CPI – Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act (AODA)
The purpose of Cogent Power Inc. Burlington (CPI) Accessibility Policy is to be proactive about the inclusion of people with disabilities in our service offerings and to align ourselves with legislative requirements, such as the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act (AODA).
The purpose of this legislation is to benefit all clients and employees by:
- developing, implementing and enforcing accessibility standards in order to achieve accessibility for people with disabilities with respect to goods, services, facilities, accommodation, employment, buildings, structures and premises; and
- providing for the involvement of persons with disabilities, of provincial governments and of representatives of industries and of various sectors of the economy in the development of the accessibility standards
- 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.
- 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
The above includes disabilities of different severity, visible as well as non-visible disabilities, and disabilities the effects of which may come and go. Information about any person’s disability is personal and private and must be treated confidentially.
CPI strives to provide our services in a manner that is accessible to all of our clients and employees, and respects the dignity, independence, and integration of people with disabilities. We are committed to offering equal opportunity to access our services and to providing the benefit of the same services, in the same place and in a similar way to all clients and employees.
Accessible Client Service
CPI is committed to excellence in serving all clients including people with disabilities and we will carry out our functions and responsibilities in the following areas:
- Accessible Transportation
To make easier for clients with disabilities to access transportation CPI will provide calls to local taxi services that offer proper transportation for people with disabilities (example: vehicle with wheelchair lifting device).
We will communicate with people with disabilities in ways that take into account their disability.
All staff must consider how people with various disabilities communicate and tailor their approaches to dealing with clients appropriately. If a particular method is unavailable, work expeditiously with the client to find an acceptable alternative.
- Make the original communication more accessible by using techniques like plain language writing during the planning process; or
- Change the usual method of communication to meet the client’s needs;
(Example: providing schedules or information in paper format. If a client with low vision asks for information in Braille but it is not available in Braille, we may explain that it is available in an accessible format on the website. This may work for the client because s/he has a screen reader at home that reads what is displayed on the website. For another client, who has vision difficulties or a learning disability, it may be sufficient to read the difficult parts out loud).
- Telephone Services
We are committed to providing fully accessible telephone service to our clients. Staff is expected to communicate with clients over the telephone in clear and plain language and to speak clearly and slowly, wherever necessary. We will offer to communicate with clients by any other appropriate means of communication if telephone communication is not suitable to their communication needs.
- Assistive Devices
An assistive device is any piece of equipment a person with a disability uses to help them with their daily living. Some examples include: a wheelchair, screen reader, listening device or cane. We are committed to serving people with disabilities who use assistive devices to obtain, use or benefit from our services. CPI personnel shall wherever possible accommodate clients who use assistive devices in connection with their disability. CPI personnel must ensure that they are familiar with various assistive devices that may be used by clients with disabilities while accessing our services.
- Use of Service Animals and Support Persons
We are committed to welcoming people with disabilities who are accompanied by a service animal on the parts of our premises that are open to the public and other third parties. Before meeting with a client who uses a service animal, we should:
- identify areas of our office and plant not open to service animals (e.g. the kitchen); and
- Ask the client about the appropriate ways to interact with them and their service animals (e.g. never touch or distract a guide dog without permission).
We are committed to welcoming people with disabilities who are accompanied by a support person. Support people do not have to be a paid support worker but could be any family member or friend that helps a client perform daily tasks. Any person with a disability who is accompanied by a support person shall be allowed to enter CPI premises with his or her support person. At no time shall a person with a disability who is accompanied by a support person be prevented from having access to his or her support person while on our premises.
All information about a disability is personal and private and must be treated confidentially.