3.A.80 Accessibility

Community Connections

 

 

Administrative Procedure: Accessibility

 

EFFECTIVE DATE:

October, 2017

 

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ADMINISTRATIVE PROCEDURE CODE:

3.A.80

AMENDED DATE:

November, 2017

Policy Reference

 

 

Legal Reference

 

Accessibility for Manitobans
Act, 2013

 

 

 





















In December 2013 The Accessibility for Manitobans Act (AMA) became law.  Border Land School Division (BLSD), as a large public sector organization, is required to be compliant with the standards that have been put forward in this law.  The standards that have been developed are:

 

  • Accessible Customer Service
  • Accessible Information and Communications
  • Accessible Built Environment
  • Employment Accessibility
  • Accessible Transportation

     

    Each standard is being transitioned in and as the legislative timeline indicates, BLSD will develop procedure in each area.

     

    The BLSD Accessibility Plan is located online through the Border Land School Division website at www.blsd.ca

     

    This administrative procedure on accessibility exists to address public access to our public spaces and services within Border Land School Division.  Procedures for accessibility for students are located in administrative procedure 5.A.20 Appropriate Education, which is based on the Appropriate Education Act and The Standards for Student Services.

     

    These two acts together ensure that our students and our communities have barrier free access to our system, which includes access to information, services, or access to space and activities.

     

    Accessible Customer Services

     

    For the purposes of BLSD a customer can be defined as any public person who enters school division property as a private citizen and/or parent. Examples of service(s) provided may include use of space, meeting with staff, attending school events, or making general inquires.

     

    BLSD is committed to complying with the Accessibility Service standard under The Accessibility for Manitobans Act.  BLSD is committed to serving all people including those with disabilities.  If BLSD finds any procedure or policy that is not consistent with the principles of independence, dignity and equality of opportunity for people with disabilities, it will be modified or removed.

     

    Accessible Customer Service Actions:

     

    Communication

     

    BLSD will communicate with people disabled by barriers in ways that take into account the nature of the barrier.  We will work to provide: easy to read fonts in documents written in plain language, magnifiers at each public reception area, and all publications will include a notice that “This publication is available in alternate formats upon request.”

     

    BLSD will have signage placed at all main entry points into our buildings asking how we can help to direct people to be open to ask for assistance.  BLSD staff will be trained to work with the person to determine the barrier and what method of communication works best for them.

     

                Assistive Devices

     

    People with assistive devices may use their personal assistive device when accessing our services or facilities.  BLSD staff will be trained in using any assistive device that is provided on site by BLSD to ensure access to facilities and services.

     

    In cases where the assistive device presents significant and unavoidable health or safety concerns, other measures will be used to ensure the person with a disability can access our goods, services or facilities.

     

    Assistive devices will not be touched without permission and adequate space will be provided to accommodate assistive devices.  Alternative ways of taking the service to the customer will be examined when a barrier prohibits service to people using mobility devices.

     

     Support Persons

     

    A person with a disability is welcomed to be accompanied by a support person.  When a support person is present, communication should occur with the customer unless instructed to do otherwise.

     

    There are no fees to access our educational services located within our Border Land School Division facilities.  There may be fees to access extracurricular events associated with schools.  In this case, the support person will be charged the admission fee for the event.  In the case of events where fees are charged, notification is shared via school websites, newsletters, posters etc.

     

    Service Animals

     

    BLSD welcomes people with disabilities and their service animals.  Service animals are allowed on the parts of our premises that are open to the public. BLSD follows the Manitoba Human Rights Code for defining a service animal.

     

    A service animal can often be identified through visual indicators, such as a harness or vest, or through the assistance it is providing.  When it is not easy to identify that an animal is a service animal and is appropriate, staff may ask:

    1. Is the animal assisting you?
    2. What assistance has the animal been trained to provide related to your disability?

       

      As per the MB Human Rights Code, the handler is expected to maintain control of the animal through voice, signal or other means.

       

      Service animals may be prohibited from entering areas where direct food preparation is occurring.  This is a decision that will be made at the time a person with their service animal checks in at the main office.

       

      If a service animal is prohibited by another law, we will do the following to ensure people with disabilities can access our services or facilities:

  • explain why the animal is excluded
  • discuss with the customer another way of providing services or accessing facilities.

     

    Maintain Barrier Free Access

     

    BLSD will maintain barrier-free access.  This includes, but is not limited to,

  • keeping hallways and waiting areas clear of clutter such as boxes,
  • keeping entrance ways clear of ice and snow,
  • ensuring the placement of standing signage is not a trip hazard or barrier,
  • have space for mobility devices in a waiting area.

 

In the event of a planned or unexpected disruption of services or facilities for customers disabled by barriers, BLSD will promptly post notices and, when possible, announce the disruption.  A clearly posted notice or announcement will include information about the reason for the disruption, its anticipated length of time, and a description of alternative facilities or services, if available.  This notice may appear on webpages or on posters on the location of the disruption.

 

These services/facilities include accessible washrooms, elevators and automatic doors.

 

Feedback Process

 

BLSD welcomes feedback on how we provide accessible customer service.  Customer feedback will help us to identify barriers and respond to concerns.  Customers can provide feedback by email, phone, or by visiting the admin assistants in the building.  All feedback, including complaints, submitted in writing, will be handled by the immediate supervisor of the location and will be shared with the Superintendent.  Customers can expect to hear back with 5 work days in regards to their complaint.

 

Mandatory Training

 

BLSD will provide accessible customer service training to all employees or anyone providing services on our behalf.  Any volunteers working directly with the public will receive training or be supervised by a trained staff member.  All BLSD staff members who are trained is documented to ensure that it reaches all employees.

 

All staff will be trained on accessible customer service upon being hired.  They will immediately be asked to complete an online training program provided through BLSD and site administrators will review provincial documents with all staff once per year as an annual refresh.

 

            Hosting Public Events

 

All events hosted in BLSD will be planned using the Disability Accommodations Checklist provided as part of this procedure.

 

            Modifications to Procedures

 

Any procedures of BLSD that do not respect and promote principles of dignity, independence, integration and equal opportunity for people with disabilities will be modified for removed.  BLSD Board Policies are reviewed annually and BSLD Administrative Procedures are reviewed on an ongoing basis as need arises.