About Every Canadian Counts

Every Canadian Counts (ECC) is a coalition committed to improving services for over 20% of Canadians Identifying with having long-term, chronic disabilities. There is an urgent need to provide for these Canadians and their families, as many do not have access to even the most basic supports and services. The crisis is clearly illustrated by stories of families who have left loved ones on the steps of government agencies or at the door of homeless shelters in a desperate attempt to access needed services. Lack of services, weak provincial support systems, and the absence of a national strategy to address this crisis is unacceptable in Canada in this day and age. 

A national disability support program could offer a number of solutions to existing problems, for example:
1) Seamless delivery of services and supports throughout an individual’s lifetime
2) Elimination of current waiting lists for support programs and housing
3) Country-wide provision of quality, consistent and portable services

Our Advisory Board


Executive Chair and Director, Melbourne Disability Institute at the University of Melbourne
Professor Bonyhady is also one of the key architects of the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) and was the inaugural Chair of the National Disability Insurance Agency (NDIA) from 2013 to 2016. He is widely regarded as the “father of the NDIS’. He is also a former President of Philanthropy Australia.


International Consultant
Michael's efforts have included notable international initiatives such as the NDIS in Australia, the International Initiative on Disability Leadership, and more. He is perhaps best known for his extensive public speaking and teaching roles on many issues for over more than four decades.


Senior Management Consultant,Managing Director, International Information Technology Foundation
John's career began at Canadian Pacific Limited as Manager of Systems Development and later at VIA Rail where he was Chief Information officer. John was also responsible for the IT value-for-money audit practice of the Auditor General of Canada.

Board of Directors


Background in the areas of disability, government programs, and international development
Pavel’s recent work history includes working with the Federal Government and multiple Canadian disability organizations to provide the Federal Government’s Office for Disability Issues with the disabled community’s collective recommendations to improve the federal accessibility legislation known as Bill C-81, “The Accessible Canada Act”.
He holds an MA in Political Science from the University of Ottawa and a BA in International Relations from the Moscow State University of International Affairs.


Addressing the needs of people with disabilities through his advocacy for a national disability insurance program.
Dr Cowie holds both a Ph.D. and a Masters from the London School of
Economics, London UK, in Development Economics and Geography (1982). He has been a lecturer at the University of Toronto, Ottawa and Carleton Universities specializing in global economics and is currently a professional trainer for the Norman Paterson School of International Affairs, Carleton University. In recent years, Bill has headed up the Every Canadian Counts Coalition.


President of OCAPDD/Open Hands (Ottawa Carleton
Association for Persons with Developmental Disabilities)
Norma is the current President of OCAPDD/Open Hands (Ottawa Carleton
Association for Persons with Developmental Disabilities) and is their
representative to the Board of OASIS (Ontario Agencies Serving Individuals
with Special Needs). In addition Norma is also member of Champlain Grant
Review Team, Ontario Trillium Foundation while employed as an Assistant Returning Officer for Elections Canada (Federal Electoral District of Ottawa West-Nepean).


Focus on Independent Living initiatives and UNCRPD compliance advocacy.
Jonathan Marchand is a senior network engineer from Quebec City. He has worked in Quebec and in Australia for many years. He's been institutionalized since 2010 against his will because of his disability. He's a founder and president of Coop ASSIST - Quebec cooperative for Independent Living which aims to create a new provincial personal assistance program that is compliant with the UN's Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD).


Neurology and Internal Medicine and Fellow of the Canadian Academy of Health Sciences
He is certified by the College of Physicians and Surgeons of Ontario in the discipline of Neurology, and as a Fellow of the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada in the domains of Neurology and Internal Medicine in good standing. 

As a clinician-scientist, he is a Fellow of the Canadian Academy of Health
Sciences, Chief Research Officer of the Ontario Neurotrauma Foundation
which supports research, its publication, and its application in the area of
neurotrauma, and Member, Board of Directors, Brain Injury Canada. 


Areas of focus in education, health, and social safety nets, poverty, public expenditure, and aid coordination.
An economist by training Jim has over 40 years professional experience in
development including 23 years at the World Bank; three years spent in the Prime Minister’s Office in Papua New Guinea, and one year as an Advisor in the Government of Indonesia. 

Jim served in a number of positions including as Senior Advisor to the International Development Research Centre, advising the United Nations, various African governments, and the Government of Canada, and working with Oxford University’s Centre for Global Economic Governance.


Specializes in disability inclusive development of policy and programs.
Dr. Turmusani specializes in disability inclusive development with a PhD in
disability studies from Britain. 

As volunteer, he serves/ed on the Board of Director for a number of national disability organizations and a former
member of the Board of Ottawa-Carleton Association for Persons with
Developmental Disabilities. 

Currently, working on the social inclusion of autistic users with multiple educational needs. His expertise includes research
and evaluation; design/management of international community-based
rehabilitation, namely inclusive education; disability rights protection and
legal reform.


Educator and specialist teacher, community leader and volunteer.
Hubert has a long history of working and volunteering in the disabled community. 

He has been involved with the Ontario Association for Developmental Education for 18 years serving as a member-at-large, president and past president. Hubert served as the president of the Council for Exceptional Children for London-Middlesex. 

He is on the L’Arche London board of directors. Before retirement, Hubert was a special education specialist teacher in a mostly self-contained classroom for 17 years. He taught students with a wide
range of intellectual and multiple disabilities. Hubert also engaged in a
yearlong teacher work exchange to Australia for the year of 2010. 


Active advocate for equal rights for all; harnessing positive reinforcement as a powerful tool.
Penny is the president of Barrier Free Canada- Canada Sans Barrieres and
Vice president of CNIB Deaf Blind Community Services member of The city of Kingston Accessibility Advisory Committee.

In 1984 Penny obtained a diploma in business management from the British
Columbia Institute of Technology and since that time Penny has enrolled in
several courses ranging from several communication courses to obtaining a
instructor certificate in adult literacy.

Encouraging society to do the right thing goes a lot further than calling people out for doing the wrong thing. Positive reinforcement is a powerful tool.


Accessibility consultant and advocate.
Vice President BDO Consulting where he leads consulting on matters pertaining to accessibility. Past projects include work with the Federal Government towards the Accessible Canada Act. 

Founder of AccessibiliTV Max, was Social Media Executive Producer with experience in production and programed development.

Previously Max was Senior Advisor of Partnerships and Engagement, Officer
of Public Service Accessibility/Treasury Board of Canada Secretariat; Senior
Advisor, Deputy Minister Champion for Persons with Disabilities at
Infrastructure Canada; Senior Project Manager at Manager Human Resources
at Correctional Services Canada.
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