Do you want a way to get your message out to the public about what your Accessibility Advisory Committee (AAC) is doing to help implement the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act (AODA)?
Let the public know what barriers your AAC is removing, what attitudes you are changing and any other information you feel relevant to making Ontario Barrier Free by becoming a contributing member of this website.
Why Become a Member?
We think Charles Beer said it best in his Report, The Strength and Potential of Municipal Accessibility Advisory Committees (MAACs)
I was struck by the number of examples of best practices from municipalities and MAACs that were cited throughout the consultations. There does not, however, appear to be any formal process for documenting or making these examples available to other municipalities. In fact, the consultations for the review provided an opportunity for representatives from various municipalities and MAACs to come together to discuss how they were approaching the new responsibilities under the AODA, as well as innovative ideas their communities had developed and the challenges they were facing.
Municipalities ranging in size from large urban to small rural provided examples of innovative and comprehensive accessibility plans. I was told of one
interesting initiative from the City of Thunder Bay. Twice a year the MAAC brings together representatives from the local hospitals, colleges and universities
to share opportunities, best practices and challenges with respect to the broader public sector’s responsibilities under the ODA and the AODA.
Now that the private and not-for-profit sectors are also covered by accessibility requirements, informal local collaborative structures can support them
in meeting their new obligations. I see tremendous strength and potential for MAACs to effect change at the community level and to support the work of
the more informal advisory committees set up by many hospitals, colleges, universities and school boards, and over time the efforts of the private and not for profit sectors. In particular, the MAACs can serve as an excellent resource for the chambers of commerce in their communities. I see this as a key factor in supporting the province to meet its 2025 goal for accessibility, as the provincial government alone cannot effect the level of change required.
Benefits of Membership
This website is a knowledge resource for researchers as well as a permanent historical record of the accomplishments of AACs across Ontario. Over time it will make a significant contribution to implementing the enforcement requirements of the five standards developed under the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act (AODA)
and provide guidelines for coping with issues that appear contradictory in other provincial legislation. When your AAC becomes a site member you become part of this important process.
There are significant benefits to an AAC becoming a full site member:
- ability to benefit from the experience and expertise of other AACs in resolving issues
- ability to connect with the people behind those issues for assistance in a confidential, timely and direct way
- communicate directly with other AACs who have common interests and similar problems
- an opportunity to permanently record achievements, challenges and coping strategies in a database that becomes both a historical record and a resource for others
- unlimited access to ACC Resources Action Plan modules in key areas such as Implementation Strategy, Assessing the Financial Implications of Compliance, Economic Impact Analysis, Building Community Consensus and Compiling Effective Surveys.
How it Works
By becoming a “Site Member” Your AAC can have its own password protected Admin interface with access to your personal “Profile Page” and post to the Blog section and let the public know what your AAC is doing to break down barriers.
In order to have posting privileges to this site you must be a verified Chair of an Ontario Accessibility Advisory Committee (AAC) or a designate of your AAC
What You Receive
This will allow password protected access to your Admin page where you can:
- Edit your personal Profile
- Edit your ACC Profile Page
- Create and modify posts
- Email broadcasts to registered subscribers and other AACs Chair/Designates
Note: Anyone familiar with the WordPress Admin Interface would be ideally suited to be your AAC’s Admin, although this is not a prerequisite as the interface is pretty simple to understand. To test drive the Content Management System go to demo.badeyes.com.
- Chairs/Designates are responsible for all content, which includes accuracy, permissions etc.
- No uploading of images or files allowed
- No creation of new Categories
- No posting into other AAC’s Category or Profile page
While there is no limit at present for how much you can post, we ask that you do not abuse this by posting for the sake of posting, it’s in all of our best interests that information is timely and relevant to the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act (AODA) and issues that affect us on a daily basis.