Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act
In 2005, the Ontario Public Service passed the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act (AODA), which requires training for all employers and workers in Ontario. Its purpose is to improve accessibility standards for Ontarians with physical and mental disabilities in all public establishments by 2025. Compliance is mandatory.
Our family of faith works to make sure everyone in our community is aware of their responsibilities to foster an accessible and inclusive environment for those with disabilities.
The accessibility standards are the legal requirements parishes need to follow to become more accessible to people with disabilities. They address five key areas:
- Customer service
- Information and communications
- Design of public spaces
Parishes are required to provide AODA training to all employees, volunteers, contractors and other third parties, and all others who provide goods, services or facilities on behalf of the parish. Training should include:
- The purpose of AODA and the requirements of the Customer Service Standard
- How to interact and communicate with people with various types of disabilities
- How to interact with people with disabilities who use an assistive device, who may be accompanied by a support person or who need the help of a service animal
- How to use equipment or devices available on the parish’s premises or otherwise provided by the parish that may help with the provision of goods or services to a person with a disability
- What to do if a person with a disability is having difficulty accessing goods and services from the parish and how to provide feedback on such an issue
It’s important for parishes to keep track of all training records; they may be needed in the future.
Parishes with 20 or more employees must complete an accessibility compliance report. It’s a way to make sure parishes are on track with the goal of making a fully accessible province by 2025. The report is a self-assessment of a parish’s status in terms of compliance with provincial accessibility requirements.
Parishes with 20 or more employees that fail to submit a report can face penalties and fines. Email Accessibility Ontario if you need the form in an alternate format. If you have any questions about accessibility compliance reporting, or the details necessary to complete the forms, contact Accessibility Ontario at 1-866-515-2025, 416-325-3408 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
These sites should give you the resources you need to comply with AODA training requirements:
- A five-part eLearning series (20 minutes) completes the training requirements for the Integrated Accessibility Standards
- Free AODA online training covers the basic information about AODA, comprehensive details about its standards and the benefits. Works best on a desktop or laptop computer.
- English only
- Takes about an hour to complete, but you can pause and come back to it
- Certificate emailed upon completion
- You’ll need to enter your email address before you can start
- Learn about your rights and responsibilities under AODA and how they affect you at work and in services
- Free resources and templates
- Customer service policy template
- Training modules and templates
- Compliance Report forms
For more information, contact Aneita Chang, HR Coordinator, at 416-363-6021, ext. 233 (1-800-668-8932) or email@example.com.