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Part 1. Introduction

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NARRATOR:
Welcome to Working Together: training on the Ontario Human Rights Code and the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act. We'll show you how the Code applies to people with disabilities and about your organization's duty to accommodate.

NARRATOR:
We'll call the Ontario Human Rights Code "the Code", the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act "the AODA" and the Integrated Accessibility Standards Regulation "the IASR". They are all laws you must follow.

NARRATOR:
This module describes your organization's rights and responsibilities under the Code and the AODA standards, as well as how they work together. The IASR under the AODA requires training about the Code and how it helps people with disabilities. This module provides that training.

NARRATOR:
The Code has primacy. This means that Ontario laws (with a few exceptions) have to follow the Code. Its goal is to provide for equal rights so as to create a climate of respect where everyone feels part of the community and can contribute fully. The Code says people with disabilities must be free from discrimination where they work, live, and receive services, and their needs must be accommodated.

NARRATOR:
The goal of the AODA is for Ontario to be accessible by 2025, by removing and preventing barriers so that people with disabilities can participate more fully in communities.

NARRATOR:
As part of the AODA, the Government of Ontario is developing and enforcing mandatory province-wide accessibility standards in key areas of daily life. The first regulation under the AODA was the customer service standard. The next three standards – Information and Communications, Employment and Transportation – are contained in one regulation called the Integrated Accessibility Standards Regulation or IASR for short.

NARRATOR:
The Code and the AODA work together in various ways to promote equality and accessibility.

NARRATOR:
The Code has primacy. It overrides the AODA and other provincial laws when there is a conflict. In fact, the AODA states that if there's a conflict between it and any other Act or regulation, the law offering the higher level of accessibility comes first.

NARRATOR:
The Code and the AODA are both provincial laws, and both use the same definition of disability. They don't apply to the federal government and federally-regulated organizations like banks, airlines, and interprovincial transportation companies – these are covered by the Canadian Human Rights Act.

NARRATOR:
While the Code and the AODA work together, they have some important differences. Under the Code, when a person with a disability needs accommodation, there is a duty to accommodate. This means organizations may need to provide an individualized response to an accommodation request. The Code applies to all Ontario organizations regardless of type and size. This includes "owner-operator" organizations without employees. It also covers volunteers and unpaid workers.

NARRATOR:
The AODA sets accessibility standards that organizations must meet. The human rights principles of the Code help to inform and guide how AODA standards are to be met. The AODA standards apply to all organizations (public, private, and not-for-profit) with one or more employees in Ontario. Requirements depend on an organization's type and size.

NARRATOR:
The AODA standards don't limit or replace the requirements of the Code or any other law. Meeting AODA standards doesn't guarantee that an organization has met Code requirements or that the organization won't receive human rights complaints, but it may lower the risk of complaints.

The Ontario Human Rights Code and the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act

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