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Ontario Should Move Faster on Tearing Down Barriers

By Star Editorial Board
Tues., Aug. 6, 2019

As accessibility advocates constantly warn, we’re all just one illness or accident away from becoming disabled.

And with 1,000 Ontario baby boomers turning 65 every day, more of us will be dealing with aging vision, hearing, hips and knees that will impact our quality of life and make our physical environment more difficult to navigate.


A New Toronto Star Editorial Blasts the Ford Government for Moving So Slowly on Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities and Echoes the AODA Alliance’s Objections to Doug Ford’s Diverting 1.3 Million Dollars to the Rick Hansen Foundation’s Problematic Private Accessibility Certification Program

Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act Alliance Update United for a Barrier-Free Society for All People with Disabilities http://www.aodaalliance.org aodafeedback@gmail.com Twitter: @aodaalliance

August 6, 2019

SUMMARY

The August 6, 2019 edition of the Toronto Star includes a powerful editorial. It slams the Doug Ford Government for spending 1.3 million dollars on the problematic private accessibility certification program offered by the Rick Hansen Foundation (RHF), when the Government should act more strongly and swiftly to speed up the sluggish implementation and enforcement of the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act (AODA). That editorial can be found below.


Online Healthcare Information

Currently, the AODA does not have a healthcare standard. A committee is making recommendations about what a healthcare standard should include. One issue that a healthcare standard should address is access to information. Healthcare providers should be required to make all information available to all patients. One way for providers to do so could be by posting information on accessible websites. Patients or other visitors with disabilities can read online healthcare information on accessible computers or phones.


Proactive Communication in Healthcare is Needed

Currently, the AODA does not have a healthcare standard. A committee is making recommendations about what a healthcare standard should include. In the meantime, however, there are still AODA requirements for healthcare providers to follow. The Information and Communications Standards have regulations that apply to healthcare providers. When providers follow these requirements, they make healthcare settings more accessible to patients, workers, and visitors with disabilities. Communication in healthcare applies to service in:


Accessible Formats in Healthcare

Currently, the AODA does not have a healthcare standard. A committee is making recommendations about what a healthcare standard should include. One issue that a healthcare standard should address is access to information. Healthcare providers should be required to make all information available to all patients. For instance, all healthcare information should be available in accessible formats for patients who need them. Accessible formats in healthcare settings would help create quality medical care for all Ontarians.