Skip to main content Skip to main menu

Communicating the Financial Benefits of Accessibility for the Private Sector of Ontario

In the fourth review of the AODA, Rich Donovan states that Ontario will not be fully accessible by 2025. In other words, the provincial government will not meet its own deadline under the AODA. Limited creation, implementation, and enforcement of AODA standards impacts the well-being and safety of Ontarians with disabilities. Therefore, Donovan recommends that the Ontario government should declare this lack of progress on accessibility a crisis. This crisis state should last six (6) months. During this time, the Ontario government should form a crisis committee to implement crucial accessibility improvements in the province. The Premier should act as the chair of this committee, and the Secretary of Cabinet should act as co-chair. Furthermore, Donovan outlines tactical recommendations the province should follow to fulfill its remaining responsibilities in the public sector. One of these tactical recommendations is communicating the financial benefits of accessibility for the private sector of Ontario.

Communicating the Financial Benefits of Accessibility for the Private Sector of Ontario

The review states that people with disabilities represent a large sector of the population with buying power. In other words, accessible organizations can do business with a large clientele of people with disabilities. However, organizations in the private sector often seem unaware that they could gain more profit if they were more accessible. On one hand, organizations could underestimate the number of people with disabilities. On the other hand, organizations could fail to recognize people with disabilities as potential customers or clients. In either case, private-sector organizations need to know that accessibility has financial benefits. This type of incentive could be more persuasive for organizations than AODA enforcement, which has had limited success.

This finding aligns with the third review’s recommendation of a public education campaign on the business case for accessibility.


Therefore, the review recommends that the accessibility agency should create messages alerting organizations in the private and public sectors about the financial benefits of accessibility. The agency should focus its outreach on large organizations, which can be role models for smaller organizations. In addition, the agency should remind organizations about these benefits before accessibility audits. Non-compliant organizations can begin to appreciate the benefits as they improve their accessibility.