The Canadian Counseling and Psychotherapy Association (hereafter referred to as “CCPA”) is committed to applying reasonable efforts to ensure that it provides accessible customer service to people with various kinds of disabilities, and respects the core principles of independence, dignity, integration and equal opportunity.
SCOPE AND APPLICATION
Standards under Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act (AODA) that apply to CCPA and to which this policy complies are:
- Customer Service Standard
- Integrated Standards for Information and Communication
- Employment Standard
ACCESSIBILITY STANDARDS FOR CUSTOMER SERVICE
CCPA will use reasonable efforts to ensure that the provision of its goods and services are consistent with the principles of dignity, independence, integration and equal opportunity by:
- Providing goods and services in a manner that respects the dignity and independence of persons with disabilities;
- Providing goods and services so that persons with disabilities are able to fully benefit from the same services, in the same place, and in the same or similar way as persons without disabilities, unless an alternative measure is necessary to enable a person with a disability to obtain, use, or benefit from CCPA’s goods and services; and
- Giving people with disabilities an opportunity equal to that of persons without disabilities to obtain, use or benefit from CCPA’s goods and services.
Use of Assistive Devices
CCPA permits persons with disabilities to use their personal assistive devices while on CCPA premises to obtain, use, or benefit from CCPA’s goods and services.
When communicating with a person with a disability, CCPA will do so in a manner that takes into account the person’s disability.
Use of Service Animals and Support Persons
Service Animals: Persons with disabilities who are accompanied by guide dogs or other services animals will be permitted to enter CCPA’s premises that are open to non-employees with the animal and will be allowed to keep the animal with them, unless the animal is otherwise excluded by law. If the service animal is excluded by law, CCPA will use reasonable efforts to ensure that alternate means are available for persons with disabilities to obtain, use or benefit from CCPA’s goods and services. If it is not readily apparent that the animal is a service animal, CCPA may ask the person with a disability for a letter from a physician or nurse confirming that the person requires the animal for reasons relating to his or her disability.
It is the responsibility of the person with a disability to ensure that his or her service animal is kept in control at all times.
Support Persons: Persons with disabilities who are accompanied by a support person will be permitted to enter CCPA premises that are open to the public and will not be prevented from having access to the support person while on the premises.
CCPA may require a person with a disability to be accompanied by a support person while on CCPA premises in situations where it is deemed necessary to protect the health and safety of the person with a disability and/or others.
When support persons are required for CCPA-sponsored meetings or events, the person with a disability will be required to provide his or her own support person. If there are fees associated with the meeting or event, the support person will be charged the regular fee unless otherwise specified by CCPA. Advance notice of said fees will be provided if such circumstances exist.
Notice of Temporary Disruptions
CCPA will make reasonable efforts to provide notice to persons with disabilities in the event of a planned or unexpected disruption in the facilities or services usually used by people with disabilities. If the disruption is anticipated, CCPA will provide a reasonable amount of advance notice of the disruption. If the disruption is unexpected, notice will be provided as soon as possible. The notice will include information about the reason for the disruption, its anticipated duration, and a description of alternative facilities or services, if available.
CCPA will provide training to employees, independent contractors, volunteers and others who deal with the public or third parties on its behalf.
Training will include information and guidance on:
- pertinent accessibility legislation and the requirements of the standards;
- CCPA’s plan to meet the customer service standard;
- how to interact and communicate with people with various disabilities;
- how to interact with people with disabilities who use assistive devices or require the assistance of service animals or support people; and
- what to do if a person with a disability is experiencing difficulty accessing CCPA’s goods and services.
Staff, independent contractors and volunteers will also be trained when changes are made to the plan.
CCPA is committed to providing high quality goods and services to all members of the public that it serves, including customers with disabilities. Feedback on how well CCPA achieves this goal is welcome and appreciated.
Feedback from members of the public regarding the way CCPA provides goods and services to people with disabilities can be made by telephone, in person, in writing, through email, or through other relevant methods.
All feedback will be directed to the Chief Executive Officer.
Privacy will be respected and all feedback will be reviewed for possible action that can be taken to improve CCPA services. In most cases, a response to the feedback will be provided within 30 business days. Responses will be delivered in a format that is accessible to the individuals who submitted the feedback.
Accessibility Standards for Information and Communication
CCPA takes measures to meet the following requirements under the Information and Communication Standards as prescribed by the Regulation:
Accessible Formats and Communication Supports
CCPA ensures that communication or information that is made available to the public or that is provided to or exchanged with third parties will be made accessible to persons with disabilities on request. CCPA will achieve this by providing alternate formats or will arrange for the provision of communication supports that take into account the needs of the person making the request. If there is a price that members of the public must pay to access the communication piece, then the cost charged to persons with disabilities for a more accessible product must be no higher than the standard charge for that item, regardless of additional expenses incurred to produce the item.
Note: the above does not apply to products and information that CCPA does not control directly or indirectly through a contractual relationship, nor does it apply to unconvertible information or communication.
CCPA will provide training for its employees and volunteers regarding the Integrated Accessibility Standards Regulation and the Ontario Human Rights Code, 1990 as they pertain to individuals with disabilities. Training will also be provided to individuals who are responsible for developing CCPA’s policies, and all other persons who provide goods, services or facilities on behalf of CCPA.
Training will be provided on an ongoing basis to new employees and as changes to CCPA’s accessibility policies occur.
Accessibility Standards for Employment
CCPA takes measures to meet the following requirements under the Ontario Employment Standards Act, 2000 as prescribed by the Regulation:
Individualized Workplace Emergency Response Information
- CCPA will provide individualized workplace emergency response information to employees who have a disability when CCPA is made aware of the need for accommodation. The individualized emergency response plan and associated information will be made available in alternate format as needed in order to take into account the disability.
Recruitment, Assessment and Selection Processes
- Notify CCPA employees and the public about the availability of accommodations for applicants with disabilities throughout the recruitment process;
- Notify internal and external job applicants that accommodations to support their participation in all aspects of the recruitment process will be provided on request. Notification will be provided in all job postings, and in alternate formats when requested, as well as when communicating with applicants verbally or in writing;
- Notify job applicants that accommodations and supports will be provided on request when they are chosen to participate in the assessment and selection process; and
- Notify successful applicants of our policies for accommodating employees with disabilities when making an offer of employment.
Informing Employees of Supports
CCPA will inform its employees about its policies to support employees with disabilities, and will provide job accommodations that take into account the accessibility needs of employees with disabilities.
Accessible Formats and Communication Supports for Employees
CCPA will, when requested by an employee with a disability, provide or arrange for the provision of accessible formats and communication supports for information that is needed by the individual to perform his or her job. CCPA will provide, or arrange for the provision of, information that is generally available to employees in the workplace. CCPA will consult with the employee to determine the suitability of an accessible format or communication support.
“Assistive Device“: any piece of equipment a person with a disability uses to help him or her with daily living. Personal assistive devices include, but are not limited to, wheelchairs, hearing aids, white canes or speech amplification devices.
“Disability”: (a) any degree of physical disability, infirmity, malformation or disfigurement that is caused by bodily injury, birth defect or illness and, without limiting the generality of the foregoing, includes diabetes mellitus, epilepsy, a brain injury, any degree of paralysis, amputation, lack of physical co-ordination, blindness or visual impediment, deafness or hearing impediment, muteness or speech impediment, or physical reliance on a guide dog or other animal or on a wheelchair or other appliance or device; (b) a condition of mental impairment or a developmental disability; (c) a learning disability, or a dysfunction in one or more of the processes involved in understanding or using symbols or spoken language; (d) a mental disorder; or (e) an injury or disability for which benefits were claimed or received under the insurance plan established under the Workplace Safety and Insurance Act, 1997 (Ontario).
“Guide Dog“: a dog trained as a guide for a blind person and having the qualifications prescribed by the regulations under the Blind Persons’ Rights Act (Ontario).
“Service Animal“: any animal used by a person with a disability where it is readily apparent that the animal is used by the person for reasons relating to his or her disability; or where the person provides a letter from a physician or nurse confirming that the person requires the animal for reasons relating to his or her disability.
“Support Person“: a person who accompanies a person with a disability in order to help him or her with daily tasks, such as communication, mobility, personal care or medical needs or with access to goods or services. The support person may be a paid support worker, a volunteer, a friend or a family member; the support person does not need to have special training or qualifications.
Kim Hollihan, Chief Executive Officer