The government has appointed former Liberal Cabinet Minister Charles Beer to conduct a mandatory independent review of the entire Act. Beer is organizing province wide consultations, which will help inform his report to the government of
Consultations are also being conducted across the province. The committee will use the feedback received during the review period to shape the final proposed standard before submitting it to the government to consider for adoption as a law.
The committee’s proposed standard will affect all new construction and extensive renovations and proposes requirements for every aspect including:
- · Common access — entrances, doorways, ramps, stairs
- · Exteriors — curbs, crossings, street furniture
- · Plumbing — washrooms, showers, drinking fountains
- · Communication — signage, telephones
- · Buildings — air quality, acoustics, lighting
The committee has proposed the following timelines: new construction to follow the standard within 12 months of it coming into force and substantial renovation to follow the standard 12 to 36 months of it coming into force.
It is important to note that the government does not plan to impose requirements for retrofitting existing buildings at this time. Also, the government does not intend to require existing or new single family houses accessible at this time.
All businesses are encouraged to review the draft standards and to provide comments to the government no later than October 16, 2009. If you require an alternate format or method to provide your feedback, please contact: Accessibility Directorate of Ontario, Outreach and Compliance Branch, Ministry of Community and Social Services,
Key Background Facts:
- · customer service, which came into force January 1, 2008
- · transportation, which was submitted to the government for consideration
- · information and communications, which was submitted to the government for
- · employment, which is being finalized following public review that ended in May 2009
- · built environment — proposed draft is available for public review until Oct. 16, 2009.
For more information and comment forms for the draft Built Environment Standards visit www.mcss.gov.on.ca/mcss/english/pillars/accessibilityOntario/accesson/business/environment/
For more information on how to participate, or on the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act, please go to www.mcss.gov.on.ca/mcss/english/pillars/accessibilityOntario/accesson/participate