Accessible Customer Service Policy
All goods and services provided by Brass Bell Family Resource Centre will follow the principles of dignity, independence, integration, and equal opportunity.
This policy meets the requirements of the customer service standards included in the Integrated Accessibility Standards Regulation under the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act, 2005. It applies to the provision of goods and services to the public or other third parties, not to the goods themselves.
Assistive device: A technical aid, communication device, or other instrument that is used to maintain or improve the functional abilities of people with disabilities.
Disability: As defined by the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act, 2005, and the Ontario Human Rights Code, refers to:
- 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 remedial appliance or device;
- A condition of mental impairment or a developmental disability;
- A learning disability, or 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.
Guide dog: A highly trained working dog that has been trained at one of the facilities listed in Ontario Regulation 58 under the Blind Persons’ Rights Act, to provide mobility, safety, and increased independence for people who are blind.
Service animal: An animal is a service animal if the animal can be readily identified as one that is being used by a person for reasons relating to that person’s disability, including where the animal is confirmed as such by a letter from a qualified regulated health professional.
Support person: In relation to a person with a disability, another person who accompanies them in order to help with communication, mobility, personal care, medical needs, or access to goods and services.
The Provision of Goods and Services to Persons with Disabilities
Brass Bell Family Resource Centre 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 health and 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 accommodation needs when providing goods and services; and
- Communicating in a manner that takes into account the customer’s disability.
The Use of Assistive Devices
Customer’s Own Assistive Devices
Persons with disabilities may use their own assistive devices as required when accessing goods or services provided by the organization.
In cases where the assistive device presents a health and safety concern or where accessibility might be an issue, other reasonable measures will be used to ensure the access of goods and services, up to the point of undue hardship.
For example, open flames and oxygen tanks cannot be near one another. Therefore, the accommodation of a customer with an oxygen tank might involve ensuring the customer is in a location that would be considered safe for both the customer and business.
Alternatively, where elevators are not present and where a customer requires assistive devices for the purposes of mobility, service will be provided in a location that meets the needs of the customer.
Guide Dogs and Service Animals
A customer with a disability who is accompanied by a guide dog or service animal will be allowed access to premises that are open to the public unless otherwise excluded by law. “No pet” policies do not apply to guide dogs or service animals.
Staff may respectfully ask if an animal is a service animal and will not ask the nature of the person’s disability or purpose of the animal.
If a customer’s guide dog or service animal is excluded by law (see applicable laws below), Brass Bell Family Resource Centre will offer alternative methods to enable the person with a disability to access goods and services, when possible. For example, the organization might accommodate a customer’s disability by securing the animal in a safe location and offering the assistance of an employee to facilitate the delivery of goods and services.
The Use of Support Persons
If a customer with a disability is accompanied by a support person, Brass Bell Family Resource Centre will ensure that both persons may enter the premises together and that the customer is not prevented from having access to the support person.
In situations where confidential information might be discussed, consent will be obtained from the customer before any potentially confidential information is mentioned.
Notice of Disruptions in Service
Service disruptions may occur for reasons that may or may not be within the control or knowledge of Brass Bell Family Resource Centre. In the event of any temporary disruptions to facilities or services that customers with disabilities rely on to access or use goods or services, reasonable efforts will be made to provide advance notice. In some circumstances, such as in the situation of unplanned temporary disruptions, advance notice may not be possible.
If a notification needs to be posted, the following information will be included unless it is not readily available or known:
- Goods or services that are disrupted or unavailable;
- Reason for the disruption;
- Anticipated duration; and
- A description of alternative services or options.
When disruptions occur, Brass Bell Family Resource Centre will provide notice by:
- Posting notices in conspicuous places, including at the point of disruption, at the main entrance, and the nearest accessible entrance to the service disruption, or on the organization website;
- Contacting customers with appointments;
- Verbally notifying customers when they make a reservation or appointment; or
- By any other method that may be reasonable under the circumstances
Brass Bell Family Resource Centre shall provide customers with the opportunity to provide feedback on the service provided to customers with disabilities. Information about the feedback process will be readily available to all customers. Feedback forms, along with alternate methods of providing feedback verbally (in person or by telephone) or written (handwritten, delivered, website, or e-mail), will be available upon request.
Customers can submit feedback to:
Or through our contact form on our website at www.brassbell.org
Customers who wish to provide feedback by completing an onsite customer feedback form or verbally can do so to any Brass Bell Family Resource Centre employee.
Customers who provide formal feedback will receive acknowledgement of their feedback, along with any resulting actions based on concerns or complaints that were submitted.
Training will be provided to:
- Every employee of or a volunteer with Brass Bell Family Resource Centre;
- Every person who participates in developing the policies of Brass Bell Family Resource Centre; and
Regardless of the format, training will cover the following:
- A review of the purpose of the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act, 2005;
- A review of the requirements of the customer service standards;
- Instructions on how to interact and communicate with people with various types of disabilities;
- Instructions on how to interact with people with disabilities who:
- Use assistive devices;
- Require the assistance of a guide dog or other service animal; or
- Require the use of a support person (including the handling of admission fees);
- Instructions on how to use equipment or devices that are available at our premises or that we provide that may help people with disabilities;
- Instructions on what to do if a person with a disability is having difficulty accessing our services; and
- Policies, procedures, and practices of the organization pertaining to providing accessible customer service to customers with disabilities
Brass Bell Family Resource Centre will provide training as soon as practicable. Training will be provided to new employees, volunteers, and contractors within the first three months of employment or involvement with the organization. Revised training will be provided in the event of changes to legislation, procedures, policies, or practices.
If you have any questions or concerns about this policy or its related procedures, please contact:
Or through our contact form on our website at www.brassbell.org
This policy and its related procedures will be reviewed as required in the event of legislative changes or changes to organization procedures.