ISSN 1708-4350 (print)
ISSN 1708-4369 (online)
Ontario is making progress toward building an accessible province by 2025. The Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act, 2005 (AODA) has laid the foundation to meet this goal. Under the act, Ontario is developing standards that will remove the barriers faced by people with disabilities.
On January 1, 2008, the first accessibility standard under the act came into force. Through the Accessibility Standards for Customer Service, people of all abilities will be able to get the service they need. Public sector organizations, including the Ontario government, will need to comply with this standard by 2010. Private sector and non-profit organizations will need to comply by 2012.
Next year, more standards will be released in other important areas, including:
The Ministry of Transportation's sixth annual Accessibility Plan highlights 2007-2008's achievements to break down barriers for people with disabilities. It also outlines the ministry's commitments in the coming year to make programs, policies and services more accessible for all Ontarians. A notable achievement includes the purchase of 309 conventional and 112 specialized transit buses for a total of 421 new accessible replacement buses under the 2007 Ontario Bus Replacement Program. At the end of 2007, 72.6 per cent of municipal conventional transit buses in Ontario were accessible, up from 38 per cent in 2003.
This accessibility plan is unique, because it reflects our transition between the AODA and the Ontarians with Disabilities Act, 2001 (ODA). The ODA applies to the Ontario government and all broader public sector organizations. Under this act, the ministry develops annual accessibility plans to make its policies, programs, services and buildings more accessible to people with disabilities.
Through the ODA, accessibility planning has laid a strong foundation for the Ministry of Transportation to build on. This ministry will continue to help make Ontario more accessible for people with disabilities and a more inclusive society for all Ontarians.
An executive summary of all Government of Ontario Ministry Accessibility Plans is available at the Accessibility Directorate of Ontario site.