalities in the discourses among the policy texts.  2 The second aspect of this problem relates to how the language of disability is used within the discourses articulated in the texts. This is explored through an examination of the role and function of the language of various models of disability within the policy documents. In particular, the presence or absence within the texts of the language of specific models is examined, together with their role in legitimizing certain policy approaches. The third aspect of this problem lies in identifying how the discourses empower/disempower various actors involved in the policy process and whether they promote or discourage specific ideological approaches to social policy. Differing audiences, actors and power differentials seem to be at play at different stages in the policy process, and certain ideological orientations also seem to present. How these interplay within, and are reflected by the dominant discourses forms an important element of the study. This thesis intends to examine a set of four publicly accessible documents that depict the development and implementation of a primary framework for national Canadian employment policy for people with disabilities. The national policy framework being examined is the Multilateral Framework of the Employability Assistance for People with Disabilities [EAPD] (Government of Canada, 1998a), developed in the late 1990’s and early 2000’s. I will examine four key public texts generated during the evolution and implementation of this multilateral policy framework. In so doing, I intend to determine what the dominant discourses are among these four documents, demonstrate and examine the presence (or absence) of the language of different models of disability.  3 This process provides insights into the degree of power exercised by various actors and the dominant ideological themes. 1.2 Research Questions 1. Are there common discourses in four public documents surrounding the development and implementation of the EAPD national disability employment policy framework? 2. Are there any models of disability reflected in these discourses? 3. Do these discourses and/or models suggest or support particular ideological orientations within the policy texts? 4. Do the discourses and models of disability interact to support or diminish the voices/power of the primary actors involved? 1.3 Rationale for the Study Ball (1994) notes that policies “typically posit a restructuring, redistribution, and disruption of power relations, so that different people can and cannot do different things” (p. 20). Similarly, models of disability reflect predominate views of disability extant in society at large at particular points in time. Hubbard (2004) and Devlieger (2005) observed that contemporary societies are driven by these views when interacting with the population of persons with disabilities within their midst. In other words, if policies facilitate the determination of who can do what, then models of disability articulate how individuals with disabilities should be understood and considered in society. The  4 interaction of these two elements, within the context of the vital area of employment policy for Canadians with disabilities, is the foundation for this study. 1.3.1 Importance of Models of Disability Dominant models have the implicit ability to shape the power relationships within the policy, yet the integration of elements of subordinate models (or at least the language used in them) can often ‘soften’ the evidence of this domination. Just as Canadian society’s view of disability and people with disabilities have changed over the last two centuries, these changes have been reflected by the dominance or subordination of various models of disability. The dominance of earlier models of disability, such as the “Religious” model which attributed disability to divine punishment or demonic possession, and the “Charity” model wherein individuals and society had a moral obligation to assist the afflicted and disabled has been gradually superseded by other models. As the United Nations Expert Group on International Norms and Standards Relating to Disability (United Nations, 2003) has noted, “the move from the patronizing and paternalistic approach to persons with disabilities … to viewing them as members of the community with equal rights has also been reflected in the evolution of international standards relating specifically to disability, as well as in moves to place the rights of persons with disabilities within the category of universal human rights” (para. 6). In many cases the older and newer models of disability often contain deep philosophical differences that appear irreconcilable (O'Day, 1998, O'Day,1999). Policies grounded in these differing models can often take radically different approaches to  5 addressing the needs of persons with disabilities. However, when examining recent examples of Canadian disability policy documents it appears that elements of the documents often reflect the newer models, particularly in regard to the language used. Other elements of the policy reflect earlier models, despite their supposedly mutual irreconcilability. Devlieger (2005), in his discussion of models of disability within a global context observed that “…one should consider the existence of [such] modes of thought as sometimes juxtaposed, but more often intertwined. While one model may be dominant in one context, snippets of [other] models of thought intervene” (p. 6). Prince (2004) has also observed this phenomenon in Canadian disability policy, noting that: Legislative reviews and reforms have modernized the language as well as the law of concern to Canadians with disabilities. Such measures represent a reordering of the symbolic fabric of citizenship, measures disability groups regard as important gestures in expressing what kind of nation we wish to be. The older perspectives on disability persist, though, embedded in various policies and programs at both levels of government in Canada. (p. 463). This phenomenon is not restricted to Canadian disability policies. Other researchers of disability policy have observed a similar phenomenon. For example, Humpage (2007) noted that within the Australian governments’ proposed changes to the national Disability Support Pension (DSP) to promote the concepts of ‘participation’ and ‘inclusion’. She observed that the language used in the new policy document: “…shares some overlap with that used by disability advocates to promote the “social model of disability”, which focuses on the relationship between people with disabilities and their  6 social environments and locates the required interventions with the end of the realm of social policy and institutional practice” (p. 215). However, she also noted that: The Australian government’s plans for welfare reform actually sit in tension with a social model of disability. This is because a central component of the reforms, mutual obligation, overlaps with and reinforces a ‘medical model of disability’, in that both locate the ‘problem’ in the individual and ignore the obligations of the state and society more generally. In addition, they both use medical professionals as ‘gatekeepers’ to resources and subject people with disabilities to systems of surveillance, compliance and coercion. (p. 216). Thus the importance of the models of disability on government disability policy cannot be ignored. If, as Taylor, Rizvi, Lingard & Henry (1997) contend, “power and control are central in the policy process” (p. 27), then examination of the policy texts should provide an excellent means of exploring how the various models of disability are used in different ways at different stages in the policy development and implementation process. As was noted in a 1999 evaluation of existing federal policies and programs for people with disabilities: The literature shows that there are various ways of defining and identifying disability. How it is done can result in differing characterizations of the disabled population and differing conceptions of disability. This in turn can have important implications for both policy and evaluation [as]…. disability is often defined to be as inclusive as possible, such as in overarching legislation, while in other cases, definitions are used to control access and to ration services (Government of Canada, 1999a, para. 24).  7 1.3.2 Why Employment Policy for People with Disabilities? The critical importance of employment to the personal, economic, and social well being of persons with disabilities is well documented. In a capitalistic society which values both health and physical/mental ‘normality’ as well as economic self-sufficiency, being unemployed carries a heavy social stigma yet is depressingly common among adults with disabilities (O'Day, 1998). Barnes (1999a) notes that the understanding of disability in our society is “inextricably linked to paid work [and] since at least the industrial revolution, to be defined as ‘disabled’ means to be either unemployed or underemployed” (p. 147). Yasuda, Wehman, Targett, Cifu & West (2002) observed that being employed has become synonymous in our society with financial security, self- esteem, independence, social relationships, self-worth, and personal identity. Robinson (2000) noted the “advantages of employment for disabled people in terms of the social psychological benefits of work in enhancing self-esteem and reducing social isolation” (p. 246). The In Unison 2000 policy document (Government of Canada, 2000a) specifically states that “for many people with disabilities, paid or voluntary work - whether full- or part-time - is a key to independence and full participation in their communities” (p.31). Indeed, so important is the role of employment for people with disabilities that the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities includes a specific Article (27) which references the needs and rights of persons with disabilities regarding employment (United Nations, 2006). Despite this importance, the employment situation for persons with disabilities is worsening. Numerous studies (Government of Canada, 1996b; Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development, 2003; Roeher Institute, 2001a; Schwochau &  8 Blanck, 2000; Vilsack & Pederson, 2000) confirm a distressingly high (and growing) discrepancy in employment rates between disabled and non-disabled Canadians. As the 2003 Statistics Canada document Disability in Canada (Government of Canada, 2003b) notes: ...during the working age years (15-64), persons with disabilities are almost twice as likely to experience low income as others (26.6% versus 13.9%). Employment is also a great challenge, with employment rates ranging from 45.7% for youth with disabilities to 51.2% among core-working ages, to 27.3% among older workers with disabilities. These rates are all substantially lower than those of persons without disabilities (pp. 2-3). Even in Alberta, with its generally higher levels of employment overall, the aggregate labour participation rate for persons with disabilities in 2001 was 58.8% for men and 52.8% for women vs. 89.1% (males) and 77.8% (females) for their non-disabled counterparts (Government of Alberta, 2006). Fawcett (2000) observed that the poverty rate for women with disabilities who were employed full-time, full-year in Ontario was 8 per cent, but among women with disabilities in Ontario who were not employed at all, the poverty rate was 40 per cent – five times higher! Russell (2002) notes the continuing decline in the employment rates of persons with disabilities in the United States, even in periods of economic expansion and increasing employment levels within the population as a whole. From an international perspective, the situation is equally serious. As was noted at the 2002 Inter-Regional Consultative Expert Meeting on Disability Sensitive Policy Design and Evaluation (WorldEnable, 2002) “worldwide, the socioeconomic dynamics of  9 disability have tended to be similar among countries for a long period of time. People often tend to lose some or all of their rights to social and economic inclusion as a result of incurring a disability, which typically results in some degree of social and economic isolation and marginalization” (para. 2). Barnes (1999a) citing an array of mainly disabled writers, goes so far as to claim that without a radical restructuring of social policy in general, and within employment policy the concept of work in particular, there is little cause for optimism that the employment or economic situation of persons with disabilities will change substantially in the future. Hoff, Holsapple, Kennedy and Moseley (2009) note that the current global economic crisis is accentuating an already difficult employment picture for persons with disabilities. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (2010) reports that in 2009 the employment to population ratio (the proportion of the population that is employed) was 19.2% for persons with a disability, compared with 64.5% for individuals without a disability. The Bureau also reported that workers with a disability were more likely than those without to be employed on a part-time basis, and much more likely to be employed in service occupations than their nondisabled peers. Similarly, individuals with disabilities are far less likely to be employed in management, professional or similar occupations with greater remunerative possibilities. The importance of employment lies not only in the ‘taken for granted’ status of employment as a key element in the determination of self-worth in our society, but also in the very real correlation between employment status and poverty. Persons with disabilities in Canada face levels of poverty almost twice that of persons without disabilities (Canadian Association of Independent Living Centres, 2004), and employment is seen as a primary means for addressing this disparity. Indeed, recent key  10 social policy initiatives at both the federal and provincial levels have emphasized the importance of employment for persons with disabilities as a means of reducing poverty, an unsuccessful policy direction which appears to be gaining strength under the current Conservative federal government (Council of Canadians with Disabilities, 2008). Policy initiatives in the last decade at the provincial level, such as the British Columbia’s Employment Strategy for Persons with Disabilities (Government of British Columbia, 2003) and Manitoba Rewarding Work (Government of Manitoba, 2007) emphasize employment as a key mechanism for raising persons with disabilities out of poverty. 1.4 Relevance to Practice Prince (2001) notes “the history of citizenship for Canadians with disabilities is in large part a history of public policies and intergovernmental relations” (p. 791). Despite the fact that federal/provincial/territorial policies and agreements have historically played a critical role in the provision of employment supports and services to people with disabilities in Canada, little attention has been given to examining the development or impact of policy initiatives such as EAPD Multilateral framework. This is in part due to employment policy for persons with disabilities in Canada being, until recently, a relatively isolated subset in the area of disability policy development. Unlike other areas, such as health or transportation, where policy initiatives are often rolled into broader social policy directions aimed at the general population, the Canadian experience in employment policy for persons with disabilities has, as a rule, been very narrowly interpreted. As a result, few have looked at these policy frameworks, let alone the models of disability underpinning them, even though they are one of the primary national social  11 policy mechanisms for addressing the employment needs of persons with disabilities in Canada. My interest in this issue is, in part, a result of my current job responsibilities as the Director of the Intergovernmental Relations Branch – Strategic Corporate Services Division of Alberta Employment and Immigration. In this role, I oversee both policy analysis and strategic support to the Minister, Deputy Minister, and Assistant Deputy Ministers on key issues as they interact with their counterparts in the federal government and other provinces and territories. One of my areas of responsibility involves the negotiation, monitoring and evaluation of intergovernmental agreements impacting departmental programs and services for Albertans with disabilities. Although the policy initiatives reviewed in this study were developed prior to my assumption of this role, I have been privy to many of the discussions and decision-making processes underlying the development of similar provincial and national policy initiatives arising subsequent to the EAPD Multilateral framework. I also have extensive contact with stakeholders and advocates for persons with disabilities on both a regional and national level, many of whom are increasingly critical of the current approaches by government to the provision of employment supports for persons with disabilities. Prior to my current role in Intergovernmental Relations, I had spent nearly 20 years in direct service provision with people with disabilities. In that time, working within government, non-profit, and workers’ compensation systems, I have personally seen both the positive and negative impacts that can result as policy is interpreted and implemented. However, within my entire time in the public service or the vocational rehabilitation sector, I have rarely (if ever) encountered any challenges to the underlying  12 assumptions or models upon which the policies governing my practice and work environment were based. As someone whose professional training and professional practice has almost entirely been grounded in the medical and functional models of disability (to be discussed below), I was initially shocked and puzzled when adherents of other models of disability launched quite vociferous attacks on the principles underlying many of the major policy and program initiatives underlying my work. Over time, as I expanded my own knowledge base of other models and viewpoints of disability I began to question many of the assumptions and policies grounding my professional practice. It is this questioning, combined with the obvious failure of many of the current policies and practices intended to help persons with disabilities gain employment, which drives my interest in this area and centers my research for this dissertation.  13 2: POLICY CONTEXT Goldberg (2005) states that the first step in the critical discourse analysis of policy requires limiting the policy field in order to focus the analysis. This involves “… situating the policy in its discursive context and delineating the boundaries of the investigation. Once delineated, key actors/stakeholders, their interests and power relationships can be identified” (p. 103). In this study, the policy field is limited to the area of Canadian employment policy for persons with disabilities, and further limited to a set of policy documents generated either in conjunction with or under the auspices of the Employability Assistance for Persons with Disabilities (EAPD) policy initiative. The EAPD initiative has been identified as one of the key elements in national disability employment policy (National Educational Association of Disabled Students, 1998; Prince, 2001), as well as one of the major policy outcomes arising from work undertaken in support of the Federal/Provincial/Territorial Social Union Framework Agreement. This agreement, signed in 1999, commits federal, provincial, and territorial governments to work collaboratively to “strengthen Canada's social safety net, involve Canadians in the development of social programs and strengthen partnerships among governments” (Government of Canada, 2000, para. 1). Loewenson (2003) notes that “policy development processes are neither linear, simple nor always coherent. They often involve the concerted action of multiple agencies with differing interests and are generally influenced by a wide range of factors, not all of which are within the public domain” (para. 9). The policy discourses examined in this  14 study were generated at a time when a number of differing (and often conflicting) social and political factors were making their influences felt on the development of disability policy both globally and within the Canadian context. While this complexity makes the identification of all factors influencing the development of the EAPD policy framework almost impossible, there are some key elements whose influence can be more easily isolated. This chapter will examine a number of these environmental and contextual elements influencing the development of the policy texts. The chapter begins with a discussion of the concept of employability and the influence this concept has had on labour market policy, followed by an exploration of the history of disability employment policies in Canada. The latter discussion includes specific consideration of federal/provincial government disability policy as well as the perspectives of external stakeholders both within Canada and internationally. The next section in the chapter briefly summarizes the policy context behind the EAPD policy initiative, and the chapter concludes with a summary of the current policy environment and changes that have taken place since the initiation of the EAPD. 2.1 The Concept of Employability and People with Disabilities One key element of employment policy for persons with disabilities at both the national and international level has been the application of the concept of ‘employability’. Leggatt-Cook (2007) notes that while the term “employability” has been discussed since the early 20th century, it is only in the last two decades that concept has been actively applied to labour market and employment policy. McQuaid & Lindsay (2005) observed that in recent decades the concept of employability has played a crucial  15 role in informing labour market policy worldwide, both in terms of local, regional and national policy in numerous countries. The concept has also been applied when describing the objectives of economic strategies promoted by important supranational institutions such as the OECD, ILO, United Nations, etc. Indeed, the ubiquity with which the concept is used has resulted in the term acquiring a variety of meanings and applications within a range of different policy contexts, and has become a “buzzword” often applied to labour market and employment policy (Hillage & Pollard, 1998; McQuaid & Lindsay, 2005). 2.1.1 History of the Concept McQuaid & Lindsay (2005) trace the history of the concept of employability in terms of ‘waves’ of change in the meanings of the term. The first ‘wave’ comprised of a singular usage of the concept, defined as “dichotomic employability”, which essentially divided the population into two categories of people: the “employable” and the apparently “unemployable”. This conceptualization of employability was utilized from the early 1900’s until the late 1940’s with little attention paid to any nuances or differences influencing the dichotomy. ‘Employable’ simply referred to individuals considered to be ‘ready for work’, while ‘unemployable’ applied to those deemed ‘not ready for work’ and consequently in need of welfare or other social supports (Gazier, 2001). The second wave of meanings was popular in the 1950’s to the 1960’s, and centered on the attributes of the individual within the labour market. In particular, two definitions were popular, the ‘socio-medical’ and ‘manpower policy’ variants (Gazier, 2001). The socio-medical definition of employability “sought to establish the work  16 requirements necessitated by employment, and examined the distance between [them and] the existing work capabilities of the physically and/or mentally disadvantaged” (Leggatt-Cook, 2007, p. 13). The manpower policy definition was primarily used in the United States during the activist era of the 60’s, and while retaining the focus on the individuals’ physical capabilities, also added a focus on the social and educational capabilities of the individual (e.g. - level of educational qualifications, type of work experience, criminal records, etc). To this mix, McQuaid & Lindsay (2005) added a third definitional category, namely the ‘flow employability’ definition. Emerging out of French sociological literature in the 1960’s, this approach to defining employability focused “on the demand side and the accessibility of employment within local and national economies” (McQuaid & Lindsay, 2005). As such, it was less concerned with the individuals attributes than in the local, regional and national economic and labour market environments within which the individual operated. The third ‘wave’ of understanding the term employability appeared in the 1980’s and 1990’s, with the abandonment of the preceding conceptualizations and the progressive adaptation of three successive understandings of the term. These changes to the meaning of the term were premised both on developments within the global economy and on the increasing impact of ideological considerations in the development of labour market policy. McQuaid and Lindsay (2005) describe the three different variants as (1) ‘outcome-based’, labour market performance centered employability; (2) ‘initiative employability', with a focus on individual responsibility; and (3) 'interactive employability', which integrated a focus on individual adaptation to labour market realities with an acknowledgment that a number of social and structural factors also  17 influenced individual ability to access employment. Gazier (2001) and McQuaid & Lindsay (2005) argue that there has been a steady progression in the last 20 years in the usage of the three meanings listed above, and that, until recently, the interactive employability conceptualization has been dominant within labour market policy in advanced economies. Leggatt-Cook (2007) however, caution that the ‘third wave’ formulations of employability may not fully capture the impact of increasing changes to the economic and political environments of advanced Western economies. They speculate that these formulations are perhaps minimizing the extent to which dislocations caused by rapid technological developments, the onset of widespread globalization, and the continuing impact of neo-liberal economic thought are having on governments worldwide, and how they in turn utilize the concept of employability within national labour market policy. Further, the recent and sudden onset of the current world-wide economic slowdown has resulted in a dramatic expansion of direct interventions by national governments in terms of economic stimulus, regulation of the banking system, and the application of labour market policy to enhance the employability of citizens impacted by the global recession. 2.1.2 Current Applications of Employability in Labour Market Policy McQuaid & Lindsay (2005), citing Philpott (1998, 1999) suggest that radical changes in the world economy over the last three decades “inevitably leads to a two-part approach to employability policy—one focusing on activation and labour market attachment (or what Philpott calls 'access'), and the other focusing on 'up-skilling' the labour force through employability training and lifelong learning” (p. 203). The implication of this for labour market and employment policy, particularly for persons  18 with disabilities, is significant. Such an orientation can easily lead to a “kind of supply side fundamentalism” (Peck and Theodore, 2000, p. 729), which essentially attributes responsibility to the jobless individual for his/her situation and assumes that they simply lack the requisite skills, abilities or motivation to obtain and maintain employment. As will be discussed in detail in later chapters, certain models of disability place a primary emphasis on the individuals physical and employment related attributes as their primary focus. Such an application of the concept of employability in labour market policy would likely favour the influence of certain models over others during policy development. Within a Canadian context, Butterwick and Benjamin (2006) note a policy shift in recent years away from finding and placing unemployed workers into jobs, and towards an orientation that sees the enhancement of the individual’s employability as the primary objective of labour market policy. This shift in orientation has had significant policy implications, particularly for populations facing substantial barriers in the competitive labour market. The onus of responsibility has shifted away from state’s role in ensuring the availability of jobs for individuals, and towards a reliance on the marketplace to create jobs as an outgrowth of economic activity, with a corresponding responsibility on the individual to ensure that they have the necessary skills and attributes needed to convince employers to hire them. McQuaid & Lindsay (2005) point out that this shift in orientation can evoke “a 'traditional' reactionary understanding of unemployment, which seeks to blame the jobless individual's predicament upon his or her inadequacies, rather than acknowledging a lack of opportunity within the labour market” (p. 204). Leggatt-Cook (2007) argues that the Canadian policy discourse on employability is today increasingly centered on the need to forge closer ties among government,  19 business and education in order to ensure that Canada is competitive and successful in the global economy. As a result, government labour market policy approaches (strongly supported by the private sector) have increasingly retreated from the activist interventions in employment and unemployment often seen in Europe (e.g. statutory and regulatory restrictions on layoffs and firings, legislation promoting protection of workers’ rights, etc.) and towards a focus on the personal development and training of workers. Butterwick & Benjamin (2006) observed that “public policy now becomes focused on the domestic or private sphere, that is, the personal development and ‘inner life’ of individual workers” (p. 79). In terms of national Canadian disability policy, a focus on the employability of the individual has been a central element of recent policy initiatives. For example, Prince (2001) observes that among the principles grounding the EAPD policy framework examined in this study is an emphasis on direct support of employability, as well as a focus on individual needs. In this regard, Canadian disability employment policy has followed international trends, with a marked refocusing on the ‘upskilling’ of the individual to meet the needs of the employers, rather than direct government intervention to create jobs or ameliorate the harsher aspects of the competitive labour market (Butterwick & Benjamin, 2006, Gazier, 2006, Leggatt-Cook, 2007, McQuaid & Lindsay, 2005). 2.2 History of Employment Policy for People with Disabilities in Canada The need for some form of national policy response to the employment concerns of persons with disabilities has been recognized in Canada for over 50 years (Crichton &  20 Jongbloed, 1998). The first concerted efforts to address the employment concerns of persons with disabilities concentrated on injured workers, with the initiation of Workers’ Compensation legislation in Quebec in 1909 and Ontario in 1914. Subsequent to the First World War, further efforts were undertaken through federal policies and benefits intended to reintegrate and employ disabled veterans. However, these efforts were targeted only to specific populations of disabled individuals, identified as “deserving” of government assistance. Most individuals with disabilities were totally reliant on either personal resources or charity in finding employment, a situation that continued in the years leading up to the Second World War (Crichton & Jongbloed, 1998). The post-World War II influx of wounded and injured veterans combined with an increasing awareness of the needs of persons with disabilities led to federal initiatives to enhance the services and resources available. Neufeldt and Enns (2003) note that in the 1950’s the initial impetus for a more coordinated, national approach to disability issues arose from the dissatisfaction experienced by returning injured veterans. They expressed concerns over the nature and approach to treatment and rehabilitation provided by the federal Department of Veterans Affairs. Veterans felt that the existing services, heavily influenced by physician-centric and institution-based models dating back to the post- World War I era, offered little scope for rehabilitation or facilitating their return to the community. Veteran’s advocates joined with organizations representing other populations of persons with disabilities to push for more coordinated, responsive and national policy and programs. Jongbloed (2006) notes that initiatives such as the federal Blind Persons Act of 1951 and the federal Disabled Persons Act of 1956 were among the first of the post-war  21 national legislative efforts intended to assist persons with disabilities. Related legislative developments in the creation of the Canadian welfare state also occurred in other areas that affect people with disabilities, such as income support (Unemployment Insurance Act), health care (Hospital Insurance & Diagnostic Services Act), and pensions (Canada/Quebec Pension Plan, Canada Assistance Plan). Jongbloed (2006) also notes that broad scale social and health initiatives of this type were common from the 1940’s to the mid-1970’s. She attributes to a greater degree of comfort by the burgeoning middle classes with substantive initiatives to redistribute the countries wealth more evenly. However, none of the legislative and regulatory initiatives cited above specifically addressed employment. Employment concerns were first addressed from a national policy perspective with the passing of the Vocational Rehabilitation for Disabled Persons Act (VRDP) in 1961 (Government of Canada, 1985). When tracing the development of this initiative, Neufeldt and Enns (1993), place its beginning with a national conference on the rehabilitation of the physically disabled in 1951. They cite this as the first effort to bring together academics, practitioners, disability advocacy representatives and representatives from both the federal and provincial governments. This outcome of this conference included calls for the federal government to become more heavily involved in rehabilitation. They also cite the event as a primary impetus for the creation of the VRDP legislation. The Vocational Rehabilitation for Disabled Persons Act’s primary intent was to assist persons with disabilities lacking personal resources in accessing or maintaining themselves in the labour market (Crichton & Jongbloed, 1998). As noted earlier, the Act enabled provinces to recover 50% of their costs associated with educating or training  22 adults with disabilities. It was also a notable policy initiative in three aspects: (1) the broad scope and wide flexibility inherent within the policy (i.e. - there were no funding limits and a wide variety of services and programs were covered); (2) policy development activities were primarily driven by the federal government with input from provinces, and (3) there was active federal participation in program delivery as federal officials were involved in decision making at all levels including individual client services. Neufeldt and Enns (2003) noted that the VRDP initiative was both revolutionary and evolutionary. It was revolutionary in that it was the “first mechanism for federal provincial cost sharing of training and technical support to bring disabled people back into the labour force” (p. 47). It was also evolutionary as its development and implementation reflected the gradual acceptance by provinces of federal involvement in areas of provincial jurisdiction. However, this acceptance of a federal role by provinces was not whole-hearted. As Neufeldt and Enns (2003) also observed, the VRDP program began with an Order in Council in 1952 with legislation only tabled in 1961, an elapsed time span of ten years. Neufeldt and Enns believe that this delay speaks to a possible reluctance on the part of some provinces to participate, with the resulting need for lengthy negotiations and consideration. Despite this, the VRDP Act (slightly updated in 1985) served as the primary national and provincial policy vehicle for disability employment activities until the mid-1990s. While the VRDP Act served as a linchpin for disability employment policy through the 1960s, 1970s and 1980s, research and policy development efforts surrounding disability issues were not static during that time. Bickenbach (1993) notes that the cause of persons with disabilities was gaining increasing prominence both  23 nationally and internationally, particularly in the 1980’s, with the United Nations declaration of 1981 as the Year of the Disabled Person. Changes were also taking place regarding the role of advocacy within the community of persons with disabilities. In the 1950’s, 60’s and 70’s advocacy functions primarily rested within the ranks of national disability organizations such as Easter Seals, Canadian Paraplegic Association, and the Canadian National Institute for the Blind. However, the 1980’s marked the increasing empowerment of individuals with disabilities to advocate on their own behalf. This period also saw an increasing assertiveness on the part of the community of persons with disabilities to attempt to influence government policy development. McColl and Boyce (2003) cite the period from 1981 to the present as one in which the concept of disability and what it meant to the individual to be ‘disabled’ underwent a substantial shift. Citing Driedger (1989), McColl and Boyce (2003) argue that the very concept of disability has shifted from being considered a misfortune to an injustice; and that the responsibility for disability issues has shifted from the individual to society. They further argue that this shift had dramatic effects on the approach taken by advocates within the community of persons with disabilities. They moved away from a strong identification on the disability itself and towards an emphasis on the cultural assumptions about disability, and how attitudinal and socio-economic factors have an impact on society’s understanding of disability. Derksen, in a keynote address to the National Educational Association of Disabled Students (2004), summarized the growth of coherent lobbying to influence policy development by stakeholders within the community of persons with disabilities. He notes the development of national and provincial coalitions amongst organizations advocating for people with disabilities, where “strength in numbers derived  24 from the recognition that joining together in common bonds of understanding and experience, rather than remaining separated by differences” (para. 13). A number of other public policy initiatives relating to the status of persons with disabilities in Canada also took place during this time period. A major review of disability policy by the House of Commons Special Committee on the Disabled and Handicapped took place in 1981. The report of this Committee, entitled Obstacles: Report of the Special Parliamentary Committee on the Disabled and the Handicapped (Government of Canada, 1981) was intended to “identify the key obstacles faced by disabled persons in Canada, and to outline practical actions which will help to overcome these obstacles” (p. 3). The Obstacles document set forth a number of detailed recommendations on a number of issues, including education, skills training, and employment for people with disabilities. Bickenbach (1993) noted its importance in calling for a discrete branch of social policy activities relating to disability issues, and the transformation of those issues from an ill-defined collection of social problems to the object of detailed social policy analysis. Derksen (2004) describes the report as a major historical turning point in empowering the participation of the community of persons with disabilities in government policy development in Canada. Prince (2004a) observed that: The 1981 Obstacles Report observed that most federal decisions were taken without regard to their impact upon the lives of children, youth and adults with disabilities. Accordingly, the Committee recommended that the federal government establish a review at the cabinet level similar to that for the Status of Women, which would ensure ongoing consideration of the concerns of people with disabilities, including children and their families. The government's response  25 at the time was one of general interest and an expressed intention to explore implementing the proposal (p. 68). In 1985, legislation was tabled to address one of the major recommendations of the Obstacles report regarding the employment for persons with disabilities. This legislation, the Employment Equity Act (Government of Canada, 1985), provided for the establishment of employment equity programs in all corporations under federal jurisdiction, including crown corporations with 100 or more employees. In conjunction with the 1985 updating of the Vocational Rehabilitation for Disabled Persons Act, it was hoped that significant advancements could be made in the employment of persons with disabilities. Unfortunately, the impact of the legislation, particularly the Employment Equity Act, was disappointing. In their review of the impact of the Employment Equity Act, Wallace and Currie (1996) noted that despite the laudable intentions of the Act, “… the measures appear to have had very little impact in terms of increasing the employment of persons with disabilities” (para., 6). They go on to identify several possible reasons for the relative ineffectiveness of the legislation, including a lack of effective monitoring mechanisms and a lack of effective sanctions for noncompliance. While amendments to the Act were undertaken in 1994 to address some of these concerns, the employment situation of persons with disabilities has not noticeably improved despite these legislative initiatives. By the early 1990s it was becoming increasingly apparent that the employment status of persons with disabilities was not improving significantly under existing legislation and policy. A report commissioned by the federal government, entitled A  26 Consensus for Action: The Economic Integration of Disabled Persons (Government of Canada, 1990) referenced the significant gaps between expectations of persons with disabilities and actions being taken by governments, with particular reference to the lack of consistent and coordinated policy. Recognition of the failings of existing policy responses, combined with mounting concerns by disability advocates, changes in government fiscal and social policies, and increasing demands by provincial governments for greater autonomy were creating the impetus for a new approach. This radically changed national policy responses to disability employment issues in Canada. The academic community has only lately begun to examine the issue of disability policy in Canada. Bickenbach (1993) undertook one of the first major examinations of disability policy in Canada, and in particular examined how different models of defining disability have had an impact on policies to enhance employability for people with disability. He was also one of the first to note and review the major policy implications inherent in the federal policy documents then being generated, such as the Obstacles Report (Government of Canada, 1981). Crichton & Jongbloed (1998) followed Bickenbach’s groundbreaking analysis some years later, recognizing that developments in the mid-1990’s had superseded some of Bickenbach’s suppositions that the policies and their implications needed to be revisited. Their major review of disability and social policy in Canada provided insights into both the current state of policy development in the country as well as a historical context for the evolution of disability policy. Though they reviewed employment policy as merely one component of disability policy within the country, they did provide an overview of how disability employment policy had evolved in Canada to that point. McColl and Jongbloed (2006) have since produced an  27 updated overview of disability policy in Canada, though again with only limited reference to employment issues. Puttee (2002) undertook an examination of disability policy in Canada from the perspective of intergovernmental relationships. He also undertook an analysis of recent developments in Canadian disability policy, particularly the evolution (and subsequent partial collapse) of the cooperative federalism approach initiated by the Chrétien government. Puttee also undertook an analysis of the concurrent impact of federal and provincial fiscal restraint measures on disability policy. Prince (2001, 2004a, 2004b, 2005) has examined Canadian disability policy from a number of perspectives including employment, and is one of the few who has directly discussed the development and implications of the EAPD policy initiative. Other studies have also looked at disability employment policy, but from more narrow perspectives. For example, Pedlar and Hutchinson (2000) explored the potentially far reaching consequences of the major restructuring of federal and provincial human services ministries and programs in the 1990’s. Likewise, Campolieti and Lavis (2000) examined the public and private programs which constituted the "income safety net” for persons with disabilities from the 1970’s to the mid-1990’s, and the potential impact of changes undertaken in the name of fiscal sustainability, a major factor in the operationalization of EAPD. 2.3 Federal/Provincial/Territorial Government Approaches to Disability Policy Federal, provincial, and territorial governments have generated large numbers of studies, policy reviews, evaluations, and other documents in the area of disability policy in general and disability employment policy in particular. The federal government in  28 particular has undertaken numerous studies and examinations that attempt to document the needs and issues of Canadians with disabilities. These efforts have generated a large number of policy recommendations, reports, issue papers, green papers, white papers, and other documents. Examples of major policy documents from the 1980’s and early 1990’s include the previously cited 1981 Obstacles Report (Government of Canada, 1981) and the Consensus for Action: The Economic Integration of Disabled Persons report (Government of Canada, 1990) which highlighted the failings of existing policy responses. In 1996, the Federal Task Force on Disability Issues released a report entitled Equal Citizenship for Canadians with Disabilities: The Will to Act (Government of Canada, 1996a). This report explored many aspects of the concept of citizenship and equal rights for persons with disabilities, including the changing nature of federal- provincial dynamics and the importance of work and labour market integration for Canadians with disabilities. Also in 1996, a report commissioned by the federal government (Fawcett, 1996) entitled Living with Disability in Canada: An Economic Portrait examined both the rate and types of labour market participation by Canadians with disabilities. Also cited earlier and examined in detail in this thesis is the national vision paper In Unison: A Canadian Approach to Disability Issues (Government of Canada, 1998c). This paper was drafted to be a focal point for Canadian social policy development addressing the economic and income support needs of persons with disabilities. This work was complemented by the Future Directions to Address Disability Issues for the Government of Canada: Working Together for Full Citizenship report (Government of  29 Canada, 1999b). The document focused on the need for inclusion of persons with disabilities into federal disability policy planning, while the Lessons Learned from the Evaluation of Disability Policy and Programs report (Government of Canada, 1999a) provided a review of evaluation information policies and programs from a variety of sources in Canada and several other countries. An update of the In Unison document, entitled In Unison 2000 (Government of Canada, 2000a) addressed changes that had taken place in federal/provincial/territorial approaches to service delivery for persons with disabilities since the publication of the original vision paper. In 2001 the federal government sponsored the Caledon Institute to develop a Proposal for a National Disability Supports Initiative (Caledon Institute for Social Policy, 2001), which explored the possibility of a new and major initiative to develop a comprehensive support system for persons with disabilities. Also in 2001, the Government of Canada released the findings of the Participation and Activity Limitation Survey (PALS). Entitled Disability in Canada: A 2001 Profile (Government of Canada, 2001), this survey gathered statistical information on children (aged 14 and under) and adults (aged 15 and over) in Canada who had a disability. The data in this report remains a critical source of demographic and economic (including employment) data on Canadians with disabilities for researchers and policy makers. A series of reports entitled Advancing the Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities (Government of Canada, 2002a) attempted to capture the current concerns of Canadians with disabilities, especially the impact of fiscal restraint measures. In 2003 the Government of Canada released a report entitled Defining Disability: A Complex Issue (Government of Canada, 2003c). This report illustrated and clarified the complex and  30 multi-dimensional nature of the concept of disability found in policy, programs and benefits in Canada, while also providing a review of and framework for understanding disability definitions in key Government of Canada initiatives. In 2004 the Government of Canada released a two-part study (statistical and qualitative) entitled Canadian Attitudes Towards Disability Issues (Government of Canada, 2004b). This study gauged the attitudes of Canadians towards persons with disabilities, their awareness of disability- related issues, and how these compare between individuals with and without disabilities. Also in 2004, the Federal-Provincial-Territorial Ministers Responsible for Social Services commissioned a “gap analysis” to gather information on whether persons with disabilities in Canada have adequate access to the supports and services needed for full inclusion (Government of Canada, 2004c). This report provided a basic profile of the requirements and unmet needs for disability supports. In 2004, the Government of Canada released the first of a series of annual reports entitled Advancing the Inclusion of People with Disabilities (Government of Canada, 2004d, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010), in which the federal government provides an overview of key initiatives undertaken by different federal departments and agencies (either individually or in collaboration) in the reported fiscal year. These reports include a reference to federal initiatives within the area of employment and skills training for persons with disabilities. Similar types of documents have also been generated at the provincial level. For example, the Alberta Disability Strategy (Alberta Premier's Council on the Status of Persons with Disabilities, 2002) undertook a range of policy recommendations to enhance the employability of persons with disabilities. The document Full Citizenship: A Manitoba Provincial Strategy on Disability (Government of Manitoba, 2001) also  31 explored employment issues within the context of overall disability policy within the province, and the 2002 Government of British Columbia document Employment Strategies for Persons with Disabilities (Government of British Columbia, 2002) examined changes to provincial employment supports for persons with disabilities. Another example can be seen in the June 2006 Government of Newfoundland and Labrador guiding document for a new poverty reduction strategy. Entitled Reducing Poverty: An Action Plan for Newfoundland and Labrador (Government of Newfoundland and Labrador, 2006), this policy strategy outlined a proposed set of approaches to prevent, reduce and alleviate poverty amongst a variety of populations in Newfoundland and Labrador, including individuals with disabilities. These documents, although generated in many cases by governments of different political persuasions (with perhaps the exception of the British Columbia strategy document) have tended to promote similar values and render similar policy recommendations as those generated by their federal counterparts. 2.3.1 Constitutional and Jurisdictional Authority Disability policy in Canada is both shaped and influenced by the constitutional division of powers between the Government of Canada and the provinces and, to a lesser degree, the territories. Most national disability policy initiatives (particularly those related to disability employment policy) are shaped by this complex set of interactions. Constitutionally, the authority and responsibility for the delivery of services to persons with disabilities is almost exclusively a provincial responsibility. However, through using its broader fiscal resources, the federal government has traditionally yielded considerable influence in shaping disability policy.  32 The governing of Canada is based upon a federal system of government, consisting of a national (federal) government and governments for each province and territory. Each body of government, federal, provincial and territorial, possesses certain powers and areas of jurisdiction. Along with jurisdictional responsibility, each level of government also has certain fiscal powers, most importantly in the area of taxation and revenue generation. Provinces have traditionally had jurisdiction over most areas considered within the realm of disability policy, such as health, education, employment, social services and income security for citizens with disabilities. Provinces (and more recently territories) have argued that the problem with this constitutional arrangement is that the provinces were allotted those areas that are the most costly to govern, while the federal government was given the highest level of fiscal powers. Hence, while the federal government has the most access to financial resources, the provinces have the most costly responsibilities (Disability and Information Technologies Research Alliance, 2006). This dynamic has been at play within F/P/T relations since the beginning of confederation, but gained greater prominence with the development of the post-World War II welfare state (Prince, 2008). As a result, the federal government has used its fiscal power to influence disability policy despite its limited jurisdictional authority. 2.3.2 Collaborative Federalism Prince (2002a) identifies one key element within the web of relationships between the various orders of government to be of critical importance in the development of the EAPD framework. This element, collaborative federalism, is a major theme in many of the documents examined in this study. For example, within the In Unison vision paper, direct or implied references to collaborative federalism were repeatedly identified within  33 the first eight paragraphs of the preamble alone. Similar references to the concept are also present in both the Multilateral and Bilateral Agreements as well. In his examination of Canadian federalism and disability policy, (Prince (2001) identifies the concept of collaborative federalism as one of the key elements impacting recent disability policy initiatives. Prince defines collaborative federalism (also referred to as co-operative, executive, or administrative federalism) as denoting “…mutual interdependence, joint problem solving among officials, and little or no hierarchy in working relations between the two orders of government in Canada” (p. 794). Cameron and Simeon (2002), in their review of Canadian F/P/T intergovernmental relations over the last 50 years, argue that collaborative federalism has been at the heart of intergovernmental relations between the federal government and provinces/territories and was a major factor in the creation of the Canadian welfare state. They also argue that Canadian intergovernmental relationships have been marked by a steady progression in the development of F/P/T mechanisms representative of the concept of collaborative federalism. 2.3.3 Evolution of Canadian Disability Employment Policy In setting the federal/provincial intergovernmental context for the EAPD policy framework, the beginnings can be seen in the period running from the immediate post- war era to the mid-1960s, which was defined by an activist agenda on the part of the federal government (Jongbloed, 2003; Prince, 2001). The era was one in which provincial governments in large part tolerated this agenda, as much of the policy design work and funding came from Ottawa (Cameron & Simeon, 2002) and a number of major national disability policy initiatives were undertaken during this time. In his review of the  34 evolution of the VRDP and EAPD policy initiatives, Prince (2001, 2002a) states that the intergovernmental process began with the formation of a National Advisory Committee on the Rehabilitation of Disabled Persons in 1951. The process expanded in 1953 when Cabinet authorized the federal Minister of Labour to enter into agreements with the provinces for developing rehabilitation activities for disabled persons. This intergovernmental process was ultimately codified in the Vocational Rehabilitation of Disabled Persons Act (Fawcett, 2000). As noted earlier, the Act enabled the provinces to recover 50% of vocational training costs related to individuals with disabilities. The other significant legislation arising from this and similar process was the Canada Pension Plan Act (Russell, 2002), which resulted from a federal–provincial agreement to provide a national system of social insurance, one element of which was a disability pension. Prince (2001) observed that a key selling point was Ottawa’s offer to provinces/territories of an open-ended financial offer, dependent only on how much provinces/territories wished to spend on these rehabilitation services. All the provinces entered into two or three-year renewable agreements with Ottawa, with the exception of the Government of Quebec, which eventually did elect to participate in VRDP in the late 1980s. In the 1970’s, a change in orientation began to appear in the area of national disability policy. Jongbloed (2003) noted that in 1977, the federal government introduced the Federal–Provincial Fiscal Arrangements and Established Programs Financing Regulations, intended to control costs brought about by open-ended, federal–provincial matching grants in programs such as VRDP. Guest (1980), as cited by Jongbloed (2003) observed that by the 1970’s there was increasing ambivalence about general income  35 support for those in need. There were numerous factors at play surrounding this ambivalence. Foremost, Jongbloed (2003) contends that Canada’s welfare state has always been a middle class construction, arising out of the middle classes’ acceptance of the importance of distributing the country’s wealth more evenly. Hence, income support, training and health programs were not only intended to meet the needs of disadvantaged Canadians, but more importantly “…to ensure that all Canadians had access to education and healthcare services through redistribution of resources” (Jongbloed, 2003, p. 204). In this regard, the Canadian welfare state was less an altruistic construct and more a means by which the needs of the politically powerful middle class were addressed while, to a lesser degree, also addressing the needs of the disadvantaged populations within Canadian society. The difficulty was and is, of course, the vulnerability of policies and programs generated by the state should the social or political dynamic (i.e. – the needs and/or desires of the dominant political class) shift. Prince (2002a) argues that various types of shifts took place in the 1990’s. Friendly (2000) likewise states that the terrain of Canadian federalism, especially as far as federal/provincial understandings of the concept, shifted dramatically in the 1990’s. Johns, O’Reilly and Inwood (2006) point out that this shift has resulted in a range of pressures being placed on intergovernmental processes. Prince (2001, 2002a) identifies two particular catalysts for these shifts. The first was a major restructuring to federal/provincial funding and cost sharing arrangements for disability program/services which took place in the early to mid-1990’s. In the particular, this period saw the development and implementation (or imposition) of the Canadian Health and Social Transfer (CHST). The second is the development of the Canadian Social Union.  36 2.3.4 Federal – Provincial Relations Prince (2002a) notes that “the disability policy field in Canada is a dense network of intergovernmental agreements” (p. 24). National disability employment policy in particular is shaped by a set of complex interactions between the provinces and the federal government. Constitutionally, the authority and responsibility for the delivery of services to persons with disabilities is almost exclusively a provincial responsibility. However, the federal government has served as a major source of funding and resources for these services. The governing of Canada is based upon a federal system, consisting of a national (federal) government and governments for each province and territory. Each body of government, central, provincial and territorial are given certain powers and areas of jurisdiction. Along with jurisdictional responsibility, each level of government also has certain fiscal powers, most importantly in the area of taxation and revenue generation. Provinces have traditionally had jurisdiction over most areas considered within the realm of disability policy, such as health, education, employment, social services and income security. Provinces (and more recently territories) have argued that the problem with this constitutional arrangement is that the provinces were allotted those areas that are the most costly to govern, while the federal government was given the highest level of fiscal powers. Hence, while the federal government has the most access to financial resources, the provinces have the most costly responsibilities (Disability and Information Technologies Research Alliance, 2006). This dynamic has been at play within F/P/T relations out since the beginning of confederation, but gained greater prominence with the development of the post-World War II welfare state (M. Prince, 2008). As a result,  37 the federal government has used its fiscal power to influence disability policy despite its limited jurisdictional authority. Prince (2002a), identifies one key element within the web of relationships between the various orders of government to be of critical importance in the development of the EAPD framework. This element, collaborative federalism, is a major theme in many of the documents examined in this study (e.g. - within the In Unison vision paper, direct or implied references to collaborative federalism were repeatedly identified within the first eight paragraphs of the Preamble alone). Similar (if not always as overt) references to the concept are also present in both the Multilateral and Bilateral Agreements as well. In setting the federal/provincial intergovernmental context for the EAPD policy framework, the beginnings can be seen in the period running from the immediate post- World War II era to the mid-1960’s, which was defined by an activist agenda on the part of the federal government (Jongbloed, 2003; Prince, 2001). The era was one in which provincial governments in large part tolerated this agenda, given that much of the policy design work and funding came from Ottawa (Cameron & Simeon, 2002). Also, a number of major national disability policy initiatives were undertaken during this time. Prince ‘s (2001, 2002a) review of the evolution of the VRDP and EAPD policy initiatives states that the process began with the formation of a National Advisory Committee on the Rehabilitation of Disabled Persons in 1951. This policy process expanded in 1953 when Cabinet authorized the federal Minister of Labour to enter into agreements with the provinces for developing rehabilitation activities for disabled persons. This intergovernmental process was later codified in the Vocational Rehabilitation of Disabled  38 Persons Act [VRDP] (1961). The VRDP Act enabled the provinces to recover 50% of vocational training costs related to individuals with disabilities. Prince (2001) observed that Ottawa essentially offered provinces and territories an open-ended financial arrangement, dependent only on how much they wished to spend. All the provinces entered into two or three-year renewable agreements with Ottawa, with the exception of the Government of Quebec. However, in the late 1980’s Quebec did elect to participate. In the 1970s, a change in orientation began to appear in the area of national disability policy. Jongbloed (2003) noted that in 1977 the federal government introduced the Federal–Provincial Fiscal Arrangements and Established Programs Financing Regulations, which were intended to control costs brought about by open-ended, federal– provincial matching grants in programs such as VRDP. Guest (1980), as cited by Jongbloed (2003), also observed that by the 1970’s there was increasing ambivalence within governments at both the federal and provincial levels about general income support for those in need. Jongbloed (2003) contends that Canada’s welfare state was a middle class construction, arising from of the middle classes’ acceptance of the importance of distributing the country’s wealth more evenly. Hence, income support, training and health programs were not only intended to meet the needs of disadvantaged Canadians, but more importantly “…to ensure that all Canadians had access to education and healthcare services through redistribution of resources” (Jongbloed, 2003, p. 204). Hence, the Canadian welfare state was less an altruistic construct than a means by which the needs of the politically powerful middle class were addressed while, to a lesser degree, also addressing the needs of the disadvantaged populations within Canadian society. The difficulty was (and is) that policies and programs generated by the state  39 within such a context are vulnerable should the social or political dynamic (i.e. – the needs and/or desires of the dominant political class) shift. Prince (2002a) argues that this very type of shift took place in the 1990’s. Within both federal and provincial governments, regardless of political affiliation, a profound ideological change took place. This change moved away from a perspective supporting an activist social agenda by the state and overt federal involvement in social policy development. Instead, governments moved towards a perspective emphasizing individual responsibility and the constitutional pre-eminence of provincial governments in the area of social policy. Friendly (2000) likewise argues that the terrain of Canadian federalism, especially as pertaining to federal/provincial interactions, shifted dramatically in the 1990’s. Johns, O’Reilly and Inwood (2006) point out that this shift resulted in a range of pressures being placed on intergovernmental processes. 2.3.5 Changes to Federal – Provincial Funding Arrangements From the 1950’s to the 1980’s, a number of federal-provincial cost-sharing arrangements developed to ensure the equitable provision of social/health programs and services to citizens across Canada, including the Canada Pension Plan (CPP) and the Canada Assistance Plan (CAP). From a disability policy perspective, the CAP was perhaps one of the most significant, being a multilateral intergovernmental agreement that consolidated a number of older welfare programs, which included several targeted towards Canadians with disabilities. In terms of employment policy for persons with disabilities, the primary vehicle was the Vocational Rehabilitation Program for Disabled Persons (VRDP) program. Key elements of this initiative were that federal funding provided to provinces was open-ended, and that the federal government would reimburse  40 provinces 50% of all expenditures covered under VRDP. Further, the scope of the initiative allowed for coverage of a wide range of programs services, including areas addressing physical rehabilitation and assistance to populations of persons with disabilities who were unlikely to achieve economic self-sufficiency or attachment to competitive employment (e.g. participants in sheltered workshops). Prince (2002a) suggests that programs such the CAP and VRDP represent the “institutional infrastructure of collaborative federalism” (p. 36) and manifested themselves through consultation, negotiation and coordination, administrative bilateral agreements with provinces and cost-sharing agreements for programs and services. Such institutional arrangements were put at risk, however, by federal responses to budgetary pressures in the early and mid-1990s. Friendly (2000) notes that in 1994-95 the federal government responded to deteriorating revenue/debt ratios by implementing severe cutbacks in the federal public service, downloaded the costs of government programs to provinces via a massive slashing of transfer payments, and privatized many other services. From an intergovernmental perspective, the federal approach was to move away from the consultative and collaborative model described above and towards a more unilateral approach, wherein the federal government unilaterally made changes or proposed amendments to existing federal funding transfer mechanisms. Friendly (2000) believes that the federal fiscal policies of the mid-1990s marked the beginning of the federal governments withdrawal from having a pronounced role in the shaping of national social policy through use of its spending power, and marked the end of a 30 year reign of federal activism in Canadian social policy.  41 The federal imposition in 1995 of unilateral fiscal policies also helped set the stage for the development of the EAPD Multilateral framework. The parameters and precedents established by the federal actions generated serious conflict between provinces/territories and the federal government, culminating in legal challenges going all the way to the Supreme Court, which ruled in the federal governments favour. Such actions also integrated into the FPT policy process the strong influence of federal and provincial/territorial fiscal and budgetary concerns which, in turn, inserted an adversarial element into FPT discussions in areas such as disability policy, where it had previously been somewhat rare. Citing Bach & Rioux (1996), Prince (2002b) also contends that there was a subsequent de-emphasis in the role of the national government “in managing and encouraging a national discussion on comprehensive social policy in which public policy and welfare state provision would be critically examined from the perspective of universal human rights” (p. 50). 2.3.6 The Social Union While, as noted above, the imposition of the Canadian Health and Social Transfer (CHST) in the 1990’s by the federal government did add a strong element of conflict and animosity to FPT relations, not all elements of relations between provinces/territories remained rancorous. Efforts continued between the two levels of government to develop mechanisms for joint progress on social policy issues. These efforts started with the establishment of the provincial Ministerial Council on Social Policy Reform and Renewal in 1995, whose report to the Premiers recommended that provinces and territories “create a national agenda for social policy reform and renewal, which is supported by all First Ministers” (Ministerial Council on Social Policy Reform, 1995, p. 1). In 1996 the federal  42 Throne Speech built on recommendations from the Ministerial Council, suggesting that the federal government “might be willing to discuss how to improve Canada’s child support system as a joint initiative with the provinces” (Friendly, 2000, p. 23), an initiative that by 1998 had evolved into the National Child Benefit (NCB). In the disability policy field, a similar process evolved, in this case with the EAPD Policy initiative. Work had been ongoing since the late 1980s on possible improvements to the VRDP program. While the capping of federal VRDP contributions in 1995 as part of federal cost reduction measures added an element of tension to the intergovernmental mix, in April, 1996 provincial and territorial ministers for social services invited their federal counterpart to participate as a full partner in jointly developing integrated programs for people with disabilities (Prince, 2002a). Employment was just one of the disability policy areas examined over the period of 1996-1999. The EAPD Multilateral framework was one of the few FPT policy initiatives to come to fruition through the process, one of the very few that overtly referenced the Social Union as a significant influence on the policy development process. The "Social Union" initiative was intended as an umbrella mechanism under which FPT governments could concentrate their efforts to renew and modernize Canadian social policy. It focused on “… the pan-Canadian dimension of health and social policy systems, the linkages between the social and economic unions, and the recognition that reform is best achieved in partnership among provinces, territories and the Government of Canada” (Federal-Provincial-Territorial Council on Social Policy Renewal, 2009, para., 1). On February 4 1999, the federal government and nine provincial governments signed the Framework to Improve the Social Union for  43 Canadians (Government of Canada, 1999c). First Ministers had previously created the Federal-Provincial-Territorial Council on Social Policy Renewal in 1996, and upon the signing of the Framework directed it to guide the Social Union initiative. The role of the Council was to monitor work on overarching social policy issues and coordinate/support "sectoral" councils that examine broad reaching policy concerns issues such as social supports for children and persons with disabilities. At present, the Council is co-chaired by the Federal Minister of Human Resources and Social Development Canada and a rotating provincial/territorial minister responsible for social services. The primary objective of the Social Union initiative was to reform and renew Canada's system of social services and the federal and provincial/territorial governments reached a broad consensus that the first priorities should be children in poverty and persons with disabilities. Both the NCB and EAPD were developed in large part in response to this consensus. 2.4 Community Stakeholders and Disability Employment Policy An examination of the role of the community of persons with disabilities and their advocates in the development of EAPD Multilateral framework must consider both the historical context of their involvement and the direct role they have taken in the development of the documents. The former is important given the evolution of this role over the last 50 years. During the 1950s, external consultative efforts by governments on disability policy tended to be focused primarily on academics, professionals and others involved in the delivery of services to people with disabilities. As noted previously, the National Advisory Committee on the Rehabilitation of Disabled Persons was formed in 1951. It was composed of 37 members representing the federal and provincial  44 governments, health and welfare voluntary agencies, the medical profession, employers, organized labour and universities. Interestingly however, representatives from disability groups themselves were not identified as warranting designated membership on the Committee (Prince, 2001, 2002a). Occasionally, specific populations of persons with disabilities and their advocacy organizations (e.g. – Canadian National Institute for the Blind, Canadian Paraplegic Association) were able to make their voices heard in the development of national legislation and policy, such as the War Veteran’s Allowance Act of 1930 (Neary, 2009) or the Blind Persons Rights Act of 1952 (Government of Canada, 1952). Generally, however, the dominant discourses surrounding disability policy occurred without substantial participation by the community of people with disabilities. This exclusionary approach began to change in the 1970s. Jongbloed (2003) cites the development of human rights organizations with strong interests in legal and policy issues (e.g. – the formation of ex-psychiatric patients rights groups in Vancouver) as the first steps of politicization within the various communities of Canadians with disabilities. This was followed by the development of cross-disability advocacy organizations with active political agendas, such as the Coalition of Provincial Organizations of the Handicapped, formed in 1977. Jongbloed (2003), citing Dreidger (1990) argues that these organizations changed the nature of interactions between governments and the Canadians with disabilities. The prominence given to the International Year of Disabled Persons in 1981, and the introduction of the Charter of Rights and Freedoms in 1982 resulted in increased responsiveness by governments, particularly at the federal level. Political activism by disability advocacy organizations in Canada continued throughout the 1980’s. This can be seen most notably in their participation during the development of  45 the Obstacles (Government of Canada, 1981) report. With its emphasis on the three interlocking goals of people with disabilities: (1) to be treated with respect, (2) to have the right to control their fate, and (3) to have opportunities to participate in all aspects of Canadian society, the report reflects many of the issues and agendas emphasized by the communities and their advocates (Bickenbach, 1993; Jongbloed, 2003). Other studies and papers examining specific aspects or issues in disability policy have been undertaken by independent research organizations, think tanks, and advocacy organizations, often at the behest of various levels of government. Many of these touch on issues relating to employment for persons with disabilities. The Roeher Institute (2001b) examined disability supports within the context of women’s equality, the Caledon Institute (1997) examined the impact of income support systems in place for persons with disabilities and their impact on employment, and the Canadian Council on Social Development (2004) undertook an examination of workers with disabilities and their current status in the workplace. At a provincial level, the Ontario Income Security Advocacy Centre (Fraser, Wilkey & Frenschkowsky, 2003) completed a study of the Ontario Disability Support program. More recently, the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives undertook a detailed study of welfare recipients in BC who are expected to work (Klien & Pulkingham, 2008). They concluded that current BC government welfare reforms were clearly unsuccessful. Indeed, as one senior official with a major disability advocacy organization pointed out in private discussions with the author in an off the record conversation, rarely has an issue been examined in such depth by so many different governments and organizations to such little effect.  46 2.5 International Perspectives on Disability Employment Policy From an international perspective, there have been a limited number of studies examining the impact of disability employment policies and programs from a multi- national perspective. However, differences in governance, culture, and economic development between countries make such comparisons challenging. For example, the legislative and policy responses to disability employment issues in the United States and Canada differ radically. Canada has no equivalent to the Americans with Disabilities Act (Government of the United States, 1990), and the influence and control of state governments over disability policy is much less than their provincial counterparts in Canada (Gerber & Price, 2004). Even within other first world countries with advanced social-welfare systems, governance differences can be so substantial so as to challenge the validity of cross-national comparisons. For example, Tuominen and Laitinen-Kuikka (2003) identified three regime types within the European Union: liberal, conservative and social democratic, based on a clustering of countries along three dimensions of variability, state-market relations, stratification and social rights. They observed significant differences between countries, in particular the different philosophical and ideological approaches to disability employment policy, especially regarding the degree to which persons with disabilities should be able to make their living independent of pure market forces. These were found to vary greatly among European countries, emphasizing the difficulties in making trans-national comparisons and suggesting that caution should be undertaken in interpreting data based on such comparisons or drawing conclusions from it.  47 Corden and Thornton (2001) attempted to address this difficulty in their comprehensive review of international research on policies, programs, and interventions intended to assist persons with disabilities in accessing, sustaining, or maintaining employment. The principle aspects of the study centered on an examination of program evaluations of identified national policy initiatives in five countries, each selected on the basis of benefit structures seen as not dissimilar to that of the UK: (e.g. - USA, Canada, Ireland, Australia and New Zealand). Bruyere (1999) undertook a comparison of the employment policy provisions of major disability policy initiatives in the United States, Great Britain, and Northern Ireland through a major survey of employers within those jurisdictions. It is argued that the similarities in benefit structures and governance that made such comparisons useful. Studies by quasi-governmental organizations or international NGO’s on employment policy for persons with disabilities have also been undertaken. In 2003 the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (2003) released a major study examining employment policies for persons with disabilities in over 30 industrialized countries. The International Labour Organization (ILO), in collaboration with the Policy and Research Unit at the University of York, conducted a research project on job retention and return to work policies and practices for persons with disabilities in Canada, France, Germany, the Netherlands, New Zealand, Sweden, the United Kingdom and the United States (International Labour Organization, 1999). This study noted similarities and differences in national approaches to disability employment policy and the importance of cultural considerations in the examination of this area. Thornton & Lunt (1998) identify a number of factors influencing disability policy  48 in the 1990s, including “education, health, housing, transport - as well as discussions around anti-discrimination and human rights legislation that embrace disability on a number of fronts” (p. 22). They also cite the increasing politicizing of disability issues across countries that has “highlighted notions of disadvantage and exclusion and has been contributory factor to the 'soup' of policy change” (p. 23). Interestingly, Thornton & Lunt (1998) identify the elevation of employment issues as a major development in global approaches to disability policy. They note that “national policy-makers are increasingly looking cross-nationally for ‘solutions’ to the ‘problems’ of employment of disabled people, and disabled people and their allies are drawing on experience elsewhere to promote, and sometimes achieve, radical change nationally” (p. 26). McCabe (2007) likewise observes that while policy makers always operate from within their own political, social and cultural contexts, there is increasing evidence that they will look beyond these contexts for policy ideas, and that examples of international policy transfer and other related  concepts are becoming more common in disability policy development. Price, Radio & Toga (1999) have identified several global trends which could have influenced Canadian disability policy in the late 1990’s and early 2000’s. Chief among these was an increasing recognition of disability policy issues within international bodies such as the United Nations, International Labour Organization (ILO), World Health Organization (WHO), along with the placement of disability issues on the United Nations social agenda. Price et al (1999) also argue that: There has been a “major shift in the philosophical value system underpinning disability initiatives, from a viewpoint which locates disability within the individual and focuses on the need for amelioration or rehabilitation, to a human  49 rights framework which perceives individuals with disabilities as persons with rights and opportunities equal to those of non-disabled members of their communities. The onus is on society to accept diversity in its members, and to make the institutional changes necessary to achieve this outcome for disabled citizens (para. 2). Another contributory influence from a global perspective could be the increasing acceptance among policy makers worldwide of neoliberal ideologies emphasizing the importance of maximizing the economic self-sufficiency of all individuals as a core element of social policy. Horton (2007) argues that one popular view of globalization stresses the role of policy choices associated with a broader program of neoliberal reforms, and that global social policy influences are marked by a general shift towards market-oriented neo-liberalism. In this context, disability policy, like other aspects of social policy, emphasizes “…a (new) orthodoxy of individual responsibility and the “emergency” safety net - thus replacing collective provision through a more residualist welfare state … in which individuals are required to assume the status of being the subjects of their own lives – the entrepreneurial self” (p. 1). Larner (2000) notes that the pervasive adaptation and application of the concepts of neo-liberal ideology in social policy by governments of differing political stripes throughout the world speaks volumes as to the degree that the preference for market mechanisms as a means of ensuring social well-being is now imbedded in the policy making agenda of governments throughout the world. Larner (2000), citing Brodie (1996). goes on to note that despite questionable empirical claims and a lack of intellectual rigour for the neo-liberal policy agenda, the ideology has successfully changed “public expectations about citizenship entitlements,  50 the collective provision of social needs, and the efficacy of the welfare state” (p. 7). Citing Hall’s (1988) analysis of the Thatcher regime, Larner (2000) identifies the effectiveness of neo-liberal ideology from a policy perspective as lying in “its ability to constitute subject positions from which its discourses about the world made sense to people in a range of different social positions” (p. 8), thus changing the currency of political thought and argument. In essence, neo-liberal concepts impose a new ideological hegemony on discourse regarding social policy. 2.6 Employability Assistance for People with Disabilities (EAPD) Policy Framework The EAPD policy initiative was officially intended to address shortcomings in the Vocational Rehabilitation of Disabled Persons (VRDP) program, then perceived as inadequate in meeting the goal of improving the labour market and economic participation of persons with disabilities (Government of Canada, 2002b). In 1997, the Government of Canada and Provincial/Territorial jurisdictions initiated a multilateral process to examine programming then in place to assist people with disabilities, particularly in terms of employment and integration in the labour market, and more specifically focused on programming then funded through VRDP. The intention was to “build on those program elements which have contributed most to labour market and economic participation” (Government of Canada, 1998d, para., 2). As a result of this review, a shift in focus was recognized by both orders of government toward the funding of programs and services with a stronger employability focus. This shift was not without contention, as it involved the withdrawal of support to some existing programs and services, and the replacement of the VRDP program with a  51 new funding initiative under which the Government of Canada would share with the provinces and territories the costs of selected initiatives. It was also recognized that this reorientation could require a multi-year implementation period, determined through bilateral discussions and agreements between the federal government and provincial/territorial jurisdictions. By early 1998, discussions between federal and provincial officials had advanced to the point that an agreement was reached between the federal government and the provinces and territories to replace the VRDP program with a new policy framework. This framework was to be entitled the Employability Assistance for People with Disabilities (EAPD) Multilateral Framework and would be based on the principles then being finalized in the In Unison vision paper. EAPD was to be centered on a core multilateral policy framework to be signed by all federal and provincial governments. This would articulate a set of values and principles intended to underpin federal and provincial efforts at disability employment supports. The framework was also intended to serve as a ‘blueprint’ for the development of a series of five year bilateral agreements between the federal government and the ten provinces (territories were not included in the EAPD framework). Federal-Provincial-Territorial Ministers Responsible for Social Services approved the EAPD Multilateral Framework in April, 1998 (Government of Canada, 1998a). 2.7 Current Situation The EAPD initiative officially expired on March 31, 2003. Negotiations had been ongoing since early 2001 between the federal government and provincial and territorial jurisdictions regarding a successor agreement. Progress was slow, partly due to federal  52 fiscal restraint measures precluding any increase in funds to provinces, as well as federal demands for increased accountability and data collection by provinces and territories. For their part, provinces and territories had demands for increased flexibility, decreased accountability requirements, and a substantial increase in federal funds above that provided under EAPD. Stakeholder groups were equally vocal in their demands for a complete revisiting of employment supports for persons with disabilities, and the launching of a new, comprehensive disability supports program (Caledon Institute for Social Policy, 2001). After extensive negotiations undertaken in 2001 and 2002 between federal and provincial/territorial officials, a document entitled A Framework for a Comprehensive Labour Market Strategy for Persons with Disabilities (Government of Canada, 2002d) was finalized and endorsed by FPT Ministers Responsible for Social Services in November, 2002. Officials were directed by Ministers to undertake specific negotiations on a new policy framework. Subsequently, a policy agreement to replace EAPD was negotiated, and a document entitled Multilateral Framework for Labour Market Agreements for Persons with Disabilities (LMAPD) (Government of Canada, 2004a) was developed. This new policy framework was intended to be somewhat broader in scope in terms of services funded than the EAPD agreement and gave provinces/territories more administrative flexibility on accountability and reporting criteria. F/P/T Ministers Responsible for Social Services met in Yellowknife on August 29, 2003 and reached agreement in principle on the new LMAPD (Government of Canada, 2004a) to succeed the EAPD agreement. This new agreement was formally endorsed by all jurisdictions  53 except Quebec. The new LMAPD was strikingly similar to the previous EAPD agreement, with changes primarily focusing on accountability mechanisms and reporting measures. At present, the LMAPD remains in force across Canada (save for Quebec and the Territories), has been extended beyond its March 2008 expiration date pending new FPT negotiations. On February 6, 2006, a new Conservative minority government was sworn into office. There are only limited formal references by the Conservative Party of Canada to disability policy in their social policy pronouncements, and current references to disability policy as part of the Policy Declaration contained on the party website (Conservative Party of Canada, 2008) is restricted to brief references committing the party to the development of a national disability policy framework. At present the impact of this government's approach to national disability policy is still a work in progress. Since assuming power the Conservative government’s approach to social policy in general and disability policy in particular is oriented to an even more decentralized approach, emphasizing provincial primacy in social matters. On March 19, 2007, The Honourable Jim Flaherty, Minister of Finance Canada, tabled the 2007 federal budget Aspire to a Stronger, Safer, Better Canada (Government of Canada, 2007). Within that document were elements that identified a radical departure in national disability employment policy. First, the government announced that beginning in fiscal year 2008/09, the federal government would introduce a new program to address gaps in labour market programming through the provision of $500 million per year (over the course of a six-year term), to be delivered through bilateral agreements with the provinces and territories on an equal per capita basis. The key element of this  54 announcement was a formal recognition by the federal government that provinces and territorial governments were best placed to identify needs and deliver this training. Hence those levels of government would have primary responsibility for the design and delivery of programs. A second element within the budget built on this point, namely that additional federal labour market programs could also be transferred to provincial and territorial governments under these agreements. Particular reference was made to a number of current federal labour market programs targeted for under-represented groups such as youth, older workers and persons with disabilities. Since this budget announcement the federal government has signed labour market agreements with all but one of the provincial jurisdictions (again territorial jurisdictions are not included due to their differing constitutional relationships with the federal government). In January 2009 additional funds were directed to provinces and territories via the Labour Market Agreements to address impacts of the worldwide economic slowdown. While no formal agreements have been made to transfer the funds currently being made available by the federal government under the LMAPD to the Labour Market Agreements, representatives of national disability advocacy organizations have informally expressed concerns that this is in fact the long-term intent. Disability advocates are concerned that the more liberal and activist approaches towards disability issues, which have driven federal disability policy in the past may now be de-emphasized or replaced with more traditional approaches should these transfers take place. Prince (2007) notes that disability advocacy organizations had frequently targeted the federal government in the past for national action on disability related supports, because of their greater receptivity and track record of leadership in national initiatives during the 1960’s,  55 70’s, and 80’s. However, the current federal Conservative governments’ declared intention to limit the use of federal spending power in areas of exclusive provincial jurisdiction makes such lobbying exercises much more problematic. On January 27, 2009, the federal government released Budget 2009: Canada’s Economic Action Plan (Government of Canada, 2009). It included a temporary increase in funding for training to be dispersed through provincial Labour Market Agreements. This included a commitment to provide provinces with an additional $500 million nationally for a Strategic Training and Transition Fund (STTF), which was to be invested over two years to support the particular needs of individuals impacted by the burgeoning economic crisis. In addition, $1 billion nationally was committed to top up the existing transfer funding of $1.95 billion annually, in order to expand the availability of training delivered through the Employment Insurance programs by provinces and territories. Interestingly, none of this large commitment of additional funds was targeted towards persons with disabilities. On March 19, 2010 the Government of Canada released Budget 2010: Leading the Way on Jobs and Growth (Government of Canada, 2010). This budget focussed primarily on initiatives to combat the persistent economic downturn, and the budget contained only minimal references to initiatives for persons with disabilities. Those initiatives announced in the budget focussed primarily on improving Registered Disability Savings Plans to allow more flexibility for contributions. Also announced was the continuation of funding for the Enabling Accessibility Fund, an initiative which provides funds to community-based projects that improve accessibility and remove  56 within communities. No new initiatives pertaining to employment for persons with disabilities were announced. It is noteworthy that in an examination of the Conservative policy platform during the April, 2011 election, the only reference to Canadians with disabilities is within the context of the Canada Student Grants Program. Here students with permanent disabilities are lumped in with low-income, middle-income part-time students (Conservative Party of Canada, 2011). This tendency to reference services for people with disabilities within the context of generic services for all citizens is a common feature of neoliberal social policy approaches, and will be discussed in greater detail later in this thesis.   57 3: THEORETICAL CONSTRUCTS In this chapter, an examination will be undertaken of some of the key theoretical constructs underlying this research.  The chapter will commence with a discussion of what models of disability are, followed by an exploration of the key models utilized in the study. Following this is a discussion on the various approaches to disability policy analysis and their relevance to the study. The chapter will then close with an examination of the concept of discourse, and a discussion on discourse theory and disability policy research. 3.1 Models of Disability In their discussion of models of disability in rehabilitation, Brandt and Pope (1997) defined models of disability as conceptual models, which may assist individuals in thinking about components or behaviours in complex systems. Brandt & Pope (1997) go on to note that such models “must be constantly changed as new knowledge is gained, particularly if they are to adequately represent processes or systems that are in flux” (p. 63). The World Bank (2008) describes models of disability as mechanisms to “conceptualize and compare different ways of thinking and talking about disability, [and] certain analytical frameworks or mindsets” (para., 1). An often repeated descriptor within the literature is that models are used to “provide a framework for understanding the way in which people with impairments experience disability”(Open University, 2006). Rialland (2006) notes that models of disability:  58 “… are tools for defining impairment and, ultimately, for providing a basis upon which government and society can devise strategies for meeting the needs of disabled people. They are often treated with scepticism as it is thought they do not reflect a real world, are often incomplete and encourage narrow thinking, and seldom offer detailed guidance for action. However, they are a useful framework in which to gain an understanding of disability issues, and also of the perspective held by those creating and applying the models” (para., 1). Bernell (2003) observed that the definition of what constitutes disability is very much grounded in the theoretical or conceptual framework in which it is based, and that the strengths and weaknesses of the particular framework or model has a significant impact on disability policy. Mitra (2006) observed that altering the theoretical definition or framework for the construct of disability can have far reaching social, economic, and political implications. She notes "… administrative programs and laws use definitions that define program eligibility and legislation coverage. Those definitions, which directly affect the lives of persons with disabilities, are typically based on theoretical models." (p. 236). If the models change, there can be significant influences upon the development and implementation of disability policy. As Townsend (1979), cited in Jongbloed (2003) notes “the way in which an issue is viewed contains an implicit prescription for policy” (p. 25). In many cases, various disciplines or professions tend to subscribe to or be dominated by one or more models of disability (Hubbard, 2004). These models help define the role of the particular profession within the context of their involvement with disabled persons, but are in many cases highly instrumental in determining the status and  59 power of the profession and professional within society. Most of the models that have dominated government disability policy over the last century have been generated by the professional communities charged with providing services to persons with disabilities (Lutz & Bowers, 2003). Different professions have championed different models of disability at different points in time. Those professions who are influential within a government policy perspective (e.g. physicians) have primarily centered responsibility for the disability and any subsequent impacts squarely on the individual (Hubbard, 2004; Lutz & Bowers, 2003). Disability advocates have argued that these models have in turn been at the root of many policies seen by people within the disabled community as discriminatory, disempowering, and intent on maintaining the existing power structures of the professional communities (Barnes, 1991; Corker & Shakespeare, 2002; Shakespeare & Watson, 2002). The late 20th century, however, saw the emergence of a new model of disability, one that has challenged those assumptions and had a profound impact on the way in which people with disabilities view themselves, how they interact with society, and how they view the various social mechanisms that exist to help them (Oliver, 1995, Barnes, 1999b). With the development of this new ‘social’ model and its rising popularity in certain quarters of both the professional disciplines and the community of persons with disabilities there also came challenges arising from conflicts with the vested interests and power held by adherents of the pre-existing models. Kuhn (1996) states that gain for a new model is only achieved by “discarding some previously standard beliefs or procedures, and, simultaneously, by replacing those components of the previous model with others” (p. 66). He further noted, “the transfer of  60 allegiance from model to model is a conversion experience that cannot be forced” (p. 151). Thus the application of new models in policy often hinges on the various approaches of the professional disciplines traditionally involved (e.g. rehabilitation medicine, occupational therapy, physiotherapy, vocational rehabilitation counselling). In many cases, these various disciplines or professions tend to subscribe to or be dominated by one or more existing models of disability (Hubbard, 2004). This is important in that these models help define the role of the particular profession within the context of their involvement with disabled persons, and are highly influential in determining the status and power of the profession and professional within society (Jongbloed & Crichton, 1990). Daniels (1990) notes that often a model becomes so imbedded within a profession that for the practitioner the tenets of the model become “… unconscious or so taken for granted that its very existence is unquestioned” (p. 2). The adaptation of a new model is not without risk for the professionals involved and may often entail resistance from entrenched and powerful elements within the profession(s) (Kuhn, 1996). Commenting on the disparity of power created within the various models of disability used in rehabilitation settings, Waddell (2002) observes that all “decision makers about disability (disabled individuals, health professionals, social security administrators, policy makers and politicians) need a better and more appropriate understanding [of] models of disability if society is to address current trends effectively and fairly” (p. 4). References to the impact of changing models on professional communities in the literature are not encouraging in this regard. Follette & Hout’s (1996) case study of the impact of changing models in psychology on the re-editing of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual suggest that rather than surrender the power implicit  61 within a particular model, professional communities will engage in battles of ferocious intensity to protect their perceived interests. In the case of models of disability, where entire professional communities (and industries) have been established in application of certain models, protection not only of power but also of livelihood has made the transitions between models particularly challenging (Bury, 1997). 3.2 Key Models There is an extensive base of literature on what constitutes a model of disability, with numerous delineations of what the models are and their components and subcomponents (DePoy & Gilson, 2004; Gabels & Peters, 2004). Bickenbach & Chatterji (1999) observe that attempts to define and explain the concept of disablement have drawn from a number of sociological and social-psychological theoretical perspectives, including being ”…explained in terms of deviance theories, labelling and functionalist theories, symbolic interactionalism, somatopsychological and attitude theories, Marxist and other materialistic theories, and more recently feminist theories, postmodern interpretations and many others.” (p. 1174). Pfieffer (2002) posited nine different models of disability, Hubbard (2004) identified four, Lutz and Bowers (2002) suggested two models, while Turnbull, Beegle, and Stowe (2001) and Waddell (2002) identified five separate models. Given the variety of theoretical perspectives at play in the definition and description of disability, it is difficult to identify let alone utilize all the models of disability presented in the literature. However, in my review of the literature I have identified commonalities that suggest certain models can be considered as being the most used or dominant at different times within North America. It appears that no formal research or meta-analyses have  62 been done on the frequency of appearance of particular models within the literature. However, most major works reference the existence of some form of medically dominated model, a functional and economic model emphasizing the economic productivity of the individual and how this is impacted by the disability, and a social model of disability emphasizing the predominance of societal factors in determining who is considered disabled and what that means. Prince (2002b) used this differentiation in his discussion of the application of models of disability to Canadian disability policy. Hubbard (2004) also references this differentiation as a common means for delineating the various models. On this basis, I have elected to draw on the terminology used by Smart and Smart (2006) in their review of the major models of disability. Smart and Smart aggregated models with strong similarities into broader clusters, and from these derived the three core models posited in their typology. This in turn has reduced a confusing array of models and classification systems to a manageable set of categories. Hence, the three core models that I will be referencing in this study are: 3.2.1 Medical Model Also known as the biomedical model, the medical model has been the dominant model for disability policy and program development for most of the 20th century. Bickenbach (1993) traces its roots back to earlier Christian theologies that regarded many types of disability as arising as a result of some form of deviance or sinfulness. Waddell (2002) suggest that the evolution of the medical model regarding the disabled paralleled the development of the disease model in medicine, both occurring at the end of the 19th and beginning of the 20th centuries. Both have at their heart the location of disability or  63 disease within the individual (Beckett & Wrighton, 2000; DePoy & Gilson, 2004; Terzi, 2005). Hubbard (2004) notes that medical model “denotes a medical aetiology that stresses a causal relationship between the origins and outcomes of disability” (p. 184). She also notes that under this model a medical determination becomes a prerequisite for being considered disabled, and the individual is basically assigned the role of being ‘sick’. Smart and Smart (2006) state that a major strength of this model lays in its explanatory power, and its use of the language of medicine “…lending scientific credibility to the idea that disabilities are wholly an individual experience” (p. 29). Lutz and Bowers (2003), building on Minaire’s (1992) concepts, note that the medical model is a linear process that begins with the aetiology of the ‘disease’, followed by its pathology and subsequent manifestation. Hence the model focuses on the ‘disease’ process itself, by finding a cure and returning the patient to a ‘normal’ or at least former level of functioning. Waddell (2002) posited that the primary processes at work within the medical model are: (1) recognizing patterns of symptoms and signs (history and examination), (2) inferring underlying injury (diagnosis), (3) applying physical therapy to the injury – treatment (and rehabilitation) and (4) expecting the patient to recover (or have residual disability). While useful in research and diagnosis, Lutz and Bowers (2003) also note that the pure application of the traditional ‘medical model’ has limited applicability in many cases of disability, where a “cure” may not be possible and improvement of current levels of functioning difficult to achieve. Hubbard (2004) observed that the medical model, in its purest form, attempts to treat the body without regard for the individual inhabiting it.  64 However, Hubbard also notes that this is a form of reductionism that is, in fact, impossible when dealing with people who operate and interact in their environment, live within family and other social units, and function both economically and socially with a greater society and culture. Despite these limitations, the medical model has dominated many aspects of policy and program development for persons with disabilities in Canada for much of the 20th century (Prince, 2004). The Vocational Rehabilitation for Disabled Persons (VRDP) Act (Government of Canada, 1985) specifically stated that a disabled person was “ a person who because of a physical or mental impairment is incapable of pursuing regularly any substantially gainful occupation” (para. 4), and required medical (i.e. – physician) verification of the existence of a permanent disability. The influence of the medical model continues today, in that it is still difficult to find government programs or services that do not require some form of medical proof of disability (Government of Canada, 2006a). For example, eligibility for the Canada Pension Plan Disability Vocational Rehabilitation Program (Government of Canada, 2006b) hinges on the “physicians agree[ment] that they can cope with a work-related rehabilitation program” (para., 5). Likewise, all Workers’ Compensation systems in Canada rely heavily on medical opinion as a fundamental criterion for accessing the systems. 3.2.2 Functional/Environmental/Economic Model of Disability Lutz and Bower (2003) observed that many disciplines (e.g. – Occupational Therapy) recognized quite early the limitations of a strict application of the medical model in dealing with clients with disabilities. Nagi (1965) expanded upon the concept of the medical model by looking at factors beyond the strict aetiology of the individuals  65 condition (e.g. -  social factors, environmental considerations, etc.). Other models and classification systems followed, such as the Institute of Medicine model, the International Classification of Function model, the Economic model, the Disablement model (Verbrugge & Jette, 1994), and most recently, the International Classification of Disabilities, Impairments and Handicaps – II (World Health Organization, 2001). These systems were all attempts to move beyond the limitations of the medical model. Smart and Smart (2006) collapsed this collection of models and classification systems into a functional/environmental model of disability. Their primary argument was that all the models and classification systems mentioned above were interactional in nature, since they consider the individual not only on the basis of his/her medical diagnosis but also how the person with a disability interacts with and functions within his/her environment. From this perspective: … the definition of disability, the causal attribution, and the solution attribution are not found wholly within the individual (or his or her disability). Instead, adherents of these models of disability recognize the importance of biology but also posit that the environment can cause, contribute to, and exaggerate disability. Furthermore, these models do not view the “problem” of disability as located totally within the individual, suggesting that many of the difficulties of disability are also located outside the individual, specifically within the environment and its functional requirements. (Smart & Smart, 2006, p. 32). To Smart and Smart’s definition I have added a third element, namely economic considerations. The focus on the functional requirements of the outside environment, particularly in regards to employment, has resulted in a strong focus on the economic  66 capability/contribution of the individual. This in turn has resulted in elements of this model having a major effect on disability employment policy (Hubbard, 2002). This model pushes the emphasis on the ability of the individual to function in some form of remunerative employment, and to achieve to the greatest degree possible the ability to be economically self-supporting. This in turn has evolved as a key element of most current vocational rehabilitation policies and programs (Bickenbach & Chatterji, 1999). In most cases, the medical and functional/environmental/economic models are often used co- jointly. The medical model offers a determination of whether an individual is indeed ‘disabled’, with the functional/environmental/economic model offering determinations of the ‘degree of disablement’ and the economic impact of the disability (Lutz & Bower, 2003). The policy implications of the functional/ environmental/economic model and the aligned classification systems have been criticized on several different levels, not least in the way that disability and function are translated into economic and employment productivity frames of reference (Lunt & Thornton, 1993). In a functionalist model, persons with disabilities (PWD’s) are ‘obligated to become rehabilitated if possible’ (Myers, 1965). One of the consequences of this model is that “as long as the person is not ‘fully functional’… he or she is expected to be dependent on others for care. Therefore, for PWD’s who cannot regain full functioning, the assumption inherent in this perspective places the PWD in a chronic role of dependency.” (Lutz & Bower, 2003, p. 74). Higgins (1992) noted that under the assumptions embedded in the functional/environmental/economic model of disability, societies (and their agents, i.e. – governments, charities, etc.) can cause disabilities, exaggerate disabilities, and even  67 “make disabilities”. Conversely, disabilities can also be discredited, minimized, and in some particularly horrific examples (e.g. – Nazi Germany) demonized. Bruzy (1997) argues that it is the misuse or abuse of the assumptions in this model, particularly when combined with the determinism inherent within the medical model, that have resulted in much misery for people with disabilities in the last 100 years. 3.2.3 Social Model of Disability Shakespeare and Watson (2002) in their review of the history of the social model of disability, trace its roots back to the United Kingdom in the 1970’s, when activists in the Union of the Physically Impaired Against Segregation (UPIAS) began to reject the assumptions inherent within the medical and functional/environmental models. British academics (Barnes, 1991; Finkelstein, 1980, 1981; Oliver, 1990, 1995) contributed heavily to the theoretical development of the model. Oliver (1996) described the core elements of the model: in our view, it is society which disables physically impaired people. Disability is something imposed on top of our impairments by the way we are unnecessarily isolated and excluded from full participation in society. Disabled people are therefore an oppressed group in society. To understand this it is necessary to grasp the distinction between the physical impairment and the social situation, called ‘disability’, of people with such impairment. Thus we define impairment as lacking all or part of a limb, or having a defective limb, organism or mechanism of the body and disability as the disadvantage or restriction of activity caused by a contemporary social organization which takes little or no account of people who have physical impairments and thus excludes them. (p. 22).  68 Smart and Smart (2006) note that inherent within the model is an assumption that disability is a social construct, and as such can be deconstructed or revised to address the blatant barriers and discrimination faced by persons with disabilities. From this perspective, they define the social model of disability in the following way: …self-definition, self-determination, the elimination (or reduction) of the prejudice and discrimination (sometimes referred to as “handicapism”), rejection of medical diagnoses and categories, and the drive to achieve full equality and civil rights…[and that] …(a) people with disabilities must define disability; (b) people with disabilities must refuse to allow “experts” or “professionals” to define the disability, determine the outcomes of their lives, or judge the quality of their lives; and (c) people with disabilities refuse the “disabled role” of deviance and pathology. (Smart & Smart, 2006, p. 34). As noted earlier, since its formulation, the social model has become highly influential (Vickery, 2001). Inherent within the model is an assumption of political activism on the part of people with disabilities, particularly within Great Britain, where the model was strongly influenced by neo-Marxist academics and the concept of social oppression is strongly emphasized (Barnes, 1991, 1999b; Dewsbury, Clarke, Randall, Rouncefield, & Sommerville, 2004; Oliver, 1990; Shakespeare & Watson, 2002). In North America, where the model has evolved somewhat differently “…the North American approach has mainly developed the notion of people with disabilities as a minority group, within the tradition of US political thought” (Shakespeare & Watson, 2002, p. 4). Batavia and Schriner (2001) also discuss the North American approach to the  69 social model in terms of what they describe as the ‘disability-rights movement’, and refer to the model as the ‘civil rights’ or minority group model’. Although enormously influential over the last decade, the social model is not without critics (Dewsbury, et al., 2004; Humphrey, 2000). Batavia and Schriner (2001) note that the model is less effective in providing policy guidance in cases where the employment or other issues faced by persons with disabilities are not the result of direct (or indirect) discrimination. Within the British school, criticisms have surfaced over the rigidity and dogmatism with which the model is applied to all aspects of disability issues. Crow (1992) notes the increasing reluctance by adherents of the model to even acknowledge the existence, let alone any possible influence of an individuals’ impairment in terms of how they interact with society, and posits that challenges are arising as adherents to the social model try to address issues or aspects of disability which are problematic under the model (Vickery, 2001). Hansen and Philo (2007) reflected on how the physicality of the individual’s disability and the nature of the impairment could impact on the disability geography in which the individual interacts and must navigate every day. From the perspective of this study, Hansen and Philo’s (2007) discussion of how the expectation that individuals with disabilities should strive to be as “normal” as their disability allows (normalcy being the standards and performance expected of their non-disabled peers) can influence areas such as work and employment are of particular interest. Shakespeare and Watson (2001) argue that the model has become so dominant, particularly in Great Britain that “…the very success of the social model is now its main weakness. Because it is such a powerful tool, and because it was so central to the  70 disability movement, it became a sacred cow, an ideology which could not easily be challenged” (p. 5). However, others have argued that far from being dogmatic, the social model is merely evolving and much of the criticism is an artefact of the struggle for dominance between different ‘schools’ of thought within the model. Gabels and Peters (2004) for example, argue that much of the criticism is arising from neo-Marxist adherents of a class struggle interpretation of the model who had dominated both the initial development of the model in Great Britain and are now resisting it’s evolution into a broader “resistance” based model. New approaches or interpretations of the model arising from these are now putting at risk the dominant position of many of the ‘fathers’ of the social disability model whose writings in the 1960’s and 70’s gave rise to the disability movement. However, despite these limitations, the social model of disability continues to have a very strong influence on contemporary thought regarding disability and disability policy. 3.3 Disability Policy Analysis Approaches While the relationship between public policy and issues that have an impact on persons with disabilities have been highlighted since the 19th century (O'Brien, 2001), examination of disability policy as a separate area of study is relatively recent. With the development of the socio-political model in the latter part of the 20th century, an increasing emphasis began to be given to the linkage between disability issues and public policy (Michael Oliver, 1995), and with it an increasing recognition of the importance of the effective application of policy analysis. Various authors (Dejong, 1994; Fox, 1994; Oliver, 1995; Watson, 1993) began to identify a gap in the analysis of public social policy, namely the systematic examination  71 and research of public policy directed at persons with disabilities. Dejong (1994) observed that “disability policy has not been recognized as a generic policy area. We often speak of a health policy, a tax policy, a defence policy, an education policy, a foreign policy, a transportation policy, an energy policy, an environmental policy, or an income policy, but seldom do we speak of a disability policy” (p. 154). Watson (1993) noted that disability policy research was an emerging area in the field of policy research, with a particular impact upon public (i.e. – government) policy. Watson further noted the broad nature of the field, encompassing special education, civil rights statutes, accessible transportation, housing, and public facilities, publicly funded rehabilitation services, and benefit programs for people with disabilities (p. 720). Due in part to the wide scope of what can be included under the category of disability policy, there has been a relative dearth of research examining how the various theoretical constructs within the policy analysis field apply to this area. To address this, Scotch and Schriner (1997) argued that it is necessary to examine methodologies and processes from a range of social and economic policy realms. My review of the literature, in particular the theoretical frameworks used in disability policy analysis, suggests that there are separate lines of inquiry or approaches to policy analysis which seem to have relevance to the issues examined in this thesis. Howlett and Ramesh (2003), citing Radin (2000), identified two ‘ideal’ approaches to policy analysis, the first of these being the ‘rational’ or ‘modern’ approach, which focuses on the quantification of economic costs and benefits. This approach was particularly popular in the 1960’s and 1970’s and still in use. The second, identified as  72 the ‘postmodern’ approach of the 1980’s and 1990s’, is concerned with the social construction of policy problems, policy discourses and the politics of policy processes. The ‘rational’ approach is described by Everett (2003) as a prescriptive model, which is process oriented and is usually comprised of a number of logically ordered sequential steps which comprehensively canvasses, assesses and compares all options. According to Everett (2003), the ‘post-modernist’ approach examines policy as an inherently political process, and the outcome of a ‘play of power’ which proceeds from an interaction and series of negotiating steps between groups using a variety of resources and techniques in order to reach a solution. Pothier and Devlin (2006) expanded on the concept of ‘post-modern’ policy analysis approaches by applying their concept of critical disability theory. Drawing from a number of theorists, including feminist, communitarian, critical race theorists, and gay/lesbian/queer theorists (among others), they identify four central themes that underlie a critical examination of disability issues:  (1) Language, definitions, and voice, (2) Contextual politics and the politics of responsibility and accountability, (3) Philosophical challenges; and (4) citizenship/dis-citizenship. Similarly, Hiranandami (2005) articulated the importance of applying critical theory to disability, where a number of factors, including models of disability, must be applied to “question the monolithic views of disability as individual inadequacy” (para. 2). There have been continuing debates in the literature (Bridgman & Davis, 2003; Everett, 2003; Howard, 2005; Smith & May, 1980; Sutton, 1990) regarding which  73 approaches are the most effective theoretical perspective for undertaking policy analysis. In reviewing the different approaches to policy, I quickly noted the overwhelming preference within much of the recent disability policy research for approaches grounded in critical theory and post-modern approaches. Applying Michel Foucault’s and Norman Fairclough’s concepts to policy analysis, extensive use has been made of the methodologies centering on discourse analysis in the review of public policy. Pothier and Devlin (2006) noted: “A primary concern of critical disability theory is an interrogation of the language used in the context of disability” (p. 3). Dudley-Marling, Stevens and Gurn (2007) likewise observed that critical policy analysis of government and educational policy should include consideration of the explicit and implicit meanings in professional language, definitions and terminology, and the historical and political contexts that help shape the policy environment. Goldberg (2005) identified a number of researchers who have utilized these approaches to policy analysis, including: Stephen Ball (1993), Trevor Gale (1999), Olssen, Codd and O'Neill (2004), James Scheurich (1997), and Sandra Taylor (1997). To effectively address the complexities of the actual policy process, in particular the interplay of power and political influences, Everett (2003) recommends using approaches which acknowledge that policies and policy directions are a result of a struggle among stakeholders for resources and their application and distribution. In particular, Everett argues that there needs to be an acknowledgement that the results of such a struggle are unlikely to be based on a fair and objective analysis. Rather, “… policies and their resultant outcomes are more likely to be determined on the basis of political clout and expedients” (Everett, 2003, p.70). Below I briefly summarize my  74 decision to reject the traditional “rationalist” approaches to policy analysis often favoured in the past by governments. I also examine three approaches, which I believe demonstrate the effective application of critical policy analysis and discuss their applicability to my research. 3.3.1 Limitations of the Rationalist Approaches to Policy Analysis Everett (2003) argues that the rationalist approaches to policy analysis exemplified by concepts such as the ‘policy cycle’ are inadequate in addressing the complexity inherent within all major policy development activities. Everett (2003) believes that these more traditional approaches to policy analysis often fail to “address[ing] effectively the complexity of decision-making and how particular issues emerge on the political agenda and the means of their ultimate solution” (p. 68). Everett argues that such approaches fail to address the key political elements that are in play in the development of policy, or are inadequate in resolving policy steeped in controversy. At best he believes that traditional approaches like the policy cycle may have some value if the policy issues are relatively straightforward, however he believes that it is “… unlikely, however, that the policy cycle can replace the political contest, or resolve issues which become contentious and are politicized” (p. 69). 3.3.2 Ball’s Critical Policy Sociology Recognizing the limitations of more traditional policy analysis approaches, I have been drawn to Ball’s work on the nature of policy, particularly his emphasis on policy as both text and discourse and his acknowledgment of Foucault’s concepts of power and governmentality, as well as the role of power and politics within the policy process.  75 Cataldi (2004) references Ball’s application of Foucault’s discourse theory and methodology in policy analysis, and notes that Foucault’s concepts can serve as a viable foundation for a policy analysis methodology. Cataldi (2004) goes on to identify a number of potential applications of Foucault’s discourse theory to policy analysis, including: 1. Foucault’s concept of discourse provides an expansive framework for describing the broad ideological and political influences impacting the early stages of policy. 2. Foucault’s mode of discourse inquiry (his discourse principles transposed into a procedural method) provides a systematic analysis of the multiple, unparallel dimensions of political and policy processes. 3. Foucault’s methodology lends itself to the construction of a practical procedural model to gather data on policy interactions within a changing policy environment. Ball (1994) builds upon Foucault’s concepts by identifying policy discourse as a process which "articulate[s] and constrain[s] the possibilities and probabilities of interpretation and enactment" (p. 23). Goldberg (2005), citing Ball (1994), states that “this definition conceives of discourse as particular ways of organizing meaning-making practices and …acts like the "'rules of the game' by differentially empowering or disempowering the relevant social groups" (Offe, 1984 as cited in Ball, 1994, p.20). Ball (1994) also observes that discourse can have the effect of “redistributing the ‘voice’, so that …only certain voices can be heard as meaningful and authoritative” (p. 24). In looking at the sequence of policy documents in this study, Ball’s concept of dominant  76 voices is of particular interest. As Ball (1994) notes “…we do need to recognize and analyze the existence of ‘dominant’ discourses, regimes of truth, erudite knowledge – like neo-liberalism and management theory – within social policy” (p. 25). Goldberg (2005), citing Gale (1999), states that “…according to Ball, discourse is separate from text as text refers to a particular concrete manifestation of practices organized within a particular discourse… as such, text can be analyzed to reveal the discourses operating” (p. 64). In this study, the intent is to identify through an analysis of the texts the discourse/policy relationship, as reflected by the use of the key models of disability. Paralleling a discourse analysis of the Government of British Columbia’s Disability Designation Review by Prieur (2006), Ball’s conceptualizations will inform an examination of how these differing discourses have positioned the key actors and models within the policy texts. 3.3.3 Taylor’s Critical Policy Analysis Taylor (1997) builds on many of Ball’s conceptualizations, particularly his observation that “policy is discourse”, to further explore the applicability of discourse theory to the area of policy research. She notes Maguire and Ball’s (1994) observation that policy studies appear to be methodologically unsophisticated, with issues of language and meaning often being taken for granted. (p. 24). Taylor draws on Foucauldian theories of discourse and particularly the work of Norman Fairclough (1989, 1992, 1993). Seeking to “… explore policy-making processes within the broad discursive field within which policies are developed and implemented” (p. 25), Taylor (1997) argues that discourse theories can enhance the scope of critical policy analysis not only by focusing on policy documents as texts, but also by exploring the arena of policy making. Citing  77 Yeatman (1990) and Fulcher (1989), she references the “struggle between contenders of competing objectives within the policy, where language—or more specifically, discourse—is used tactically” (p. 26). In Taylor’s view, discourse analysis is a particularly useful tool for capturing how language in policy texts reflects the outcomes of political struggles over meaning. In so doing, the researcher can understand the competing discourses extant in the document, and the dominant ideologies reflected therein. Taylor goes further in arguing the importance of moving beyond textual analysis when applying discourse theory to an appreciation of the context in which the policy process takes place and the policy texts are created. Citing McHoul (1984), Taylor (1997) argues that a discourse analysis of policy must move beyond a focus on the linguistic aspects of the policy statements to explore the networks of discourse that constitute a field of power and knowledge. Quoting Codd (1988), she argues that policy texts represent the outcome of political struggles over meaning, and that “language serves a political purpose, constructing particular meanings and signs that work to mask social conflict and foster commitment to the notion of universal public interest” (Codd, 1988), in Taylor, 1997, p. 27). Taylor gives particular emphasis to the historical, economic, social, political and cultural contexts that help determine how policy ‘problems’ are constructed and positioned on the policy and political agenda, and which in turn shape both the content and language of the policy texts. She notes that the terminology used in policy texts is often highly malleable, and often reflect particular historical and cultural contexts. Discourse analysis can facilitate an understanding of these contexts, and this in  78 turn can provide a more complete picture of how particular concepts are used and understood. Taylor (1997) also identifies the strong linkages between elements of feminist and discourse theories, in particular how both theoretical perspectives see policy as a set of dynamic, historically located and complex processes rather than simply a set of institutions. Both perspectives also question the assumptions surrounding the validity of earlier policy analysis methodologies and challenge the conclusions drawn from those studies. Citing Eisenhart and Howe (1992) and Silverman (1993), Taylor also argues that both theoretical perspectives encourage a more critical awareness of methodological questions that had previously been taken for granted—particularly in relation to interpretation. Taylor believes that the application of discourse theory will strengthen policy research and produce effective and critical analyses useful in the pursuit of social justice. She sees the value of this type of research not only for policy makers within government, but also for interested stakeholders who may be engaged in struggles with the state in various policy arenas. 3.3.4 Goldberg’s Critical Policy Discourse Analysis (CPDA) Michelle Goldberg (2005) builds on the concepts of applying discourse theory to policy analysis by developing a detailed methodological approach for the examination of policy using discourse analysis. Combining Foucault and Fairclough's theoretical approaches, Goldberg extends them with concepts drawn from a range of researchers within the critical, narrative, educational and policy perspectives, such as Ball (1993),  79 Gale (1999), Joshee & Johnson (2005), Ozga (2000) and Taylor (1997). Goldberg has developed a detailed methodology that “uncovers how discursive technologies operate through predominant discourses and their interactions with other multiple discourses in a tangling web to influence policy reality” (p. 99). Similar to Taylor’s Critical Discourse Analysis, Goldberg does not limit the analysis to simply the text. Rather, she attempts to go beyond the linguistic content of a text to include: 1) A historical contextualization (a history of systems of thought), 2) Focus on discourse-as-knowledge, discourse as a matter of the social, historical and political conditions under which statements come to count as true or false, 3) Reference the materiality of discourse, not only interpreting text, but recognizing discourse as an instrument and effect of power (p. 97). Another key element to Goldberg’s CPDA is recognition of the multiple ways that discourse operates as power. Building on Foucault’s belief that power operates through a multiplicity of forces, agents and practices, Goldberg sees a web of multiple, diffuse and interactive ways that power operates. She uses these concepts to highlight a revised notion of intertexuality, which she defines as “relationships between discourses that assign meaning to other discourses across multiple domains to structure reality” (p. 98). Hence, by identifying the multiple co-existing discourses and analyzing their interactions, it is possible to reveal their influence on the policy process. Yet another parameter considered within Goldberg’s (2005) methodology is the concept of predominant discourses. A predominant discourse is “the discourse that exists at the core or hub of the discursive interaction. It is the discourse that “legitimizes and  80 marginalizes (enables or constrains) all other discourses, and is also the medium through which all other discourses are interpreted” (p. 98). The predominant discourse thus plays a privileged role in the motivating and articulation of other discourses. Building upon Greenberg's (2000) conception of themes, Goldberg emphasizes that the predominant discourse is not necessarily just the most common discourse expressed, nor the one which is spoken most frequently by the greatest number of speakers, or centered on the point of origin of the discourse or the position of the speaker. Rather, it is based on all these factors and on how they interact and legitimatize other discourses. It is from this perspective of policy as a complex set of interactions between predominant and other discourse that led Goldberg (2005, 2006) to apply a web metaphor, wherein the predominant discourse can play the role of a hub through which any number of other discourses interact and possibly contest. This “discursive web” is described by Goldberg (2006) as “an ensemble of multiple discourses that interact in a complex web of relationships that enable or constrain social relations” (p. 82). Through the identification of the predominant and other discourses present within a policy text(s), it is possible to describe this discursive policy web and highlight the relationships between them in order to expose their influence on the policy reality. The analytical process undertaken in Goldberg’s (2005) approach to CPDA can be summarized as involving three phases: 1) Phase I involves situating the policy being examined within its discursive context and basically delineating the boundaries of the research, something Goldberg calls “limiting the policy field”. Key actors/stakeholders are identified, as are their interests and power relationships. The objective of this phase is to “identify the  81 discourses circulating and describing their relationships in details” (p. 103). Another key element to this phase is identifying the predominant discourse(s) and highlighting the ideologies behind them. 2) The second phase involves an examination of the policy texts, not only the sentences, paragraphs, phrases, etc., but also how they are structured and what is silenced or missing. As well, the analysis examines how the ideology operates through the discourse, and identifies “how the discursive web operates as a technology to structure power relations” (p. 110). 3) The final phase in the CPDA involves the proposing social change. Arguing that deconstruction and analysis are insufficient, Goldberg suggests that the researcher redesign the discourses to “produce more positive effects and imagine new possibilities” (p. 111). She also suggests that one possibility is to develop counter- discourses that can challenge the dominant discourses. Citing Fairclough’s premise that structural or social changes can be made by shifts in discourse, Goldberg (2005) argues that CPDA can assist the process by highlighting the interconnectedness of discourses and that “advocates need to work on multiple discourses together to facilitate social change. However, change will not happen overnight through a revolution. Change involves an ongoing process where resistance means creating and adapting discourses within the web that then have influences on other discourses” (p. 111). Goldberg (2005) describes CPDA as an effective methodology that combines Foucault and Fairclough's theoretical approaches with the work of other theorists from narrative, critical thinking and educational policy perspectives to make critical discourse  82 analyses more powerful and realistic within a policy context. It can be used to examine how power relations are legitimized and regulated through discourse. It can also help identify those multiple and complex assemblages of power which in turn creates ‘truths’ that determine action and regulate behaviour in policy (p. 99). 3.4 Definition of Discourse Fairclough (1993) notes that “… discourse is a difficult concept, largely because there are so many conflicting and overlapping definitions formulated from various theoretical and disciplinary standpoints" (p. 3). MacDonnell (1986) characterizes discourse theory as constructivist, rationalist, and heterogeneous in nature. McHoul and Grace (1993) define the term discourse’ within two contexts, namely ‘non-critical’ and ‘critical’ approaches. The former as they see as being derided from linguistics, socio- linguistics and sociology (among other traditional disciplines). The latter they see as originating in the critical approaches developed by thinkers such as Foucault, who examined the discourse (or discourses) in terms of bodies of knowledge. Foucault's approach “… moves away from a focus on language (in the sense of a linguistic system or grammar) and towards a counter reading of historical and social conditions” (p. 27). Goldberg (2005) citing Foucault (1974), and Fairclough and Wodak (1997) ,examined discourse as a process of social construction. She cites Berger and Luckman (1967) in stating that "discourse is the foundation of the process of social construction upon which social reality depends" (p. 70). As such, discourses are the basis for uncovering how reality is discursively constructed. Weedon (1987) interpreted Foucault's definition of the concept of discourse as:  83 … ways of constituting knowledge, together with the social practices, forms of subjectivity and power relations …discourses are more than ways of thinking and producing meaning. They constitute the 'nature' of the body, unconscious and conscious mind and emotional life of the subjects they seek to govern (p. 108). Curran (2000) noted that not all discourses are equal. Some discourses are more influential, pervasive, and tend to structure or dominate related discourses. Curran (2000) discusses these “dominant” discourses in terms of being “the spoken, written, and behavioural expectations that we all share within a cultural grouping” (para. 4). As such, she sees dominant discourses as being “normative” in nature, and, based on our expectations as a social group. Curran also notes that by being normative, dominant discourses can often be seen as a collection of expectations that are taken for granted. They embody socialization by the dominant or decision-making groups, and gives the prevailing "accepted" rules of everyday living as practiced or desired by decision-makers. As such, dominant discourses rarely include the perspective of the “other”, which she describes as the non-power holding groups within society. Hare-Mustin (1994), citing Bloom (1981), likewise observed that “not all circulating discourses are of equal importance; some have a privileged and dominant influence on language” (p.19). She further noted that “dominant discourses are so familiar, they are taken for granted and even recede from view. It is hard to question them. They are part of the identity of most members of any society, and they influence attitudes and behaviours” (p.20). Within a policy context, these dominant discourses can often serve to decontextualize and depoliticize significant policy changes, and move them from the realm of potentially contentious and politically challenging issues to that of being  84 ‘common sense’ decisions based on ubiquitous and ‘goes without saying’ assumptions that are rarely challenged (Butterwick & Benjamin, 2000). The concept of discourse used in this thesis is grounded in the work of post- structuralist scholars such as Foucault and Fairclough. As Cataldi (2004) observed, these conceptions of discourse “offered a new way of conceptualizing and evaluating historical traditions and institutional structures, political processes and their influence on policy and values, the formulation of individual and cultural identity and the artefacts and symbols that represent them" (p. 9). As Goldberg (2005), citing McHoul and Grace (1993) and Hook (2001) points out : This understanding leads to a definition of discourse as a series of rules, which at a given period of time, and for a definite society, dictate the possibilities and limits of what it is possible to write, think or say, or what counts as truth. These rules are the basis of forming, refining, and constraining our thoughts and behaviours. Discourses have material effects as discourses and the assumptions carried with them circulating in society limit thoughts, behaviours and actions (albeit in an unconscious manner). Furthermore, viewing discourse as the series of rules that enable and constrain material relations of power, enables an analysis of how the rules have the tendency to privilege some people and disadvantage others (p. 69). 3.5 Discourse Theory and Disability Policy Research Despite some concerns that discourse theory and the poststructuralist assumptions that underpin it would tend to favour certain types of disability models over others, I  85 believe that discourse theory offers the best theoretical and methodological construct available to examine the policy documents and research questions. In particular, it has a capability to focus on ideological issues that accommodate belief and value systems within differing models and the policy choices inherent within them. As Cataldi (2004) notes, “when consensus is not present or strong, then, discourse analysis allows a relativistic assessment of policy purpose and function; it accommodates and accounts for diverse value systems within the policy environment by using numerous lenses.” (p. 47). 3.5.1 Discourse and Power in Structuring Policy Peters (2007) argues that every policy document deploys particular discourses as both tactic and theory in a web of power relations. Discourse theory thus enables an examination of policy within a broader framework of power, where specific values are viewed as instruments usually serving an established, powerful majority (Cataldi, 2004). As Nisbet (1999) observes “… their concern is not so much a matter of being “right” (for there are different “right” solutions, depending on one’s values), but rather of reconciling divergent views in a solution which is seen as “fair” by a maximum number of those affected by it. In this, the aims and values of those with access to power must carry greatest weight.” (p.71) In policy environments such as those affecting national disability policy, the potential disparity in the power relationships between governments (usually the sole source of funding for major disability services initiatives) and representatives of advocacy organizations and the community of persons with disabilities is great. Reliance solely on one-dimensional, rational and linear approaches that see policy interactions as causal, defined and predictable may produce facts without insight. Cataldi (2004)  86 suggests that the research goals in discourse analysis should “aim to detect the play of different forces and mechanisms of political power” (p. 48). To this end, I draw on the work of Foucault (1974, 1980) who suggests that the study of power must be located in discursive activity, for "relations of power cannot themselves be established, consolidated nor implemented without the production, accumulation, circulation and functioning of a discourse" (Foucault, 1980, p. 93). As Goldberg (2005) observes, Foucault's focus on the role of discourse in the operation of power examines the way discourses conceal particular interests by making them appear "normal". Hence the discursive practices undertaken in policy development legitimize a “truth” which structures current power relations by “… formulating meanings and understandings which disciplines action and regulate behaviour”. (p. 71). Chan (2005) notes that one of the strengths of Foucault's conceptualization is that power is an endemic practice in everyday relations, and is active even when there is no consciousness of it. Quoting Foucault’s (1978) statement that “… power is everywhere: not because it embraces everything but because it comes from everywhere” (p. 94), she notes that as such, power relations are not unilateral or unidirectional but discursive. Chan (2005) cites Smith’s (1987) work on ‘relations of ruling’ as a framework, which develops a more complex theory of power relations that are embedded in everyday practices as well as language. She argues that these relations of ruling are useful in thinking about public policy as "... they explain how power becomes embedded in actions and documents, even when individuals have no consciousness of the power that these actions and documents convey" (p. 139). She notes that Smith (1987) considers the examination of policy texts as one means of capturing ruling relations and, in particular,  87 the researcher can identify the various voices within the discourse, especially those that may be silenced or are speaking out to challenge traditional norms. 3.5.2 Ideology and Policy The issue of ideology poses a number of unique challenges within disability policy research. Questions arise as to what is meant by the term “ideology”, how ideologies are intertwined with particular models of disability, and how both ideology and power are expressed within the context of particular policy instruments. Merriam- Webster (2011) defines ideology as (1) visionary theorizing, (2) a systematic body of concepts especially about human life or culture (3) a manner or the content of thinking characteristic of an individual, group, or culture, or (4): the integrated assertions, theories and aims that constitute a socio-political program. Thompson (1984) identifies three key ways in which ideology operates: 1. An ideological process legitimates, it establishes the authority of particular individuals, classes or social categories and the authenticity of their collective view of the world, 2. Ideology offers a version of social reality which is in keeping with the interests of powerful individuals or groups, 3. It universalizes or naturalizes the arbitrary and contingent, dissolving the historical contingency of a particular formulation of social reality so that it appears as an inevitable and enduring aspect of human experience.  88 Abberley (1995) notes that there are wide disagreements amongst social theorists as to the usefulness and meaning of the concept of ideology. From the perspective of disability policy, he believes that the focus should be on “distinguishing between systems of symbols or beliefs which are politically neutral … and those which embody and reproduce asymmetrical power relationships” (p. 222). Abberley (1995) goes on to observe that ideology provides a way of thinking about the body of events, pronouncements and practices through which policy can “serve to perpetuate the process of disablement of impaired people”  (p. 222). This process is undertaken by: 1. Legitimatizing the authority of particular individuals, classes or social categories and the authenticity of their collective view of the world, 2. Offering a version of social reality which is in keeping with the interests of powerful individuals or groups, 3. Universalizing or naturalizing the arbitrary and contingent, dissolving the historical contingency of a particular formulation of social reality so that it appears as an inevitable and enduring aspect of human experience. In this thesis, the issue of ideology will be examined to establish the relationships between different ideological orientations and particular models of disability, and to determine their mutual impact on the policy texts. Particular attention will be paid to the influence of liberalist ideologies, most notably neoliberal and inclusive liberal approaches to social policy.  89 3.5.3 Neo-liberal Ideologies Mahon (2000) summarizing the work of O’Connor, Orloff and Shaver (1999), distinguishes between three moments in the development of liberalism – classic, new or social liberalism, and neo-liberalism. Craig and Porter (2004) added a fourth, which they defined as inclusive liberalism. In the last 20 years, many social policy analyses have argued about the impact of neo-liberal ideological influences on the application of disability policy (McDowell, 2004, Wilton & Schuer, 2005). Citing the election of Ronald Regan in the United States and Margaret Thatcher in Great Britain as marketing the rise of the ‘New Right’ movement in the late 1970’s, these analysts argue that neo- liberal administrations were characterized by a core set of beliefs influencing their approach to social policy. Kagan and Burton (2006), citing Jessop (2006) summarized these key elements of neo-liberal belief as including an emphasis on: 1. Legitimatizing the authority of particular individuals, classes or social categories and the authenticity of their collective view of the world, 2. Economic liberalization promoting competition in the open marketplace, 3. A strong emphasis on deregulation, giving greater economic freedom from state control and legal restrictions, 4. Privatization where possible of the public sector involvement in the direct or indirect provision of goods and services, 5. The commoditization of the residual public sector to promote the role of market forces, either directly or through market proxies,  90 6. A focus on globalization and encouraging mobility of both capital and labour, 7. Reduced direct taxation to expand the scope for market activity Kagan and Burton (2006) also note that an equally important aspect of neo-liberal thought on social policy has been an increasing emphasis on “radical individualism”, that is, an emphasis on individual responsibility and action and a belief that “ the wisdom of the market would allocate resources and ensure economic development that would trickle down to everyone else (p. 302). Fine and Barreras (2004), citing Bourdieu (1998), argue that this ideological orientation in social policy has become increasing pervasive, and is increasingly being viewed in society as the commonly accepted and ‘self-evident’ perspective for addressing social concerns. Goldberg (2005), citing Erjavec (2001), observed that “... neo-liberalism has been uncritically adopted as inevitable. It promotes a view of the world that is certain and unquestionable, thus constructing a truth under which we are forced to operate” (p. 159). Villas (1996) notes that emphasis on neoliberal policy approaches within governments world-wide reflects a shift in economic and social policy away from a Keynesian-Fordist model, where the state undertook an interventionist approach to regulate economic activity if need be, and intervene to address any acute inequities caused by the marketplace. Villas (1996) notes that in this model, social policy: Reinforced the process of capital accumulation to the degree that it created externalities for private enterprises. For example, public investment in education, health care, worker training, and low-income housing represented a savings for the private sector, which would otherwise have had to invest in these areas.  91 Meanwhile, employment, wage and pricing policies improved the purchasing power of individual workers and the domestic market as a whole. Social policy was seen as an element of investment, not an expense [and] facilitated the incorporation of broad sectors of the poor, especially the urban poor, into the political and economic system (para. 6-7). Villas (1996) argues that the neoliberal economic model that now predominates social policy throughout the Americas is predicated on a radically different set of assumptions, and views social policy as operating: … like a charity, directing aid toward the extremely poor. Rather than improving the working and living conditions of low-income groups, social policy tries to assist the many victims of structural adjustment, and to prevent further deterioration in the living standards of the population already below the poverty line. Neoliberal social policy doesn't help these people get out of the hole of poverty; it simply tries to prevent them from sinking further into it (para. 6-7). Reichwein (2002) argues that current neoliberal social policy approaches are modern incarnations of late 19th century British and North American ethos towards the poor, combined with a core belief in the ability of the competitive marketplace to eventually equalize economic and social inequities and eventually “lift all boats” in a tide of increasing prosperity. Reichwein (2002, p. 7) identifies core policy assumptions that permeate the neoliberal social policy approaches, including: 1. There are worthy versus unworthy (or deserving versus undeserving) citizens in society.  92 2. Administration of social benefits is to be carried out at as a local level as possible, and there are to be strict residence/eligibility requirements. 3. The principle of ‘less eligibility’ should apply, meaning that aid given to the poor (especially the unemployed employable citizens) is to be sufficiently minimal so as to make active labour market participation (regardless of wage) the preferable option. However, others have argued that the classification of the above-described principles and social policy approaches as solely ‘neoliberal’ is too simplistic. It is rather a description of what is in fact an amalgamation of a number of different ‘liberal’ constructs, tempered by the realities of constructing and applying social policy to complex issues faced by societies in the late 20th and early 21st centuries. Mahon (2008) citing O’Connor et. al., (1999) argues that many of the social policy approaches of the last twenty years, which have been labeled as neoliberal by many critics, are in fact an amalgamation of classic liberalism, neo-liberal and social liberal constructs. While retaining the neoliberal commitment to challenging the Keynesian welfare state and classical liberalisms celebration of market individualism and minimal government, Mahon (2008) claims that much of recent social policy in Canada also draws on social liberal principles in support of some types of social investment. This approach, which he labels as inclusive liberalism: … draws on social liberalism to support its case for social investment. Inclusive liberalism shares neo-liberalism’s commitment to non-inflationary growth and balanced budgets and is equally dedicated to the liberalization of the flow of goods and capital. Both stress the centrality of employment (supply-, not demand-side  93 measures) and labour market flexibility, accepting that this means greater inequality. To instill the work ethic, systems of income support need to be reconfigured to eliminate ‘welfare traps’. For inclusive liberals, however, activation includes training and other forms of assistance designed to develop individual capacities. Social policy is here understood as a social investment designed to ‘empower individuals to take their place in markets and civil society’ (Craig and Porter 2006: 91). As in the Keynesian era, then, the inclusive liberal state recognizes the existence of ‘the social’, but social policies to empower people to meet the challenges of economic globalization (Mahon, 2008, p. 344).  From Mahon’s (2008) perspective, the term neoliberal has been generalized to a point where it now is being applied to a range of different ‘liberal’ approaches, and caution should be used in the application of the term to social policy approaches. While the term “neoliberal” will be used in a broader context in this thesis, the caution is acknowledged and the question of how “neoliberal” are certain elements of the policy texts will be examined later in the document. 3.6 Discourse and Disability Policy: A personal narrative In the Graduate Handbook published by the Department of Educational Studies at the University of British Columbia (University of British Columbia, 2009), the doctoral thesis within the Doctor of Education (EdD) program is described as “… a research project in which the student has intensively studied a problem or set of circumstances in his or her practice” (p.