AODA and Integrated Accessibility Standards Policy
1. Policy Overview
Van der Graaf Inc. (“VDG”) is committed to working towards full compliance with all standards under the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act, 2005 (“AODA”) as they are introduced. In doing so, we affirm our commitment to providing quality services in a manner that respects the dignity and independence of persons with disabilities.
The Multi-Year Accessibility Plan outlines the policies, and actions that VDG have put in place to improve opportunities for people with disabilities.
2. Statement of Commitment
VDG is committed to treating all people with dignity and independence. We believe that 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 AODA.
VDG is committed to continue developing, implementing and maintaining policies governing how it will achieve accessibility through meeting the requirements under AODA and its associated regulations, the Customer Service Accessibility Standard and the Integrated Accessibility Standard (“IASR”).
3. Customer Service Accessibility Standard
The Customer Service Standard, the first standard under AODA was implemented by VDG 2013.
To ensure that our office and production locations are accessible to persons with a disability, the following policies apply:
VDG will permit the use of a service animal (such as a seeing eye dog or service dog) by a person with a disability who is an employee, a client, an individual assisting a client, or a member of the public seeking our services. If necessary, our team members will facilitate the entry of the person with a disability, and his or her service animal to the building in which our office is located.
Our clients, and other members of the public with a disability who wish to be accompanied by a support person to a meeting with our team members, whether at our office, will be permitted to do so to the extend we can make this possible. For these purposes, a support person is defined as another person who accompanies the person with a disability to help with communication, mobility, personal care, or medical needs or with access to goods or services.
Persons with a disability who wish to use an assistive device when working with our team members will be permitted to do so. This includes use of a tape recorder, Braille recorder, or another device, when communicating with our staff.
We are committed to improving accessibility for those with disabilities. We welcome feedback about the way we provide service to such persons.
Method of Providing Feedback
Feedback may be provided in person at our office or by telephone, in writing, or by delivering an electronic text by email or on diskette or otherwise. Contact information is located below:
All feedback will be reviewed by the Human Resources Department and a member of Senior Management team.
If the feedback constitutes a complaint about the accessibility of service to persons with disabilities, an attempt will be made to resolve it immediately. If this cannot be achieved, the complaint will be forwarded to the President and responded to within ten business days using the same means of communication that was used to provide the feedback. All reasonable efforts will be made to resolve the complaint.
Training on AODA has been provided and is given to every person who participates in developing the policy. AODA Training, including Customer Service, is also part of mandatory training for all new hires in Ontario. Completion of training of all employees is tracked and recorded.
4. AODA 2015
To provide equal opportunities for current and prospective team members, we have implemented a policy to meet the requirements of the Integrated Accessibility Standards (IASR), Ontario Regulation 191/11, as part of the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act, 2005.
5. General Requirements
VDG has created and implemented an accessibility plan outlining how we intend to remove accessibility barriers. The plans will be available in accessible formats upon request and will also be posted on our website.
The plan will be reviewed and updated every five (5) years and will include the consultation with persons of disabilities.
Training shall be provided to all current and future team members regarding Integrated Accessibility Standards Regulation (IASR) compliance. This also includes contractors who work for or provide services. We will keep records of the training that was given, the date it was provided, and the team members who were trained.
6. Integrated Accessibility Standards Regulation
i. Accessible Emergency Information
We will work with team members with disabilities to ensure they fully understand the workplace emergency response information. The method chosen will reflect the individual’s unique challenges and will be created in consultation with the team member. It shall consider the team members mental and physical capabilities, as well as the physical nature of the work environment.
The emergency response information will be reviewed if the team member moves to a different physical location, when the team member’s accommodation needs are reviewed, and during general reviews of the emergency response policies.
VDG will provide training to employees, volunteers and other staff members on Ontario’s accessibility laws and on the Human Rights Code as it relates to people with disabilities. Training will be provided in a manner that best suites the duties and needs of employees, volunteers and other staff members and every person who deals with the public on behalf of VDG.
VDG has taken the following steps to ensure employees were provided with the training needed to meet Ontario’s accessible laws:
iii. Accessible Formats and Communication supports for Team Members
If requested by a team member with a disability, we will provide the team member with a suitable and accessible format that accommodates their individual needs. This includes information the team member needs to perform their job and other information that is generally available to all team members in the workplace (ex. General updates, new policies or procedures, health & safety meeting minutes, etc.)
VDG is committed to providing support for a diverse range of browsers and assistive technologies, empowering our users to choose the tools that best suit their needs. Our website is designed to be compatible with all major systems in the user market, including Google Chrome, Microsoft Edge, Apple Safari, and Mozilla Firefox. Our websites and web content, meets the WCGA as required by the AODA except where meeting the requirement(s) is not practicable.
iv. Employment Standards
VDG is committed to inclusive and accessible employment practices that attract and retain individuals with disabilities. We have taken the following steps to notify the public and employees, that when requested. VDG will accommodate people with disabilities throughout all phases of the employment relationship.
Recruitment, Assessment and Selection
VDG is committed to ensuring that our recruitment and assessment processes are fair and accessible. All supervisors and managers who are involved in hiring are required to complete AODA and Human Rights training.
During the hiring process, we will notify our team members, the public, and the selected candidates that we will work with them to provide accommodation for their disabilities. If the applicant requires accommodation, we will work with them to provide suitable arrangements.
All VDG job postings will state that accommodation will be available on request for persons with disabilities.
Inform employees of policies supporting employees with disabilities. This information will be provided to new employees as soon as practicable after hiring.
Provide updated information on accommodation policies to employees when they occur.
Documented Individual Accommodation Plans
The individual accommodation will also include:
Return to Work
VDG is committed to developing and putting in place a process for developing individual accommodation plans and return-to-work policies for employees that have been absent due to a disability or injury (described in section 29 of the IASR) and require disability-related accommodations in order to return to work. We will work with the team member to find suitable accommodations for them to return to work safely.
Performance Management, Career Development and Redeployment
VDG is committed to ensuring the accessibility needs of employees with disability when carrying out the performance management process and when offering career development and advancement opportunities, as per the individual’s accommodation plan outlined above. This will ensure equal development and advancement opportunities for all team members.
VDG will take the following steps to ensure the accessibility needs of employees with disabilities are taken into account when VDG is using a performance management process or a career development process. VDG will ensure that the format of delivery and we will provide feedback and update in alternative format, so that it meets the needs of the employee.
When redeployment is required for an employee with a disability, VDG will take into account the accessibility needs of the employee as well as an individual accommodation plan.
Redeployment means the reassignment of an employee to another department or position with VDG when a particular position has been eliminated.
VDG will arrange for the employee’s individual accommodation plan and will identify accessibility needs to be transferred to the employee upon reassignment.
When the employee arrives at the new position, the accommodation plan will be reviewed and amended if needed.
VDG discusses issues of accessibility and monitors compliance with the requirements of AODA by periodic review of policies and practices at Joint Health and Safety meetings, and policy reviews conducted by VDG’s senior HR representative.
For more information on this accessibility plan, please contact:
(905) 793-8100 ext. 408