Technical committee for a model standard for the built environment - accessibility

Role

The role of the technical committee is to:

  • Identify barriers to accessibility in the built environment
  • Take into account emerging trends in the area of accessibility of the built environment
  • Develop a model standard for the built environment - accessibility that will reflect language consistent with the national model building code. This standard will apply best practices in accessibility of the built environment.

Compensation for individual members

We are adopting Canadian and international practices to develop accessibility standards. We will recruit experts from various backgrounds. These are volunteer roles as most members will represent organizations. If an individual with a disability is not paid by an organization, we will compensate them for their role as an expert on a technical committee.

Travel directive

If members need to travel, Accessibility Standards Canada covers expenditures, as per the Government of Canada travel directive.

Areas of focus

There are common areas where persons with disabilities may face barriers related to the built environment. These include, but are not limited to:

  • building entrances;
  • paths of travel;
  • access to storeys;
  • parking and loading zones;
  • controls;
  • power door operators;
  • assistive listening devices;
  • signage;
  • washrooms and universal washrooms (including showers).

Membership

 

Experts with disabilities are key to the successful development of accessibility standards. Experts with disabilities, as well as other experts, would fit into one of the stakeholder categories noted below.

Each technical committee will have 12 to 18 members to represent the following categories:

Persons with disabilities

The Accessible Canada Act defines a person with a disability as a person with any impairment, including a physical, mental, intellectual, cognitive, learning, communication or sensory impairment — or a functional limitation — whether permanent, temporary or episodic in nature, or evident or not, that, in interaction with a barrier, hinders a person’s full and equal participation in society.

Industry and commerce
  • Manufacturers, producers and designers
  • Service industries
  • Distribution, warehousing and transport companies
  • Retailers
  • Insurance companies and banks
  • Business and trade associations
Government authorities
  • Groups that represent regional treaty organizations
  • Federal, provincial and territorial or municipal government groups
  • Groups that make rules
Consumer and public interest
  • Groups that represent consumers and that have nothing to do with "industry and commerce"
  • Experts who represent consumers or the public interest
Labour and unions

Groups that represent trade unions and trade union federations. The goal of these groups is to look out for the collective interest of employees in relation to their employers.

University groups and research groups
  • Universities and other higher educational institutions
  • Teachers who represent the universities
  • Professional associations
  • Research institutions
Non-governmental organizations

Groups that do not aim to make profits and that care about society or the environment.

Standards development organizations

An accredited organization that makes, approves, publishes and manages standards.

 

Frequently asked questions

 

How will members be chosen?

Accessibility Standards Canada's technical committees have members who are persons with disabilities and stakeholders whose work could be affected by our standards. This means that our committees are well-balanced.  It also means that the standards we create are reliable and:

  1. reflect the needs and perspectives of Canadians with disabilities;
  2. take into consideration the needs of the organizations which will apply those standards;
  3. take into consideration the perspectives of partners, including provinces and territories; and
  4. leads to best practices.

These four aspects will increase the adoption of the standards.

How does the selection process work?

A selection panel reviews all applications and chooses members.

We review applications for:

  • lived experience of persons with disabilities
  • professional experience
  • education and training experience
  • technical knowledge, and
  • stakeholder category

We are creating technical committees with a balance of perspectives. This includes perspectives coming from persons with disabilities and representatives from all stakeholder categories listed in the Membership section above.

Will persons with disabilities be compensated for their work as experts on the committees?

We are following Canadian and international best practices to develop our standards. This means we recruit persons with disabilities and other experts to be sure our committees are balanced.  These are volunteer roles, but if an expert with a disability is not paid by an organization, we will pay them for their role on a technical committee.

Will I be reimbursed if there is travel involved?

Committee meetings are currently online. If members eventually need to travel, Accessibility Standards Canada will cover some expenditures, as per the Government of Canada travel directive.

Where will meetings be held?

The safety of our committee members is our priority so committee meetings will take place online for the foreseeable future.

Will meetings be accessible?

Accessibility Standards Canada will work with technical committee members to meet their accessibility needs.