Accessibility Policy

The Caroline Family Health Team of Burlington (C-FHT) is committed to providing barrier-free programs and services and to treating all people in a way that allows them to maintain their dignity and independence. We believe in integration and equal opportunity. We are committed to improving accessibility and meeting the needs of people with disabilities in a timely manner, and will do so by meeting accessibility requirements under applicable laws that deal with accessibility for persons with disabilities.

C-FHT AODA Multi-year Plan

A.  Customers/Patients, Business Partners and Members of the Public

C-FHT is committed to excellence in serving all of its customers/patients, and in dealing with all of its business partners and members of the public, including people with disabilities.

Communication

We will communicate with our customers/patients, business partners and members of the public with disabilities in ways that take into account their disability.

Assistive Devices

When dealing with C-FHT, our customers/patients, business partners and members of the public with disabilities are welcome to use assistive devices that help them with daily living. We will ensure that relevant staff are trained and familiar with any assistive devices we may have on our premises or that we provide that may be used by individuals with disabilities while on our premises.

Service Animals

We welcome the service animals of customers/patients, business partners and members of the public with disabilities. Service animals are allowed on the parts of our premises that are open to the public.

Support Persons

A customer/patient, business partner or member of the public with a disability who is assisted by a support person will be allowed to have that person accompany them on our premises or when dealing with us.

Notice of Temporary Disruption

In the event of a planned or unexpected distruption to services of facilities for persons with disabilities, notice will be provided regarding affected areas, reason, expected duration and alternative access. These areas could include automatic doors, elevators, receptions, training or meeting facilities, offices or kitchen. C-FHT will notify everyone promptly and appropriately. This includes notices on assistive devices or equipment, front door, facility doors or windows, reception, waiting areas or on the C-FHT website (www.carolinefht.ca)

Feedback Process

Anyone who wishes to share feedback to C-FHT regarding provision of services to people with disabilities can provide comments to any representative of C-FHT. This may be offered directly, verbally or otherwise, by phone, email, or letter. All feedback will be received by the Executive Director for consideration or response within 5 days. Should a complaint be received, it will be addressed according to C-FHT’s regular management procedures.

B.  Employees

Job Applicants

C-FHT will take reasonable steps to accommodate job applicants with disabilities during the recruitment and assessment process for employment. We will make this clear in our job postings, and we will also notify job applicants if they are selected to participate in the recruitment process.

If a job applicant requests accommodation, we will consult with them and make reasonable adjustments appropriate for the particular situation. If a job applicant is successful and is hired by C-FHT, we will notify them of our policy with respect to accommodation of employees with disabilities, discussed in the paragraph below.

Accommodation of Employees

If requested by an employee with a disability, C-FHT will take reasonable steps to support and accommodate the employee’s accessibility needs. Our Employee Policy Handbook contains additional information about our accommodation policies, as well as our commitment to employment equity and diversity in the workplace.

When using performance management processes, providing career development opportunities to employees, or moving employees from one job to another, C-FHT will take into account the accessibility needs of employees with disabilities. This includes reviewing any existing accommodation plan for the employee to understand their needs and assess whether adjustments are required for their success, making performance management documents such as performance plans available in accessible formats or with communication supports when requested, providing feedback and coaching in a manner that is accessible to the employee, and considering what accommodations the employee may reasonably need when learning new skills or taking on additional job responsibilities.

Accessibility of Workplace Information

If requested by an employee with a disability, C-FHT will take reasonable steps to make workplace information accessible in a format or with communication supports that are appropriate for their needs. Workplace information means any information that employees need to perform their jobs, as well as general information that is available to all employees.

Emergency Response

C-FHT will provide customized workplace emergency information to any employee who we are aware has a disability and who may require help in an emergency. We will work with those employees individually to determine what their limitations might be in an emergency situation, and tailor an emergency response plan accordingly. With the employee’s consent, we will share this information with any other staff designated to help them in an emergency. We will review this information if an employee changes work locations, or if their overall accommodation needs change, or if C-FHT reviews its emergency response policies generally.

Employees are encouraged to speak to their supervisor about creating a customized workplace emergency plan for them if they have a disability, whether temporary or permanent, as C-FHT may not be aware of an existing disability. In addition, if requested, C-FHT will provide emergency information to any employee with a disability in a format that he or she can understand.

C.  Information and Communication

C-FHT is committed to meeting the communication needs of people with disabilities. When asked to do so, we will take reasonable steps to provide information and communications materials, including about our programs, services and facilities, in accessible formats or with communication supports. We will consult with people with disabilities to determine their information and communication needs, and will take steps to respond reasonably based on an individual’s needs, the format in question, and available resources.

D.  Website Accessibility

The C-FHT website is accessible to people with disabilities. Content posted on our website conforms with Level A of the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) 2.0 and Level AA of WCAG 2.0 (other than items 1.2.4 and 1.2.5 relating to captions and audio description, respectively).

E.  Design of Public Spaces

C-FHT will meet applicable accessibility requirements if it builds or makes major modifications to public spaces, such as accessible off-street parking or service-related elements like service counters or waiting areas.

F.  Notice

C-FHT will make this Accessibility Policy available to the public on our website, and will provide it to all employees. If requested this Accessibility Policy will be provided in an accessible format.

G.  Training

C-FHT is committed to training its staff (and other persons where required by applicable law) on applicable accessibility laws that apply to persons with disabilities, as well as on the accessibility commitments set out in this policy. Training will be provided in a way that is appropriate to the duties of such individuals.

H.  Modifications

Any of our policies or practices that do not respect and promote the dignity and independence of people with disabilities will be modified or removed. C-FHT will periodically review and revise this Accessibility Policy as appropriate.

I.  Contact

For more information on this Accessibility Policy, or for accessible formats of this document, please contact:

Kathleen Whittaker, Executive Director
The Caroline Family Health Team of Burlington
3305 Harvester Road, Units 15-20
Burlington, ON L7N 3N2
Email: kathleen.w@carolinefht.ca
Phone: 905-632-8007