Self Advocacy Letters

Writing a formal letter or email can be an effective way to advocate for yourself and the rights of persons with disabilities. Below is an example of a simple format for writing a letter as well as two sample letters that follow that format.

Example of a letter format:

[Your Name ]
[Your Address]
[Your Telephone Number and E-Mail Address]

[Today’s Date]

[Name of the Person You Are sending the Letter to]
[Their Title]
[Their Address]

Dear [person you are writing to],
[Describe the problem you want people to know about. State the facts in a simple way.]
[Tell them what you want them to do about it.]
[Ask them to respond to your letter.]
[Sign off by saying “Sincerely” and stating your name.]

OPTIONAL [CC: Carbon Copy – this is a list of people you are sending copies of this letter to, for example your MHA, Town Mayor, or anyone else who could help your cause. See the last letter below for examples.]

Examples of Advocacy Letters

Letter 1

Jane Smith
123 Main Street
Harbourtown, NL A7B 3C1
(709) 111-1111

January 10, 2023

Allan Jones
Director of Programs
Income Support
321 Metro Boulevard
Capital City, NL A1A 1A1

Dear Allan Jones:

My name is Jane Smith. I’m writing this letter because I’m struggling to survive as a person with a disability in Newfoundland and Labrador.

I currently receive Canada Pension Plan Disability(CPP) but it does not provide enough money for me to pay rent, heat my apartment and buy groceries. Because I’m receiving CPP I’m not eligible for funds from Income Support or any other programs. I have to choose between heat, light and basic food. With the rising cost of living I will soon no longer be able to afford a place to live.

As a person with disabilities, I often experience a higher cost of living and the system should enable me to access supports equitably. I would like to speak with someone to discuss my needs.

Can you please call me at (709) 111-1111.

Jane Smith

Letter 2

Kyle Murphy
10 Water Street
Covetown, NL A0B 2J0
(709) 221-2221

February 2, 2023

Susan Baird
Manager of Operations
Covetown Community Centre
Covetown, NL A0B 2J0

Dear Susan Baird:

My name is Kyle Murphy. I’m writing today because of accessibility challenges I’ve experienced while trying to use the Covetown Community Centre. There are a number of areas in the Centre that could be improved with some simple changes and I’m concerned that the building may not meet basic building codes for the province.

I have low vision and I use a white cane to help me navigate while walking. The stairs in the Centre are all black and I’m not able to see where the steps begin and end. A couple of times I’ve nearly fallen. Other buildings have bright yellow strips on the nose of the steps and I can see them well enough to use them safely. Also, there are some doorways in the Centre that have a raised lip over an inch high and I’ve tripped over them a number of times. These are just a couple of examples of things that could be fixed in order to make the facility safer and more accessible for everyone. Can you please call me at (709) 221-2221 to talk about some of these concerns.

Kyle Murphy

CC: Mayor Janice Brown, Covetown Community Centre Recreational Committee