Accessible Customer Service Policy

Purpose

This purpose of this policy is to articulate Huron County Library’s commitment to providing accessible customer service.  Huron County Library is committed to the independence and integration of persons with disabilities and all who live, learn, work, play and invest in our community.

Definitions

A disability is a physical or mental condition that limits a person’s movements, senses, or activities.

A support person means, in relation to a person with a disability, another person who accompanies someone in order to help with communication, mobility, personal care or medical needs or with access to goods, services or facilities.

A service animal refers to an animal used by a person for reasons relating to their disability. An animal is considered a service animal for a person with a disability if:

  • it is readily apparent that the animal is used by the person for the reasons relating to their disability, as a result of visual indicators such as the vest or harness worn by the animal; or
  • the person provides a letter from a regulated health professional confirming that the person requires the animal for reasons relating to the disability.

An assistive device is a device that a person brings with them such as a wheelchair, walker or a personal oxygen tank that might assist in hearing, seeing, communicating, moving, breathing, remembering and/or reading.

Policy

1. Services and Programs

Huron County Library will make every reasonable effort to ensure that services and programs are provided in a manner that respects the dignity and independence of persons with disabilities by:

1.1  welcoming the use of assistive devices to access our services and programs;

1.2.  encouraging the inclusion and access of support persons accompanying people with disabilities;

1.3.  waiving fees for support persons accompanying persons with disabilities; advance notice may be required to ensure accommodation when space, materials or resources are limited;

1.4.  welcoming service animals to assist users or, in instances when a service animal is not legally permitted, provide alternative accommodation (eg. serve the person in an area where the animal is legally permitted);

1.5. purchasing materials in a variety accessible formats (eg. print, audio, visual, digital, etc.);

1.6. ensuring the library website meets appropriate standards for access by people with a disability;

1.7. maintaining an accessibility plan that outlines the library’s strategy to prevent and remove barriers.

2.  Communication

Huron County Library will make every effort to communicate with users in a manner that enables the use of services and programs by:

2.1. providing reasonable notification of all interruptions that especially relate to the provision of services and programming for people with disabilities (eg. elevator issue);

2.2. maintaining the Accessible Customer Service Policy and, upon request, making it available in alternative formats;

2.3.  following the County process for suggestions on how to improve accessible services;

2.4.  sharing information on the provision of customer service for people with disabilities and accessible services and programs;

2.5.  providing library communications, upon request, in accessible formats.

3.  Training

Huron County Library, in collaboration with the Corporation of the County of Huron, provides training on how to provide customer service to people with disabilities to:

3.1.  those who participate in developing policies and procedures on the provision of service to the public;

3.2.  all existing staff and volunteers;

3.3.  new staff and volunteers of Huron County Library.

Replacement Statement

This policy replaces all previous versions and comes into effect on the date passed.

Citations

Province of Ontario.  Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act.  2005.  S.O. c. 11.
Province of Ontario.  Accessibility Standards for Customer Service, Ontario Regulation 429/07.

Related Documents

Huron County Library.  Mission, Vision and Values Statement. 2019
Huron County Library. Collection Policy. 2019
Huron County Library. Accessibility Plan. 2013
County of Huron. Accessibility Standards for Customer Service & Use of Assistive Devices Policy. 2016