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 establishes the Integrated Accessibility Standards in the areas of Employment, Information and Communications, and Transportation for the Ottawa Valley Waste Recovery Centre (OVWRC) in accordance with Ontario Regulation 191/11 and with the Ministry of Community and Social Services” intent to “streamline, align and phase-in accessibility requirements and allow for progress on accessibility and reduce the regulatory burden for obligated organizations”. This regulation came into force on July 1, 2011.
This policy has been drafted in accordance with the Regulation and addresses how the OVWRC achieves accessibility through meeting the Regulation’s requirements. It provides the overall strategic direction that the Centre will follow to provide accessibility supports to Ontarians with disabilities. The requirements of the Regulation include:
• Establishment, implementation, maintenance and documentation of a multi-year accessibility plan, which outlines the organization’s strategy to prevent and remove barriers and meet its requirements under the Regulation.
• Incorporation of accessibility design, criteria and features when procuring or acquiring goods, services, or facilities.
• Other specific requirements under the Employment, Information and Communications, and Transportation Standards.
3. POLICY STATEMENT AND ORGANIZATIONAL COMMITMENT
The OVWRC 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 OVWRC shall use every effort to ensure that the Centre meets 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.
“Large Designated Public Sector Organization”- means a designated public sector organization with 50 or more employees.
“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, 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.
“Unconvertible” – means:
(a) not technically feasible to convert the information or communications;
(b) that 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”.
5.1 Multi-Year Accessibility Plan
The OVWRC 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 Centre will report annually on the progress and implementation of the plan, will post the information on its website and will provide it in alternative formats upon request. The plan will be reviewed and updated at least once every five (5) years.
5.2 Procuring or Acquiring Goods, Services or Facilities
The Centre will use accessibility design, 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 the Centre will provide an explanation).
The OVWRC will ensure that training is provided to all employees and volunteers on the requirements of the accessibility standards referred to in the Regulation and the Human Rights Codes as it pertains to persons with disabilities. This training is provided to all employees during their on-line Health & Safety Orientation at the beginning of employment. Applicable employees serving the public will complete the AODA Customer Service On-Line Training annually. If any changes are made to this policy or the requirements, training will be provided. The Centre shall maintain a record of the dates when training is provided and the number of individuals to whom it was provided.
5.4 Information and Communications Standard
The OVWRC will create, provide and receive information and communications in ways that are accessible to people with disabilities.
If the OVWRC determines that it is not technically feasible to convert the information or communications, or the technology to convert the information or communications is
not readily available, the Centre will be obligated to provide the person requesting the information with:
(a) an explanation as to why the information or communications are unconvertible; and
(b) a summary of the unconvertible information or communications.
The OVWRC has processes 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 Centre will notify the public about the availability of accessible formats and communication supports.
5.6 Accessible Formats and Communication Supports
The OVWRC shall be obligated to provide or arrange for accessible formats and communication supports for persons with disabilities:
a) upon request, in a timely manner, that takes into account the person’s accessibility needs due to a disability;
b) at a cost that is no more than the regular cost charged to other persons;
c) consult with the person making the request and determine the suitability of an accessible format or communication support;
d) notify the public about the availability of accessible formats and communication supports.
5.7 Website Accessibility
The OVWRC shall make its internet website and web content conform with the World Wide Web Consortium Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) 2.0 Level AA by January 1, 2021.
The OVWRC 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.
• If selected applicant requests an accommodation the OVWRC shall consult with the applicant and provide and/or arrange for the provision of a suitable accommodation that takes into account the applicant’s disability.
• Notify successful applicants of the policies for accommodating employees with disabilities.
5.9 Employee Notification
The OVWRC shall inform its employees of the policies used to support its 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.
5.10 Accessible Formats
In addition, where an employee with a disability requests it, the OVWRC will consult with the employee to provide and/or arrange for the provision of accessible formats and communication supports for:
• Information that is needed in order to perform the employee’s job.
• Information that is generally available to employees in the workplace.
• Consult with the employee making the request to determine the suitability of an accessible format or communication support.
5.11 Individual Accommodation Plan
The OVWRC shall document individual accommodation plans (IAP) for employees with a disability. These plans will include:
• The employee’s participation in the development of the IAP.
• Assessment on an individual basis.
• Identification of accommodations to be provided.
• Timeline(s) for the provision of accommodations.
• The OVWRC may request an evaluation by an outside medical or other expert, at its expense, to assist with determining accommodation and how to achieve accommodation.
• Steps to be 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.
5.12 Return to Work
The OVWRC will have in place a return to work process for employees who have been absent from work due to a disability and require disability-related accommodation in order to return to work. This process must be documented and must outline the steps that the OVWRC will take to facilitate the return to work and include an IAP. (See Health and Safety Policy HSP 11.4 Return to Work)
5.13 Performance Management, Career Development and Advancement, and Redeployment
The OVWRC will take into account the accommodation needs and/or IAPs of employees when:
• Using performance management processes.
• Providing career development and advancement information.
• Using redeployment procedures.
5.14 Workplace Emergency Response Information
The OVWRC shall provide individualized workplace emergency response information to employees who have a disability: (See Health and Safety Policy HSP 9.13 Evacuation Procedure, Including Fire Response)
• 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.
• If the employee who receives individual workplace emergency response information requires assistance and with the employee’s consent, the OVWRC shall provide the workplace emergency information to the person designated by the OVWRC to provide assistance to the employee.
• As soon as practicable after becoming aware of the need for accommodation due to the employee’s disability.
• Review the individualized workplace emergency response information when the employee moves to a different location in the organization, when overall accommodation needs or plans are reviewed and when the employer reviews its general emergency response policies.
6. ASSOCIATED DOCUMENTS
Multi Year Accessibility Plan 2021 – 2026
Customer Service Training Document
Updated: June 3rd, 2021