Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act (AODA)
What is AODA?
AODA stands for the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act, 2005. It is a law in Ontario, Canada that sets out accessibility standards for government, businesses, nonprofits, and public sector organizations in the province. The goal of AODA is to make Ontario more accessible and inclusive for people with disabilities. All organizations with more than 20 employees must formally report their accessibility assessments and progress to the Ontario government.
The AODA lists five standards to which organizations
Organizations must provide accessible customer service to people with disabilities. This includes providing accessible information and communication, accessible transportation, and accessible built environments.
Organizations must make employment opportunities accessible to people with disabilities. This includes providing accessible workplaces, accessible job postings, and accessible hiring practices.
Information & Communications
Organizations must make their information and communications accessible to people with disabilities. This includes making their websites, documents, and other forms of communication accessible.
Organizations must make their transportation services accessible to people with disabilities. This includes providing accessible public transit, accessible taxis, and accessible parking.
Organizations must make their built environments accessible to people with disabilities. This includes making their buildings, sidewalks, and other public spaces accessible.
Americaneagle.com & AODA
At Americaneagle.com, we are most involved in advancing accessible information and communication solutions with our clients. The AODA has specific requirements for websites that are designed to make them accessible to people with disabilities. These requirements are based on the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) 2.0 Level AA, which are the most prominent international standards for web accessibility.The AODA has a phased-in implementation schedule, with different standards coming into effect at different times. The goal is for Ontario to be fully accessible by 2025.
The four core principles of the AODA are:
Nothing About Us Without Us
People with disabilities must be involved in the development and implementation of accessibility standards.
Integration and Participation
People with disabilities should have the same opportunities as everyone else to participate in all aspects of society.
Accessibility should be designed into products and services from the start, rather than being added on later.
Accessibility should be an ongoing process, with organizations constantly looking for ways to improve the accessibility of their products, services, and workplaces.
The AODA is an important piece of legislation that is helping to make Ontario a more accessible and inclusive Canadian province for people with disabilities. By complying with the AODA, organizations can help to ensure that all Ontarians have the opportunity to maximize participation within their communities.