To comply with obligations set out in the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act 2005 and the Accessibility Standards for Customer Service regulation.
The organization is committed to identify, remove and prevent barriers to people with disabilities who live, work in or use our properties and services, including all tenants, customers, staff and members of our communities.
To outline practices and procedures in place at our worksites to help identify and remove barriers that impede a person’s ability to access care and services.
It is important to understand that information about a disability is personal and private and must be treated confidentially. In most cases it will not be necessary to ask for proof of a disability.
Refers to policies, procedures and practices that treat a person with a disability as a customer who is as valued and deserving of effective and full service as any other customer. They do not treat people with disabilities as an afterthought or force them to accept lesser service, quality or convenience. Service delivery needs to take into account how people with disabilities can effectively access and use services and show respect for these methods.
In some instances, independence means freedom from control or influence of others’ freedom to make your own choices. In other situations, it may mean the freedom to do things in your own way. People who may move or speak more slowly should not be denied an opportunity to participate in a program or service because of this factor.
Integrated services are those services that allow people with disabilities to fully benefit from the same services, in the same place and in the same or similar way as other clients. Integration means that policies, practices and procedures are designed to be accessible to everyone including people with disabilities. Sometimes integration does not serve the needs of all people with disabilities. In these cases, it is necessary to use alternate measures to provide goods or services. Alternate measures are ways of serving people that are not completely integrated into the regular business activities of the organization, for example, email.
Equal opportunity means having the same chances, options, benefits and results as others. In the case of services, it means that people with disabilities have the same opportunity to benefit from the way you provide services as others. They should not have to make significantly more effort to access or obtain service. They should also not have to accept lesser quality or more inconvenience.
- Review all policies, practices and procedures on providing goods or services to ensure they are in keeping with the accessibility requirements for people with disabilities.
- Use reasonable efforts to ensure that the policies, practices and procedures are consistent with the core principles of independence, dignity, integration and equality of opportunity.
- Allow and encourage people to use their own personal assistive devices to access our goods and use our services and communicate any other measures our organization offers to enable them to access our goods and use our services.
- Communicate with a person with a disability in a manner that takes into account his or her disability.
- Allow and welcome people with disabilities to be accompanied by their guide dog or service animal in those areas of the premises we own or operate that are open to the public, unless the animal is excluded by another law. If a service animal is excluded by law, use other measures to provide services to the person with a disability.
- Permit people with disabilities who use a support person to bring that person with them while accessing goods or services in premises open to the public or third parties. A support person means, in relation to a person with a disability, another person who accompanies him or her in order to help with communication, mobility, personal care or medical needs or with access to goods and services.
- Where admission fees are charged, provide notice ahead of time on what admission, if any, would be charged for a support person of a person with a disability.
- Provide notice when facilities or services that people with disabilities rely on to access or use our goods or services are temporarily disrupted. The notice will include information about the reason for the disruption, its anticipated duration and a description of alternative facilities or services, if available.
- Train staff, volunteers, contractors and any other people who interact with the public or other third parties on our behalf on the following topics, as outlined in the Customer Service Standard, E-learning module:
- A review of the purpose of the Act and the requirements of the regulation.
- Instruction on how to interact and communicate with people with various types of disabilities
- Instruction on how to use equipment or devices available at the workplace or that we provide otherwise, that may help people with disabilities access our services, such as elevators, lifts or other technology
- Instruction on what to do if a person with a disability is having difficulty accessing our services (ask the person how they can be accommodated and what alternative methods of service provision would be more accessible)
- Records of training will be maintained.
- Human Resources will file an Accessibility report on the Customer Service Standard in accordance with requirements.
- Establish and communicate a process for people to provide feedback on how we provide goods or services to people with disabilities and explain how we will respond to any feedback and take action on any complaints. This can be in one of the following ways: in person, by telephone, in writing, electronically, or otherwise. It is the responsibility of every staff member to be attentive to the concerns of our customers and visitors and to resolve concerns related to accessibility. The process to provide feedback is posted clearly in a public area.
- The customer service standard policy is posted on the corporate website.
See full Accessibility Plan