Currently, no AODA standards require tourism to be accessible. However, the Third Review of the AODA recommends the creation of standards mandating accessibility in tourism. In this article, we will outline possible requirements for campground accessibility in Ontario.
Campground Accessibility in Ontario
AODA standards in tourism could require campgrounds to make a certain percentage of their campsites accessible. For instance, this requirement could be comparable to accessibility in hotel rooms.
Under the Ontario Building Code, at least ten percent (10%) of hotel rooms must be barrier-free for guests with physical disabilities. A hotel is not required to provide more than twenty (20) barrier-free rooms, although hotels may provide more if they wish.
In other words, future AODA tourism standards could require campgrounds to make at least ten percent (10%) of their campsites accessible for campers using wheelchairs or other assistive devices. Alternatively, campgrounds could provide twenty (20) or more wheelchair-accessible campsites.
Furthermore, campgrounds could improve the accessibility of other features, including:
Similarly, any other buildings that campers enter, such as welcome areas or shelters, could have accessible:
AODA standards in tourism could offer incentives to campgrounds for retrofitting their sites and amenities.
In addition, campgrounds could advertise their accessible features, as well as their nearness to other physically accessible tourist attractions, including:
Moreover, campground staff could also have training to support campers wishing to tour locations that are not yet accessible to visitors using their personal assistive devices. For example, a camper might want to visit a local trail or beach that is not yet accessible. However, campground staff might know where the camper can borrow or rent an all-terrain wheelchair, or find another way to access the site.
Finally, campgrounds within larger tourist venues, such as provincial parks, could provide all-terrain wheelchairs on loan to visitors wishing to see locations that are not yet accessible.