Excellence Canada – Ontario Accessibility Awards
Excellence Canada, formerly the National Quality Institute, through its People Access division, is dedicated to helping private sector and not-for-profit organizations become aware of and implement the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act, 2005 (AODA).
To promote greater accessibility, Excellence Canada is recognizing and awarding organizations that meet and exceed the legislated standards of the AODA.
The Excellence Canada – Ontario Accessibility Awards Program recognizes and congratulates organizations within our community that have shown a commitment to providing excellent accessibility initiatives to accommodate people with disabilities.
In addition to meeting the legislated requirements of the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act, achieving an Excellence Canada – Ontario Accessibility Award is further recognition that the organization is respected within its local community for going above and beyond basic compliance and for providing excellent accommodation for people with disabilities.
The Excellence Canada – Ontario Accessibility Awards Program supports and reinforces the core principles for providing good customer service to people with disabilities, as outlined in the Ontario Accessibility Standards for Customer Service, which are:
- Goods or services must be provided in a manner that respects the dignity and independence of persons with disabilities.
- The provision of goods or services to persons with disabilities and others must be integrated unless an alternate measure is necessary, whether temporarily or on a permanent basis, to enable a person with a disability to obtain, use or benefit from the goods or services.
- Persons with disabilities must be given an opportunity equal to that given to others to obtain, use and benefit from the goods or services.
In addition, the Integrated Accessibility Standards Regulation now requires certain criteria be met around employment, information & communications, and transportation.
What are the Benefits of the Award?
The Excellence Canada – Ontario Accessibility Award provides an independent, third party verification of the work being done in your organization. Recognition is a powerful tool that helps your organization reinforce positive change. Customers and suppliers respect it. Employees love it!
The award will acknowledge your organization as a role-model in this important social initiative and will motivate others in your community to step up and take positive action.
Recognition of your organization locally will publicize the great work being done and help to attract new customers and employees. And perhaps the best reason is that it is an opportunity to showcase the social consciousness of your visionary organization.
- Presentation of an Excellence Canada award that may be displayed for up to two years by the business and their website.
- A Certificate of Recognition to each award recipient.
- Identifiable window decals that may be displayed in a prominent position within the business to identify that the business supports accessibility for people with disabilities.
- A letter of congratulations to the organization from Excellence Canada, in recognition of the positive community difference in the area of accessibility initiatives, displayed on the websites of People Access and Excellence Canada.
- Inclusion of the details of the business and a description of their accessibility initiatives on the websites of People Access and Excellence Canada.
- National and provincial media exposure through a variety of related websites, articles, and news releases.
Applying for the Ontario Accessibility Awards
How to apply
To receive the award, you must submit details of your initiatives to improve accessibility to people with disabilities, and how your organization has gone above and beyond compliance with the legislated standards of the AODA.
The deadline to submit your application to email@example.com is March 31, 2015. For organizations that have met the criteria for the award, there may be a small verification fee of $195 per location to partly recover the cost of a site visit where the adjudicators feel it is required. Awards will be presented in the fall of 2015.
- Applications must be received by March 31, 2015 to qualify.
- Two evaluators – an Excellence Canada evaluator plus a community accessibility evaluator.
- Submission review to identify key strengths and any gaps, plus any follow-up questions for the applicant.
- Letter to applicant regarding the decision in July 2015.
For more information on the Excellence Canada – Ontario Accessibility Awards Program, please call 1.800.263.9648 ext. 224 or email Awards@peopleaccess.ca