Current Watershed Conditions
Normal
Normal
Sault Ste. Marie Region Conservation Authority (SSMRCA)
Submit Search

Accessibility Policy

Sault Ste. Marie Region Conservation Authority
Customer Service Policy Statement:
Providing Goods and Services to People with Disabilities

 

1. The mission of the Sault Ste. Marie Region Conservation Authority (CA)

The Sault Ste. Marie Region Conservation Authority (CA) is resolved to identify and remove barriers to full participation for persons with disabilities and to encourage community partners to share the vision of the CA of a fully accessible community. The CA hereby makes a commitment to prevent barriers from being created in future planning processes and implementation.

2. Commitment

In fulfilling our mission, the Sault Ste. Marie Region Conservation Authority (CA) strives at all times to provide its goods and services in a way that respects the dignity and independence of people with disabilities. The CA is also committed to giving people with disabilities the same opportunity to access our goods and services, allowing them to benefit from the same services and carry out business with the CA, in the same place and in a similar way as other members of the public.

3. Providing goods and services to people with disabilities

The CA is committed to excellence in serving all customers including people with disabilities and will carry out its activities and responsibilities in the following manner:

3.1 Communication

Staff and representatives of the CA will communicate with people with disabilities in ways that take into account their disability. The CA will train staff who communicate with customers on how to interact and communicate with people with various types of disabilities.

3.2 Telephone services

The CA is committed to providing fully accessible telephone service to its customers. The CA will train staff to communicate with customers over the telephone in clear and plain language and to speak clearly and slowly.

The CA will offer to communicate with customers by email, Bell relay services (1-800-855-0511) or through written correspondence if telephone communication is not suitable to their communication needs or is not available.

3.3 Services to Assist Visually Disabled People

The CA is committed to serving people with disabilities related to vision. The CA will offer to provide information in large font, by audio interpreter or in a means that can be used in conjunction with the Zoom In machine at the public library, if existing information is not suitable to their needs.

3.4 Assistive devices

The CA is committed to serving people with disabilities who use assistive devices to obtain, use or benefit from CA goods and services or carry out business with the CA. The CA will ensure that staff is trained and familiar with various assistive devices that may be used by customers with disabilities while accessing our goods or services.

3.5 Billing

The CA is committed to providing accessible invoices to all of its customers. For this reason, invoices will be provided upon request in hard copy, large print, or by email.

The CA staff will answer any questions customers may have about the content of the invoice in person, by telephone, email or through written correspondence, in regular or large print.

4. Use of service animals and support persons

The CA is committed to welcoming people with disabilities who are accompanied by a service animal on the parts of its premises that are open to the public and other third parties. The CA will also ensure that all staff, volunteers and others dealing with the public are properly trained in how to interact with people with disabilities who are accompanied by a service animal. At no time will a person with a disability who is accompanied by a service animal be prevented from having access to his or her service animal while on CA premises.

The CA is committed to welcoming people with disabilities who are accompanied by a support person. Any person with a disability who is accompanied by a support person will be allowed to enter CA premises with his or her support person. At no time will 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 CA premises.

5. Notice of temporary disruption

The CA will provide customers with notice in the event of a planned or unexpected disruption in the facilities or services usually used by people with disabilities. This notice will include information about the reason for the disruption, its anticipated duration, and a description of alternative facilities or services, if available.

The notice will be placed at all public entrances on our premises and if possible on the CA’s website.

6. Training for staff

The CA will provide training to all employees, volunteers and others who deal with the public or other third parties on their behalf, and all those who are involved in the development and approvals of customer service policies, practices and procedures. This training will be provided within 30 days after a staff member commences their duties.

Training will include the following:

  • The purposes of the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act, 2005 and the requirements of the customer service standard
  • How to interact and communicate with people with various types of disabilities
  • How to interact with people with disabilities who use an assistive device or require the assistance of a service animal or a support person
  • What to do if a person with a disability is having difficulty in accessing the CA’s goods and services or carrying out business with the CA.
  • The CA’s policies, practices and procedures relating to the customer service standard.

Applicable staff will be trained on policies, practices and procedures that affect the way goods and services are provided to people with disabilities. Staff will also be trained on an ongoing basis when changes are made to these policies, practices and procedures.

7. Additional Assistance

Should a situation arise wherein the CA is not able to provide suitable service to a person or persons with a disability, further advice will be sought from the City of Sault Ste. Marie Accessibility Centre staff with regards to alternative options for service delivery that may be available from other local agencies or at other local facilities. Accessibility Centre phone (705) 541-2822.

8. Feedback process

The ultimate goal of the CA is to meet and surpass customer expectations while serving customers with disabilities. Comments on our services regarding how well those expectations are being met are welcome and appreciated.

Feedback regarding the way the CA provides goods and services to people with disabilities can be made verbally in person or by telephone, by email or written correspondence. All feedback will be directed to the General Manager. Members of the public can expect to hear back within seven days.

9. Modifications to this or other policies

The CA is committed to developing customer service policies that respect and promote the dignity and independence of people with disabilities. Therefore, no changes will be made to this policy before considering the impact on people with disabilities.

Any policy of the CA that does not respect and promote the dignity and independence of people with disabilities will be modified or removed.

10. Questions about this policy

This policy exists to achieve service excellence to customers with disabilities. If anyone has a question about the policy, or if the purpose of a policy is not understood, the question or comment should be referred to, the General Manager of the Sault Ste. Marie Region Conservation Authority.

Rhonda Bateman, General Manager
Sault Ste. Marie Region Conservation Authority
1100 Fifth Line East
Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario P6A 6J8
tel:  (705) 946-8530
fax: (705) 946-8533