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441-01584 (Transportation)

Paper petition

Original language of petition: English

Petition to the House of Commons in Parliament Assembled


  • Free parking for the disabled should be harmonized across Canada;
  • Canada has federal and provincial continuity in most matters concerning rights and accessibility rights;
  • The matter of free parking for the disabled is not addressed in current law uniformly, and that it is one very important area of accessibility;
  • The cost and effort of parking for the disabled and mobility challenged presents a barrier to accessibility;
  • Not having free APP (Accessibility Parking Pass) parking, and continuity with it, is a significant challenge for those with mobility issues that travel to new areas, cities, and provinces;
  • It can be even harder for those traveling here from other countries, ones that have addressed this challenge;
  • Caregivers and families need this continuity when they are called upon to help with transport;
  • Several Canadian cities, including Toronto, Mississauga, Burlington, Niagara Falls, Ottawa, Hamilton, St Catharines, Windsor, Sarnia, Sault Ste Marie, Cornwall, London, Brampton, Halifax, and Quebec City, allow for free parking for APP holders; and
  • Several countries, including Switzerland, Turkey, Cost Rica, Iceland, Argentina, Australia, Great Britain, the Entire EU, and more, all allow APP free parking, even for disabled who are visiting from other countries, and we should as well.

Therefore, we, the undersigned citizens and residents of Canada, call upon the House of Commons in Parliament assembled to work with the provinces and territories to make parking free for all Accessibility Parking Pass holders, nationally.

Response by the Minister of Transport

Signed by (Minister or Parliamentary Secretary): The Parliamentary Secretary Annie Koutrakis

While Transport Canada has a mandate to ensure that the federal transportation network is without barriers for persons with disabilities, in Canada, policies for accessible parking (including accessible parking permits) fall under provincial and territorial government authority. The responsibility for enacting and enforcing bylaws on parking permits and the use of designated accessible parking spaces is then delegated to cities and municipalities. This means that there is variation of policies from one province or territory to another.

The Government of Canada has a Mutual Recognition of Parking Badges Agreement for Persons with Disabilities (, which was first established in 1978 at the European Conference of Ministers of Transport (ECMT) Council of Ministers, and later updated in 1997. All ECMT Member Countries, as well as ECMT Associated Countries have the right to the same parking concessions as nationals in all ECMT countries, with the only condition being that the vehicle must display a valid badge showing the international wheelchair symbol.

Transport Canada remains committed in ensuring an accessible transportation system for all Canadians and will continue to work with other government departments, and provinces and territories towards that goal.


Response by the Minister of Diversity and Inclusion and Persons with Disabilities

Signed by (Minister or Parliamentary Secretary): Irek Kusmierczyk

The Government of Canada is committed to identifying, removing and preventing barriers to accessibility and improving financial security for persons with disabilities.

The Accessible Canada Act (ACA), which came into force in 2019, requires regulated entities to proactively identify, remove and prevent barriers to accessibility in seven (7) priority areas. While transportation is one of the priority areas set out in the ACA, the issuance of accessible parking passes, including applicable fees, is a provincial/territorial matter.

In addition, municipal governments are responsible for setting parking regulations, including whether accessible parking pass holders must pay for parking. Recognizing the importance of creating seamless experiences for persons with disabilities, harmonization of accessible parking requirements and/or fees may be an area for future multi-jurisdictional collaboration.

The Government of Canada understands that there are many extra costs associated with having a disability. These costs can be a significant hardship for Canadians with disabilities who are already living on a low income. According to the 2017 Canadian Survey on Disability, working age Canadians with disabilities experience poverty at nearly twice the rate of working age Canadians without disabilities (23% vs 12%).

To better support persons with disabilities, the Government released its first-ever Disability Inclusion Action Plan?a comprehensive, whole-of-government approach to disability inclusion. A cornerstone of the Action Plan is the Canada Disability Benefit initiative. The Canada Disability Benefit Act (Bill C-22) received Royal Assent on June 22, 2023. The Act is framework legislation that establishes the Canada Disability Benefit to reduce poverty and to support the financial security of working-age persons with disabilities.


Presented to the House of Commons
Mark Gerretsen (Kingston and the Islands)
June 21, 2023 (Petition No. 441-01584)
Government response tabled
August 16, 2023
Photo - Mark Gerretsen
Kingston and the Islands
Liberal Caucus

295 signatures

Only validated signatures are counted towards the total number of signatures.