Accessibility - easyhome

Accessibility

Customer Service Policy Statement

Providing Goods and Services to People with Disabilities


1. Our mission

The mission of easyhome Ltd. and its subsidiaries is to provide customers access to household goods and services that enhance the quality of their lives.

2. Our commitment

In fulfilling our mission, easyhome Ltd. strives at all times to provide its goods and services in a way that respects the dignity, and independence of people with disabilities. We are also committed to giving people with disabilities the same opportunity to access our goods and services and allowing them to benefit from the same services, in the same place and in a similar way as other customers.

3.  Background

The Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act, 2005 (AODA) was created with the goal of developing standards that would improve accessibility for people with disabilities across the Province.  The AODA allows the Provincial Government to develop specific standards of accessibility and to enforce them.  The standards are made into regulations pursuant to the AODA.  The Customer Service standard is the first standard developed under the AODA.

4.  Definitions (as defined by the AODA Act, 2005)

Assistive Device is a technical aid, communication device, or medical aid modified or customized, that is used to increase, maintain, or improve the functional abilities of people with disabilities.

Barrier means anything that prevents a person with a disability from fully participating in all aspects of society because of his or her disability, including a physical barrier, an attitudinal barrier, a technological barrier, a policy or a practice.

Disability, is

·  any degree of physical disability, infirmity, malformation or disfigurement that is caused by bodily injury, birth defect or illness, and without limiting the generality of the foregoing, includes diabetes mellitus, epilepsy, a brain injury, any degree of paralysis, amputation, lack of physical co-ordination, blindness or visual impediment, deafness or hearing impediment, muteness or speech impediment, or physical reliance on a guide dog or other animal or on a wheelchair or other remedial appliance or device,

·  A condition of mental impairment or a developmental disability,

·  A learning disability, or a dysfunction in one or more of the processed involved in the understanding or using symbols or spoken language,

·  A mental disorder, or

·  An injury or disability for which benefits were claimed or received under the Workplace Safety and Insurance Act, 1997.

Service Animal, an animal is a service animal for a person with a disability if it is readily apparent that the animal is used by the person for reasons relating to his or her disability; or if the person provides a letter from a physician or nurse confirming that the person requires the animal for reasons relating to the disability.

Support Person, a support person means in relation to a person with a disability, another person who accompanies him or her in order to help with the communication, mobility, personal care or medical needs or with access to goods or services.

5. Providing goods and services to people with disabilities

easyhome Ltd. is committed to excellence in serving all customers including people with disabilities and we will carry out our functions and responsibilities in the following areas:

5.1 Communication

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

We will train staff who communicate with customers on how to interact and communicate with people with various types of disabilities.

5.2 Telephone services

We are committed to providing an accessible telephone service to our customers. We will train staff to communicate with customers over the telephone in clear and plain language and to speak clearly and slowly.

We will offer to communicate with customers by alternative methods such as e-mail, relay services, or print communication if telephone communication is not suitable to their communication needs or is not available.

5.3 Assistive devices

We are committed to serving people with disabilities who use assistive devices to obtain, use or benefit from our goods and services. We will ensure that our staff members are trained and familiar with various assistive devices that may be used by customers with disabilities while accessing our goods or services.

5.4 Billing

We are committed to providing accessible invoices to all of our customers. For this reason, invoices will be provided in the following formats upon request: hard copy, large print, e-mail.

We will answer any questions customers may have about the content of the invoice in person, by telephone or e-mail.

6. Use of service animals and support persons

We are committed to welcoming people with disabilities who are accompanied by a service animal on the parts of our premises that are open to the public and other third parties. We will also ensure that all staff, volunteers and others dealing with the public are properly trained in how to interact with people with disabilities who are accompanied by a service animal.

We are committed to welcoming people with disabilities who are accompanied by a support person. Any person with a disability who is accompanied by a support person will be allowed to enter easyhome’s premises with his or her support person. At no time will a person with a disability who is accompanied by a support person be prevented from having access to his or her support person while on our premises.

Wherever service animals are prohibited by law, we may provide personal assistance during the store visit.

7. Notice of temporary disruption

easyhome Ltd. will provide customers with notice in the event of a planned or unexpected disruption in the facilities or services usually used by people with disabilities. This notice will include information about the reason for the disruption, its anticipated duration, and a description of alternative facilities or services, if available.

The notice will be placed at all public entrances and service counters on our premises.

8. Training for staff

easyhome Ltd. will provide training to all employees, volunteers and others who deal with the public or other third parties on their behalf, and all those who are involved in the development and approvals of customer service policies, practices and procedures. Individuals in the following positions will be trained:

Regional managers, store managers, store staff, delivery drivers, contract staff, co-op students, distribution or warehouse staff, customer service agents and office staff.

This training will be provided during employee orientation after they commence their duties.

Training will include the following:

· The purposes of the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act, 2005 and the requirements of 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

· easyhome’s policies, practices and procedures relating to the customer service standard

· Instructions to staff on how to use equipment or devices available on our organization’s premises or otherwise provided by our organization, and how to assist a person with a disability who has trouble accessing your goods and services.

Applicable staff will be trained on policies, practices and procedures that affect the way goods and services are provided to people with disabilities. Staff will also be trained on an ongoing basis when changes are made to these policies, practices and procedures. 

As required, easyhome will keep records of the training provided.

9. Feedback process

The ultimate goal of easyhome Ltd. is to meet and surpass customer expectations while serving customers with disabilities. Comments on our services regarding how well those expectations are being met are welcome and appreciated.

Feedback regarding the way easyhome provides goods and services to people with disabilities can be made by e-mail, verbally, or by a suggestion feedback form. All feedback will be directed to the human resources department. Customers can expect to hear back in 15 business days.

Complaints will be addressed according to complaint categories already established in our company’s complaint management procedures.

10. Modifications to this or other policies

We are committed to developing customer service policies that respect and promote the dignity and independence of people with disabilities. Therefore, no changes will be made to this policy before considering the impact on people with disabilities.

Any policy of easyhome that does not respect and promote the dignity and independence of people with disabilities will be modified or removed.

11. Roles/Responsibilities: 

Employer:  The role of the employer is to establish proper tools and resources in support of providing goods or services that uphold the four key principles of dignity, independence, integration and equal opportunity for all persons, including persons with disabilities.

Manager:  The role of the manager is to ensure all employees under their direction have completed their training and support the policy.

Employees:  The role of every employee is to ensure their understanding of the Customer Service policy and to abide by the policy at all times.

12. Questions about this policy

This policy exists to achieve service excellence to customers with disabilities. If anyone has a question about the policy, would like to see our policies, or if the purpose of a policy is not understood, an explanation should be provided by, or referred to, human resources department at 33 City Centre Drive, Suite 510, Mississauga ON L5B 2N5 Canada – 905.272.2788.

See also easyhome Ltd. Multi-year Accessibility Plan and Integrated Accessibility Standards Regulation Policy Statement (IASR) Policies documents.