Family Services York Region (FSYR) aims to provide the best service possible to the community, in a manner that respects the dignity and independence of all clients. This includes persons with disabilities, in accordance with the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act (AODA hereafter), 2005 and subsequent amendments. FSYR makes every effort to ensure that its policies, practices and procedures are consistent with the principles of independence, dignity, integration and equality of opportunity, described in the Act.
This policy applies to every staff, volunteer and student who provide services on behalf of FSYR.
All interactions between clients and representatives of FSYR regarding the application of this policy will be considered confidential and disclosed only as required to provide appropriate service or by law.
Documentation to be Made Available
This document will be made available to any member of the public upon request, in a format that takes into account their disability. It can also be viewed at any office or on FSYR’s website.
Accessibility Practices and Procedures
FSYR will make every reasonable effort to provide services to all clients, including clients with disabilities. FSYR will communicate with persons with disabilities in a manner that takes into account their disability and will carry out functions and responsibilities in the following areas:
Personal Assistive Devices
Where an individual requires an assistive device to benefit from participating in services offered by FSYR, the device will be accommodated whenever possible. If such a device cannot be accommodated, every reasonable effort will be made to offer an alternate assistance or will be referred to a service which can accommodate this need.
Examples of personal assistive devices include walkers, white canes and personal oxygen tanks.
When an individual requires a service animal to benefit from access to services at FSYR, the service animal will be welcome on the premises unless otherwise legally excluded. If the animal is legally excluded, FSYR will explain why the animal is excluded and make every reasonable effort to provide measures to enable an individual use and benefit from FSYR services.
An animal is a “service animal” for a person with a disability if it is readily apparent that the animal is used by the person for reason relating to their disability or if the person provides a letter from a physician or a nurse confirming that the person requires the animal for reasons relating to the disability.
Support persons will be welcome to accompany clients in order to access services at FSYR. There is no additional fee. Signed consent by the client and/or support person may be required when accessing confidential services.
A support person is a person who accompanies a person with a disability to help with communication, mobility, personal care, medical needs or with access to goods and/or services.
Notice of Temporary Disruption
FSYR will provide clients with notice as soon as possible in the event of a planned or unexpected temporary disruption in the facilities or services.
When this type of disruption occurs, notice will be:
- Placed at all public entrances and through other methods of communication as reasonable in the circumstance (such as telephone calls, website notice)
- Will include information about the reason for the disruption
- Will include its anticipated duration
- Will include an alternative location for service if applicable
Training for Employees
FSYR provides training to all staff, volunteers and students during their orientation to the agency. This is documented in their Human Resources file. Training includes the following:
- The purpose of the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act, 2005 (AODA) and the requirements of the Accessibility Standards for Customer Service.
- How to interact and communicate with customers with various types of disabilities.
- How to interact with customers with a disability who use an assistive device or require the assistance of a dog or services animal or a support person.
- Instruction on how to use equipment or devices available that may help people with disabilities access services, such as TTY telephones and lifts
- What to do if a customer with a disability is having difficulty in accessing services
Feedback & Complaints Process
Feedback or complaints regarding FSYR’s provision of services from clients, including regarding accessibility, members of the public and stakeholders can be made by contacting the agency’s Chief Executive Officer Director at toll free number 1-888-223-3999 Ext. 223 or in writing to the Chief Executive Officer at 1091 Gorham Street, Suite 300, Newmarket, ON L3Y 8X7, or by another accessible means. If the complaint concerns the Chief Executive Officer, then the complaint should be addressed to the Chair of the Board of FSYR (same address as above). All feedback will be directed accordingly. Concern regarding privacy and psychotherapy services may be directed internally to the Director of Clinical Services and Administration.
A response will be provided within 60 days of receipt. All feedback and complaints will be addressed to the best of the agency’s ability when informed of such. The response will be provided in a form that takes into account how the feedback or complaint was submitted and a person’s disability, when appropriate.
All feedback and complaints, as well as responses/outcomes will be documented in the Complaints Log. Complaints that may put the organization at risk are brought to the attention of the Board of Directors by the Chief Executive Officer at the next meeting, or sooner if deemed necessary. The Chief Executive Officer will report on the themes of complaints and actions taken to the Board of Directors at minimum annually.