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Accessibility: Policies and Procedures

Assistive devices and alternative formats

Use of personal assistive devices

Individuals to whom LifeWorks provides services may need to do so with the use of assistive devices, such as communication aids, cognition aids, personal mobility aids and medical aids.

These assistive devices may include:

  • Manual and motorized wheelchairs
  • Canes, crutches and walkers
  • White canes
  • Hearing aids
  • Magnifiers
  • Oxygen tanks
  • Electronic communication devices

Availability of assistive devices

LifeWorks strives to enable people with disabilities to benefit from the same quality of service as other customers.

Publically-accessible areas of LifeWorks' premises include the following assistive devices, as appropriate:

  • Automatic door openers
  • Elevator or ramp
  • Handicapped bathrooms

If a particular location in which LifeWorks services are offered presents barriers to a particular individual, alternative arrangements will be sought to permit such person to access LifeWorks services at another location or in an alternative manner.

Alternative formats

LifeWorks recognizes that people with disabilities may use alternative methods to access information or services and will endeavor to provide services in an alternative format upon request.

An alternative format can be requested by completing an Alternative Format Request Form, a sample copy of which is included in this document. The forms are available online or on request by:

Mail:

Accessibility Officer
LifeWorks Ltd.
895 Don Mills Rd.
Tower One, Suite 700
Toronto, Ontario M3C 1W3

Email:

accessibility@lifeworks.com

The Alternative Format Request Form will be available in a format which takes into account the needs of the requestor.

The request will be sent to the department responsible for providing the subject service. The department will endeavor to provide the requestor with the service in an alternative format which is responsive to information as communication by the requestor.

Documents or services in alternative formats will be provided to the requestor within a reasonable time frame which will vary based on the time needed to process the request and the complexity of the alternative service delivery process.

Websites and web content

Technological innovation and accessible communication are important to LifeWorks. The organization’s websites will be designed based on the below WCAG 2.0 level A recommendations and guidelines. WGAC 2.0 A is a set of international guidelines and recommendations web developers use when developing websites and content so that they can be accessed by people with disabilities. The guidelines and recommendations cover areas like image descriptions for the visually impaired, closed captioning for the hearing impaired and access to content using a keyboard instead for a mouse for those with mobility restrictions and limitations. Since each website is unique, developers select the guidelines and recommendations that best match a website’s purpose and contents. LifeWorks has selected the following WCAG 2.0 A guidelines and recommendations based on the nature of LifeWorks' content as well as the ways in which its services are used online.

Service animals and support persons

Service animals

Service animals are animals which have been trained to assist people with different kinds of disabilities to overcome barriers. A few examples of service animals include dogs used by people who are visually impaired, hearing alert animals for people who are hearing impaired, and animals trained to alert an individual to an oncoming seizure and lead them to safety.

To be considered a service animal under the Customer Service Regulation, it must be either readily apparent (obvious by its appearance or by what it is doing) that the animal is being used because of a person’s disability or the person with a disability must provide a letter from a physician or nurse confirming that the person requires the animal because of his or her disability.

LifeWorks will permit any person with a disability to enter its publically accessible premises with a service animal and to keep the animal with him or her, unless the animal is otherwise excluded by law.

Support persons

A support person is an individual hired or chosen by a person with a disability to provide services or assistance with communication, mobility, personal care, medical needs or with access to goods or services. Personal care needs may include, but are not limited to, physically transferring an individual from one location to another or assisting an individual with using the restroom. Medical needs may include, but are not limited to, monitoring an individual’s health or providing medical support by being available in the event of a seizure. A support person may be a paid professional, a volunteer, a family member or a friend of the person with a disability. He or she does not necessarily need to have special training or qualifications.

If a person with a disability is accompanied by a support person, LifeWorks will permit both persons to enter its premise together. In some cases, the support person may have to agree to rules or requirements that are specific to LifeWorks' services.

LifeWorks may require that a person with a disability access its services with the participation of a support person where accessing the services without a support person would pose a significant risk to the health and safety of the person with a disability.

Notice of disruption to services

People with disabilities may rely on certain facilities, services or systems to access LifeWorks services. It is possible that from time to time there will be disruptions in service such as an elevator under repair, renovations that limit access to a publically-accessible area, or technology that is temporarily unavailable.

LifeWorks will endeavour to notify service users of disruptions to locations, technologies or methods where the disruption is likely to affect the ability of a person with disabilities to access services. LifeWorks recognizes that providing advanced notice of these types of disruptions will assist people with disabilities by limiting unnecessary trips or attempts to access services.

If a disruption in service is planned and expected, LifeWorks will endeavour to provide service users with reasonable notice. Where a disruption to service is unexpected, LifeWorks will provide notice of a disruption as soon as possible.

The Notice of Disruption will include the following information:

  • Type of disruption
  • Reason for disruption
  • Anticipated duration of disruption
  • Description of alternate facilities or services, if any
  • Contact information

In the event of a disruption to LifeWorks services, the Notice of Disruption will be posed on-line at www.morneaushepell.com and www.shepell.com and /or at the publically-accessible entrance to the premises or at the reception area.

It is the responsibility of the department directly affected by or responsible for the facility, technology or method that is disrupted to communicate the disruption in the most effective manner while taking into account the needs of the people directly effected by the disruption.

Training

LifeWorks will provide training to all employees and representatives in a client facing or policy-development role to increase awareness and encourage respect for the core principles of independence, equality, dignity, integration and equality of opportunity for people with disabilities.

Effective January 1, 2015, this training will be expanded to all Ontario employees. In keeping with the Integrated Accessibility Standards, it will also include a module on accommodating and respecting the rights of people with disabilities pursuant to the Ontario Human Rights Code.

Content and method of training

LifeWorks employees and representatives in a client facing or policy-development role will be required to complete an interactive on-line training program which will address topics including:

  • The purposes of the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act, 2005 and the requirements of the Accessibility Standards for Customer Service;
  • How to interact and communicate with people with various types of disabilities;
  • The purpose of assistive devices and how to interact and communicate with people who use them;
  • The purpose of service animals and how to interact with people who use them;
  • The purpose of support persons and how to interact with people who are accompanied by a support person;
  • What to do if a person with a disability is having difficulty in accessing LifeWorks services; and
  • The Ontario Human Rights Code.

LifeWorks employees and representatives in a client facing or policy-development role will also be required to read LifeWorks' Policies, Practices and Procedures for Accessible Customer Service document in addition to any other documents on accessibility at LifeWorks.

New employees and client-facing representatives will receive the training as part of their orientation process. Training refreshers will also be provided to new employees and client-facing representatives from time to time and on an on-going basis.

Record of training

LifeWorks will keep a record of all training provided under the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act, the Customer Service Regulation and the Integrated Accessibility Standards, including the dates on which the training was provided and the number of individuals who have received the training.

Client Feedback

LifeWorks aims to meet service delivery expectations for all of its clients, including those with disabilities. Our organization welcomes feedback on how client expectations are being met and uses it as an opportunity to learn and improve.

LifeWorks recognizes that people with disabilities may use different methods to communicate their feedback. Clients who wish to provide feedback on the way LifeWorks provides services to people with disabilities can do so in a variety of formats including:

By mail to:

Accessibility Officer
LifeWorks
895 Don Mills Rd.
Tower One, Suite 700
Toronto, Ontario M3C 1W3

By email to:

accessibility@lifeworks.com

Clients providing feedback should include the following information to allow LifeWorks to respond:

  • Time and date of event
  • Feedback concerning event
  • Service being accessed
  • Personnel involved
  • Additional comments
  • Contact information (should the person wished to be contacted)

Clients can also fill out LifeWorks' Client Feedback Form, a sample copy of which is enclosed and is otherwise available on-line or on request at the mail or email address listed above.

All feedback regarding the way LifeWorks provides services to people with disabilities will be reviewed and appropriate actions, if any, will be developed and implemented.

If the Feedback Form indicates the client wishes to be contacted, LifeWorks will respond either in writing, by e-mail or by telephone acknowledging the receipt of the feedback and outlining the outcome, if any, from the feedback. LifeWorks will endeavor to respond in a format that is accessible to the client, taking into account his or her individual needs.

Accessibility reporting

LifeWorks will file an accessibility report at the end of the calendar year in accordance with the Customer Service Regulation of the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act, 2005.