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Accessibility

Accessibility for Ontarians With Disabilities Act, 2005
Multi-Year Accessibility Plan

Purpose

In compliance with the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act 2005 (the “AODA”), this 2014-2021 accessibility plan outlines the policies and practices that Goldblatt Partners has or will put in place to improve opportunities for people with disabilities.

Statement of Commitment

Goldblatt Partners is committed to treating all people in a respectful way that allows them to maintain their dignity and independence. We believe in integration and equal opportunity. We are committed to meeting the accessibility requirements under the AODA and meeting the needs of people with disabilities in a timely manner.  To that end, we will endeavour to prevent and remove barriers to accessibility, as set out below.

Client Service Standards

Goldblatt Partners strives for excellence in serving all of our clients, including those who may have disabilities. We are committed to ensuring that persons with disabilities have equal access to our legal services and receive the same quality of services, in a manner that respects their dignity and independence. In accordance with the terms of our Accessible Client Service Policy, we commit to:

  • communicating with clients and visitors who have disabilities in ways that take into account their disability and facilitate effective communications;
  • invite anyone to use their assistive devices in order to access or benefit from our services;
  • welcome to our premises clients and visitors who are accompanied by a support person, or who rely on service animals;
  • train the members of our firm to communicate appropriately with people with various types of disabilities; and
  • maintaining a process for receiving and responding to feedback.

Emergency Response Information

Goldblatt Partners will provide clients and visitors with publicly available emergency information in an accessible manner upon request.  We also provide members of the Firm with individualized emergency response information and accommodation, as required by AODA.

Training

Goldblatt Partners will ensure that training is provided to members of the Firm on the requirements of AODA and the Human Rights Code (the “Code”) as it relates to people with disabilities. Training will be provided to members of the Firm in a way that is appropriate to their duties and will include:

  • mandatory training on the requirements of the Integrated Accessibility Standards and on the requirements of the Code as they pertain to persons with disabilities;
  • orientation for newly hired employees, as well as whenever changes are made to relevant policies and procedures; and
  • mandatory training on the requirements of the Accessibility Standards for Customer Service, and the Firm’s Accessible Client Service Policy;

Goldblatt Partners will keep a record of the training provided, including the dates on which the training is provided and the number of individuals to whom it is provided.

Information and communications

Goldblatt Partners will provide any person with a copy of the documents required under the Customer Service Standard, Ontario Regulation 429/07 upon request (see below for our contact information).

Goldblatt Partners is committed to meeting the communications needs of people with disabilities, including with respect to the Firm’s feedback processed. We have taken the following steps to ensure existing feedback processes are accessible:

  • Clients and members of the public can provide feedback through a number of formats, including in writing, email, phone, fax and/or personal visits to one of our offices.
  • Where a response to the feedback is requested in an accessible format, we will consult with the recipient to ensure the accessible format is appropriate.
  • Goldblatt Partners’ staff have been trained to provide services and receive feedback in a manner compliant with AODA’s Customer Service Accessibility Standards for persons with disabilities.

Upon request, Goldblatt Partners will provide or arrange for the provision of accessible formats and communications supports for persons with disabilities.  This will be done in a timely manner that takes into account the person’s accessibility needs and at a cost that is no more than the regular cost charged to other persons.  We will consult with persons with disabilities to determine their specific needs.

Except where meeting this requirement is not practicable, Goldblatt Partners has taken steps to ensure its website and content on that site conforms with WCAG 2.0, Level A, and will also ensure that new web content is compatible with WCAG 2.0, Level A or higher, when developed. Similarly, except where meeting this requirement is not practicable, Goldblatt Partners will ensure all website(s) and web content conform with WCAG 2.0, Level AA by January 1, 2021.

Employment

Goldblatt Partners is committed to fair and accessible employment practices.

Goldblatt Partners will accommodate people with disabilities during its recruitment processes, as well as when people are hired. This will include the following practices:

  • Internal and external job postings for employment opportunities at Goldblatt Partners will continue to reflect the Firm’s commitment to the AODA and to providing accommodations for applicants with disabilities in the recruitment process.
  • Upon request, Goldblatt Partners shall offer applicants selected for an interview accommodation during the interview process. Goldblatt Partners shall consult with applicants to determine and provide suitable accommodation commensurate with their accessibility needs.
  • With the consent of our employees’ unions, the collective agreements signed between Goldblatt Partners and its employees’ unions will be updated to include the Firm’s commitment to AODA principles and to accommodating employees with disabilities.
  • Similarly, any new employment contracts signed between a non-unionized employee and Goldblatt Partners will include a reference to the Firm’s commitment to AODA principles and to accommodating employees with disabilities.

Goldblatt Partners will take the following steps to formalize the process for developing individual accommodation plans and return-to-work plans for employees that have been absent due to a disability:

  • Requests for accommodation will be dealt with on a one-on-one basis, in consultation with the union where applicable and requested, and the privacy of the employee will be reasonably protected.
  • Individual accommodation plans and return-to-work plans will be in writing and kept on file confidentially.  Plans will be reviewed periodically and updated as required.

Goldblatt Partners is committed to ensuring that the accessibility needs of employees are taken into account whenever performance management, career development and redeployment processes are implemented. Feedback and coaching will be provided in a manner that is accessible to employees with disabilities.

Public and Client Spaces

Goldblatt Partners will comply with AODA in respect to the design of public and client spaces. It will also ensure that procedures are in place for preventative and emergency maintenance of the accessible elements in public spaces as required.

Plan Review

Goldblatt Partners will review and update this Plan at least once every five years.

On a regular basis, Goldblatt Partners will also assess, review, and where necessary, amend its policies and procedures to ensure compliance with the AODA.

For more information

For more information about this this accessibility plan, or to obtain accessible formats of any of our AODA documents, contact:

In Toronto:  Mandy Wojcik
Tel:   416-979-4230
Toll Free: 1-800-387-5422 or 1-866-746-5291
Fax:  416-591-7333
Email:  Mandy Wojcik

In Ottawa:  Colleen Bauman
Tel:  613-482-2463
Toll Free:  1-888-746-6881
Fax:  613-235-3041
Email:  Colleen Bauman