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Providing Services to People with Disabilities

Policy Statement:

In fulfilling our mission, CMHA – Champlain East (“The Branch”) strives at all times to provide its services in a way that respects the dignity and independence of people with disabilities. We are also committed to giving people with disabilities the same opportunity to access our services and allowing them to benefit from the same services, in the same place and in a similar way as other clients.

This Policy and Procedure has been prepared pursuant to requirements and information provided in the Ontario Regulation 429/07 made under the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act, 2005.

 

Procedure:

  1. Providing services to people with disabilities

The Branch is committed to excellence in serving all clients including people with disabilities and we will carry out our functions and responsibilities in the following areas:

1.1 Communication We will communicate with people with disabilities in ways that take into account their disability. We will train staff who communicate with customers on how to interact and communicate with people with various types of disabilities.

1.2 Telephone services We are committed to providing fully accessible telephone service to our clients. We will train staff to communicate with customers over the telephone in clear and plain language and to speak clearly and slowly.  We will offer to communicate with clients in person, by phone, by mail, by e-mail and Bell Relay Service, for those individuals contacting the Branch from a Teletypewriter, known as a TTY.   

1.3 Assistive devices We are committed to serving people with disabilities who use assistive devices to obtain, use or benefit from our services. We will ensure that our staff is trained and familiar with various assistive devices that may be used by clients with disabilities while accessing our services. We will also ensure that staff knows how to use the following assistive devices available on our premises for customers.  

1.4 Billing We are committed to providing accessible invoices to all of our customers. For this reason, invoices will be provided in the following formats upon request: hard copy, large print, electronic mail.  We will answer any questions customers may have about the content of the invoice in person, by telephone or electronic mail.

 

2. Use of service animals and support persons

We welcome people with disabilities and their service animals. Service animals are allowed on the parts of our premises that are open to the public.

When we cannot easily identify that an animal is a service animal, Branch staff may ask a person to provide documentation from a regulated health professional (official letterhead) that confirms the person needs the service animal for   reasons relating to their disability.

A regulated health professional is defined as a member of one of the following colleges:

       • A member of the College of Audiologists and Speech-Language Pathologists of Ontario.
       • A member of the College of Chiropractors of Ontario.
       • A member of the College of Nurses of Ontario.
       • A member of the College of Occupational Therapists of Ontario.
       • A member of the College of Optometrists of Ontario.
       • A member of the College of Physicians and Surgeons of Ontario.
       • A member of the College of Physiotherapists of Ontario.
       • A member of the College of Psychologists of Ontario.
       • A member of the College of Registered Psychotherapists and Registered Mental Health
         Therapists of
 Ontario

We are committed to welcoming people with disabilities who are accompanied by a service animal on the parts of our premises that are open to the public and other third parties. If service animals are prohibited by another law, for example, in the food preparation kitchen area of the Resource Centers, we will offer people with service animals a safe place where their animals may wait during food preparation and cooking activities.

We are 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 the Branch’s 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 our premises. Fees will not be charged for support persons for admission to the Branch’s Activities and Workshops. Clients will be informed of this by a notice that will be posted to the Branch’s registration forms and to our web-site.

In certain cases, the Branch might require a person with a disability to be accompanied by a support person for the health or safety reasons of the person with a disability or others on the premises. Before making a decision, the Branch will consult with the person with a disability to understand their needs and consider health or safety reasons based on available evidence and determine if there is no other reasonable way to protect the health or safety of the person or others on the premises. If the Branch determines that a support person is required, we will waive the admission fee or fare for the support person.

3. Notice of temporary disruption

The Branch 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 applicable public entrances and service counters on our premises.  For office closures, a message will be added to our answering service the notice will be posted to our website.  Refer to : Notice of Disruptions in Service Procedure

   

4. Training for staff

The Branch 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 client service policies, practices and procedures.

Individuals in the following positions will be trained:    

Receptionist, Administrative Assistant, Intensive Case Managers, Peer Support Worker, Driver/Peer Support Assistant, Mental Health Promoters, Team Supervisors, Executive Director, Program Director, Manager of Mental Health Promotion, Manager of Human Resources, Manager of Operations, volunteers who work directly with the public.

This training will be provided within 5 days after staff 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 Branch’s goods and services and how to use the client feedback process.
    • The Branch’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.

5. Feedback process 

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

We have established a process for receiving and responding to feedback regarding the way the Branch provides goods and services to people with disabilities and will make this process readily available to the public.

Feedback can be made in person, by telephone, in writing or by sending an electronic text message, email or on diskette or other electronic means. For further information  refer to Consumer Feedback Form

All feedback will be directed to the Manager of Human Resources, or if unavailable, the Program Director.

The opportunity to provide as much information as possible when providing feedback so that the event can be readily identified by the Supervisor and/or Manager responsible for where the event took place. This information may include dates, times, names, contact information, a description of the event, etc.

Feedback may be received by any person who deals with members of the public or other third parties on behalf of the Branch, whether the person does so as an employee, agent, volunteer or otherwise and any person who participates in developing the Branch's policies, practices and procedures governing the provision of goods or services to members of the public or other third parties.

A copy of the feedback shall be forwarded to the responsible Supervisor and to the Program Director for review and to the Human Resource's office for reporting purposes. An answer to the feedback is not mandatory, however, depending on the situation, the Supervisor and/or Manager responsible for where the event took place may deem it appropriate to respond to the customer.

Should an answer be deemed appropriate and should the customer have chosen to supply his or her contact information, the customer may expect the said answer within 15 business days. Refer to : Consumer Feedback Form

 6. Modifications to this or other policies and procedures

We are committed to developing client 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 Branch that does not respect and promote the dignity and independence of people with disabilities will be modified or removed.  

7. Questions about this policy and procedure

This policy and related procedures exist to achieve service excellence to clients with disabilities. If anyone has a question about the policy and procedure, or if the purpose of a policy and procedure is not understood, an explanation should be referred to the Manager of Human Resources, Canadian Mental Health Association – Champlain East at 1-800-493-8271 or 613-933-5845 or by email : This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Should the Manager of Human Resources not be available, enquiries will be referred to the Program Director.