Canadian Security Magazine

ASIS Toronto Chapter hosts Push for Change leader

Neil Sutton   

Features Photo Gallery ASIS asis toronto push for change

The Toronto Chapter of ASIS International held its first event of the year on Jan. 21 with Joe Roberts from The Push for Change as keynote speaker.

Roberts is a motivational speaker who has lived, first hand, a “skid row to CEO” story, and now shares his message as an inspiration to others.

Roberts experienced the tragic loss of his father early in life, triggering a chain of events that led to him relocating to Vancouver, turning to addiction and ultimately living on the street.

Despite his struggles with drugs and homelessness, Roberts never gave up hope. Through the support of his family in Ontario as well as some influential figures in his life who gave him a break when he needed it, he was able to move back home, pursue an education and ultimately gain rewarding employment.

Now a professional speaker, Roberts is spreading awareness of the plight of Canada’s homeless through his charity, the Push for Change. Roberts will undertake a charity walk this year, pushing a modified shopping cart across Canada, raising funds to help those in need. The ASIS Toronto chapter is supporting Push for Change as its charity of choice this year and presented Roberts with a donation at the conclusion of the meeting.


As noted by ASIS Toronto chapter chair Jason Caissie, security personnel often engage homeless people who may be on corporate property. Roberts advice to the security community is: do your job, but recognize the humanity of the homeless you interact with. Compassion and kindness will go a long way towards making a difference in someone’s life.

Roberts said it was these qualities that helped him back on the road to recovery and ultimately success. Recognizing potential in those who may appear to have hit rock bottom is a courageous and potentially life-changing act.

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