WeirFoulds' Accessibility Policy

Policy Statement

In 2005, the government of Ontario passed the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act ("AODA") with the goal of making Ontario accessible by 2025. AODA develops, implements and enforces accessibility standards in areas including:

  • Customer Service;
  • Information and Communications; and
  • Employment.

The Accessibility Standards for Customer Service, which became law on January 1, 2008, relate to the provision of goods and services in a manner that is accessible to persons with disabilities.  The Integrated Accessibility Standards regulation ("IASR"), which became law on July 1, 2011, combines the remaining standards of Accessible Information and Communications and Employment Accessibility.  The IASR requirements will be phased in over time.

WeirFoulds LLP (the "Firm") is committed to service excellence and to providing an accessible and inclusive environment. To that end, the Firm is committed to ensuring that people with disabilities are able to access and benefit from our services in the same place and in a similar manner as other clients, in a way that respects their dignity and independence.

The Firm supports the goals of AODA and has and will continue to establish policies, practices and procedures that are consistent with the standards established under AODA in a timely manner. The Firm is committed to meeting the requirements of existing and future legislation related to the identification, removal and prevention of barriers to people with disabilities and to becoming barrier free.

This policy outlines how the Firm achieves and will continue to achieve accessibility through meeting its requirements defined under AODA.

APPLICATION OF THE POLICY

All employees, lawyers, volunteers and third party individuals and entities that provide services on the Firm's behalf follow the policy in this document.

CUSTOMER SERVICE STANDARD

Since January 1, 2012, the Firm has been in compliance with the Customer Service Standard under AODA.  The Firm's Client Accessibility Policy is available here.

FEEDBACK

The Firm's primary goal is to deliver services to our clients in a respectful, welcoming, and supportive manner, and we feel that the best way to be sure we are doing so is to invite your feedback regarding our service.  Please feel free to fill out an accessibility feedback form, available here. We invite you to direct any questions, concerns, or compliments about our policy to WeirFoulds' Director, Human Resources and Administration:

Stephanie Alarie
WeirFoulds LLP
4100-66 Wellington Street West
PO Box 35, Toronto-Dominion Centre
Toronto, ON Canada M5k 1B7

Telephone: 416-947-5048
Fax: 416-365-1876
Email: salarie@weirfoulds.com

Our Director, Human Resources and Administration is pleased to provide a written response, together with any findings about your inquiry, within fourteen (14) business days of receiving your correspondence.

IASR GENERAL REQUIREMENTS

Multi-year Accessibility Plan

The Firm has established a Multi-year Accessibility Plan for the IASR.  A copy is available here. This plan has been developed in accordance with the IASR and outlines the strategy that will be used to prevent and remove barriers to accessibility and to address current and future requirements of AODA. It will be reviewed and updated at least once every five (5) years and will be made available in an accessible format upon request.

Training

The Firm is committed to ensuring all employees, lawyers, volunteers, and third party individuals and entities working on the Firm's behalf are provided training on the requirements of the IASR and on the Ontario Human Rights Code as it relates to persons with disabilities, and that such training is provided as soon as practicable.

In accordance with the IASR, and as outlined in the Multi-year Accessibility Plan, the Firm will:

  • Ensure that training will be provided in a way that best suits the duties of the individual receiving it;
  • Keep and maintain a record of the training provided, including the dates and number of individuals to whom it was provided; and
  • Ensure that training is provided on any changes to prescribed policies on an ongoing basis.

INFORMATION AND COMMUNICATION STANDARD

Feedback

The Firm is committed to having an atmosphere that welcomes feedback from all parties through a variety of means, to continuously improving feedback processes and to creating consistency in response times.

In accordance with the IASR, and as outlined in the Multi-year Accessibility Plan, the Firm will:

  • Ensure existing and new feedback processes are accessible to persons with disabilities through accessible formats and communication supports, upon request and in a timely manner; and
  • Ensure the process for feedback is welcoming and responses to correspondence are completed in a timely manner and in an accessible format, upon request.

Accessible Formats and Communication Supports

The Firm is committed to making information about the Firm and communications with the Firm accessible to persons with disabilities. The Firm will incorporate new accessibility requirements under the Information and Communications Standard to ensure that its information and communications systems and platforms are accessible and are provided in accessible formats that meet the needs of persons with disabilities upon request.

In accordance with the IASR, and as outlined in the Multi-year Accessibility Plan, the Firm will:

  • In a timely manner, provide suitable accessible formats and communication supports for information generally available to employees and information needed to perform the employee's job; and
  • Consult with the employee making the request to ensure the suitability of the support provided.

Accessible Websites and Web Content

The Firm is committed to ensuring that visitors to www.weirfoulds.com are able to view the website and web content in a manner that takes into account accessibility needs.

In accordance with the IASR, and as outlined in the Multi-year Accessibility Plan, the Firm will:

  • Ensure its website and content conform with the World Wide Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) 2.0, initially at Level A and increasing to Level AA in accordance with the Accessible websites and web content section of the Information and Communications Standard.  

EMPLOYMENT STANDARD

Recruitment

The Firm is committed to employment practices that are fair, accessible and welcoming across the entirety of the employment cycle.

In accordance with the IASR, and as outlined in the Multi-year Accessibility Plan, the Firm will:

  • Ensure job postings specify that job and workplace accommodations are available to persons with disabilities, upon request;
  • Ensure candidates selected for interviews are aware that accommodations are available upon request in relation to the materials or processes to be used;  
  • Ensure notices to successful applicants include policies and procedures available to accommodate persons with disabilities; and
  • Ensure accommodation requests are provided in a manner suitable to the individual requesting them.

Workplace Emergency Response Information

Where the Firm is aware that an employee has a disability and that there is a need for accommodation, individualized workplace emergency response information will be provided to the employee as soon as practicable and in an accessible format upon request.

The following measures have been taken by The Firm, in accordance with the standard:

  • Individualized workplace emergency response information procedures have been developed for employees with disabilities, as required; 
  • Where required, individualized workplace emergency plans have been developed for employees with disabilities, with their prior consent, in order to provide assistance when evacuating the workplace in case of an emergency or disaster; 
  • These individualized emergency plans have been communicated to the employees' respective managers and safety personnel, on an ‘as needed' basis; and
  • On an ongoing and regular basis, and as per the applicable terms of the IASR, the Firm will review and assess general workplace emergency response procedures and individualized emergency plans to ensure accessibility issues are addressed.

Informing Employees of Supports

The Firm is committed to informing all employees of policies to support employees with disabilities and the accommodations available that take into account the specific needs of the individual.

In accordance with the IASR, and as outlined in the Multi-year Accessibility Plan, the Firm will:

  • Ensure all employees are aware of policies providing accommodation support to employees with disabilities; and
  • Ensure employees are informed of changes to existing policies on job accommodations with respect to disabilities.

Process to Accommodate Employees

The Firm is committed to creating a process that is barrier free when developing individual accommodation plans and return to work schedules.

In accordance with the IASR, and as outlined in the Multi-year Accessibility Plan, the Firm will:

  • Ensure employees requesting accommodation are aware of the manner in which they can participate in the development of plans;
  • Ensure steps are in place to protect the privacy of employee personal information; and
  • Ensure individual accommodation plans are part of the return to work process.

Performance Management, Career Development and Redeployment

The Firm is committed to understanding the accessibility needs of employees with disabilities and will take those needs, as well as individual accommodation plans, into consideration when moving forward on performance management, career development and redeployment processes.

In accordance with the IASR, and as outlined in the Multi-year Accessibility Plan, the Firm will:

  • Ensure current policies reflect the goals of the IASR and support employees with disabilities through the various processes.

Should you wish to receive the Firm's Accessibility Policy in an alternative format, please contact our Director, Human Resources and Administration by email (salarie@weirfoulds.com) or by phone at 416-947-5048.

Updated: January 1, 2016