Accessible Customer Service Plan

Statement of Organizational Commitment
Canadale Nurseries Limited is committed to ensuring equal access and participation for people with disabilities. We are committed to treating people with disabilities in a way that allows them to maintain their dignity and independence. We believe in integration and we are committed to meeting the needs of people with disabilities in a timely manner. We will do so by removing and preventing barriers to accessibility and meeting our accessibility requirements under the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act and Ontario’s accessibility laws. Canadale Nurseries Limited is committed to meeting its current and ongoing obligations under the Ontario Human Rights Code respecting non-discrimination. Canadale Nurseries Limited understands that obligations under the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act, 2005 (AODA) and its accessibility standards do not substitute or limit its obligations under the Ontario Human Rights Code or obligations to people with disabilities under any other law.

Canadale Nurseries Limited is committed to excellence in serving and providing goods, services or facilities to all customers including people with disabilities.

Our accessible customer service policies are consistent with the principles of independence, dignity, integration and equality of opportunity for people with disabilities.

Assistive Devices

People with disabilities may use their personal assistive devices when accessing our goods, services or facilities. In cases where the assistive device presents a significant and unavoidable health or safety concern or may not be permitted for other reasons, other measures will be used to ensure the person with a disability can access our goods, services or facilities.

We will ensure that our staff are trained and familiar with various assistive devices that we have on site or that we may be used by customers with disabilities while accessing our goods, services or facilities. These devices may include, but are not limited to wheelchairs, walkers, oxygen tanks & scooters.

Communication

We will communicate with people with disabilities in ways that take into account their disability.

This may include the following:

  • Reading out loud to people who have vision loss
  • Reduce background noise when communicating with people with hearing aids
  • Using a pen and paper to communicate with people with hearing loss
  • Whenever possible, asking questions that can be answered with ‘yes’ or ‘no’ to people with speech and language disabilities
  • Using communication devices, if the person uses one
  • Be willing to rephrase or explain something again in another way if requested
  • Use plain language whenever possible

We will work with the person with a disability to determine what method of communication works for them.

Service Animals

We welcome people with disabilities and their service animals. Service animals are allowed on the parts of our premises that are open to the public.

A service animal can be easily identified through visual indicators, such as when it wears a harness or a vest, or when it helps the person perform certain tasks.

When we cannot easily identify that an animal is a service animal, our staff may ask a person to provide documentation from a regulated health professional that confirms the person needs the service animal for reasons relating to their disability.

A regulated health professional is defined as a member of one of the following colleges:

  • College of Audiologists and Speech-Language Pathologists of Ontario
  • College of Chiropractors of Ontario
  • College of Nurses of Ontario
  • College of Occupational Therapists of Ontario
  • College of Optometrists of Ontario
  • College of Physicians and Surgeons of Ontario
  • College of Physiotherapists of Ontario
  • College of Psychologists of Ontario
  • College of Registered Psychotherapists and Registered Mental Health Therapists of Ontario

If service animals are prohibited by another law, we will do the following to ensure people with disabilities can access our goods, services or facilities:

  • Explain why the animal is excluded
  • Discuss with the customer another way of providing goods, services or facilities

Support Persons

A person with a disability who is accompanied by a support person will be allowed to have that person accompany them on our premises.

If a person with a disability who is accompanied by a support person registers for a workshop onsite where a fee is charged, the fee will not be charged for the support person (unless they decide to also participate in the workshop).

We will notify customers of this by posting a notice in the following locations:

  • Workshop posters located at the main entrance in store
  • Online workshop posters on our website

In certain cases, Canadale Nurseries Limited might require a person with a disability to be accompanied by a support person for the health or safety reasons of:

  • The person with a disability
  • Others on the premises

Before making a decision, Canadale Nurseries Limited will:

  • Consult with the person with a disability to understand their needs
  • Consider health or safety reasons based on available evidence
  • Determine if there is no other reasonable way to protect the health or safety of the person or others on the premises

If Canadale Nurseries Limited determines that a support person is required, we will waive the admission fee, if applicable, for the support person.

Notice of Temporary Disruption

In the event of a planned or unexpected disruption to services or facilities for customers with disabilities, Canadale Nurseries Limited will notify customers promptly. This clearly posted notice will include information about the reason for the disruption, its anticipated length of time, and a description of alternative facilities or services, if available.

Services/Facilities include:

  • Disability parking spaces
  • Ramped entrance to gift store (access to washrooms)
  • Accessible washrooms
  • On-site wheelchair

The notice will be made publicly available in the following ways:

  • Written notice posted in store at all primary entrances
  • On the Canadale website, if possible
  • On the Canadale Social Media sites (Facebook, Twitter), if possible

Training

Canadale Nurseries Limited will provide accessible customer service training to:

  • All employees and volunteers, including garden centre attendants, team leaders, supervisors, managers and office staff
  • Anyone involved in developing our policies
  • Anyone who provides goods, services or facilities to customers on our behalf

Staff will be trained on accessible customer service at their orientation prior to their start date or within 1 week of their start date.

Training of our employees and volunteers on accessibility relates to their specific roles.

Training will include:

  • Purpose of the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act, 2005 and the requirements of the customer service standard
  • Canadale Nurseries Limited’s policies related to the customer service standard
  • How to interact and communicate with people with various types of disabilities
  • How to interact with people with disabilities who use an assistive device or require the assistance of a service animal or a support person
  • How to use the equipment or devices available on site or otherwise that may help with providing goods, services or facilities to people with disabilities. These include:
    • On-site wheelchair
    • Accessible washrooms
  • What to do if a person with a disability is having difficulty in accessing Canadale Nurseries Limited’s goods, services or facilities

Staff will also be trained when changes are made to our accessible customer service policies.

Canadale maintains records of the training provided, including the dates on which training was provided, and the number of people to whom it was provided.

Feedback Process

Canadale Nurseries Limited welcomes feedback on how we provide accessible customer service. Customer feedback will help us identify barriers and respond to concerns.

Customers will be notified of how to provide feedback in the following ways:

  • Notice posted in store on our information bulletin board

Customers who wish to provide feedback on the way Canadale Nurseries Limited provides goods, services or facilities to people with disabilities can provide feedback in the following ways:

  • Via email to info@canadale.com
  • Via our social media sites, such as facebook
  • Via mail to Canadale Nurseries Limited Accessibility Feedback, 269 Sunset Drive, St. Thomas, ON, N5R 3C4
  • Via telephone at (519) 631-7264
  • Via speaking to a member of our staff in store, specifically a supervisor or manager

All feedback, including complaints will be handled on an individual basis. Management will decide on the appropriate course of action and where necessary, assign staff to ensure completion. Customers can expect to hear back in 5-10 business days from the date of receipt of feedback.

Canadale Nurseries Limited will make sure our feedback process is accessible to people with disabilities by providing or arranging for accessible formats and communication supports, upon request.

Notice of Availability of Documents

Canadale Nurseries Limited will notify the public that documents related to accessible customer service are available upon request by posting a notice in the following location(s)/way(s):

  • Notice posted in store on our information bulletin board
  • Notice posted on our website

Canadale Nurseries Limited will provide these documents in an accessible format or with communication support, on request. We will consult with the person making the request to determine the suitability of the format or communication support. We will provide the accessible format in a timely manner and at no additional cost.

Information and Communication

Canadale Nurseries Limited has a process for receiving and responding to feedback and the process is accessible to people with disabilities upon request. We communicate with people with disabilities in ways that take into account their disability. When asked, we will provide information about our organization and its services, including public safety information, in accessible formats or with communication supports:

  1. In a timely manner, taking into account the person’s accessibility needs due to disability; and
  2. At a cost that is no more than the regular cost charged to other persons.

We will consult the person making the request in determining the suitability of an accessible format or communication support. If the organization determines that information or communications are unconvertible, the organization will provide the requestor with:

  1. An explanation as to why the information or communications are unconvertible; and
  2. A summary of the unconvertible information or communications.

We notify the public about the availability of accessible formats and communication supports by:

  • Posting the information on the store bulletin board
  • Posting the information on our website

We will also meet internationally recognized Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) 2.0 Level AA website requirements in accordance with Ontario’s accessibility laws.

Employment

Canadale Nurseries Limited notifies employees, job applicants, and the public that accommodations can be made during recruitment and hiring. We notify job applicants in writing when they fill out job applications, as well as when they are individually selected to participate in an assessment or selection process that accommodations are available upon request. We consult with the applicants and provide or arrange for suitable accommodations.

We notify successful applicants of policies for accommodation employees with disabilities when making offers of employment.

We notify staff that supports are available for those with disabilities at orientation or as soon as practicable after they begin their employment. We provide update information to employees whenever there is a change to existing policies on the provision of job accommodation that take into account an employee’s accessibility needs due to a disability.

We will consult with employees when arranging for the provision of suitable accommodation in a manner that takes into account the accessibility needs due to disability. We will consult with the person making the request in determining the suitability of an accessible format or communication supports specifically for:

  1. Information that is needed in order to perform the employee’s job; and
  2. Information that is generally available to employees in the workplace

Where needed, we will also provide customized emergency information to help an employee with a disability during an emergency. With the employee’s consent, we will provide workplace emergency information to a designated person who is providing assistance to that employee during an emergency.

We will provide the information as soon as practicable after we become aware of the need for accommodation due to the employee’s disability.

We will review the individualized workplace emergency response information:

  1. When an employee moves to a different location in the organization;
  2. When the employee’s overall accommodations needs or plans are reviewed; and
  3. When the employer reviews its general emergency response policies.

We have a written process to develop individual accommodation plans for employees.

We have a written process for employees who have been absent from work due to a disability and require disability-related accommodations in order to return to work.

Our performance management, career development and redeployment processes take into account the accessibility needs of all employees.

Modifications to this or other policies

Any policies of Canadale Nurseries Limited that do not respect and promote the principles of dignity, independence, integration and equal opportunity for people with disabilities will be modified or removed.

This document is publicly available. Accessible formats are available upon request.

Multi-Year Accessibility Plan

Statement of Organizational Commitment

 

Canadale Nurseries Limited is committed to excellence in serving and providing goods, services or facilities to all customers including people with disabilities.

Our accessible customer service policies are consistent with the principles of independence, dignity, integration and equality of opportunity for people with disabilities.


Canadale Nurseries Limited is committed to ensuring equal access and participation for people with disabilities. We are committed to treating people with disabilities in a way that allows them to maintain their dignity and independence.

We believe in integration and we are committed to meeting the needs of people with disabilities in a timely manner. We will do so by removing and preventing barriers to accessibility and meeting our accessibility requirements under the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act and Ontario’s accessibility laws.

Canadale Nurseries Limited is committed to meeting its current and ongoing obligations under the Ontario Human Rights Code respecting non-discrimination.

Canadale Nurseries Limited understands that obligations under the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act, 2005 (AODA) and its accessibility standards do not substitute or limit its obligations under the Ontario Human Rights Code or obligations to people with disabilities under any other law.

Introduction

Canadale Nurseries Limited strives to meet the needs of its employees and customers with disabilities and is working hard to remove and prevent barriers to accessibility.

Canadale Nurseries Limited is committed to fulfilling our requirements under the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act, 2005. This Accessibility Plan outlines the steps we are taking to meet those requirements and to improve opportunities for people with disabilities.

Our plan shows how we will play our role in making Ontario an accessible province for all Ontarians.

The plan is reviewed and updated at least once every 5 years.

We train every person as soon as practicable after being hired and provide training in respect to any changes to the policies.

We maintain records of the training provided, including the dates on which the training was provided and the number of individuals to whom it was provided.

PAST ACHIEVEMENTS TO REMOVE AND PREVENT BARRIERS

Canadale Nurseries Limited has completed the following accessibility initiatives:

Customer Service

Our organization has remained in compliance with the Customer Service Standards, how customer feedback was submitted, actions to address the feedback received and actions we have taken to identify/address potential barriers that may prevent people from giving feedback.

  • All Canadale staff receive Accessibility Training and review our Accessible Customer Service Plan as soon as practicable after they are hired.
  • Staff are familiar with various assistive devices that we have onsite or that may be used by customers with disabilities.
  • Staff have developed many ways to communicate with people with disabilities in a way that takes into account their disability (eg. Using the store iPad to communicate with the written word with people who are deaf).
  • We have welcomed Service Animals and follow proper protocol to ensure their safety
  • We welcome Support Persons and offer our staff training in interacting with persons who have a support person present
  • Whenever possible, we post Notices of Temporary Disruptions when services or facilities for customers with disabilities will be unavailable.
  • We welcome feedback on how to make Canadale more accessible and have developed fair and confidential procedures to receive and respond to this feedback.
  • The physical space is designed and changed with keeping accessibility in mind. We have installed an accessible washroom, accessible entrances to all buildings in which the public are welcome and offer wheelchairs for individuals with mobility (or other) disabilities. **NOTE: wheelchair use has been temporarily suspended due to the Covid-19 pandemic***

Information and Communications

 

  • We have developed processes for receiving and responding to feedback and the process is accessible to people with disabilities upon request.
  • We will provide information about our organization and its services (including public safety information) in accessible formats whenever an individual makes that requests.
  • Our Accessibility Plan is available in store and on our website for public record.

 

Employment

 

  • Canadale is an equal opportunity employer and make that known in job ads and job applications. This is evident in our hiring, training, promotion, transfer, rate of pay, layoff (and other forms of compensation) policies.
  • We offer accommodations for employees with disabilities and make that known in job ads, interviews, orientation (once hired).
  • We have individual Accommodation plans available for employees with disabilities
  • We offer Return to Work plans for employees who have been on leave from work because of a disability.

 

Training

 

  • We provide Accessibility train to ALL staff in their orientation prior to their start date.
  • Training on accessibility will relate to an employee’s specific roles.
  • Accessible forms of training will be made available upon request.
  • Staff will be trained when any changes in policies occur.
  • We maintain records of when training is offered and to whom it is provided.

 

Design of Public Spaces

 

  • In 2021 we significantly expanded the space of our staff lunch room to make it more accessible.
  • The last time we reconfigured the plant tables in the yard, we did so in a way to create significantly larger aisles to improve accessibility.
  • Any time we move around tables in the garden centre it is done in a way that maintains significant space in aisles to maintain accessibility.
  • Accessible washroom has been installed in the garden centre.
  • Accessible parking spaces have been installed in the parking lots.
  • Automatic door has been installed in one of the main doors to improve accessibility to the greenhouse and checkout areas.
  • Two checkouts were installed outdoors to help with accessibility, especially during the busy seasons.

 

STRATEGIES AND ACTIONS

Customer Service

Canadale Nurseries Limited is committed to providing accessible customer service to people with disabilities. This means that we provide goods, services and facilities to people with disabilities with the same high quality and timeliness as others.

  • We will expand our accessibility training for staff to include best practices for serving customers with specific disabilities. This process will begin in 2022 with a session on serving customers with Alzheimer’s and Dementia.

Information and Communications

Canadale Nurseries Limited is committed to making our information and communications accessible to people with disabilities.

  • We will aim to purchase a second iPad in which to aid in communication with people with disabilities by the end of 2026.

Employment

Canadale Nurseries Limited is committed to fair and accessible employment practices.

  • We plan to install a wheelchair accessible check out counter by the end of 2026 in order to include employees with mobility disabilities in a cashier role.

Training

Canadale Nurseries Limited is committed to training in the requirements of Ontario’s accessibility laws and the Ontario Human Rights Code as it applies to people with disabilities.

  • We plan to expand our staff accessibility training to include best practices for serving customers with specific disabilities. This process will begin in 2022 with a session on serving customers with Alzheimer’s and Dementia.

Design of Public Spaces

Canadale Nurseries Limited will meet accessibility laws when building or making major changes to public spaces.

  • We plan to install a wheelchair accessible check out counter by the end of 2026 in order to include employees with mobility disabilities in a cashier role.
  • We plan to redesign and renovate the staff bathroom to make it wheelchair accessible. We hope to begin the process by the end of 2025.
  • We plan to replace the uneven patio stones in the yard with even asphalt to improve conditions for those with mobility (and other) disabilities. We hope to begin this process by 2026.
  • We plan to replace another door with an automatic door. We hope to begin this process by the end of 2026.

FOR MORE INFORMATION

For more information on this accessibility plan, please contact:

Pauline Intven-Casier

info@canadale.com

519-631-7264

Our accessibility plan is publicly posted at www.canadale.ca

Standard and accessible formats of this document are available for free upon request.