Accessibility Standards for Customer Service
Festival Hydro is committed to providing appropriate and accessible service for its customers. Goods and services will be provided in a manner that respects the dignity and independence of all its customers. The provision of services to persons with disabilities will be integrated wherever possible. Persons with disabilities, including those that use and/or need the use of a service animal, support person or assistive device, will be given the opportunity, equal to that given to others, to obtain, use or benefit from the goods and services provided by and on behalf of Festival Hydro.
The Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act, 2005 (the “AODA”) is a Provincial Act with the purpose of developing, implementing and enforcing accessibility standards in order to achieve accessibility for persons with disabilities with respect to goods, services, facilities, accommodation, employment, buildings, structures and premises.
Under the AODA, Ontario Regulation 429/07 entitled “Accessibility Standards for Customer Service” came in to force on January 1, 2008. That Regulation established accessibility standards specific to customer service for public sector organizations that provide goods and services to members of the public or other third parties. While in effect for designated public sector organizations since January 1, 2010, such requirements are required of all providers with at least one employee effective January 1, 2012.
This policy is drafted in accordance with Regulation 429/07 and addresses the following:
- The provision of goods and services to persons with disabilities;
- The use of assistive devices by persons with disabilities;
- The use of service animals by persons with disabilities;
- The use of support persons by persons with disabilities;
- Notice of temporary disruptions in services and facilities;
- Customer feedback regarding the provision of goods and services to persons with
- disabilities; and
- Notice of availability and format of documents.
This policy applies to all persons who deal with members of the public or other third parties on
behalf of Festival Hydro, whether that person does so as an employee, member of the Board of
Directors, agent, volunteer, student on placement, or otherwise and all persons who participate
in developing Festival Hydro’s policies, practices, and procedures governing the provision of
goods and services to members of the public or other third parties.
- A device used to assist persons with disabilities in carrying out activities or in accessing the services of persons or organizations covered by the Customer Service Standard.
- Festival Hydro Inc.
- 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 coordination, blindness or visual impairment, deafness or hearing impairment, muteness or speech impediment, or physical reliance on a guide 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, or
- An injury or disability for which benefits were claimed or received under the insurance plan established under the Workplace Safety and Insurance Act, 1997.
- A guide dog as defined in section 1 of the Blind Persons’ Rights Act is a dog trained as a guide for a blind person and having qualifications prescribed by the regulations under the Blind Persons’ Rights Act.
- A Registered Nurse or Registered Practical Nurse who is a registered member in good standing with the College of Nurses of Ontario.
- A physician who is a registered member in good standing with the College of Physicians and Surgeons of Ontario.
- Any animal used by a person with a disability for reasons relating to the 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 that he or she requires the animal for reasons relating to his or her disability; or 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.
- A person who accompanies a person with a disability in order to assist him or her with communication, mobility, personal care, or medical needs or with access to goods and services.
The Provision of Goods and Services to Persons with Disabilities
Festival Hydro will use reasonable efforts to ensure that its policies, practices and procedures
are consistent with the following principles:
- Festival Hydro’s goods and services are provided in a manner that respects the dignity and independence of persons with disabilities;
- The provision of Festival Hydro’s goods and services to persons with disabilities are integrated with those provided to persons who do not have disabilities unless an alternative measure is necessary to enable a person with a disability to obtain, use or benefit from Festival Hydro’s goods and services and;
- Persons with disabilities are given every opportunity equal to that of persons without disabilities to obtain use or benefit from Festival Hydro’s goods and services.
Communication with Persons with Disabilities
When communicating with a person with a disability, Festival Hydro will do so in a manner that takes into account the person’s disability. The individual with the disability may request an accommodation and/or alternative format to facilitate their interaction with Festival Hydro. Festival Hydro staff and volunteers who deal with members of the public will work with the individual with a disability to provide a timely and appropriate accommodation and/or alternate format.
Notice of Temporary Disruption in Services and Facilities
Festival Hydro is aware that the operation of its services and facilities is important to the public. However, temporary disruptions in Festival Hydro services and facilities may occur due to reasons that may or may not be within Festival Hydro’s control or knowledge. Festival Hydro will make a reasonable effort to provide notice of the disruption to the public, including information about the reason for the disruption, its anticipated duration, and a description of alternative facilities or services, if any, that may be available. Festival Hydro will make a reasonable effort to provide prior notice of planned disruption, if possible, recognizing that in some circumstances, such as in the case of an unplanned temporary disruption, advance notice will not be possible. In such cases, Festival Hydro will provide notice as soon as possible.
Assistive Devices and other Measures that Assist with Accessibility
A person with a disability may provide their own assistive devices for the purpose of obtaining, using and benefiting from Festival Hydro’s goods and services. Exceptions may occur in situations where Festival Hydro has determined that the assistive device may pose a risk to the health and safety of a person with a disability or the health and safety of others on the premises.
In these situations and others, Festival Hydro may offer a person with a disability other reasonable measures to assist him or her in obtaining, using and benefiting from its goods and services, where Festival Hydro has such other methods available.
It should be noted that it is the responsibility of the person with a disability to ensure that his or her assistive device is operated in a safe and controlled manner at all times.
Festival Hydro is committed to welcoming people with disabilities who are accompanied by a service animal onto all Festival Hydro owned and operated public facilities that are open to the public. Festival Hydro will ensure that the individual is permitted to keep the animal with him or her unless the animal is otherwise excluded by law.
If a service animal is excluded by law, Festival Hydro will ensure that alternative means are available to enable to person with a disability to obtain, use or benefit from Festival Hydro’s goods and services.
If it is not readily apparent that the animal is a service animal, Festival Hydro may ask the person with a disability for a letter from a physician or a 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.
A person with a disability may enter publicly accessible premises owned and/or operated by Festival Hydro with a support person and have access to the support person while on the premises.
Festival Hydro may require a person with a disability to be accompanied by a support person while on Festival Hydro premises in situations where it is necessary to protect the health and safety of the person with a disability or the health and safety of others on the premises.
If, in the presence of a support person, personal information is being discussed, Festival Hydro staff must ensure that the individual consents to the support person being present. Consent can be given verbally or in writing.
A support person, when assisting a person with a disability to obtain, use or benefit from Festival Hydro’s goods and services, will be permitted to attend at no charge where an admission fee is applicable.
Festival Hydro values the feedback from its customers. Feedback from a member of the public about the delivery of goods and services to persons with disabilities may be submitted by telephone, in person, in writing, in electronic format, or through other methods to the Billing
and Collection Manager.
Festival Hydro will respond within ten (10) business days to the author of the feedback. The
author of the feedback will be provided a response that will outline the actions taken to resolve
the concerns, if any.
Festival Hydro will ensure that the following persons receive training in Accessibility Standards for Customer Service:
All employees, contracted persons, agents and those other third parties who deal with members of the public on behalf of Festival Hydro.
Every person who participates in developing the employer’s policies, practices and procedures governing the provisions of goods and services to members of the public and other third parties.
Training will be provided as soon as practical upon an individual being assigned the applicable duties and on an ongoing basis in connection with changes to Festival Hydro’s policies, practices and procedures governing the provision of goods and services to persons with disabilities.
Training will include the following but not limited to:
- A review of the purposes of the Act and the requirements of the Regulations;
- How to interact and communicate with persons with various types of disabilities;
- How to interact with persons with disabilities who use an assistive device or require the
- assistance of a guide dog or other service animal or the assistance of a support person.
- How to use equipment or devices available on Festival Hydro premise or otherwise provided by Festival Hydro that may help with the provision of goods and services to a person with a disability;
- What to do if a person with a particular type of disability is having difficulty accessing Festival Hydro’s goods and services.
Festival Hydro will keep records of the training provided including dates the training was provided and the attendees.
This policy and any other documents key to the delivery of goods and services will be made available upon request from Festival Hydro’s Customer Service Department.
Please direct any questions you have about Festival Hydro's commitment to providing accessible services or this policy to firstname.lastname@example.org.