Accessibility

Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act AODA – Medical Council of Canada Customer Service

Objective

To govern the Medical Council of Canada’s compliance with new accessibility standards being introduced under the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act (AODA). The AODA policy gives direction to all persons who deal with members of the public or other third parties in Ontario on behalf of the Medical Council of Canada (MCC) to enable the MCC to meet the requirements of the Accessibility Standards for Customer Service, Ontario Regulation 429/07 under the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act (AODA), 2005.

The policy is intended to benefit the full range of persons with disabilities, based on the corresponding definitions for “disability” in the Ontario Human Rights Code and the AODA. Whether a person’s disability is apparent or not, everyone should be treated with courtesy and made to feel welcome.

Background

The Accessibility Standards for Customer Service, Ontario Regulation 429/07 (also referred to as the accessible customer service regulation or the “customer* service standard”), came into force on Jan. 1, 2008. It is the first accessibility standard created under the authority of the AODA and is a significant step toward the overarching goal of a barrier-free Ontario. The Regulation establishes accessibility standards specific to customer service for public sector organizations and other persons or organizations that provide goods or services to members of the public or other third parties in Ontario.

The policy 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;
  • Training;
  • Customer feedback regarding the provision of goods and services to persons with disabilities; and
  • Notice of availability and format of documents.

Scope

This policy applies to all persons who deal with members of the public or other third parties in Ontario on behalf of the MCC, which may include: directors, managers, supervisors, staff, students, volunteers and temporary employees.

The MCC strives at all times to provide its services in a way that respects the dignity and independence of people with disabilities.

As per the customer service standards, every provider of goods or services with at least one employee in Ontario shall ensure that the following persons receive training about the provision of its goods or services to persons with disabilities:

  • Every person who deals with members of the public or other third parties in Ontario on behalf of the provider, whether the person does so as an employee, volunteer or otherwise.
  • Every person who participates in developing the provider’s policies, practices and procedures governing the provision of goods or services to members of the public or other third parties in Ontario.

Policy Statement

The MCC is committed to excellence in serving all customers, including people with disabilities, and will carry out its functions and responsibilities in an appropriate manner to accommodate such individuals.  The MCC is also dedicated to, wherever possible, giving people with disabilities the same opportunity to access our goods and services and allowing them to benefit from the same services, in the same place and in a similar way as other customers.

The MCC will strive to ensure that its policies, practices and procedures are consistent with the following core principles as outlined in the AODA.

Dignity – goods and services are provided in a manner that is respectful to persons with a disability and does not diminish the person’s importance.

Independence – Accommodating a person’s disability means respecting their right to do for themselves and to choose the way they wish to receive goods and services.

Integration – Wherever possible, services will be provided in a manner that enables people with disabilities to fully benefit from the same services, in the same place and in the same or similar way as other customers. This may require alternative formats and flexible approaches. It means inclusiveness and full participation. This is a fundamental human right.

Equal Opportunity – Service is provided to persons with disabilities in a way that their opportunity to access goods and services is equal to that given to others.

Procedures/Guidelines:

A. Communication with persons with disabilities

The MCC will communicate with people with disabilities in ways that take into account their disability and we will ensure that all persons who communicate with customers in Ontario on behalf of the MCC receive training on how to interact and communicate with people with various types of disabilities.

B. Telephone services

The MCC is committed to providing accessible telephone services to our customers and we will train our employees 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 email, if telephone communication is not suitable to their communication needs or is not available.

C. Assistive technology/devices

We are committed to serving people with disabilities who use assistive devices to obtain, use or benefit from our goods and services. If assistive devices/technology are made available to customers on our premises, we will ensure that all persons who deal with members of the public or other third parties in Ontario on behalf of the MCC will be trained and familiar with their use.

Assistive Devices are equipment that people with disabilities utilize to assist in their daily lives at home, work, school, etc. Such devices could be a walker, wheel chair, scooter, cane, magnification or specialized learning software, communication board, etc.

Assistive Technology is equipment or software such as screen reading, audio recording and voice recognition that people with disabilities use to obtain information and communicate with others. (e.g., Dragon NaturallySpeaking)

D. Availability and Format of Documents (Alternative Formats) 

The MCC will strive to provide accessible documents to all of its customers in a format that is most suitable for each individual. Documents can be provided in the following different formats (upon request):

  • hard copy,
  • large print,
  • email, etc.

Any questions customers may have about the content of the documents can be addressed in person, by mail, by telephone or by email.

E. Use of service animals and support persons

Service Animal:

The MCC is committed to welcoming people with disabilities who are accompanied by a service animal on the parts of our office that are open to the public and other third parties, unless the animal is otherwise excluded by law from the premises in which case we will use all other available measures to ensure that the person with a disability is able to obtain, use or benefit from our services. We will ensure that all persons dealing with the public in Ontario on behalf of the MCC are trained in how to interact with people with disabilities who are accompanied by a service animal.

Support person:

Any person with a disability who is accompanied by a support person (i.e., a paid professional, volunteer, family member, friend or otherwise) is permitted to enter the MCC’s office 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 at our office. The MCC may require a disabled person to be accompanied by a support person when at our office, but only if a support person is necessary to protect the health or safety of the disabled person or the health or safety of others on the premises.

Use of service animals and support persons at examination centres:

Candidates to MCC examinations can submit a request for test accommodations. The MCC follows its Regulations for the Conduct of Examinations for Special-Needs Candidates for the provision of test accommodations. For more information visit the test accommodations page.

The Regulations for the Conduct of Examinations for Special-Needs Candidates are available to customers upon request, and can be provided in a format that takes into consideration the customer’s disability.

F. Notice of planned or unplanned temporary disruption of services

The MCC 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 (e.g., elevators, access ramps). Notice(s) will be placed as soon as practicable at public entrances and service counters on our premises. Notice will be emailed to all staff to be communicated to any third party accessing the premises. If required, notice will be communicated by another method as is reasonable based on the circumstances.

Notice(s) will include information about the reason for the disruption, its anticipated duration, and a description of alternative facilities or services, if available.

G. Training

The MCC shall ensure that all individuals who deal with members of the public or other third parties on its behalf are provided the training required by the Customer Service Standards.

The MCC will provide the following persons with training about the provision of its goods and services to persons with disabilities:

  • Every person who deals with customers, members of the public or other third parties in Ontario on behalf of the MCC.
  • Every person who participates in developing the MCC’s policies, practices and procedures governing the provision of goods and services to its customers, members of the public or other third parties.

All MCC employees will be trained on policies, practices and procedures that affect the way goods and services are provided to people with disabilities. All persons who deal with the public or other third parties in Ontario on behalf of the MCC will also be trained on an ongoing basis when changes are made to these policies, practices and procedures.

Training will include:

  • Introduction to and purposes of the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act, 2005 and the requirements of the customer service standard, which includes:
    • how to interact and communicate with people with various types of disabilities
    • how to assist/interact with a person who uses an assistive device or requires the assistance of a service animal or a support person
    • how to use any devices or equipment supplied by the MCC that may help with the provision of good or services to a person with a disability
  • What to do if a person with a disability is having difficulty accessing the MCC’s goods or services and understanding the MCC’s policies, practices and procedures relating to the customer service standard.

Training documentation shall be maintained by Human Resources.

The Human Resources department will maintain:

  • training documentation, which would include a summary of the content of the training and details of when the training was provided
  • record of training, which would include the dates that training was provided and the number of individuals who received the training

H. Questions/Feedback process:

Feedback about the delivery of services to persons with disabilities is welcomed as it may identify areas that require change and assist in continuous service improvement. The MCC will make best efforts to provide a response in the same format in which the feedback was received and where possible, feedback will be addressed immediately.

Feedback can be provided in the following ways:

Mail/In person: 

Accessibility Committee
Medical Council of Canada
2283 St. Laurent Blvd., Suite 100
Ottawa, ON  K1G 3H7

Telephone:
613-521-6012

Email:
accessibility@mcc.ca

The MCC will also strive to accommodate the needs of people with disabilities who prefer to provide feedback in another format or by different means than those listed above.

Modifications to this or other policies

The MCC is committed to breaking down barriers faced by customers and developing 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 the MCC that does not respect and promote the dignity and independence of people with disabilities will be modified or removed. Accessibility standards will be reviewed at least every five years.

New requirements may be added over time. Whenever new or revised standards are developed under the AODA, this policy will be reviewed and updated as necessary to ensure consistency.

Implementation of this policy

MCC will assign the Accessibility Committee with ensuring compliance with the Accessibility Standards for Customer Service, including the annual reporting requirement. The Accessibility Committee is comprised of employees on the Occupational Health and Safety Committee. The committee will solicit feedback from other employee groups as required.

The Accessibility Committee will meet on a regular basis to discuss compliance issues, share best practices, and address any concerns that may arise. The Accessibility Committee shall make recommendations to the MCC’s management regarding any changes to this policy on an as needed basis.

Definitions:

Disability means:

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 remedial 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; (“handicap”)

Service Animal means:

a) any animal that is used by a person with a disability for reasons relating to his or her disability, or
b) if it is not readily apparent that the animal satisfies (a), any animal for which a person with a disability provides a letter from a physician or nurse confirming that the person requires the animal for reasons relating to his or her disability.

*Customer is the term used in the AODA legislation to describe patrons, stakeholders or anyone else in Ontario in receipt of goods or services from the MCC. The primary recipients of MCC services are the candidates, external consultants/contractors and any other individuals or organizations, such as members of the public and members of the broader community, who may be entitled to certain MCC services.