Accessibility Standard for Employment
The Accessibility Standard for Employment builds upon the existing requirements under the Ontario Human Rights Code in relation to how to accommodate individuals with disabilities across all stages of the employment cycle and applies in respect to paid employees and does not apply to volunteers and other non-paid individuals however, as a best practice, the County will make every effort to accommodate volunteers and other non-paid positions, upon request. The requirements of the Employment Standard shall be met by the County by January 1, 2014 unless otherwise specified.
Recruitment and Retention:
The County of Northumberland will:
- When posting an employment opportunity, notify applicants about the availability of recruitment-related accommodations for applicants with disabilities to support their full participation in the recruitment process;
- Notify job applicants when they are individually selected to participate in an assessment or selection process, that accommodations are available upon request in relation to the materials or processes to be used;
- If a selected applicant requests an accommodation, consult with the applicant and provide or arrange for the provision of a suitable accommodation that takes into account the applicant's accessibility needs;
- When making offers of employment, notify successful applicants of our policies for accommodating employees with disabilities.
The County of Northumberland will inform all new and existing employees of our policies for supporting employees with disabilities, including but not limited to, policies on the provision of job accommodations that take into account an employee’s accessibility needs due to a disability:
- As required, to new employees, as soon as practicable after they begin their employment;
- Whenever there is a change to existing policies on the provision of job accommodations that take into account an employee’s accessibility needs due to a disability.
When an employee with a disability requests it, the County of Northumberland will consult with the employee to provide or arrange for the provision of accessible formats and communication supports:
- For information that is needed in order to perform the employee's job;
- For information that is generally available to employees in the workplace (i.e. agendas, meeting minutes, newsletters, forms, etc.); and
- In consultation with the employee making the request, determine the suitability of an accessible format or communication support.
If the employee has an individual accommodation plan, then the accessible formats and/or communication supports that will be provided to the employee should be included in the plan.
Individual Accommodation Plan (IAP):
The County of Northumberland will have in place a written process for the development of a documented individual accommodation plan for employees with a disability. The process will include:
- The employee’s participation in the development of the IAP;
- Assessment on an individual basis;
- Identification of accommodations to be provided;
- Timelines for the provision of accommodations;
- Upon request of the County, an evaluation by outside medical or another expert, at the County’s expense, to assist with determining accommodation needs and how to best achieve accommodation;
- Union representative for the employee, upon request or another colleague, as appropriate;
- Steps taken to protect the privacy of the employee's personal information;
- Frequency with which the IAP will be reviewed and updated and the manner in which it will be done;
- If denied, the reasons for denial are to be provided to the employee;
- A format that takes into account the employee's disability needs;
- If requested, any information regarding accessible formats and communication supports provided;
- Identification of any other accommodation that is to be provided.
Return to Work:
The County of Northumberland will have a return to work process in place for employees who have been absent from work due to a disability and require disability-related accommodations in order to return to work. Such processes will be documented and will outline the steps that the County will take to facilitate the return to work and include an individual accommodation plan.
Performance Management, Career Development and Advancement, and Redeployment:
The County of Northumberland will take into account the accessibility needs and/or individual accommodation plans of employees when:
- Using performance management processes;
- Providing career development and advancement information;
- Using redeployment procedures.
Workplace Emergency Response Information – Helping Employees with Disabilities Stay Safe
The County of Northumberland will provide individualized workplace emergency response information to employees who have a disability:
- If the disability is such that the individualized information is necessary and the employer is aware of the need for accommodation due to the employee's disability;
- With the employee’s consent, to the person designated by the County and the employee to provide assistance to the employee, if required;
- As soon as practicable after becoming aware of the need for accommodation due to the employee's disability;
- And will review the individualized workplace emergency response information when the employee moves to a different location in the organization, when overall accommodations needs or plans are reviewed and when the employer reviews its general emergency response policies.