Armtec

Accessibility

Integrated Accessibility Standards Policy

 

Policy Statement

The Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act, 2005 ("the AODA") is a Provincial Act with the purpose of developing, implementing and mandating accessibility standards in order to achieve accessibility for persons with disabilities, with respect to goods, services, facilities, accommodation, employment, buildings, structures and premises.

Statement of Commitment

Armtec is committed to providing a respectful, welcoming, accessible, and inclusive environment for all persons with disabilities in a way that is respectful of the dignity and independence of people with disabilities and in a manner which takes into account the person's disability and embodies the principles of integration and equal opportunity.

Armtec ensures that all persons within its community are aware of their rights and responsibilities to foster an accessible and inclusive environment with and for persons with disabilities.

Armtec is committed to, and will strive to ensure that, the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act (AODA), 2005, its regulations, standards and all other relevant legislation concerning accessibility, are rigorously observed in a timely fashion.

Purpose

The Integrated Accessibility Standards Regulation (Regulation 191/11) (the “IASR”) under the AODA provides standards for private sector organizations to increase accessibility for persons with disabilities specifically in the areas of:

- Information and Communications

- Employment

In order to achieve our goals, Armtec has developed a multi-year Accessibility Plan which documents Armtec’s strategy and commitment to meet the applicable standards of the IASR.

Under the AODA, Ontario Regulation 429/07, entitled "Accessibility Standards for Customer Service" (the “Service Regulation"), came into effect on January 1, 2008. The Service Regulation establishes accessibility standards specific to customer service for private sector organizations that provide goods and services to members of the public or other third parties.

The objective of this policy is to identify what the equal treatment provisions of the Ontario Human Rights Code, through the AODA and the Service Regulation, require with respect to service delivery to persons with disabilities.

All goods and services provided by Armtec shall follow the principles of dignity, independence, integration and equal opportunity.

Provisions of goods and services to persons with disabilities

Armtec will make every reasonable effort to ensure that its policies, practices and procedures are consistent with the principles of dignity, independence, integration and equal opportunity by:

- ensuring that all customers receive the same value and quality;

- allowing customers with disabilities to do things in their own ways, at their own pace when accessing goods and services as long as this does not present a safety risk;

- using alternative methods when possible to ensure that customers with disabilities have access to the same services, in the same place and in a similar manner;

- taking into account individual needs when providing goods and services; and

- communicating in a manner that takes into account the customer's disability.

Accessible formats and Communication

Armtec will provide information and communications about our goods and services to people with disabilities using the appropriate accessible format or communication support wherever possible, upon request. Armtec will notify the public about the availability of accessible formats and communications support, as required.

We will communicate with people with disabilities in ways that take into account their disability.

We will train staff who communicate with customers on how to interact and communicate with people with various types of disabilities.

Telephone services

We are committed to providing fully accessible telephone service to our customers. We will train staff when required, to communicate with customers over the telephone in clear and plain language and to speak clearly and slowly.

We will offer to communicate with customers by other means of communication that may apply, e.g. email, facsimile, if telephone communication is not suitable to their communication needs or is not available.

Assistive devices

We are committed to serving people with disabilities who use assistive devices to obtain, use or benefit from our goods and services. We will ensure that our staff are trained and familiar with various assistive devices that may be used by customers with disabilities while accessing our goods or services, as required.

Persons with disabilities may use their own assistive devices as required when accessing goods or services provided by Armtec. In cases where the assistive device presents a safety concern or where accessibility might be an issue, other reasonable measures will be used to ensure the access of goods and services. For example, where elevators are not present and where an individual requires assistive devices for the purposes of mobility, service will be provided in a location that meets the needs of the customer.

Billing

When Armtec bills for services, it should demonstrate a commitment to providing accessible invoices to all of our customers. This means that invoices should be provided in alternate formats upon request (e.g., hard copy, large print, email) and that staff is prepared to answer questions customers may have about the content of the invoice.

Use of service animals and support persons

We are committed to welcoming people with disabilities who are accompanied by a service animal on the parts of our premises that are open to the public and other third parties. We will also ensure that all staff, volunteers and others dealing with the public are properly trained in how to interact with people with disabilities who are accompanied by a service animal, when required.

We are 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 Armtec’s premises 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 our premises. All customer/client confidentiality requirements and practices will also apply to support persons.

Allergies

If a health and safety concern presents itself, for example in the form of a severe allergy to the animal, Armtec will make all reasonable efforts to meet the needs of all individuals.

Notice of temporary disruption

Armtec will provide customers with notice in the event of a planned or unexpected disruption in the facilities or services usually used by people with disabilities. This notice will include information about the reason for the disruption, its anticipated duration, and a description of alternative facilities or services, if available.

The notice will be placed at all public entrances and service counters on our premises.

Training for staff

Armtec will provide training to all employees, and others who deal with the public or other third parties on their behalf, and all those who are involved in the development and approvals of customer service policies, practices and procedures. Individuals in the following positions will be trained: customer service representatives, sales associates, managers, human resource staff, receptionists, etc.

Armtec has developed a training plan that integrates the requirements of the IASR with its current new employee orientation program.

This training will be provided as soon as practicable after staff commence their duties.

Training will include the following:

- The purposes of the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act, 2005 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 or require the assistance of a service animal or a support person

- What to do if a person with a disability is having difficulty in accessing Armtec’s goods and services

- Armtec’s policies, practices and procedures relating to the customer service standard.

Applicable staff will be trained on policies, practices and procedures that affect the way goods and services are provided to people with disabilities. Staff will also be trained on an ongoing basis when changes are made to these policies, practices and procedures.

Feedback process

Armtec shall provide customers/clients with the opportunity to provide feedback on the service provided to persons with disabilities. Information about the feedback process will be readily available to all customers/clients and employees as required. Feedback forms along with alternate methods of providing feedback such as verbally (in person or by telephone) or written (hand written or email) will be available upon request.

Armtec will ensure that its processes for receiving and responding to feedback are made available to persons with disabilities, whether members of the public, clients, customers or employees, in an appropriate, accessible format or communication support, upon their request, and that members of the public are notified of the availability of such an option.

The ultimate goal of Armtec is to meet customer needs while serving customers with disabilities. Comments on our services regarding how well those expectations are being met are welcome and appreciated.

Feedback regarding the way Armtec provides goods and services to people with disabilities can be made by email, verbally, suggestion box, feedback form, etc. All feedback will be directed to the Communications and Branding Department at communications@armtec.com. Customers can expect to hear back within seventy-two (72) hours.

Availability and format of documents

Armtec shall notify customers that the documents related to the Accessibility Standard for Customer Service are available upon request and in a format that takes into account the customer's disability. Notification will be given by posting the information in a conspicuous place owned and operated by Armtec, the website and/or any other reasonable method.

Recruitment:

Armtec will notify its employees and external applicants about the availability of accommodation for applicants with disabilities in its recruitment process.

(a) Recruitment, Assessment or Selection Process

Armtec will ensure that job applicants are notified when they are individually selected to participate in the assessment or selection process and that accommodation for disabilities are made available upon request in relation to the materials or processes to be used. Armtec will consult with individuals who request accommodations and will provide for appropriate accommodations.

(b) Notice to Successful Applicants

When presenting offers of employment, Armtec will notify the successful applicant of its policies for accommodating employees with disabilities.

(c) Informing Employees of Support

Armtec will ensure that employees are informed of all accessibility policies (and any updates to those policies) used to support employees with disabilities, including policies on the provision of job accommodations that take into account an employee’s accessibility needs due to disability. This information will be provided during the new employee orientation.

(d) Accessible Formats and Communication Supports for Employees

Upon request of an employee with a disability, Armtec will consult with the employee to provide, or arrange for accessible formats and communication supports for information that is needed to perform his/her job, and information that is available to other employees. In order to determine the suitability of an accessible format or communication support, Armtec will consult with the employee making the request. Accessible formats and communications support regarding general workplace information will also be provided to employees with disabilities, as required.

(e) Workplace Emergency Response Information

Armtec provides employees with disabilities individualized workplace emergency response information when the employee’s disability is such that the information is required and Armtec has been informed of the need to accommodate the employee’s disability.

(f) Documented Individual Accommodation Plans

Armtec currently accommodates the needs of its employees with disabilities as required under the Ontario Human Rights Code. Armtec will develop individualized accommodation plans for its employees with disabilities, as Armtec is made aware. The process by which Armtec will consult, develop, determine, document, review and routinely update the individualized accommodation plan will be formalized with the employee. Armtec will implement and maintain measures effective to maintain the privacy of its employees with disabilities.

(g) Return to Work Process

Armtec will maintain a documented return to work process for employees who have been absent from work due to a disability and who require disability-related accommodations and support in order to return to work. The return to work process will clearly define and outline the steps Armtec will take to facilitate the return to work and will include documented accommodation plans for each individual as part of the process. The above stated return to work process will not replace, hinder or override any other return to work process created by or under any other statute (i.e., the Workplace Safety Insurance Act, 1997).

(h) Performance Management, Career Development and Advancement and Redeployment

Armtec will continue to consider the accessibility needs of employees with disabilities as well as individual accommodation plans, when conducting performance management reviews, providing career development and advancement to employees and when redeploying employees.

Modifications to this or other policies

We are committed to developing customer service 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.
Any policy of Armtec that does not respect and promote the dignity and independence of people with disabilities will be modified or removed.

Questions about this policy

This policy exists to achieve service excellence to customers with disabilities. If anyone has a question about the policy, or if the purpose of a policy is not understood, an explanation should be provided by, or referred to, Human Resources Department of Armtec.

Responsibility

Human Resources is responsible for ensuring that the management team in Armtec and all employees at the Corporate Office are fully knowledgeable of the company’s Accessible Customer Service Policy. Further, in the event of changes to the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act (AODA), Human Resources will ensure that the company’s policy will be modified to reflect such changes and that such changes will be passed on to managers/supervisors.

Managers/supervisors are responsible for ensuring that their respective employees have signed off their partaking of the available training thus ensuring that they are fully compliant with this policy.

All questions and/or comments should be forwarded to their divisional Human Resource Representative

If you have any questions or concerns about this policy or its related procedures, please contact:

Kelly Cotton at Kelly.cotton@armtec.com or 647-795-9250 Ext. 9264

 

APPENDIX A

GENERAL DEFINITIONS

Accessible Formats: include, but are not limited to accessible electronic formats, Braille, text transcripts, large print, recorded audio, and other formats accessible to persons with disabilities.

Assistive Device: a technical aid, communication device or other instrument that is used to maintain or improve the functional abilities of people with disabilities. Personal assistive devices are typically devices that members and guests bring with them such as a wheelchair, walker or a personal oxygen tank that might assist in hearing, seeing, communicating, moving, breathing, remembering and/or reading.

Barrier: as defined by the Ontarians with Disabilities Act, 2001, anything that prevents a person with a disability from fully participating in all aspects of society because of his/her disability. This includes:

- a physical barrier,

- an architectural barrier,

- an informational or communications barrier,

- an attitudinal barrier,

- a policy, practice and procedure barrier.

Communication Supports: include but are not limited to sign language, plain language and other communication supports that facilitate effective communications.

Disability: a key feature of the AODA is its definition of "disability". Under the AODA, the definition of "disability" is the same as the definition in the Ontario Human Rights Code [2]:

Any degree of physical disability, infirmity, malformation or disfigurement including, but not limited to:

- Diabetes mellitus;

- Epilepsy;

- A brain injury;

- Any degree of paralysis;

Amputation; Guide Dog: A highly-trained working dog that has been trained at one of the special facilities to provide mobility, safety and increased independence for people who are blind.

Service Animal: The Service Regulation [3] defines a "service animal" as "an animal for a person with disability". In this policy, a service animal is:

- any animal used by a person with a disability for reasons relating to the disability; or

- where the person provides a letter from a physician confirming that they require the animal for reasons relating to their disability; or

- where the person provides a valid identification card signed by the Attorney General of Canada or a certificate of training from a recognized guide dog or service animal training school.

Support Person: A support person means, in relation to a person with a disability, another person who accompanies him or her in order to help with communication, mobility, personal care, medical needs or access to goods and services.

- Lack of physical coordination;

- Blindness or visual impediment;

- Deafness or hearing impediment;

- Muteness or speech impediment; or

- Physical reliance of a guide dog or other animal, or on a wheelchair or other remedial appliance or device.

- A condition of mental impairment or a developmental disability.

- A learning disability or a dysfunction in one or more of the processes involved in understanding or using symbols or spoken language.

- A mental disorder.

- An injury or disability for which benefits were claimed or received under the insurance plan established under the Workplace Safety & Insurance Act, 1997.

The definition includes disabilities of different severity, visible as well as non-visible disabilities, and disabilities the effects of which may come and go. This is a broad definition, and one that must be considered closely when educating our employees in the appropriate response to our customers.

Referenced Documents:

- Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act, 2005

- Accessibility Standards for Customer Service, Ontario Regulation 429/07

- Ontario Human Rights Code, 1990