Accessible Customer Service Policy - January 28, 2022
To provide equitable customer service and comply with The Accessibility for Manitobans Act, our policy and practices reflect dignity, independence, integration, and equal opportunity for people with disabilities. If a barrier to accessing our goods or services cannot be removed, we seek alternate ways to do so.
1: Meet communication needs.
To meet customer needs we offer to communicate in different ways (i.e.in writing, reading out loud, taking time to explain things properly).
- We also keep paper and pens available to write things down,
► offer a chair when longer conversations are needed
► offer a quieter space and not rush our customers
► to engage eye-to-eye with a smile with persons using wheelchairs
► seek to make other accommodations when requested
- We use easy to read signs and documents in plain language with larger fonts and color contrast
2: Accommodate the use of assistive devices.
We accommodate the use of assistive devices when customers are accessing our goods, services, or facilities.
- We do not touch or move a customers’ assistive devices without permission.
- We are trained in how to use assistive devices we provide, including intercoms and handheld portable payment device
3: Welcome support persons
- We address the customer, not the support person, unless requested by the customer to do otherwise, and do not inquire about the disability.
- We make space for support persons on-site and ensure customers have access to their support persons at all times.
4: Allow service animals.
We allow service animals on our premises, and treat a service animal as a working animal, not distracting it from its job by petting, feeding, or playing with it, unless given permission by the person with the service animal to do so.
We know how to identify a service animal by its harness or vest and by the assistance the animal is providing
If we have concerns, we may ask if the animal has been trained to help a person with a disability-related need.
We expect the person who is handling the service animal to maintain control of the animal physically or by voice, signal, or other means.
If the service animal is showing signs of not being controlled (i.e., by barking, whining, wandering), we may provide a warning to the handler to control the animal.
If the service animal continues to misbehave, we may ask the handler to leave.
If another law prohibits service animals we explain why the animal cannot enter the space and discuss other ways to provide goods or services.
5: Maintain accessibility features.
To ensure barrier-free access, we maintain our accessibility features so they can be used as intended.
- We organize our space so that there is room for people with wheelchairs, electric scooters, and walkers, plus keep hallways, aisles, entrance clear.
- We keep our entrance area clear of ice and snow and place standing signs out of the way to avoid tripping hazards.
- We use both audio and visual cues to inform customers it is their turn to be served.
We offer pay-at-the-pump service with our handheld portable payment device when requested and may take goods and/or services to the customer.
6: Let the public know when and why an accessibility feature is unavailable.
- If requested, we work with the customer to find other ways to provide goods and services.
- We let the public know about disruptions in the following ways:
► postings at building entrances, service counter, high traffic areas,
► through employees or management.
7: Welcome and respond promptly to feedback.
We welcome and respond promptly to feedback on the accessibility of our goods and services plus document the actions taken to respond to them and that information is available on request in a format which meets the individual’s communication needs.
We invite feedback in the following ways:
► Contact us by phone, email, or website
- All feedback is directed to the person who can act on it, should it occur.
- If the feedback requires follow-up, the customer is notified that the request is being reviewed and when they can expect a response.
- Customers know what action we will take to address their feedback, if any and we respond to feedback in a way that meets the communication needs of the individual.
8: Provide the required training to employees and management.
We provide the required training on accessible customer service to employees and management, including,
- How to interact and communicate with people facing barriers to access goods and services, using assistive devices, are assisted by a support person and/or are assisted by a service animal.
- How to use equipment or assistive devices that are available on-site.
- An overview of The Accessibility for Manitobans Act, The Human Rights Code (Manitoba), and the Customer Service Standard.
- Our organizational policies, practices, and measures, including updates or changes.
- We train new employees and management promptly after hiring.
- We provide refresher training regularly, including updates to policies, practices, and measures. Training is offered regularly.
- Our Personnel Officer recording who has taken training and when.
- Feedback on the accessibility of our goods and services is addressed in staff meetings
9: We keep a written record of accessibility and training policies.
Our written documents include summaries of training material and when training is offered. We let the public know that our written policies are available on request.
- We let the public know that our accessibility and training policies are available in the following ways:
► posted on our website, on social media, and/or in newsletters
► through employees, or management (in person, by phone or through recorded greetings) through a public address system or intercom
- We provide our policies within a reasonable timeframe, at no cost, and in a format that meets the needs of the individual.
► This policy will be reviewed and updated from time to time as required.