There are several compliance deadlines approaching with respect to obligations under the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act, 2005 (“AODA”). Has your organization met its obligations under AODA?

  1. Employment Standards

New requirements under AODA are coming into effect on January 1, 2016 for large organizations, that is private sector organizations with 50 or more employees in Ontario. These standards impose new obligations in respect of employees. Accessibility requirements must now be built into all stages of the employment relationship, including the assessment and selection process, making offers of employment, performance management, career development and advancement, and redeployment. Employers must also have workplace emergency response information plans for employees, and documented individualized accommodation plans and processes.

  1. Communication

Large organizations are required to have accessible formats and communication supports by January 1, 2016 . These obligations require companies to provide communication in accessible formats.

  1. Training

Small organizations, that is private sector employers with fewer than 50 employees in Ontario, are required to ensure that all employees, volunteers, persons who participate in developing the organization’s policies, and other persons who provide goods, services or facilities on behalf of the organization receive training with respect to the requirements of the accessibility standards and the Ontario Human Rights Code. This training must be completed by January 1, 2016. Large organizations were expected to be in compliance as of January 1, 2015.  

  1. Feedback

Small organizations are required to ensure that all processes for receiving and responding to feedback are accessible. This must be completed by January 1, 2016. Large organizations were expected to be in compliance as of January 1, 2015.