In 2005, the government of Ontario passed the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act (AODA), which requires that Ontario be an accessible province by 2025. AODA contains accessibility standards in the areas of Customer service, Information and communications, Employment, Transportation, and the built environment. These standards aim to identify, prevent and remove barriers to accessibility for public, private and non-profit organizations.
In 2008, the Customer Service Standard was the first accessibility standard to become law. Designated public sector organizations were required to comply by January 1, 2010.
The Integrated Accessibility Standards Regulation (IASR) includes standards for Information and communications, Employment and Transportation. This regulation came into effect on July 1, 2011 and is now law. IASR requirements were phased in over time between 2011 and 2021. The standard for the Built Environment has been combined with the IASR and is now referred to as the Design of Public Spaces Standard (DPSS). DPSS came into effect in December 2012 and is now law.
Statement of Commitment
The Walkerton Clean Water Centre (the Centre) is committed to treating all people in a way that allows them to maintain their dignity and independence. We believe in integration and equal opportunity. We are committed to meeting the needs of people with disabilities in a timely manner and will do so by preventing and removing barriers to accessibility and meeting accessibility requirements under the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act.
Accessible Emergency Information
The Centre is committed to providing our clients and customers with publicly available emergency information in an accessible way upon request. We will also develop and provide employees with disabilities with individualized emergency evacuation and response plans upon request. This provision is outlined in more detail in the Centre’s Emergency Evacuation Plan.
The Centre will provide training to employees, Board members, volunteers and all other persons who provide goods and services on behalf of the Centre on Ontario’s accessibility laws and on the Human Rights Code as it relates to people with disabilities. Training will be provided in a way that best suits the duties of each person.
The Centre will take the following steps to ensure the required training is provided to meet Ontario’s accessibility laws:
- All Board members, employees, volunteers and persons who provide goods and services on behalf of the Centre are provided with AODA training.
- All new employees are provided with AODA training within one week of commencing employment for the Centre.
- All new Board members, volunteers and persons who provide goods and services on behalf of the Centre are provided with AODA training within one month of commencing service for the Centre.
The Centre will take the following steps to incorporate accessibility criteria and features when procuring or acquiring goods, services or facilities.
- All requests for bids and Centre contracts have an accessibility obligation and requirements clause for vendors.
- Review purchasing practices and advise all Centre staff of the need to take accessibility of goods, services and facilities being purchased into consideration during procurement. If it is not possible and practical to do so, an explanation will be provided upon request.
Information and Communications
The Centre is committed to meeting the communication needs of people with disabilities. We will consult with people with disabilities to determine their information and communication needs.
The Centre has:
- Established procedures to ensure all publicly available information is made accessible upon request, to the extent possible. This information includes all Centre AODA employee records.
- Established procedures whereby requests for accessible information will be directed to Management for review, and accessible formats will be made available where practical.
- Conducted internal and third-party accessibility reviews of the Centre’s website
The Centre will:
- Ensure all new websites and web content are assessed and evaluated for accessibility to ensure conformance with WCAG 2.0, Level AA
- Ensure existing feedback processes are accessible to people with disabilities
- Ensure the Centre’s customer feedback processes allow for multiple types of communication such as email, telephone, Bell Relay Service, regular mail and in person.
- Ensure all accessibility related inquiries are forwarded to Management for review and resolution.
The Centre took the following steps to ensure all publicly available information is made accessible upon request, to the extent possible. This information includes all Centre AODA employee records. Requests for accessible information will be directed to Management for review, and accessible formats will be made available where practical.
The Centre is taking the following steps to make all websites and content conform with WCAG 2.0, Level AA.
- Conducted internal and third-party accessibility review of the Centre’s website
- Conduct a review of new web content to ensure it conforms with WCAG 2.0, Level AA.
Ensure that any new website conforms with WCAG 2.0, Level AA.
The Centre is committed to fair and accessible employment practices and accommodating employees through the recruitment, onboarding and employee life cycle process. The Centre developed and will maintain an accommodation program. All policies and programs will be reviewed on an annual basis. The Centre will:
- accommodate people with disabilities during the recruitment and selection process. All internal and external job postings include a provision around the ability to provide accommodation in the recruitment and selection process if requested that aligns with the Human Rights Code.
- develop individual accommodation plans and return to work policies for employees that require accommodation.
- ensure the accessibility needs of employees with disabilities are taken into account when implementing new policies, programs and procedures.
- prevent and remove any identified accessibility barriers where feasible
Design of Public Spaces (formerly the Built Environment)
The Centre is a leased facility from Infrastructure Ontario (IO). When built in 2009, the Centre was built in accordance with the Ontario building code and met the accessibility requirements. The Centre will ensure that when building any new structures or during major renovations to public spaces, we will meet the Accessibility Standards for the Design of Public Spaces. Public spaces include sidewalks, ramps, stairs, rest areas, accessible off street parking, and self-service related areas such as service counters and waiting areas.
For More Information
For more information on this accessibility plan, please contact Human Resources at the Walkerton Clean Water Centre:
Fax: (226) 436-2045
Alternative accessible formats of this document are available free upon request by contacting the Centre.