Alexis Folk Meeting Mighty People Host gets interview by AT Banters

AT Banter Podcast Episode 303 – Meeting Mighty People Podcas… Wed, 9/14 6:44PM 48:51 SUMMARY KEYWORDS alexis, frog, podcast, people, horse, disabilities, year, organizations, cowbell, cerebral palsy, government, lis, talking, advocacy, sobeys, little bit, accessibility, bit, riding, community SPEAKERS Rob Mineault, Steve Barclay, Lis Malone, Alexis Folk Rob Mineault 00:18 Hey and welcome to another episode of AT Banter. Steve Barclay 00:23 Banter banter. Rob Mineault 00:28 Yeah, we’re gonna have to explain that cowbell. Hey, this is of course the podcast where we talk with advocates and members of the disability community to educate and inspire better conversation about disability. Hey, my name is Rob Mineault. Oh, and joining me today. I’m exhausted already doing this intro. Lis Malone is joining us today. Lis Malone 00:51 Hey, Rob Mineault, what’s up? Rob Mineault 00:53 Hello. And also joining us today is Mr. Steve Barclay. Steve Barclay 00:59 And I will be using a wood joiner in order to join you today. R S R L R S And I will be using a wood joiner in order to join you today. Rob Mineault 01:02 That correct. I don’t even know what that means. I must be some sort of a carpentry thing, but good enough. Hey, so we as everybody’s probably noticed by now, and is probably, you know, typing on their email to send us an email. There’s no Ryan Fleury, and there is no real actual cowbell, today. What you heard was a emulation. Steve Barclay 01:26 It was it was an approximation. Rob Mineault 01:28 Exactly. Is a mini cowbell. Lis Malone 01:30 Well, it was we did multiple minis to make up for the actual original. Rob Mineault 01:37 That was. That was the idea. But I don’t I don’t know how well that was implemented. But okay. Lis Malone 01:42 . We tried. We flopped on the dismount. But we tried. Rob Mineault 01:46 Hopefully the Russian judge doesn’t give us the zero. Lis Malone 01:51 it’s always the Russian judge. Rob Mineault 01:53 Ah, hey, how are you guys today? R S R L R L R L R Steve Barclay 01:57 On a scale of one to 10? Rob Mineault 01:59 Sure. Steve Barclay 02:01 Solid six. Rob Mineault 02:03 That’s not bad. Lis? Lis Malone 02:07 Yeah, six is pretty. That’s that’s a good number. Steve, I’m going with you. Rob Mineault 02:11 I’m gonna I’m gonna go with 6.5 Just because I watch the Price is Right a lot. And you always want to go like a little bit higher, like 50 cents higher than everybody else to try to get that closest to the actual retail price without going over. Yeah. So we should say, we want to say where Ryan is? I think we should because I’m a little bit proud of the little guy. Steve Barclay 02:33 He’s growing up. Lis Malone 02:36 He’s getting out into the world. He’s leaving the nest. Rob Mineault 02:40 So Ryan is not with us because he actually had a board meeting. Because he is now sitting on the board of an organization called AEBC, which is of course the Alliance for Equity for Blind Canadians. So he got nominated, he went to their annual general meeting over the weekend S R S R L R S L R and got nominated to sit on the board and got voted in. And so he’s off doing important stuff over there at AEBC, so Congratulations to Mr. Fleury. And I’m sure we’ll see him again next week. Lis Malone 03:19 Yeah, proud. Our little boy’s growing up. He better be pushing the podcast at the meetings. Rob Mineault 03:34 That’s right. Well, so this is gonna throw me off too, because now I have nobody to throw it to to tell us what we’re actually doing today. So I got to do this. So today, it is our great pleasure to be talking to a young lady here in British Columbia, by the name of Alexis Folk, who happens to also have a podcast that we’re going to learn all about. Welcome, Alexis. Alexis Folk 04:02 Thank you for having me. Rob Mineault 04:04 Yeah, listen, I’m sorry, that is such a chaotic day that you’re joining that everything all hell broke loose here on the podcast. But we’re gonna make a go of this and have a great appearance. So why don’t you tell our listeners and those of us who aren’t familiar with you a little bit about yourself, where you’re from and what grade you’re in. And a little bit about this podcast that you have? Well, my name is Alexis Folk. I’m in grade 10. I live in British Columbia. I started the podcast because I seen inequities in BC with inclusion and accessibility and I’m wanting to just be part of more activities. So then I started having conversations with other people with disabilities. And my teacher approached me about a fundraising opportunity for activities for people with disabilities, specifically outdoors because they don’t get to experience that very often. This podcast started from that day. Rob Mineault 05:20 So now what’s the what’s the name of the podcast? Alexis Folk 05:23 Meeting Mighty People L R A R R A Rob Mineault 05:25 Oh, interesting. And so what’s the premise? Do you do you have you have guests that come on and you you interview them? Or how does it how does it all work? I have guests that come on each month. Matter of fact, this month, I have the Nelson Creston MLA on the show. And she’ll be talking about what funding we can get for people with disabilities. Rob Mineault 05:50 Oh, wow. That’s fantastic. Now, is it so it’s a it’s a monthly podcast? Alexis Folk 05:55 Yes. Steve Barclay 05:58 And just for our listeners who don’t know what an MLA is, because they might be in the United States that is a Member of the Legislative Assembly. That’s our Provincial Parliament. This is Alexis’ representative. Rob Mineault 06:12 Yeah. That’s a big deal, getting a politician’s a big deal. Yeah, I realizing now that I started, that that is a pretty big commission to be proud of. Rob Mineault 06:27 Yeah, absolutely. So tell me a little bit about where where did this whole idea for this podcast sort of come from? I know, you mentioned that, that, you know, you sort of you noticed that there was a sort of a gap in terms of inclusion and accessibility in your own community. But was there like something that really just happened that you were just like, you know what, I got to do something? And how was it that you decided to do a podcast? R R A S R R Alexis Folk 06:55 Well, ironically, there was something that happened that I figured I seen enough equities in the community that I figured I gotta do something. And then my teacher just ended up randomly approaching me about a podcast and asked if I wanted to help out with it, and then it became my own. And then here we are today. Rob Mineault 07:20 Wow. Now, so was it hard to like, learn how to sort of do all the podcasting thing?Had you listened to a lot of podcasts? Yes. And I would say the struggle was 100% real. Like today. Yeah. The editing and the stuff like that. Rob Mineault 07:44 Yeah. I can so relate to this. Lis Malone 07:49 It’s like the podcasters code. We all know, oh god, all the stuff you have to do behind the scenes. Rob Mineault 07:56 I mean, honestly, it’s the editing. It’s the uploading, it’s getting in on the platform. It’s writing the description. Yes. All of that takes, it takes a lot of time, doesn’t it? Alexis Folk 08:06 Yes. But I’m willing to put in the time, because this is an important project. And now look how far we’ve come. Rob Mineault 08:17 That’s right. So now, how long have you been doing the podcasts for? Alexis Folk 08:25 A R R L R A R A Alexis Folk 08:25 A year and a half to two years? Wow, wow. Right? In December 3 of 2020? Rob Mineault 08:32 How did how do you sort of come up with with guest ideas? Do you have people approaching you? Or do you kind of do some research and try to decide on who you want to talk to? Alexis Folk 08:44 I do some research and then I find their email addresses and then I email them. Rob Mineault 08:52 Yeah, do you? Do you find that you’re kind of surprised that how many yeses that you do get? Because that happens with us all the time, we sometimes will reach out to somebody and be like, we’ll never we’ll never get this person on the show. And then we hear back a day later and they’re like, yeah, sure. I’d love to come on. Alexis Folk 09:07 Yeah, sometimes, but not all the time. Lis Malone 09:11 Yeah, there’s definitely times when I know we’ve reached out to people and you think gosh, this and this is a no brainer. I mean, it makes so much sense. It’s a great tie in and then they’re like, nope, pass and you’re like, Oh, really? Okay. Rob Mineault 09:27 Yeah, I’ve always I don’t know, maybe just some people just don’t like being on podcasts. I don’t know. Or maybe some people just don’t like, I don’t know. Steve Barclay 09:33 But it’s the number one fear of public speaking, right? Rob Mineault 09:36 That’s true. Yeah. So yeah talk to me a little bit about that then Alexis. So when you first started it like were you really super nervous at first and now you’re kind of like a, an old pro A R A R A L R S R started it like were you really super nervous at first and now you’re kind of like a, an old pro and it’s no problem or do you still get nervous? How has that kind of progressed? Alexis Folk 09:53 As Is it was always challenging before it’s gotten easier. The more prepared you are the better. Rob Mineault 10:03 Yeah. Well, that’s that’s usually our problem too. Alexis Folk 10:09 And also, the more you’re the more nervous you are. Rob Mineault 10:14 No, that’s Yeah, that’s true. Alexis Folk 10:18 So it’s better to just go with it. Yep. Lis Malone 10:22 It’s, I just want to ask you, Alexis, because when you’re talking about prepping for a show and getting ready for a particular guest, you ever find that sometimes you might have your whole show planned down all your questions, and then you get to guests, you just completely takes it in a whole separate direction. And you’re just like, oh, no, and you gotta throw your notes out the window and just kind of wing it Alexis Folk 10:42 Sometimes. But I like doing that kind of stuff. I mostly just look at my notes for who’s on this show and go with it. Rob Mineault 10:53 How important is is sort of the idea of advocacy to you? And did you kind of grow up with that sense of importance for advocacy? A R A R A L A R Alexis Folk 11:05 I feel like I always had it in me. But since seventh to ninth grade, I’ve been noticing that there’s a need for independence and a need for inclusion. Because I’ve seen, I’ve seen so many situations where I could be included, but people just don’t really realize how they can include people with disabilities or what they need to do. And the fact that it takes a growth mindset to actually include people. Rob Mineault 11:44 Right, right. So so yeah, education. I mean, that’s something that we talk a lot about on the podcast, as well as just that it’s so many people have a lot of misconceptions when it comes to disability. That, you know, it’s really the more voices that we have out there and the communities that are that are educating and and being visible and being loud, the better because then then people learn. And, you know, because I feel like at the end of the day, everybody, everybody wants everybody to be included. But sometimes they just they don’t know any better, or they don’t even realize that they’ve made something inaccessible to a certain community. Alexis Folk 12:24 Agreed, strongly agreed. Steve Barclay 12:28 Alexis, I had, I had a little birdie who sat on my shoulder this morning and suggested that I asked you about what you’ve done to advocate for yourself in your own community. Alexis Folk 12:40 Okay, I’ll tell you a little bit about that. So last year, I seen I seen enough inequities in my own school because I wasn’t able to access certain facilities in my school. So I went and I sat on town council in a town council meeting and asked them, could they make it more accessible? And they said, Sure, we’ll kind of have a look. And next thing I know, it was done. Steve Barclay 13:12 Oh, that’s awesome. What did you ask them to do? Alexis Folk 13:16 I asked him to make the bathroom doors in my school accessible because they were so heavy. A R A S A S A Steve Barclay 13:25 So did they just put in like a better hinging system? Or did they motorized them? What did what did they do? Alexis Folk 13:31 They put in actual buttons that you just push. Steve Barclay 13:35 Nice. Rob Mineault 13:36 So how important do you kind of see advocacy in terms of young people? Like, do you see a lot of a lot of kids your age, that are becoming more active in advocacy? And and how important do you kind of feel that that is for for young people to get involved? Alexis Folk 13:56 I feel that it’s really important because young people are gonna be here for more future to come. And they’re, they need to have a voice and future plans for access codes and stuff like that. Rob Mineault 14:12 Now that you’ve sort of have sort of stepped up your own advocacy, do you have people around you and stuff that are that are becoming more involved as well? Are you serving as sort of a bit of an inspiration for them? Alexis Folk 14:24 Yes, I am saying definitely serving as an inspiration for younger people with cerebral palsy and other disabilities that are in my community. Rob Mineault 14:38 And what’s what’s sort of your favorite thing about doing the podcast? Alexis Folk 14:44 My favorite thing, all of having like, having the open conversation about disability to life, and S A S R A R A R A My favorite thing, all of having like, having the open conversation about disability to life, and just the fact that there’s no no judgments around having a conversation about your disability. Steve Barclay 15:07 Alexis, what was your favorite interview that you’ve done so far? Alexis Folk 15:10 My favorite interview? There’s two, my favorites. One, which is with the spec, or a special education teacher with cerebral palsy. Her name is Melissa. She’s an inspiration to me. She’s got epilepsy, too. And she, she’s a disability consultant. So what she does is she takes in university resources, makes them accessible, and they have some new university resources herself related to her experiences. Steve Barclay 15:52 Nice, what was the other one? Alexis Folk 15:54 And Marco Pasqua, a cerebral palsy association of BC spokesperson. He is a very widely known inspiration across BC, and he was just interesting to talk to you, and share his experiences with the whole world of what it’s like to live with cerebral palsy and in a wheelchair and whatnot, and just be vulnerable and open. Rob Mineault 16:27 What are some of the plans that you have for the podcast? Are you you know, you just got to keep keep plugging away and keep doing it? Are there any? Do you have any dream guests that you want to try to get? Alexis Folk 16:39 I have a plan just to keep going keep seeing where this goes with might turn into a potential career, cuz there’s lots of organizations that I’ve had many had approached me and wanted me to speak at their events. One in which is the Cerebral Palsy Association, and Shawn Marsolais at Blind Beginnings one night. Rob Mineault 17:08 Yeah, that’s awesome. And I mean, it’s you never know where things are going to lead. And that’s one of the that’s one of the cool things that about the podcasts that we enjoy do is just meeting all kinds of different people and sort of making those network connections with, with S A S A R A R meeting all kinds of different people and sort of making those network connections with, with people all over the world. Alexis Folk 17:26 Yes. Rob Mineault 17:27 So tell me a little bit about what else you’d like to do other than producing a monthly podcast and doing all your advocacy work? What do you like to do extra curricularly? Alexis Folk 17:43 Extracurricularly I love to volunteer to help people with disabilities, whether it’s mentoring them, or helping them out in some kind of way, shape form. Lis Malone 17:58 You know, I would actually love to hear a little bit about the about the role that horseback riding has played in your life. That was something that really jumped out at me, when I looked at your website, I actually just got back from a trip from Wyoming and Montana. And so I was really looking forward to speaking with you and kind of getting your perspective and sharing some of my recent experiences. So if you could give us a little insight into that? Alexis Folk 18:29 Well, horse riding was really what started my journey to realizing that the world is really open to seeing different sides of the world, like, the world is very open, you can make choices that allow you to see certain sides of the world. So it helps to change my perspective and allowed me to live the life I lived today. Being fully independent, fully driven towards that people with disabilities have abilities instead of disabilities your whole life and you live around that. Lis Malone 19:15 Yeah,, so my, my recent experience, going horseback riding Just last week, I think I experienced some of the things that you just touched upon is that I had this I first of all, I haven’t ridden a horse in Oh, my God, I don’t even know how long and it was something that I wasn’t sure that I would be able to do. Because I am legally blind, Alexis, and I found it to be so incredibly liberating to be on this animal. I can’t drive a car I can’t ride a bicycle. We can’t do a lot of fun but but riding that horse and becoming in tune with the motion, my body positions how to lean and feeling where the horse was positioned, and learning that I could successfully horseback ride. A R A L A L Alexis Folk 20:13 And something else that’s not a barrier. Lis Malone 20:16 Yeah, but it was definitely something that I had not I mean, I created the barrier for myself, I made the my own assumptions that oh my gosh, I don’t think I’m going to be able to do this, I think I might, you know, want to steer the horse wrong. And so it was extremely liberating. And so when I was reading your website, and I read about how you just said that it was something that started your journey, I said, oh, my gosh, I can, I can completely see how something like this could really change your perspectives, in terms of what your abilities what your limitations are, or actually, I should say, what your limitations are not. Alexis Folk 20:51 True story, your limitation is only your imagination. Rob Mineault 20:59 See I’ve never ridden a horse. I never got kind of never got around to that. But I should really. Alexis Folk 21:08 I’ve been riding for like 10 years. And I just took a break recently. And I’ve been in a couple of videos for TSN for funding, and it’s been a life changing events. Rob Mineault 21:24 Now, do you like the like, is there a place – I’m sorry, I’m really dumb, and I know nothing about this, but do you go to a place and can you rent a horse? Like how does this work? Alexis Folk 21:33 Yeah, well, there’s a Creston Valley’s Therapeutic Riding program where I live. So you go there, you ride for therapy, say for an hour. And you just breathe in. You just enjoy. Rob Mineault 21:52 So now do so can you get like the same horse? Like is there one horse that you can go request or something? Or do you like, they just load you on whatever horses around? A L A R A R A R Alexis Folk 22:07 You get to choose. Rob Mineault 22:10 And so like, I’m curious. I’m serious. Like so do you create like sort of a bit of a bond with with one particular horse like, you know, you want? Yeah, I want Phillip today. Lis Malone 22:24 They have funny names. They’re not like Bob and George and Mary there. I had one horse that was named Stinky Drew. Rob Mineault 22:36 I knew a Stinky Drew in Grade Nine. Lis Malone 22:39 I said, I said I think I think somebody named this after their ex husband. You know, there was another one named Walk It Off. They all have these very good names. Alexis Folk 22:48 So funny. They all are named after their characteristics. Rob Mineault 23:02 Oh, that’s so cute. I love that. Yeah, no. All right. Well, you guys, you guys are convincing me I should really put that down on one on my to do list. Alexis Folk 23:14 Yeah. Rob Mineault 23:17 You know, I look I’ve seen like, I like I’ve seen horses, I’ve seen horses close up. And you know, what’s, what always struck me about them is that they’re a lot bigger than they look. Like you don’t realize how big a horse is until you’re like beside it. And you realize, man, this thing is big A R L R L A R A R don’t realize how big a horse is until you’re like beside it. And you realize, man, this thing is big and powerful. Alexis Folk 23:34 But think about the advantages that your disability is not letting you do on top of that horse. You can use the advantage of its legs to gain to get to use it as power. Rob Mineault 23:51 Yeah, that’s That’s very true. That’s very true. All right, well, listen. I’m going to find some place where I can go rent a horse for an afternoon named Philip. Well, I’m putting in a request. I don’t know. I might have to get Philip Steve Barclay 24:07 Ask for Sleepy Joe. Rob Mineault 24:09 Oh my gosh, you’re right. All right. That or Almost Dead Fred. I don’t want anyone who’s gonna kick me off. Or because, like, I know the movies. Like, I know you go, what do you like? How do you make them go? You just giddy up? Lis Malone 24:29 Hit them on the sides with your heels. Rob Mineault 24:33 That seems mean. Lis Malone 24:34 No, no, I mean, listen, these animals are so big and muscular. That I mean, you’re not I mean, they’re not gonna put spurs on you. You’re probably gonna be wearing you know, sneakers or tennis shoes, whatever you call them, and you just kind of click them. Alexis Folk 24:48 You use like command of walk on or your kick with your heels. A R S R L R L A Rob Mineault 24:56 Wait, hopefully well, hopefully they do some sort of training before they just load yours, here you go. Lis Malone 25:06 Unless, unless you want to be on one of those pony rides with the kids, were they the handlers holding the reins all the way around the little circle? Rob Mineault 25:14 Well, listen, I might be riding with the five year olds. Get my horse legs under me. Lis Malone 25:23 Steve, have you done any horseback riding? Steve Barclay 25:26 Not in years, but I did when I was younger. Yeah. Lis Malone 25:29 It’s nice, isn’t it? It’s, yeah, it’s just it’s very peaceful. And you kind of get your body into this nice rhythm. Steve Barclay 25:36 Yeah, you get that roll happening. You just sort of meander on down the road. And then the horse decides, hey, there’s a low hanging branch. I’m going to brush them off on that and then decides, hey, I think I’ll rub up against this tree and see what that does to his knees. Yeah, that’s great. Lis Malone 25:52 Well, we’re all of a sudden the horse stops and you’re like, what’s going on? Why the horse going in there? Like the the guy that the heads like? Yeah, your horse is taking a poop. It happens. Rob Mineault 26:09 R L R L S L S L R Rob Mineault 26:09 When you gotta go, you gotta go. Lis Malone 26:10 Yeah. Steve Barclay 26:12 Oh, I got a question. Rob Mineault 26:13 Okay, you go. Steve Barclay 26:14 I’m gonna I’m gonna fire one of Alexis is back at herself here. Alexis, what do you think makes a mighty person? Alexis Folk 26:23 Well, I think anybody has the two driven attributes. Make stuff happen like to make waves in the world. Rob Mineault 26:39 I like that. I like that a lot. Making waves Steve Barclay 26:42 Make waves. You ought to put that on a t shirt. And you got your own merch there, Alexis. Alexis Folk 26:48 I actually do have my own merch and logo. Awesome. Yes. It was a school project. Steve Barclay 26:59 Oh, what do you what do you got for merch? R L S R S A R S A S Alexis Folk 27:02 It’s just my MMP logo right now. Rob Mineault 27:05 Wow, that’s cool.Are they like T shirts or what do you what do you got? Hats? Alexis Folk 27:11 T-shirts, cups. I’m done a couple of cups not myself. I got em printed from Vistaprint. Rob Mineault 27:19 Right. Now, so we need to do that. We need to get some merch. We should get mugs. Lis Malone 27:24 I still say we need some beer huggies. Steve Barclay 27:31 Also built in cowbells. Lis Malone 27:33 Yes. With a cowbell on it. Yeah. Rob Mineault 27:37 All right. What have you Alexis can give us some consultation later after the show. So Alexis, let me ask you this. If there are people in our audience who are interested in listening to your podcast – which they better – where can they go online to find you and to find the podcast? Alexis Folk 28:03 Anchor, Spotify, Google Podcasts and my website so far. Hopefully it’s gonna expand within the next couple months. A R A R L S L R A Lis Malone 28:14 But we have at least one listener in Russia that we’re going to the work that we were gonna say go listen to her podcast. It’s awesome. Rob Mineault 28:23 Right. Svetlana, go to http://www.meetingmightypeople.com and go listen to the to the podcast. Give Alexis some of those Russian stats in her analytics. Alexis Folk 28:38 Okay, thank you. Rob Mineault 28:41 Alright, listen, Alexis, thank you so much for coming on and talking to us. It’s been an absolute pleasure. Best of luck with the podcast. I’ll certainly be listening. And yeah, I’m excited to to hear your interview with the MLA later this month. Alexis Folk 28:59 Yes, that should be interesting. Thank you. It’s been an absolute pleasure talking to you. Rob Mineault 29:06 Awesome. All right. Thanks, Alexis. Lis Malone 29:08 Take care, Alexis. Rob Mineault 29:12 Well, it is always nice to see a young person who is a hip deep and advocacy work. I love it. Steve Barclay 29:20 Absolutely. Rob Mineault 29:21 L R A R A R L R S R Rob Mineault 29:21 Yeah. I mean, really, that’s what we need. We need more people, young people getting involved in their community and trying to get out there and make a difference. Steve Barclay 29:28 And affect positive change. Yeah, exactly. Rob Mineault 29:32 So always great to see. Steve Barclay 29:34 You hear that youngins get out there? Get out there Rob Mineault 29:37 Get loud get and and honestly that’s what we you know, we say this all the time. You gotta get we got to get out there and make noise Steve Barclay 29:44 History has rarely been made by quiet people. Rob Mineault 29:47 Right? So that’s a good quote. Steve Barclay 29:51 I probably stole it from somewhere. Lis Malone 29:55 You’re an honest thief. Rob Mineault 29:56 Oh, Hey, you know what, speaking of that, before we wrap things up for this episode. There was some I caught this piece of news, actually just today, and I thought it would bring it up. Lis, R S R S R S R S L R some I caught this piece of news, actually just today, and I thought it would bring it up. Lis, unfortunately, it’s sort of local. But that’s okay. It’s about local bureaucracy. So maybe you’ll get something out of this, too. But Steve, did you did you realize that the BC Accessibility Act that went into place last year, as of September 1, they’ve actually mandated now that more than 750 public sector organizations, are now regulated to form accessibility committees. Did you see that news? Steve Barclay 30:42 I did not see that news. But as you were talking there, I just Googled it. And yeah, sure enough, yeah. Rob Mineault 30:50 So they’re requiring certain public sector organizations to establish their own accessibility communities, to reduce barriers for, of course, people living with disabilities. And this all goes into effect, or went into effect actually, on September 1. The organizations includes school districts and post secondary institutions, public libraries, and local governments. Organizations will need an accessibility committee, a plan and a way to receive feedback. And they have one year to complete the work. So this is really interesting. This is, you know, we didn’t really we, we have we got this legislation here in BC. Like I said, last year, and it kind of came and went without much fanfare. This is kind of the first thing that I’ve seen of for in terms of movement on it. And it’s, it’s interesting to me that, that they seem to be moving at a little bit of a faster pace, even than the Canadian Accessibility Act. But maybe that’s just because it’s, you know, it’s certainly smaller in scale. Lis Malone 31:54 Now, are the guidelines for what the accessibility requirements are, is that laid out for these organizations? Rob Mineault 32:02 So it’s interesting that you say that because this is definitely a news article with good news slash bad news. Because while they’ve reached out to all of these organizations and said that they need to be doing this. The catch is, is that they’re not going to put in any sort of enforcement mechanism until they’ve come up with accessibility standards, which they’re saying will probably take up to about two years. So even though they’ve they’ve gone to all these organizations and said, you need to, you know, create accessibility committees and you need, you know, a mechanism, a reporting mechanism for all that they’re not actually enforcing any of that until they figure out the standards, which they’re not even doing for probably another two years. That makes no sense. Well, this is again, welcome to local bureaucracy and government. Right. Steve Barclay 33:02 S R L R S Well, it’s like the Accessible Canada Act exempting themselves from the Accessible Canada Act. Right? Rob Mineault 33:07 That’s right. That’s true story, Lis. Steve Barclay 33:11 You can’t make this up. The Accessible Canada Act government has the right to exempt themselves from it and it applies to government. Lis Malone 33:22 I mean, does any what any sector actually start focusing on anything that the government dictates that is not going to be enforced? I just don’t understand. You know, that’s like you know, it’s like a carrot with no stick. Steve Barclay 33:40 They actually have a document online called the Implementation Timeline, which is kind of interesting. So, so year one, they say their goals for year one are requirements for the BC government build build tool to provide feedback to government develop government’s Accessibility Plan, develop regulations, prescribing organizations, and establish the provincial accessibility committee. Year two is Government Accessibility Plan released develop regulations prescribing organizations, government Annual Report released every year developed for standard develop second standard for their for their standards. Year three is pretty much the same as Year two, its government Annual Report developed the first and second standards. Year four is where they start talking about compliance and enforcement. So the first and second standards they develop compliance for that will be in Year four. So have developed them over Years two and three and then start to enforce them in Year four. Implementation happens in Year four, which is a phased approach to implementation then in years four and five, they are developing the third standard and fourth standard. They should have a second government Accessibility Plan released and they should have their first independent review of the of the standard. Then Year six, more and more implementation, more review, development of a fifth and sixth standard, they don’t really get into specifics on those Years seven, same Year eight, the third government accessibility plans released more implementation, plus the development of the seventh and eighth standard over year seven and eight, and then Year 10 or sorry, 8, 9 rather, year 10, they have a second independent review. And the last part of the implementation phase. So this is, this is a 10 year plan that they’ve laid out. And, you know, it’ll be interesting to see, you know, as with most governments in this province, you know, we we don’t have governments for 10 years in a row typically. So we’ll see what, you know, subsequent government might might do to this to change it or adjust the timelines or whatever, but they do they have laid out what they want to see happened over the years, but it’s super vague. R S L S Rob Mineault 36:15 Well, I mean, I don’t know, maybe we’re being a little bit too hard on them. Because that does sound like they have a plan, which is good. I mean, at least they have a 10 year plan. They’ve published it. It’s all you know, we were able to look at it and see where we’re at. I don’t know, I don’t know that, that there’s anything similar with the with in terms of the the federal act. So I don’t know, maybe this is a good sign. Lis Malone 36:43 Well, to borrow a phrase from Sleepy Joe, that sounds like a bunch of malarkey to me. Rob Mineault 36:52 Well, you know, it’s, I guess the other thing that that really like, makes me roll my eyes a little bit is when they talk about well, you know, we need to develop accessibility standards. And that’s probably going to take a few years. It’s like, well, I don’t understand why. How is that going to take two years? Like accessibility hasn’t changed over 50 years? Like, we know, what makes something accessible.I don’t understand what there is to figure out. Lis Malone 37:18 There’s already best practices in place. There’s already so many case studies and other countries like the US, so we already have, you know, laws in place. Yeah, um, I don’t know. I mean, when you hear people say, oh, yeah, it was like me when I wouldn’t think about it. In any other aspect of life if someone says to you, hey, I got this great 10 year plan. The first thing you do is like you roll your eyes. Rob Mineault 37:48 Well, and you know, what’s shocking, too, is that, you know, even when we’re talking to Alexis, you know, the fact that she had to advocate for the her school to put in, like bathroom doors that seems like a little bit crazy to me. Lis Malone 38:02 Like when I was in 10th grade, you know, I mean, gosh, that was back when, you know, under playgrounds, it was cement. Everything was made of metal. But yeah, I mean for for students to not have accessible entrances to all things a bathroom is just as crazy, right? It’s yeah, I mean, it’s, it’s hard to believe but yeah, I guess it’s still exists, obviously. Rob Mineault 38:31 And granted it’s just you know, it’s a small northern BC town. So you know, maybe that is part R L R L R L R And granted it’s just you know, it’s a small northern BC town. So you know, maybe that is part of it. But still, like it’s it’s still shocking to sort of see where, where we still are dropping the ball in terms of these things. So yeah, I don’t I don’t know. I don’t know how to feel about this article. On the one hand, like I said, I think that it’s great that it’s in the news and that there seems to be some progress but there’s there’s that cynical part of me that’s just kind of like well, no, maybe they are just putting this out there so they’re, they’re just like, hey, we’re we’re doing stuff, really. We’re doing stuff we’re not just sitting on our hands. But I don’t know maybe again, maybe this this does just sort of illustrate that it’s all according to their their 10 year plan. So I guess, I guess we’ll see. Yeah. That’s all I got. Steve Barclay 39:33 I don’t got much more. Lis Malone 39:36 More importantly, we really got to discuss these beer huggies. Rob Mineault 39:40 Yeah, well, sure. We’ll have a meeting. Oh, we’ll get Ryan, once he’s back, to schedule a meeting and we’ll brainstorm some merch for sure. If Alexis can do it, we can do it. Lis Malone 39:56 I’m still all for a hockey jersey. Rob Mineault 40:00 And I saw her logo was nice too. Lis Malone 40:05 You’ve got you’ve got some marketing envy don’t you? Rob Mineault 40:10 A little bit. I need to go to her high school. Lis Malone 40:15 You have to up your game. Gonna be taking your job. S L R L R L R L Rob Mineault 40:29 Have you seen the price of cheese lately? I need my job. I wouldn’t know about these things. Right. Oh yeah, that’s right, how is that going anyways? Lis Malone 40:42 Um I went grocery shopping yesterday because I came back from you know my my trip. Yeah and I think I could say with a lot of confidence that my shopping cart was by far the healthiest shopping cart in that whole damn store. I mean there was not one, I don’t think there was one processed item in there. Everything single ingredient, but I’ll tell you I’m broke. You think cheese is expensive, checkout produce and meats and everything. Terrible. Steve Barclay 41:23 Yeah, yeah, I know how you feel. I went to my doctor and my doctor told me not to eat anything fatty and I said what like like bacon or beef or stuff like that? He goes, no don’t eat anything, fatty! Rob Mineault 41:39 Nice, okay. Wait before we go I just saw this article as I was on this news site. Let’s check this out. A woman discovers live frog in sealed lettuce container in London Ontario grocery store. Steve Barclay 41:54 Oh, no. Rob Mineault 41:57 Well, let’s see. Let’s find out together. Chantal Scott, 26, was grocery shopping with her dad Saturday evening when she spotted the frog. She was on the phone with her mom when she spotted a frog inside a sealed lettuce container at Sobeys on Adelaide in North London, Ontario on Saturday. Scott assumed the frog was dead. Scott assumed the frog was dead when she started recording a video but when she picked up the Sobeys brand container, she saw the frog move and continued recording and about 20 minutes later she posted a video to tick tock which is of course has been viewed so many times. The frog was moving slowly. I think he was a little stunned, she said. At least he had food with him. Okay, now here’s the question that we all want to know – frog now safe. Scott brought the container over to one of the cashiers and said there’s literally a frog in the salad. Can I go take him out? And she just took it out of my hands right away it, recalled Scott. CBC News contacted the Sobeys store and whose manager is Chris Buford. He said that he’d have to defer any questions to the company’s head office. When pressed Buford said the Frog was now safe. The employee, I gave it to actually saw the video R L S R S R and commented that the manager said he kept it in a terrarium he had at home. Our quality assurance and food safety teams are currently working to better understand what may have led to this unusual situation. Meanwhile, we want to assure customers that this is an isolated incident. We have protocols and processes in place regard related to handling and distributing fresh products to ensure quality products are provided to the customers. I don’t know it sounds suspect. I think people are going to demand to see the frog. Lis Malone 43:54 Fruits and vegetables. Steve Barclay 43:56 Yeah. And you know, can you imagine somebody going home with that and accidentally not doing that and ending up with a frog in their throat? Rob Mineault 44:03 Ah Lis Malone 44:04 Do they show you a picture of like, is it one of those plastic containers of lettuce? Rob Mineault 44:11 Yeah. Lis Malone 44:12 Oh, God, I have a thing of spinach in my refrigerator. Now you’re you just made my stomach turn a little bit? Rob Mineault 44:19 Yeah. I mean, at least you did have food with them. I mean, I’m surprised that he like enough air in there. I guess obviously, he’s still alive. Lis Malone 44:33 So it’s those teeny tiny little frog lungs probably. L S R L R L R L Steve Barclay 44:38 And I bet you know all those lettuce leaves in there were probably still processing carbon dioxide. So yeah. Lis Malone 44:44 Do frogs even eat lettuce? I mean, is that would that have been frog food? Steve Barclay 44:49 Probably not. Rob Mineault 44:50 That’s a good point. Yeah, that’d be fascinating. If only frogs could talk we could have him on the show and tell us about it. Tell us about how they how this all occurred. It’s got a picture of the of the package in the store everything luckily. So Complements Spring Mix Salad. is on sale at Sobeys this wee It’s like no name. It’s just like no name, obviously. So yeah, I mean, honestly, if they’re smart about it, they should have leaned into it and use that as marketing like, free with every spring mix complements salad. Lis Malone 45:38 There shouldn’t have been a frog costume outside. , Rob Mineault 45:40 Yeah, like, market it man. Lis Malone 45:44 You may get a frog you may get a pet. Rob Mineault 45:46 Yeah, you guys have been way too defensive. All right, anyways, let’s get out of here. Hey, I don’t even know where to go to. Hey, Lis. Lis Malone 45:56 S L S R L R L R L Lis Malone 45:56 Hey, Rob. Rob Mineault 45:58 Where can people find us? Lis Malone 46:00 We can be found on the web http://www.atbanter.com Rob Mineault 46:04 Hey, they can also drop us an email if they so desire at cowbell@atbanter.com. Steve Barclay 46:16 And if they’re so inclined, they can also find us on the social medias at Twitter, Facebook and Instagram Rob Mineault 46:22 That is correct. All right, well, successful show without Ryan. Lis Malone 46:30 Who needs Ryan? Yeah. Steve Barclay 46:34 Yeah, you know, he should do he should go and he should advocate for blind consumers. That’s what he should do. Rob Mineault 46:39 Yeah, totally. Well, listen, he I was telling him when I talked to him earlier that it’s going to be a wealth of information. He’s going to be like having an inside track of all the ins and outs of of AEBC so yeah, and nd now he’s he is big Mr. Advocate. Mr. Big Shot on a big shot board. Lis Malone 47:03 L R L R S R L S R L Lis Malone 47:03 So I do have a little bit of a concern because I feel that his service on this board will interfere with the progress in him writing and recording of my song Glitter and Spangles. So I don’t I don’t think the priorities are quite where they need to be at the moment. Rob Mineault 47:24 Yeah, good point. That’s a really good point, actually, because he’s been dragging his heels on that so I’d call him out on that when he’s back. Lis Malone 47:33 It’s a real concern. And so yeah, I just thought I’d bring that up to you to you guys and make it formal. Rob Mineault 47:38 Well, you know, you need to do is you need to create an organization and then put out a call for board members and get him on the board of that. Lis Malone 47:45 Glitter and Spangles Organization foundation. Rob Mineault 47:50 That’s not a bad idea.Alright, I think that’s about do it for us this week. Big thanks, of course, to Alexis for joining us. And we will see everybody next week. L R L R L R

AT Banter Podcast Episode 303 – Meeting Mighty People Podcas… Wed, 9/14 6:44PM 48:51 SUMMARY KEYWORDS alexis, frog, podcast, people, horse, disabilities, year, organizations, cowbell, cerebral palsy, government, lis, talking, advocacy, sobeys, little bit, accessibility, bit, riding, community SPEAKERS Rob Mineault, Steve Barclay, Lis Malone, Alexis Folk Rob Mineault 00:18 Hey and welcome to another episode of AT Banter. Steve Barclay 00:23 Banter banter. Rob Mineault 00:28 Yeah, we’re gonna have to explain that cowbell. Hey, this is of course the podcast where we talk with advocates and members of the disability community to educate and inspire better conversation about disability. Hey, my name is Rob Mineault. Oh, and joining me today. I’m exhausted already doing this intro. Lis Malone is joining us today. Lis Malone 00:51 Hey, Rob Mineault, what’s up? Rob Mineault 00:53 Hello. And also joining us today is Mr. Steve Barclay. Steve Barclay 00:59 And I will be using a wood joiner in order to join you today. R S R L R S And I will be using a wood joiner in order to join you today. Rob Mineault 01:02 That correct. I don’t even know what that means. I must be some sort of a carpentry thing, but good enough. Hey, so we as everybody’s probably noticed by now, and is probably, you know, typing on their email to send us an email. There’s no Ryan Fleury, and there is no real actual cowbell, today. What you heard was a emulation. Steve Barclay 01:26 It was it was an approximation. Rob Mineault 01:28 Exactly. Is a mini cowbell. Lis Malone 01:30 Well, it was we did multiple minis to make up for the actual original. Rob Mineault 01:37 That was. That was the idea. But I don’t I don’t know how well that was implemented. But okay. Lis Malone 01:42 . We tried. We flopped on the dismount. But we tried. Rob Mineault 01:46 Hopefully the Russian judge doesn’t give us the zero. Lis Malone 01:51 it’s always the Russian judge. Rob Mineault 01:53 Ah, hey, how are you guys today? R S R L R L R L R Steve Barclay 01:57 On a scale of one to 10? Rob Mineault 01:59 Sure. Steve Barclay 02:01 Solid six. Rob Mineault 02:03 That’s not bad. Lis? Lis Malone 02:07 Yeah, six is pretty. That’s a good number. Steve, I’m going with you. Rob Mineault 02:11 I’m gonna go with 6.5 Just because I watch the Price is Right a lot. And you always want to go like a little bit higher, like 50 cents higher than everybody else to try to get that closest to the actual retail price without going over. Yeah. So we should say, we want to say where Ryan is? I think we should because I’m a little bit proud of the little guy. Steve Barclay 02:33 He’s growing up. Lis Malone 02:36 He’s getting out into the world. He’s leaving the nest. Rob Mineault 02:40 So Ryan is not with us because he actually had a board meeting. Because he is now sitting on the board of an organization called AEBC, which is of course the Alliance for Equity for Blind Canadians. So he got nominated, he went to their annual general meeting over the weekend SRSRDSLR and got nominated to sit on the board and got voted in. And so he’s off doing important stuff over there at AEBC, so Congratulations to Mr. Fleury. And I’m sure we’ll see him again next week. Lis Malone 03:19 Yeah, proud. Our little boy’s growing up. He better be pushing the podcast at the meetings. Rob Mineault 03:34 That’s right. Well, so this is gonna throw me off too, because now I have nobody to throw it to to tell us what we’re actually doing today. So I got to do this. So today, it is our great pleasure to be talking to a young lady here in British Columbia, by the name of Alexis Folk, who happens to also have a podcast that we’re going to learn all about. Welcome, Alexis. Alexis Folk 04:02 Thank you for having me. Rob Mineault 04:04 Yeah, listen, I’m sorry, that is such a chaotic day that you’re joining that everything all hell broke loose here on the podcast. But we’re gonna make a go of this and have a great appearance. So why don’t you tell our listeners and those of us who aren’t familiar with you a little bit about yourself, where you’re from and what grade you’re in. And a little bit about this podcast that you have? Well, my name is Alexis Folk. I’m in grade 10. I live in British Columbia. I started the podcast because I seen inequities in BC with inclusion and accessibility and I’m wanting to just be part of more activities. So then I started having conversations with other people with disabilities. And my teacher approached me about a fundraising opportunity for activities for people with disabilities, specifically outdoors because they don’t get to experience that very often. This podcast started from that day. Rob Mineault 05:20 So now what’s the what’s the name of the podcast? Alexis Folk 05:23 Meeting Mighty People L R A R R A Rob Mineault 05:25 Oh, interesting. And so what’s the premise? Do you do you have you have guests that come on and you you interview them? Or how does it how does it all work? I have guests that come on each month. Matter of fact, this month, I have the Nelson Creston MLA on the show. And she’ll be talking about what funding we can get for people with disabilities. Rob Mineault 05:50 Oh, wow. That’s fantastic. Now, is it so it’s a it’s a monthly podcast? Alexis Folk 05:55 Yes. Steve Barclay 05:58 And just for our listeners who don’t know what an MLA is, because they might be in the United States that is a Member of the Legislative Assembly. That’s our Provincial Parliament. This is Alexis’ representative. Rob Mineault 06:12 Yeah. That’s a big deal, getting a politician’s a big deal. Yeah, I realizing now that I started, that that is a pretty big commission to be proud of. Rob Mineault 06:27 Yeah, absolutely. So tell me a little bit about where where did this whole idea for this podcast sort of come from? I know, you mentioned that, that, you know, you sort of you noticed that there was a sort of a gap in terms of inclusion and accessibility in your own community. But was there like something that really just happened that you were just like, you know what, I got to do something? And how was it that you decided to do a podcast? R R A S R R Alexis Folk 06:55 Well, ironically, there was something that happened that I figured I seen enough equities in the community that I figured I gotta do something. And then my teacher just ended up randomly approaching me about a podcast and asked if I wanted to help out with it, and then it became my own. And then here we are today. Rob Mineault 07:20 Wow. Now, so was it hard to like, learn how to sort of do all the podcasting thing?Had you listened to a lot of podcasts? Yes. And I would say the struggle was 100% real. Like today. Yeah. The editing and the stuff like that. Rob Mineault 07:44 Yeah. I can so relate to this. Lis Malone 07:49 It’s like the podcasters code. We all know, oh god, all the stuff you have to do behind the scenes. Rob Mineault 07:56 I mean, honestly, it’s the editing. It’s the uploading, it’s getting in on the platform. It’s writing the description. Yes. All of that takes, it takes a lot of time, doesn’t it? Alexis Folk 08:06 Yes. But I’m willing to put in the time, because this is an important project. And now look how far we’ve come. Rob Mineault 08:17 That’s right. So now, how long have you been doing the podcasts for? Alexis Folk 08:25 A R R L R A R A Alexis Folk 08:25 A year and a half to two years? Wow, wow. Right? In December 3 of 2020? Rob Mineault 08:32 How did how do you sort of come up with with guest ideas? Do you have people approaching you? Or do you kind of do some research and try to decide on who you want to talk to? Alexis Folk 08:44 I do some research and then I find their email addresses and then I email them. Rob Mineault 08:52 Yeah, do you? Do you find that you’re kind of surprised that how many yeses that you do get? Because that happens with us all the time, we sometimes will reach out to somebody and be like, we’ll never we’ll never get this person on the show. And then we hear back a day later and they’re like, yeah, sure. I’d love to come on. Alexis Folk 09:07 Yeah, sometimes, but not all the time. Lis Malone 09:11 Yeah, there’s definitely times when I know we’ve reached out to people and you think gosh, this and this is a no brainer. I mean, it makes so much sense. It’s a great tie in and then they’re like, nope, pass and you’re like, Oh, really? Okay. Rob Mineault 09:27 Yeah, I’ve always I don’t know, maybe just some people just don’t like being on podcasts. I don’t know. Or maybe some people just don’t like, I don’t know. Steve Barclay 09:33 But it’s the number one fear of public speaking, right? Rob Mineault 09:36 That’s true. Yeah. So yeah talk to me a little bit about that then Alexis. So when you first started it like were you really super nervous at first and now you’re kind of like a, an old pro A R A R A L R S R started it like were you really super nervous at first and now you’re kind of like a, an old pro and it’s no problem or do you still get nervous? How has that kind of progressed? Alexis Folk 09:53 As Is it was always challenging before it’s gotten easier. The more prepared you are the better. Rob Mineault 10:03 Yeah. Well, that’s that’s usually our problem too. Alexis Folk 10:09 And also, the more you’re the more nervous you are. Rob Mineault 10:14 No, that’s Yeah, that’s true. Alexis Folk 10:18 So it’s better to just go with it. Yep. Lis Malone 10:22 It’s, I just want to ask you, Alexis, because when you’re talking about prepping for a show and getting ready for a particular guest, you ever find that sometimes you might have your whole show planned down all your questions, and then you get to guests, you just completely takes it in a whole separate direction. And you’re just like, oh, no, and you gotta throw your notes out the window and just kind of wing it Alexis Folk 10:42 Sometimes. But I like doing that kind of stuff. I mostly just look at my notes for who’s on this show and go with it. Rob Mineault 10:53 How important is is sort of the idea of advocacy to you? And did you kind of grow up with that sense of importance for advocacy? A R A R A L A R Alexis Folk 11:05 I feel like I always had it in me. But since seventh to ninth grade, I’ve been noticing that there’s a need for independence and a need for inclusion. Because I’ve seen, I’ve seen so many situations where I could be included, but people just don’t really realize how they can include people with disabilities or what they need to do. And the fact that it takes a growth mindset to actually include people. Rob Mineault 11:44 Right, right. So so yeah, education. I mean, that’s something that we talk a lot about on the podcast, as well as just that it’s so many people have a lot of misconceptions when it comes to disability. That, you know, it’s really the more voices that we have out there and the communities that are that are educating and and being visible and being loud, the better because then then people learn. And, you know, because I feel like at the end of the day, everybody, everybody wants everybody to be included. But sometimes they just they don’t know any better, or they don’t even realize that they’ve made something inaccessible to a certain community. Alexis Folk 12:24 Agreed, strongly agreed. Steve Barclay 12:28 Alexis, I had, I had a little birdie who sat on my shoulder this morning and suggested that I asked you about what you’ve done to advocate for yourself in your own community. Alexis Folk 12:40 Okay, I’ll tell you a little bit about that. So last year, I seen I seen enough inequities in my own school because I wasn’t able to access certain facilities in my school. So I went and I sat on town council in a town council meeting and asked them, could they make it more accessible? And they said, Sure, we’ll kind of have a look. And next thing I know, it was done. Steve Barclay 13:12 Oh, that’s awesome. What did you ask them to do? Alexis Folk 13:16 I asked him to make the bathroom doors in my school accessible because they were so heavy. A R A S A S A Steve Barclay 13:25 So did they just put in like a better hinging system? Or did they motorized them? What did what did they do? Alexis Folk 13:31 They put in actual buttons that you just push. Steve Barclay 13:35 Nice. Rob Mineault 13:36 So how important do you kind of see advocacy in terms of young people? Like, do you see a lot of a lot of kids your age, that are becoming more active in advocacy? And and how important do you kind of feel that that is for for young people to get involved? Alexis Folk 13:56 I feel that it’s really important because young people are gonna be here for more future to come. And they’re, they need to have a voice and future plans for access codes and stuff like that. Rob Mineault 14:12 Now that you’ve sort of have sort of stepped up your own advocacy, do you have people around you and stuff that are that are becoming more involved as well? Are you serving as sort of a bit of an inspiration for them? Alexis Folk 14:24 Yes, I am saying definitely serving as an inspiration for younger people with cerebral palsy and other disabilities that are in my community. Rob Mineault 14:38 And what’s what’s sort of your favorite thing about doing the podcast? Alexis Folk 14:44 My favorite thing, all of having like, having the open conversation about disability to life, and S A S R A R A R A My favorite thing, all of having like, having the open conversation about disability to life, and just the fact that there’s no no judgments around having a conversation about your disability. Steve Barclay 15:07 Alexis, what was your favorite interview that you’ve done so far? Alexis Folk 15:10 My favorite interview? There’s two, my favorites. One, which is with the spec, or a special education teacher with cerebral palsy. Her name is Melissa. She’s an inspiration to me. She’s got epilepsy, too. And she, she’s a disability consultant. So what she does is she takes in university resources, makes them accessible, and they have some new university resources herself related to her experiences. Steve Barclay 15:52 Nice, what was the other one? Alexis Folk 15:54 And Marco Pasqua, a cerebral palsy association of BC spokesperson. He is a very widely known inspiration across BC, and he was just interesting to talk to you, and share his experiences with the whole world of what it’s like to live with cerebral palsy and in a wheelchair and whatnot, and just be vulnerable and open. Rob Mineault 16:27 What are some of the plans that you have for the podcast? Are you you know, you just got to keep keep plugging away and keep doing it? Are there any? Do you have any dream guests that you want to try to get? Alexis Folk 16:39 I have a plan just to keep going keep seeing where this goes with might turn into a potential career, cuz there’s lots of organizations that I’ve had many had approached me and wanted me to speak at their events. One in which is the Cerebral Palsy Association, and Shawn Marsolais at Blind Beginnings one night. Rob Mineault 17:08 Yeah, that’s awesome. And I mean, it’s you never know where things are going to lead. And that’s one of the that’s one of the cool things that about the podcasts that we enjoy do is just meeting all kinds of different people and sort of making those network connections with, with S A S A R A R meeting all kinds of different people and sort of making those network connections with, with people all over the world. Alexis Folk 17:26 Yes. Rob Mineault 17:27 So tell me a little bit about what else you’d like to do other than producing a monthly podcast and doing all your advocacy work? What do you like to do extra curricularly? Alexis Folk 17:43 Extracurricularly I love to volunteer to help people with disabilities, whether it’s mentoring them, or helping them out in some kind of way, shape form. Lis Malone 17:58 You know, I would actually love to hear a little bit about the about the role that horseback riding has played in your life. That was something that really jumped out at me, when I looked at your website, I actually just got back from a trip from Wyoming and Montana. And so I was really looking forward to speaking with you and kind of getting your perspective and sharing some of my recent experiences. So if you could give us a little insight into that? Alexis Folk 18:29 Well, horse riding was really what started my journey to realizing that the world is really open to seeing different sides of the world, like, the world is very open, you can make choices that allow you to see certain sides of the world. So it helps to change my perspective and allowed me to live the life I lived today. Being fully independent, fully driven towards that people with disabilities have abilities instead of disabilities your whole life and you live around that. Lis Malone 19:15 Yeah,, so my, my recent experience, going horseback riding Just last week, I think I experienced some of the things that you just touched upon is that I had this I first of all, I haven’t ridden a horse in Oh, my God, I don’t even know how long and it was something that I wasn’t sure that I would be able to do. Because I am legally blind, Alexis, and I found it to be so incredibly liberating to be on this animal. I can’t drive a car I can’t ride a bicycle. We can’t do a lot of fun but but riding that horse and becoming in tune with the motion, my body positions how to lean and feeling where the horse was positioned, and learning that I could successfully horseback ride. A R A L A L Alexis Folk 20:13 And something else that’s not a barrier. Lis Malone 20:16 Yeah, but it was definitely something that I had not I mean, I created the barrier for myself, I made the my own assumptions that oh my gosh, I don’t think I’m going to be able to do this, I think I might, you know, want to steer the horse wrong. And so it was extremely liberating. And so when I was reading your website, and I read about how you just said that it was something that started your journey, I said, oh, my gosh, I can, I can completely see how something like this could really change your perspectives, in terms of what your abilities what your limitations are, or actually, I should say, what your limitations are not. Alexis Folk 20:51 True story, your limitation is only your imagination. Rob Mineault 20:59 See I’ve never ridden a horse. I never got kind of never got around to that. But I should really. Alexis Folk 21:08 I’ve been riding for like 10 years. And I just took a break recently. And I’ve been in a couple of videos for TSN for funding, and it’s been a life changing events. Rob Mineault 21:24 Now, do you like the like, is there a place – I’m sorry, I’m really dumb, and I know nothing about this, but do you go to a place and can you rent a horse? Like how does this work? Alexis Folk 21:33 Yeah, well, there’s a Creston Valley’s Therapeutic Riding program where I live. So you go there, you ride for therapy, say for an hour. And you just breathe in. You just enjoy. Rob Mineault 21:52 So now do so can you get like the same horse? Like is there one horse that you can go request or something? Or do you like, they just load you on whatever horses around? A L A R A R A R Alexis Folk 22:07 You get to choose. Rob Mineault 22:10 And so like, I’m curious. I’m serious. Like so do you create like sort of a bit of a bond with with one particular horse like, you know, you want? Yeah, I want Phillip today. Lis Malone 22:24 They have funny names. They’re not like Bob and George and Mary there. I had one horse that was named Stinky Drew. Rob Mineault 22:36 I knew a Stinky Drew in Grade Nine. Lis Malone 22:39 I said, I said I think I think somebody named this after their ex husband. You know, there was another one named Walk It Off. They all have these very good names. Alexis Folk 22:48 So funny. They all are named after their characteristics. Rob Mineault 23:02 Oh, that’s so cute. I love that. Yeah, no. All right. Well, you guys, you guys are convincing me I should really put that down on one on my to do list. Alexis Folk 23:14 Yeah. Rob Mineault 23:17 You know, I look I’ve seen like, I like I’ve seen horses, I’ve seen horses close up. And you know, what’s, what always struck me about them is that they’re a lot bigger than they look. Like you don’t realize how big a horse is until you’re like beside it. And you realize, man, this thing is big A R L R L A R A R don’t realize how big a horse is until you’re like beside it. And you realize, man, this thing is big and powerful. Alexis Folk 23:34 But think about the advantages that your disability is not letting you do on top of that horse. You can use the advantage of its legs to gain to get to use it as power. Rob Mineault 23:51 Yeah, that’s That’s very true. That’s very true. All right, well, listen. I’m going to find some place where I can go rent a horse for an afternoon named Philip. Well, I’m putting in a request. I don’t know. I might have to get Philip Steve Barclay 24:07 Ask for Sleepy Joe. Rob Mineault 24:09 Oh my gosh, you’re right. All right. That or Almost Dead Fred. I don’t want anyone who’s gonna kick me off. Or because, like, I know the movies. Like, I know you go, what do you like? How do you make them go? You just giddy up? Lis Malone 24:29 Hit them on the sides with your heels. Rob Mineault 24:33 That seems mean. Lis Malone 24:34 No, no, I mean, listen, these animals are so big and muscular. That I mean, you’re not I mean, they’re not gonna put spurs on you. You’re probably gonna be wearing you know, sneakers or tennis shoes, whatever you call them, and you just kind of click them. Alexis Folk 24:48 You use like command of walk on or your kick with your heels. A R S R L R L A Rob Mineault 24:56 Wait, hopefully well, hopefully they do some sort of training before they just load yours, here you go. Lis Malone 25:06 Unless, unless you want to be on one of those pony rides with the kids, were they the handlers holding the reins all the way around the little circle? Rob Mineault 25:14 Well, listen, I might be riding with the five year olds. Get my horse legs under me. Lis Malone 25:23 Steve, have you done any horseback riding? Steve Barclay 25:26 Not in years, but I did when I was younger. Yeah. Lis Malone 25:29 It’s nice, isn’t it? It’s, yeah, it’s just it’s very peaceful. And you kind of get your body into this nice rhythm. Steve Barclay 25:36 Yeah, you get that roll happening. You just sort of meander on down the road. And then the horse decides, hey, there’s a low hanging branch. I’m going to brush them off on that and then decides, hey, I think I’ll rub up against this tree and see what that does to his knees. Yeah, that’s great. Lis Malone 25:52 Well, we’re all of a sudden the horse stops and you’re like, what’s going on? Why the horse going in there? Like the the guy that the heads like? Yeah, your horse is taking a poop. It happens. Rob Mineault 26:09 R L R L S L S L R Rob Mineault 26:09 When you gotta go, you gotta go. Lis Malone 26:10 Yeah. Steve Barclay 26:12 Oh, I got a question. Rob Mineault 26:13 Okay, you go. Steve Barclay 26:14 I’m gonna I’m gonna fire one of Alexis is back at herself here. Alexis, what do you think makes a mighty person? Alexis Folk 26:23 Well, I think anybody has the two driven attributes. Make stuff happen like to make waves in the world. Rob Mineault 26:39 I like that. I like that a lot. Making waves Steve Barclay 26:42 Make waves. You ought to put that on a t shirt. And you got your own merch there, Alexis. Alexis Folk 26:48 I actually do have my own merch and logo. Awesome. Yes. It was a school project. Steve Barclay 26:59 Oh, what do you what do you got for merch? R L S R S A R S A S Alexis Folk 27:02 It’s just my MMP logo right now. Rob Mineault 27:05 Wow, that’s cool.Are they like T shirts or what do you what do you got? Hats? Alexis Folk 27:11 T-shirts, cups. I’m done a couple of cups not myself. I got em printed from Vistaprint. Rob Mineault 27:19 Right. Now, so we need to do that. We need to get some merch. We should get mugs. Lis Malone 27:24 I still say we need some beer huggies. Steve Barclay 27:31 Also built in cowbells. Lis Malone 27:33 Yes. With a cowbell on it. Yeah. Rob Mineault 27:37 All right. What have you Alexis can give us some consultation later after the show. So Alexis, let me ask you this. If there are people in our audience who are interested in listening to your podcast – which they better – where can they go online to find you and to find the podcast? Alexis Folk 28:03 Anchor, Spotify, Google Podcasts and my website so far. Hopefully it’s gonna expand within the next couple months. A R A R L S L R A Lis Malone 28:14 But we have at least one listener in Russia that we’re going to the work that we were gonna say go listen to her podcast. It’s awesome. Rob Mineault 28:23 Right. Svetlana, go to http://www.meetingmightypeople.com and go listen to the to the podcast. Give Alexis some of those Russian stats in her analytics. Alexis Folk 28:38 Okay, thank you. Rob Mineault 28:41 Alright, listen, Alexis, thank you so much for coming on and talking to us. It’s been an absolute pleasure. Best of luck with the podcast. I’ll certainly be listening. And yeah, I’m excited to to hear your interview with the MLA later this month. Alexis Folk 28:59 Yes, that should be interesting. Thank you. It’s been an absolute pleasure talking to you. Rob Mineault 29:06 Awesome. All right. Thanks, Alexis. Lis Malone 29:08 Take care, Alexis. Rob Mineault 29:12 Well, it is always nice to see a young person who is a hip deep and advocacy work. I love it. Steve Barclay 29:20 Absolutely. Rob Mineault 29:21 L R A R A R L R S R Rob Mineault 29:21 Yeah. I mean, really, that’s what we need. We need more people, young people getting involved in their community and trying to get out there and make a difference. Steve Barclay 29:28 And affect positive change. Yeah, exactly. Rob Mineault 29:32 So always great to see. Steve Barclay 29:34 You hear that youngins get out there? Get out there Rob Mineault 29:37 Get loud get and and honestly that’s what we you know, we say this all the time. You gotta get we got to get out there and make noise Steve Barclay 29:44 History has rarely been made by quiet people. Rob Mineault 29:47 Right? So that’s a good quote. Steve Barclay 29:51 I probably stole it from somewhere. Lis Malone 29:55 You’re an honest thief. Rob Mineault 29:56 Oh, Hey, you know what, speaking of that, before we wrap things up for this episode. There was some I caught this piece of news, actually just today, and I thought it would bring it up. Lis, R S R S R S R S L R some I caught this piece of news, actually just today, and I thought it would bring it up. Lis, unfortunately, it’s sort of local. But that’s okay. It’s about local bureaucracy. So maybe you’ll get something out of this, too. But Steve, did you did you realize that the BC Accessibility Act that went into place last year, as of September 1, they’ve actually mandated now that more than 750 public sector organizations, are now regulated to form accessibility committees. Did you see that news? Steve Barclay 30:42 I did not see that news. But as you were talking there, I just Googled it. And yeah, sure enough, yeah. Rob Mineault 30:50 So they’re requiring certain public sector organizations to establish their own accessibility communities, to reduce barriers for, of course, people living with disabilities. And this all goes into effect, or went into effect actually, on September 1. The organizations includes school districts and post secondary institutions, public libraries, and local governments. Organizations will need an accessibility committee, a plan and a way to receive feedback. And they have one year to complete the work. So this is really interesting. This is, you know, we didn’t really we, we have we got this legislation here in BC. Like I said, last year, and it kind of came and went without much fanfare. This is kind of the first thing that I’ve seen of for in terms of movement on it. And it’s, it’s interesting to me that, that they seem to be moving at a little bit of a faster pace, even than the Canadian Accessibility Act. But maybe that’s just because it’s, you know, it’s certainly smaller in scale. Lis Malone 31:54 Now, are the guidelines for what the accessibility requirements are, is that laid out for these organizations? Rob Mineault 32:02 So it’s interesting that you say that because this is definitely a news article with good news slash bad news. Because while they’ve reached out to all of these organizations and said that they need to be doing this. The catch is, is that they’re not going to put in any sort of enforcement mechanism until they’ve come up with accessibility standards, which they’re saying will probably take up to about two years. So even though they’ve they’ve gone to all these organizations and said, you need to, you know, create accessibility committees and you need, you know, a mechanism, a reporting mechanism for all that they’re not actually enforcing any of that until they figure out the standards, which they’re not even doing for probably another two years. That makes no sense. Well, this is again, welcome to local bureaucracy and government. Right. Steve Barclay 33:02 S R L R S Well, it’s like the Accessible Canada Act exempting themselves from the Accessible Canada Act. Right? Rob Mineault 33:07 That’s right. That’s true story, Lis. Steve Barclay 33:11 You can’t make this up. The Accessible Canada Act government has the right to exempt themselves from it and it applies to government. Lis Malone 33:22 I mean, does any what any sector actually start focusing on anything that the government dictates that is not going to be enforced? I just don’t understand. You know, that’s like you know, it’s like a carrot with no stick. Steve Barclay 33:40 They actually have a document online called the Implementation Timeline, which is kind of interesting. So, so year one, they say their goals for year one are requirements for the BC government build build tool to provide feedback to government develop government’s Accessibility Plan, develop regulations, prescribing organizations, and establish the provincial accessibility committee. Year two is Government Accessibility Plan released develop regulations prescribing organizations, government Annual Report released every year developed for standard develop second standard for their for their standards. Year three is pretty much the same as Year two, its government Annual Report developed the first and second standards. Year four is where they start talking about compliance and enforcement. So the first and second standards they develop compliance for that will be in Year four. So have developed them over Years two and three and then start to enforce them in Year four. Implementation happens in Year four, which is a phased approach to implementation then in years four and five, they are developing the third standard and fourth standard. They should have a second government Accessibility Plan released and they should have their first independent review of the of the standard. Then Year six, more and more implementation, more review, development of a fifth and sixth standard, they don’t really get into specifics on those Years seven, same Year eight, the third government accessibility plans released more implementation, plus the development of the seventh and eighth standard over year seven and eight, and then Year 10 or sorry, 8, 9 rather, year 10, they have a second independent review. And the last part of the implementation phase. So this is, this is a 10 year plan that they’ve laid out. And, you know, it’ll be interesting to see, you know, as with most governments in this province, you know, we we don’t have governments for 10 years in a row typically. So we’ll see what, you know, subsequent government might might do to this to change it or adjust the timelines or whatever, but they do they have laid out what they want to see happened over the years, but it’s super vague. R S L S Rob Mineault 36:15 Well, I mean, I don’t know, maybe we’re being a little bit too hard on them. Because that does sound like they have a plan, which is good. I mean, at least they have a 10 year plan. They’ve published it. It’s all you know, we were able to look at it and see where we’re at. I don’t know, I don’t know that, that there’s anything similar with the with in terms of the the federal act. So I don’t know, maybe this is a good sign. Lis Malone 36:43 Well, to borrow a phrase from Sleepy Joe, that sounds like a bunch of malarkey to me. Rob Mineault 36:52 Well, you know, it’s, I guess the other thing that that really like, makes me roll my eyes a little bit is when they talk about well, you know, we need to develop accessibility standards. And that’s probably going to take a few years. It’s like, well, I don’t understand why. How is that going to take two years? Like accessibility hasn’t changed over 50 years? Like, we know, what makes something accessible.I don’t understand what there is to figure out. Lis Malone 37:18 There’s already best practices in place. There’s already so many case studies and other countries like the US, so we already have, you know, laws in place. Yeah, um, I don’t know. I mean, when you hear people say, oh, yeah, it was like me when I wouldn’t think about it. In any other aspect of life if someone says to you, hey, I got this great 10 year plan. The first thing you do is like you roll your eyes. Rob Mineault 37:48 Well, and you know, what’s shocking, too, is that, you know, even when we’re talking to Alexis, you know, the fact that she had to advocate for the her school to put in, like bathroom doors that seems like a little bit crazy to me. Lis Malone 38:02 Like when I was in 10th grade, you know, I mean, gosh, that was back when, you know, under playgrounds, it was cement. Everything was made of metal. But yeah, I mean for for students to not have accessible entrances to all things a bathroom is just as crazy, right? It’s yeah, I mean, it’s, it’s hard to believe but yeah, I guess it’s still exists, obviously. Rob Mineault 38:31 And granted it’s just you know, it’s a small northern BC town. So you know, maybe that is part R L R L R L R And granted it’s just you know, it’s a small northern BC town. So you know, maybe that is part of it. But still, like it’s it’s still shocking to sort of see where, where we still are dropping the ball in terms of these things. So yeah, I don’t I don’t know. I don’t know how to feel about this article. On the one hand, like I said, I think that it’s great that it’s in the news and that there seems to be some progress but there’s there’s that cynical part of me that’s just kind of like well, no, maybe they are just putting this out there so they’re, they’re just like, hey, we’re we’re doing stuff, really. We’re doing stuff we’re not just sitting on our hands. But I don’t know maybe again, maybe this this does just sort of illustrate that it’s all according to their their 10 year plan. So I guess, I guess we’ll see. Yeah. That’s all I got. Steve Barclay 39:33 I don’t got much more. Lis Malone 39:36 More importantly, we really got to discuss these beer huggies. Rob Mineault 39:40 Yeah, well, sure. We’ll have a meeting. Oh, we’ll get Ryan, once he’s back, to schedule a meeting and we’ll brainstorm some merch for sure. If Alexis can do it, we can do it. Lis Malone 39:56 I’m still all for a hockey jersey. Rob Mineault 40:00 And I saw her logo was nice too. Lis Malone 40:05 You’ve got you’ve got some marketing envy don’t you? Rob Mineault 40:10 A little bit. I need to go to her high school. Lis Malone 40:15 You have to up your game. Gonna be taking your job. S L R L R L R L Rob Mineault 40:29 Have you seen the price of cheese lately? I need my job. I wouldn’t know about these things. Right. Oh yeah, that’s right, how is that going anyways? Lis Malone 40:42 Um I went grocery shopping yesterday because I came back from you know my my trip. Yeah and I think I could say with a lot of confidence that my shopping cart was by far the healthiest shopping cart in that whole damn store. I mean there was not one, I don’t think there was one processed item in there. Everything single ingredient, but I’ll tell you I’m broke. You think cheese is expensive, checkout produce and meats and everything. Terrible. Steve Barclay 41:23 Yeah, yeah, I know how you feel. I went to my doctor and my doctor told me not to eat anything fatty and I said what like like bacon or beef or stuff like that? He goes, no don’t eat anything, fatty! Rob Mineault 41:39 Nice, okay. Wait before we go I just saw this article as I was on this news site. Let’s check this out. A woman discovers live frog in sealed lettuce container in London Ontario grocery store. Steve Barclay 41:54 Oh, no. Rob Mineault 41:57 Well, let’s see. Let’s find out together. Chantal Scott, 26, was grocery shopping with her dad Saturday evening when she spotted the frog. She was on the phone with her mom when she spotted a frog inside a sealed lettuce container at Sobeys on Adelaide in North London, Ontario on Saturday. Scott assumed the frog was dead. Scott assumed the frog was dead when she started recording a video but when she picked up the Sobeys brand container, she saw the frog move and continued recording and about 20 minutes later she posted a video to tick tock which is of course has been viewed so many times. The frog was moving slowly. I think he was a little stunned, she said. At least he had food with him. Okay, now here’s the question that we all want to know – frog now safe. Scott brought the container over to one of the cashiers and said there’s literally a frog in the salad. Can I go take him out? And she just took it out of my hands right away it, recalled Scott. CBC News contacted the Sobeys store and whose manager is Chris Buford. He said that he’d have to defer any questions to the company’s head office. When pressed Buford said the Frog was now safe. The employee, I gave it to actually saw the video R L S R S R and commented that the manager said he kept it in a terrarium he had at home. Our quality assurance and food safety teams are currently working to better understand what may have led to this unusual situation. Meanwhile, we want to assure customers that this is an isolated incident. We have protocols and processes in place regard related to handling and distributing fresh products to ensure quality products are provided to the customers. I don’t know it sounds suspect. I think people are going to demand to see the frog. Lis Malone 43:54 Fruits and vegetables. Steve Barclay 43:56 Yeah. And you know, can you imagine somebody going home with that and accidentally not doing that and ending up with a frog in their throat? Rob Mineault 44:03 Ah Lis Malone 44:04 Do they show you a picture of like, is it one of those plastic containers of lettuce? Rob Mineault 44:11 Yeah. Lis Malone 44:12 Oh, God, I have a thing of spinach in my refrigerator. Now you’re you just made my stomach turn a little bit? Rob Mineault 44:19 Yeah. I mean, at least you did have food with them. I mean, I’m surprised that he like enough air in there. I guess obviously, he’s still alive. Lis Malone 44:33 So it’s those teeny tiny little frog lungs probably. L S R L R L R L Steve Barclay 44:38 And I bet you know all those lettuce leaves in there were probably still processing carbon dioxide. So yeah. Lis Malone 44:44 Do frogs even eat lettuce? I mean, is that would that have been frog food? Steve Barclay 44:49 Probably not. Rob Mineault 44:50 That’s a good point. Yeah, that’d be fascinating. If only frogs could talk we could have him on the show and tell us about it. Tell us about how they how this all occurred. It’s got a picture of the of the package in the store everything luckily. So Complements Spring Mix Salad. is on sale at Sobeys this wee It’s like no name. It’s just like no name, obviously. So yeah, I mean, honestly, if they’re smart about it, they should have leaned into it and use that as marketing like, free with every spring mix complements salad. Lis Malone 45:38 There shouldn’t have been a frog costume outside. , Rob Mineault 45:40 Yeah, like, market it man. Lis Malone 45:44 You may get a frog you may get a pet. Rob Mineault 45:46 Yeah, you guys have been way too defensive. All right, anyways, let’s get out of here. Hey, I don’t even know where to go to. Hey, Lis. Lis Malone 45:56 S L S R L R L R L Lis Malone 45:56 Hey, Rob. Rob Mineault 45:58 Where can people find us? Lis Malone 46:00 We can be found on the web http://www.atbanter.com Rob Mineault 46:04 Hey, they can also drop us an email if they so desire at cowbell@atbanter.com. Steve Barclay 46:16 And if they’re so inclined, they can also find us on the social medias at Twitter, Facebook and Instagram Rob Mineault 46:22 That is correct. All right, well, successful show without Ryan. Lis Malone 46:30 Who needs Ryan? Yeah. Steve Barclay 46:34 Yeah, you know, he should do he should go and he should advocate for blind consumers. That’s what he should do. Rob Mineault 46:39 Yeah, totally. Well, listen, he I was telling him when I talked to him earlier is going to be it’s going to be a wealth of information. He’s going to be like having an inside track of all the ins and outs of of AEBC so yeah, and nd now he’s he is big Mr. Advocate. Mr. Big Shot on a big shot board. Lis Malone 47:03 L R L R S R L S R L Lis Malone 47:03 So I do have a little bit of a concern because I feel that his service on this board will interfere with the progress in him writing and recording my song Glitter and Spangles. So I don’t I don’t think the priorities are quite where they need to be at the moment. Rob Mineault 47:24 Yeah, good point. That’s a really good point, actually, because he’s been dragging his heels on that so I’d call him out on that when he’s back. Lis Malone 47:33 It’s it’s a real concern. And so yeah, I just thought I’d bring that up to you to you guys and make it formal. Rob Mineault 47:38 Well, you know, you need to do is you to create an organization and then put out a call for board members and get him on the board of that. Lis Malone 47:45 Glitter and Spangles Organization foundation. Rob Mineault 47:50 That’s not a bad idea.Alright, I think that’s about do it for us this week. Big thanks, of course to Alexis for joining us. And we will see everybody next week. L R L R L R

Thank you to AT Banters for the huge MMP Podcast shout out regarding me and my passions

Published by Alexis Folk

Hello my name is Alexis Folk, I was born premature resulting in my Cerebral Palsy. I live in a small town in BC. I am currently going into grade 10 and I love swimming and volunteering for clubs. I have been horse riding since I was three years of age for fun.

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