Customer Service Accessibility Policy


St. Lawrence Centre for the Arts

Accessible Customer Service Policy

 

Background Information

The Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act, 2005 (AODA) is a Provincial Act with the purpose of developing, implementing and enforcing accessibility standards in order to achieve accessibility for persons with disabilities with respect to goods, service, facilities, accommodation, employment, buildings, structures and premises.

Under the AODA, Ontario Regulation 429/07 entitled “Accessibility Standards for Customer Service” established accessibility standards specific to customer service for persons or organizations that provide goods and services to members of the public or other third parties. The Accessibility Standards for Customer Service are effective January 1, 2012.

Policy Statement

The St. Lawrence Centre for the Arts is committed to excellence in serving all customers including people with disabilities.

Policy Application

This policy applies to every person who deals with customers/clients or other third parties on behalf of the St. Lawrence Centre for the Arts whether they do so as employees, volunteers, agents or otherwise and all persons who participate in developing the Centre’s policies, practices and procedures governing the provision of goods and services.

General Principles

As part of our commitment to providing excellent customer service, the Centre will make reasonable efforts to ensure that its practices policies and procedures are consistent with the following principles.

  • The Centre’s goods and services are provided in a manner that respects the dignity and independence of persons with disabilities
  • That persons with disabilities are given opportunities equal to those of other customers/clients to obtain or use our goods and service
  • The Centre’s goods and services provided to persons with disabilities are integrated with those provided to others unless an alternative method is necessary to allow a person with a disability to benefit from the Centre’s goods and services. The alternate measure may be temporary or permanent.
  • When communicating with a person with a disability, the Centre will do so in a manner that takes into account the person’s disability.

Communication

When communicating with a person with a disability, the Centre will do so in a manner that takes into account the person’s disability. We will communicate in a way that allows persons with disabilities to communicate effectively for the purpose of using, receiving and requesting the Centre’s goods, services and facilities.

The Centre is committed to excellent customer service and as part of that service we will assess our web site to identify any barriers to persons with disabilities and will implement improvements, taking into consideration accessibility guidelines and best practices.

Assistive Devices

Persons with disabilities may use assistive devices as required in accessing goods or services provided by the St. Lawrence Centre for the Arts.

Service Animals

Persons with disabilities shall be allowed to be accompanied by their service animal in areas that are open to the public when accessing goods and services provided by the Centre, unless otherwise prohibited by law.

Support Persons

When a person with a disability accesses the Centre’s goods or services with a support person, the Centre’s employees or other third party contractors shall ensure that both persons are permitted to enter the premises together and shall ensure that the person with a disability can access the support person while on the premises.

The Centre may require a person with a disability to be accompanied by a support person in order to protect the health and safety of that person or other persons on the premises.

Upon presentation of the Access2 card, persons with disabilities are entitled to receive a complimentary ticket for a support person when they purchase a ticket for a performance at the Centre.

Notice of Service Disruptions

In the event of a temporary disruption in the availability of goods or services used by persons with disabilities, the Centre will provide notice which may be a variety of methods and may include posting written notices in a conspicuous area, on the Centre’s website, or any other such means as is reasonable under the circumstances, detailing the approximate length of the disruption and the alternative accommodations, if any, that are available to persons with disabilities.

In the event of an unplanned disruption, notice will be posted as soon as possible.

Training

The Centre will ensure that all persons to whom this policy applies receive training. The amount and format of training will be determined by the level of each individual’s interactions with the public and his or her involvement in the development of the policies, practices and procedures pertaining to the provision of goods and services.

Training will include:

  • A review of the purposes of the AODA and the requirements of Accessibility Standards for Customer Service (Ontario Regulation 429/07)
  • Instruction on the Centre’s policies, procedures and practices pertaining to the provision of goods and service to persons with disabilities
  • How to interact and communicate with persons with various types of disabilities
  • How to interact with persons with disabilities who use assistive devices, or who require the assistance of a Service Animal or Support Person
  • How to use the equipment or assistive devices available at the Centre
  • What to do if a person with a particular type of disability is having trouble accessing goods or services

Training will be provided as soon as practicable after each person has been assigned the applicable duties. Training will also occur on an ongoing basis as changes are made to the policies, procedures and practices governing the provision of goods or services to persons with disabilities.

The Centre will keep training records, including the date training was provided and the number of individuals to whom it is provided. The names of the individuals trained shall be recorded for administrative purposes.

Documentation

Documentation that describes this policy and each of its requirements shall be maintained on the Centre’s website and will be provided to individuals, on request, in a format that takes the person’s disability into account.

Feedback

The St. Lawrence Centre for the Arts strives to meet and exceed customer expectations while serving persons with disabilities. Comments on our service regarding how well those expectations are being met are appreciated.

Feedback may be made in writing, by telephone or email to:

Accessibility Officer
St. Lawrence Centre for the Arts
27 Front St. E
Toronto, ON M5E 1B4
Tel: 416-366-1656 ext 260
Fax: 416-947-1387
Email: chenderson@stlc.com

All feedback will be forwarded to the appropriate personnel, documented, tracked and responded to within 10 business days.