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AODA Policy

Accessibility Policies

BA Consulting Group Ltd. (BA Group) is committed to providing equal access and participation for all people with disabilities, consistent with the principles of independence, dignity, respect, integration, and equality of opportunity.

As a professional transportation consulting firm, BA Group ensures all clients, staff, and visitors can access our consulting services, work-related technology, and technical reporting materials as required.

Accessibility Standards are rules our organization follows in its commitment to identify, remove, and prevent barriers to enable equal opportunities for everyone's participation. All standards have been combined under one Integrated Accessibility Standards Regulation (IASR).

The standards relevant to BA Consulting Group are:

  1. Accessibility Standard for Customer Service,
  2. Information and Communications Standard, and the
  3. Employment Standard

We understand that obligations under the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act, 2005 (AODA) and its accessibility standards do not substitute or limit its obligations under the Ontario Human Rights Code or to people with disabilities under any other law.

 

  1. Accessibility Standard for Customer Service

The customer service standard sets out the obligations for businesses and organizations to provide goods and services in a way that is accessible to people with disabilities. It's about understanding that people with disabilities may have different needs.

Training

BA Group is committed to training all staff and volunteers in accessible customer service, other Ontario's accessibility standards, and aspects of the Ontario Human Rights Code that relate to persons with disabilities.

BA Group will provide training to all consulting staff, field staff, and technical staff who deal with the public or other third parties on their behalf.  This training will be provided to staff as part of recruitment orientation and Health and Safety Training within two months of an employee's start date.

Training will include, but is not limited to:

  • An overview of the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act, 2005 and the requirements of the customer service standard
  • BA Group's accessible customer service plan.
  • 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 BA Group's services

BA Group trains all staff members routinely and at the beginning of employment in matters of Health and Safety, including relevant sections of the human rights code pertaining to accessibility and the accommodation of individuals with disabilities, the IASR, and the Customer Service Standard.

Staff are subsequently retrained when changes are made to our accessible customer service plan.

We maintain records of the training provided.

Assistive Devices

BA Group ensures that our staff are trained and familiar with various assistive devices, accessible formats, and communication supports that may be used by customers with disabilities while accessing our goods or services. People with disabilities are welcome to use their assistive devices as needed when obtaining our technical materials or when attending an in-person meeting at our office.

Communication

BA Group will communicate with people with disabilities in ways that take into account their disability.  Should any client or client representative have a disability that limits their ability to receive our technical materials or consulting services, BA Group staff will cooperate with the party to ensure barrier-free service.

BA Group trains staff on the various ways they can become better communicators to all people, including those with disabilities. Some examples include reducing background noise for the hearing impaired, waiting for people with language impairments to finish their communication, providing notes for the learning disabled, or informing clients of any accessible features for disabilities affecting mobility.

Support Persons and Service Animals

BA Group welcomes the use of support persons and service animals for people with disabilities within our office spaces. A person with a disability who is accompanied by a support person is free to have that person accompany them on our premises.  There are no fees associated with our services that would be impact support persons attending our offices.

In the instance where support persons are present, during a private conversation or when sensitive information shall be disclosed, we will notify individuals receiving support in advance of their choice to have their support person present or not, at their discretion.

  1. Information and Communication Standard

The Information and Communications Standard establishes processes that businesses and organizations in Ontario must follow to create, provide, and receive information and communications in ways that are accessible to people with disabilities.

BA Group provides the following Information and Communication supports through our day-to-day business activities and interactions.

  • Website Compliance Our website meets the internationally recognized Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) 2.0 Level AA website requirements under Ontario's accessibility laws.
  • Accessible Technical Documents Our technical drawings and documents are available promptly upon request and will consider the format most appropriate in consultation with the persons seeking the modified materials.
  • Continuous Feedback We are always looking for ways to improve our accessibility compliance and welcome feedback through email at bagroup@bagroup.com or by phone at 416.961.7110 x212.

If we cannot convert the requested material to an appropriate format, we will provide a summary and explanation in an appropriate format within seven business days upon receipt of request, at no cost.

  1. Employment Standard

As part of the IASR, the Employment Standard deals with accessibility in the employment cycle and addresses organizations' processes and procedures in recruiting and accommodating their employees. Additionally, the Ontario Human Rights Code requires all employers to meet the accommodation needs of employees with disabilities to the point of undue hardship. The Employment Standard builds on this requirement by requiring employers to have processes to determine an employee's accommodation needs.

In our desire to comply with these standards, BA Group is committed to the following Employment Standards.

Employee Support

All new and existing employees are welcome to request information and supports for disabilities when required. This includes, but is not limited to, providing job accommodations that consider an employee's accessibility needs with the employee’s input.

Accessible Recruitment

BA Group has a protocol for addressing an accessible recruitment process that discusses accessibility when posting jobs, conducting interviews, and job offers. This is achieved by informing employees, job applicants, and the public that accommodations can be made during recruitment and hiring.

Accessible Formats and Supports

Once hired, employees may request accessible formats and communication supports. This requirement is similar to those in the Information and Communications Standard. BA Group will consult with employees to determine their accessibility needs and how best to accommodate them.

Examples of Accessible Formats and Communication Supports an employee may require include access to software such as a screen reader, documents in an electronic format, or text transcripts of visual or audio information.

Individual Accommodation Plan

Our Individual Accommodation Plans are designed for, and with the participation of, any employee who informs the organization of a disability requiring accommodation. BA Group will address the specific requirements of the individual to safely and effectively conduct their work.

Employee Participation

BA Group is committed to working with our employees to develop appropriate accommodation plans to meet their specific support needs. This includes but is not limited to participation in:

  1. creating a detailed list of all Information and Communication Supports required to conduct work,
  2. communicating, understanding, and developing a Workplace Safety and Emergency Response Plan from a Certified BA Health and Safety Committee Member,
  3. a return to work process (when required),
  4. selecting the appropriate level of privacy protection, and
  5. any additional modifications to communication and information support that become necessary through training or employee development.

Employee Assessment and Development

A person with a disability will be assessed of their performance annually, considering their individual needs and requirements and in equal consideration as other employees.

Outside Evaluation

BA Consulting Group may seek outside assistance for the employee when required to accommodate their most appropriate supports effectively. This may include seeking professional advice from suppliers and AODA experts to determine the requirements of the Standards are fully met.

Privacy Protection

Any employee with a disability will determine the range of required involvement and awareness of their disability. BA Group will comply with the requested level of staff involvement.

Accessible Formats

Upon request, this accommodation plan can be made available in an accessible format based on the specific requirements of the employee's disability.

Workplace Emergency Response Information

Individualized emergency response information can help both employees with disabilities and organizations prepare for various emergencies such as fire, power outages or severe weather. For example, an employee who cannot hear a fire alarm will need to know how and when to exit the building in the event of a fire safely.

With the employee's consent, BA Group will ensure the information is shared with anyone designated to help them in an emergency. Additional infrastructure will be installed as required to meet the needs of individual employees (i.e. visual vs auditory alarms).

Emergency Response Plan

BA Group will work with the employee to develop and implement an individualized emergency response plan. An emergency response team member will be designated from our Health and Safety Committee to design and implement a Workplace Emergency Response Plan with the employee's participation.

The plan will be unique to the individual and could include (but is not limited to):

  • highlighting safe exits,
  • mapping of a Fire Escape Plan/Route, and
  • the assignment of an Emergency Response Team Member who will assist the employee in an emergency.

Plan Review Policy

The two combined plans (Individual Accommodation Plan and the Emergency Response Plan) will be reviewed when required for the following events:

  • when the need for additional supports becomes necessary,
  • moving or relocation, entailing a reassessment and the possible need for alternate information and communication supports,
  • promotion or additional training,
  • anytime a return to work process must be developed, and
  • anytime BA Group undergoes a review of our emergency response policies.

Notice of Temporary Disruption

Due to the nature of our consulting service business, it is highly unlikely that an interruption to barrier-free access would occur; however, in the event of a planned or unexpected disruption to accessible services, BA Group will notify affected staff, visitors, clients, or their representatives directly, identifying the reason for the disruption, its anticipated length of time, and a description of alternative facilities or services, if available.

The notice will also be placed at our reception desk and on the corporate website: www.bagroup.com

Multi-Year Accessibility Plan

As a mid-sized organization, BA Group plans to meet all IASR Requirements of the Accessibility Standard for Customer Service, the Information and Communications Standard, and the Employment Standard as follows:

  1. Workplace Emergency Procedures and Plan – Completed in September 2014 and revised in January 2015
    1. BA Group works with our employees to develop and implement individualized emergency response plans,
    2. Our current Emergency Procedures outline additional assistance measures
  2. Feedback Processes Compliance – Completed and to be enacted as required on an ongoing basis
    1. Please refer to our website at: http://www.bagroup.com/aoda-policy
  3. Individualized Accommodation Plan Process – Completed to be used as required
  4. Website Compliance (Level A) – Complete (Level AA) January 1, 2021
    1. A website audit was conducted using the standards defined by W3C’s Web Accessibility Initiative.- September 2014.
    2. BA Group is currently in full compliance as of November 2018, and upon relaunch of our website in October 2021.
  5. Staff Training for the Integrated Accessibility Standard Regulation and other relevant policies and standards– January 1, 2015 - ongoing

Feedback Process

To help us improve our accessibility policies and procedures or provide any general accessibility feedback, we welcome people to contact us by email at bagroup@bagroup.com or at (416) 961-7110 x212. All feedback will receive a response within thirty days.

Our goal is to accept suggestions on improvements to our current standards and to integrate those recommendations to make a better user experience for all Ontarians.