In accordance with the Integrated Accessibility Standards Regulation O.Reg 191/11, as amended
Under the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act, 2005 all public and private sector organizations must meet the requirements of accessibility standards established by regulation. This policy has been drafted in accordance with The Integrated Accessibility Standards Regulation, Ontario Regulation 191/11, as amended and addresses how the Township of Addington Highlands will achieve accessibility through meeting the Regulations requirements. It provides the overall str4ategic direction that the Township of Addington Highlands will follow to provide accessibility supports to Ontarians with disabilities.
The responsibilities set out in this policy and the Integrated Accessibility Regulation are not a replacement or a substitution for the requirements established under the Human Rights Code
Nor do the standards or policy limit any obligations owned to persons with disabilities under any other legislation.
The requirements of the Regulation include:
- Establishment, implementation, maintenance and documentation of a multi-year accessibility plan, which outlines the Township of Addington Highlands strategy to prevent and remove barriers and meet its requirements under the Regulation;
- Incorporation of accessibility criteria and features when procuring or acquiring goods, services, or facilities.
- Training; and
- Other specific requirements with regard to Information and Communication, Employment, Transportation, Design of Public Spaces and Customer Service.
Policy Statement and Organizational Commitment
The Township of Addington Highlands is committed and guided by the four core principles of Dignity, Independence, Integration and Equal Opportunity and supports the full inclusion of persons as set out in the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms, and the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act, 2005.
The Township of Addington Highlands will make every effort to ensure that we meet the needs of people with disabilities, in a timely manner, through the implementation of this policy.
“Accessible Formats” may include, but are not limited to, large print, recorded audio and electronic formats, Braille and other formats usable by persons with disabilities.
“Accommodation” means the special arrangement made or assistance provided so that persons with disabilities can participate in the experiences available to persons without disabilities.
Accommodation will vary depending on the person’s unique needs.
“Communication Supports” may include, but are not limited to, captioning, alternative and augmentative communication supports, plain language, sign language and other supports that facilitate effective communications.
“Communications” means the interaction between two or more persons or entities, or any combination of them, where information is provided, sent or received.
“Conversion Ready” means an electronic or digital format that facilitates conversion into an accessible format.
“Designated Public Sector Organization” means every municipality and every person or organization listed in Column 1 of Table 1 of Ontario Regulation 146/10 (Public Bodies and Commission Public Bodies — Definitions) made under the Public Service of Ontario Act, 2006.
“IAP” means Individualized Accommodation Plan.
“Information” includes data, facts and knowledge that exists in any format, including text, audio, digital or images, and that conveys meaning.
“Internet Website” means a collection of related web pages, images, videos or other digital assets that are addressed relative to a common Uniform Resource Identifier (URI) and is accessible to the public.
“Kiosk” means an interactive electronic terminal, including a point-of-sale device, intended for public use that allows users to access one or more services or products or both.
“Mobility Aid” means a device used to facilitate the transport, in a seated posture, of a person with a disability.
“Mobility Assistive Device” means a cane, walker, wheelchair, scooter or similar aid.
“New Internet Website” means either a website with a new domain name or a website with an existing domain name undergoing a significant refresh.
“Redeployment” means the reassignment of employees to other departments or jobs within the organization as an alternative to layoff, when a particular job or department has been eliminated.
- It is not technically feasible to convert the information or communications;
- The technology to convert the information or communications is not readily available.
“Web Content Accessibility Guidelines” means the world wide web consortium recommendation, dated December 2008, entitled “Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) 2.0.
Multi-Year Accessibility Plan
The Township of Addington Highlands Multi-Year Accessibility Plan outlines a phased-in strategy to prevent and remove barriers and addresses the current and future requirements of the AODA. The Township of Addington Highlands will report annually on the progress and implementation of the plan, post the information on the Township website and will provide it in alternative formats upon request.
The plan will be reviewed and updated at least once every five years.
Procuring or Acquiring Goods, Services or Facilities
The Township of Addington Highlands will have regard for accessibility criteria and features when procuring or acquiring goods, services or facilities, except where it is not practical to do so (in which case, if requested, an explanation will be provided.)
The Township of Addington Highlands shall have regard to accessibility for persons with disabilities when designing, procuring or acquiring self-service kiosks.
The Township of Addington Highlands will ensure that training is provided to all employees on the requirements of the accessibility standards (information and communication, employment, transportation, design of public spaces and customer service) referred to in the Regulation and on the Human Rights Code as it pertains to persons with disabilities. Ongoing training will be provided to new employees as soon as practicable. If any changes are made to this policy or the requirements training will be provided. The Township of Addington Highlands shall maintain a record of the dates when training is provide and the number of individuals to whom it was provided.
Information and Communication Standard
The Township of Addington Highlands will create, provide and receive information and communications in ways that are accessible to people with disabilities.
If the Township of Addington Highlands determines that it is not technically feasible to convert the information or communications, or the technology to convert the information or communication is not readily available, that person who requires the information will be provided with:
- an explanation as to why the information or communications are not convertible; and
- a summary of the unconvertible information or communications.
The Township of Addington Highlands will provide its emergency procedures, plans or public safety information which are made available to the public, in an accessible format or with appropriate communication supports, as soon as practicable, upon request.
The Township of Addington Highlands has a process in place for receiving and responding to feedback and will ensure that those processes are provided in accessible formats and with communication supports upon request. The Township of Addington Highlands will notify the public about the availability of accessible formats and communication supports.
Accessible Formats and Communication Supports
The Township of Addington Highlands shall provide or arrange for accessible formats and communications supports for persons with disabilities:
- Upon request, in a timely manner that takes into account the persons’ accessibility needs due to a disability;
- At a cost that is no more than the regular cost charged to other persons;
- In consultation with the person making the request to determine the suitability of an accessible format or communication support.
The public shall be notified about the availability of accessible formats and communication supports.
The Township of Addington Highlands shall make any new web content on its internet website conform with the World Wide Web Consortium Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) 2.0 Level A. By January 1, 2021 all internet websites and web content In the Province of Ontario will conform with WCAG 2.0 Level AA.
Public Library Materials and Resources
The Township of Addington Highlands’s Public Libraries shall:
- Provide or arrange access to accessible formats of library materials where they exist;
- Consider the accessibility needs of their users when acquiring new materials.
- Make information about the availability of accessible materials known to the public.
The Employment Standard builds upon the existing requirements under the Ontario Human Rights Code in relation to how to accommodate individuals with disabilities throughout the job application process and the employment relationship. It applies in respect to employees and does not apply to volunteers and other non-paid individuals.
Specific requirements include:
The Township of Addington Highlands shall:
- Notify employees and the public about the availability of accommodations for applicants with disabilities during the recruitment process when job applicants are individually selected to participate in an assessment or selection process;
- Consult with the applicant and provide or arrange for the provision of a suitable accommodation that takes into account the applicant’s disability, if a selected applicant requests an accommodation;
- Notify successful applicants of the policies for accommodating employees with disabilities.
The Township of Addington Highlands shall inform its employees of its policies used to support employees with disabilities, including but not limited to, policies on the provision of job accommodations that take into account an employee’s accessibility needs due to a disability:
- As required, to new employees, as soon as practicable after they begin their employment;
- Whenever there is a change to existing policies on the provision of job accommodations that take into account an employee’s accessibility needs due to a disability.
When an employee with a disability requests it, the Township of Addington Highlands will consult with the employee to provide or arrange for the provision of accessible formats and communication supports:
- For information that is needed in order to perform the employee’s job;
- For information that is generally available to employees in the workplace; and
In consultation with the employee making the request in determining the suitability of an accessible format or communication support.
Individual Accommodation Plan (IAP)
The Township of Addington Highlands shall have in place a written process for the development of a documented individual accommodation plan for employees with a disability. The process will include:
- The employee’s participation in the development of the IAP;
- Assessment on an individual basis;
- Identification of accommodations to be provided;
- Timelines for the provision of accommodations;
- The Township of Addington Highlands may request an evaluation by outside medical or other expert, at our expense, to assist with determining accommodation and how to achieve accommodation;
- Employee may request the participation of a representative from their bargaining agent, where represented, or otherwise a representative from the workplace not from a bargaining agent;
- Steps taken to protect the privacy of the employee’s personal information;
- Frequency with which the IAP will be reviewed and updated and the manner in which it will be done;
- If denied, the reasons for denial are to be provided to the employee;
- A format that takes into account the employee’s disability needs;
- If requested, any information regarding accessible formats and communication supports provided;
- Identification of any other accommodation that is to be provided.
Return to Work
The Township of Addington Highlands will have a return to work process in place for employees who have been absent from work due to a disability and require disability-related accommodations in order to return to work. Such processes will be documented and will outline the steps that the Township of Addington Highlands will take to facilitate the return to work and include an individual accommodation plan.
Performance Management, Career Development and Advancement, and Redeployment
The Township of Addington Highlands will take into account the accommodation needs and/or individual accommodation plans of employees when:
- Using performance management processes;
- Providing career development and advancement information;
- Using redeployment procedures.
Workplace Emergency Response Information
The Township of Addington Highlands shall provide individualized workplace emergency response information to employees who have a disability:
- If the disability is such that the individualized information is necessary and the employer is aware of the need for accommodation due to the employee’s disability;
- With the employee’s consent, to the person designated by the Township of Addington Highlands to provide assistance to the employee if required;
- As soon as practicable after becoming aware of the need for accommodation due to the employee’s disability;
- And will review the individualized workplace emergency response information when the employee moves to a different location in the organization, when overall accommodations needs or plans are reviewed and when the employer reviews its general emergency response policies.
The Transportation Standard will make it easier for people to travel on specialized and public transit and in taxicabs in Ontario, including persons with disabilities, older Ontarians and families traveling with children in strollers.
The Township of Addington Highlands is not a provider of specialized or public transit and does not license taxi cabs, therefore the transportation standard requirements do not apply to the municipality.
Design of Public Spaces Standard
The Township of Addington Highlands is committed to meeting accessibility laws when building or making major changes to public spaces.
Customer Service Standard
The Township of Addington Highlands will provide goods and services to people with disabilities, with particular consideration of the following areas:
The Township of Addington Highlands will communicate with people with disabilities in ways that take into account their disability. Staff who communicate with customers will be trained on how to interact and communicate with people with various types of disabilities.
The Township of Addington Highlands is committed to providing fully accessible telephone service to our customers. Staff will be trained to communicate with customers over the telephone in clear and plain language, to speak clearly and slowly and to tailor their responses as much as possible in support of the individual.
The Township of Addington Highlands will offer to communicate with customers by other means, including relay service or e-mail, if telephone communication is not suitable to their communication needs or is not available.
The Township of Addington Highlands is committed to serving people with disabilities who use assistive devices to obtain, use or benefit from our goods and services. The Township of Addington Highlands will also ensure that staff know how to use the assistive devices which are available on our premises.
The Township of Addington Highlands is committed to providing accessible invoices to all of our customers.
For this reason, correspondence, other documentation and invoices other than tax bills will be provided in large print or by e-mail, upon request.
Tax bills can be copied and enlarged, upon request of the taxpayer on title.
Any questions customers may have about the content of the invoice will be answered in person, by telephone or e-mail.
Use of Service Animals and Support Persons
The Township of Addington Highlands is committed to welcoming people with disabilities who are accompanied by a service animal, in the areas of our premises that are open to the public and other third parties. All staff, volunteers and others dealing with the public will be properly trained in how to interact with people with disabilities who are accompanied by a service animal.
The Township of Addington Highlands is committed to welcoming people with disabilities who are accompanied by a support person. Any person with a disability who is accompanied by a support person will be allowed to enter The Township of Addington Highlands buildings with his or her support person. At no time will a person with a disability who is accompanied by a support person be prevented from having access to his or her support person while on Township premises.
No admission will be charged to the support person for admission to Township of Addington Highlands Facilities. Note: No such facilities exist at this time.
Third party events using municipal halls are excepted.
The ultimate goal of The Township of Addington Highlands is to meet and surpass customer expectations while serving all people, including those with disabilities. Comments regarding how well those expectations are being met are welcome and appreciated.
Feedback regarding the way The Township of Addington Highlands provides goods and services to people with disabilities can be made by using a feedback form, by mail, e-mail, or verbally. All feedback should be directed to the Accessibility Co-ordinator. Customers can expect a response within thirty (30) days.
Modifications to This Policy
The Township of Addington Highlands is committed to developing accessibility policies that respect and promote the dignity and independence of people with disabilities. Therefore, no changes will be made to this policy before considering the impact on people with disabilities.
Additional training will be provided to all employees, volunteers and policy developers if any changes are made to the Townships Accessibility Policy.
Questions About This Policy
If anyone has a question about the policy, or if the purpose of a policy is not understood, inquiries should be referred to the Townships Accessibility Co-ordinator.
Accessible formats of this document are available free of charge, upon request. Policy Approval, this policy was approved by resolution on December 19, 2016; RE