Minutes of the Board of Directors’ meeting – November 25 to 27, 2019


Members of the Board of Directors (the Board)

  • Me Paul-Claude Bérubé, Chairperson
  • Mary Reid, Vice-Chairperson
  • William Adair, Director (November 25 and 26)
  • Kory Earle, Director
  • Maureen Haan, Director
  • Penny Hartin, Director
  • Rabia Khedr, Director
  • Brad McCannell, Director (by teleconference)
  • Dr. Joe McLaughlin, Director
  • Laurie Ringaert, Director (except November 26 p.m.)

Accessibility Standards Canada staff members

  • Philip Rizcallah, Chief Executive Officer (CEO)
  • Kevin Whitehouse, Director General
  • Maggie Saunders, Acting Manager, Corporate Secretariat
  • Micah Walter, Policy Analyst (November 25 a.m.)
  • Tania Magloire, Human Resources Manager (November 25 a.m. and November 27 a.m.)
  • Nathalie Poitras, Administration Manager (November 25 a.m.)
  • Christina Richard, Communications Manager (November 26 p.m.)
  • Collinda Joseph, Acting Manager, Standards Development (November 26 p.m.)
  • Andre Madrid, Deputy Chief Financial Officer (November 27 a.m.)
  • Heather Throop, Consultant (November 27 a.m.)
  • Lorraine Trudel, Coordinator, Corporate Secretariat


  • Michelle Reimer, Facilitator (November 26 a.m.)


Monday, November 25, 2019

1. Welcoming remarks

The Chairperson reiterated that Board members and Accessibility Standards Canada staff are building the foundation of this organization to help create inclusivity for all Canadians.

2. Board meeting agenda

The meeting was opened at 9:00 a.m. in Ottawa, Ontario, with words of welcome from the Chairperson.

3. Approval of the agenda

03-1 Motion for the approval of the agenda. Seconded.

Carried by all.

4. Governance: By-Law Number 1 and Governance Policy

These policy documents have been reviewed by the Accessibility Standards Canada legal counsel. (See documents 3A; 3B; 3C).

By-Law Number 1

By-Law Number 1 sets out provisions respecting how the Board shall carry out its activities and conduct its affairs. A copy of the By-Law will be shared with the Minister. The By-Law will be made public once finalized. After thorough discussion, the Directors proposed moderate changes to the document.

03-2 Motion to approve By-Law Number 1 as presented with proposed modifications. Seconded.

Carried by all.

Governance Policy

The Governance Policy document includes detailed provisions regarding Board of Directors meetings, the requirement for the establishment of evaluation mechanisms, and the terms of reference for the 5 standing committees of the Board. The Policy will be made public once finalized. After discussion, the Directors propose moderate changes to the document.

03-3 Motion to approve the Governance Policy with the proposed modifications. Seconded.

Carried by all.

5. Timing and location of the next Board of Directors meetings

Document 31A

Directors were presented with options for time and locations for holding the February 10 to 12, 2020 Board of Directors’ meeting and the April 6 to 8, 2020 Annual Public Meeting.

03-4 Motion was presented to hold the next Board of Directors’ meeting of February 10 to 12, 2020 in Vancouver, British Columbia. Seconded. A resolution stated that if Vancouver is not possible, Montreal would be the alternate location.

Carried by all.

03-5 Motion was presented to hold the Board of Directors’ Annual Public Meeting on April 6 to 8, 2020 in Toronto, Ontario. Seconded.

Carried by all.

6. Nominations of members for standing committees and recruitment policy

Documents 9A, 9B and 9C

For clarification, the word Chairperson refers to the Chair of the Board and the committee chairs refers to the chairs of the standing committees.

The Chairperson stated that the purpose of the Nomination Committee is to have a process in place to make recommendations for the involvement of independent participants as members of these committees along with representation of Directors.

Work plans for each committee will be approved at the next Board meeting. Each committee’s work plan will include: the actions, time frame and staff member(s) supporting the work. A template for a 12-month work plan will be shared by the committee chair.

03-6 Motion that the Board of Directors approves the Recruitment Policy and approves the Chairperson’s nominations of Accessibility Standards Canada Board members to the Standing committees. The 5 Standing Committees are composed as the following:

  • Strategic Planning Committee: Maureen Haan (Chair), Mary Reid and Dr. Joe McLaughlin
  • Governance Committee: Kory Earle (Chair), Laurie Ringaert and William Adair
  • External Relations Committee: Penny Hartin (Chair), Mary Reid and Dr. Joe McLaughlin
  • Nominations Committee: Rabia Khedr (Chair), Dr. Joe McLaughlin and William Adair
  • Performance Appraisal Committee: Brad McCannell (Chair), William Adair and Laurie Ringaert


Carried by all.

7. Updated/travel and reimbursement guidelines

Documents 10A and 10B

A summary of the Travel and Reimbursement Guidelines was presented to the Directors and the Board was informed that the guidelines meet the federal government requirements.

03-7 Motion to approve the revised Travel Reimbursement and Payment Guidelines and also to approve the recommended change of name of document to “Accessibility Standards Canada Travel Reimbursement and Salary Per Diem Reimbursement Guidelines”. All further amendments will be brought to the next Board of Directors meeting for approval. Seconded.

Carried by all.

03-8 Motion to adjourn the meeting at 4:15 p.m. Seconded.

Carried by all.

Tuesday, November 26, 2019

03-9 Motion to re-open the meeting at 9:00 a.m. Seconded.

Carried by all.

8. Opening remarks

The morning session provided a forum for Directors to present their vision for Accessibility Standards Canada.

9. Vision and strategic planning

Document 13A

The vision and strategic planning process took into account the principles and mandate from the Accessible Canada Act with clear objectives to be attained by 2040. A summary of the session will be given to Board members by the facilitator.

10. Communications and Public Engagement Strategy (PES)

Documents 17A, 17B, 17C

Board members discussed the details of the strategy and, in addition to recommending a number of changes, they requested that the Engagement Strategy be separated into 2 documents: a Communications Strategy (which could be a policy and procedures document) and a Public Engagement Strategy.

It was recommended that the communications strategy takes into consideration the items identified in the Standard Pillar session held earlier in the day, and include plans on how Accessibility Standards Canada will convey the standards and all other forms of communications with the public. Modification to be made on page 12, under bullet 2, that the word “businesses” be included in this item instead of “entities”. Board members were informed that all Accessibility Standards Canada staff will soon be trained in plain language writing. For future Board minutes, a record of proposed modifications would be included in the motions.

03-10 Motion to approve the Communications and Public Engagement Strategy document which includes guidelines for representing Accessibility Standards Canada, as presented with proposed modifications. Seconded.

Carried by all.

11. Priority areas for standards

Documents 19A, 19B, 19C, 19D and 19E

The “Important Areas for Standards Development” document outlined proposed areas of standard priorities for employment, service dogs in transportation, emergency egress, and outdoor spaces. Directors exchanged views on the various areas for standards development.

03-11 Motion to approve the standard areas of emergency egress, employment and outdoor spaces and that the area of “service dogs in transportation” be replaced with the “Plain language” standard. Seconded.

Carried by all.

12. Minutes of the board meeting: September 30 to October 2, 2019 and of the special meeting of November 14, 2019

Documents 22A and 22C

03-12 Motion to approve the minutes of the Board of Directors’ Regular meeting of September 30 to October 2, 2019. Seconded.

Carried by all.

03-13 Motion to approve the minutes of the Board of Directors’ Special meeting of November 14th, 2019. Seconded.

Carried by all.

Document 22B: Action item list

Directors reviewed items from the “Accessibility Standards Canada Board of Directors Action Item Tracker” to identify those areas of business which are completed and those that need further actions.

13. Chair’s update

Document 24A

The Chairperson informed Directors of his availability in the month to come. He stated that all Directors can represent Accessibility Standards Canada at the local, regional or national level and he reminded members to submit to him all requests for approval to attend community events in the name of Accessibility Standards Canada.

14. CEO’s update

Document 25A: Chief Executive Officer (CEO) report

Processes are being set in place to increase staffing over the coming years as well as establishing a framework on grants and contributions. The CEO also gave a summary of the work plan for the new Accessibility Standards Canada location.

15. Closing remarks

03-14 Motion to adjourn the meeting at 4:30 p.m. Seconded.

Carried by all.

Wednesday, November 27, 2019

16. Opening remarks

03-15 Motion to reopen the meeting at 9:00 a.m. Seconded.

Carried by all.

17. Business arising

Document 23A

Directors were reminded to fill out the “Evaluation Report” for this Board meeting as all recommendations will be taken into account for improvement of future Board of Directors meetings.

18. Finance

Document 26A: Accessibility Standards Canada finance operations

A summary of Accessibility Standards Canada’s budget was presented outlining Accessibility Standards Canada’s relationship with ESDC. A financial forecast was presented for the remainder of 2019 and the upcoming fiscal year. The Board requested that future fiscal forecasts contain a narrative that explains any significant variances. Budget information will be available to the public for information.

19. In-camera session

03-16 Motion to have an in-camera session at 11:10 a.m. Seconded.

Carried by all.

03-17 Motion to close the in-camera session at 12:00 p.m. Seconded.

Carried by all.

20. Correspondence

Documents 28A and 28B

Correspondence previously shared with the Board at the 1st regular Board meeting will be included in the agenda and the documents for the February 2020 Board of Directors meeting.

21. CEO performance appraisal and board evaluation

Documents 29A and 29B: Summary and performance agreement and evaluation form

03-18 Motion that the Board approves the planning assumptions on the creation of performance goals for the Chief Executive Officer (CEO). The Board of Directors recommends that the Board’s “Performance Appraisal Committee” creates the goals for further discussion. Seconded.

Carried by all.

22. Other business

Documents 32A, 32B and 32C

The Directors discussed specific items for consideration in the development and involvement of their work with Accessibility Standards Canada. There was also discussion on Accessibility Standards Canada’s involvement and representation in events related to the International Day of Persons with Disabilities being held on December 3, 2019.

The Chairperson announced that the Canadian Foundation for Physically Disabled Persons has chosen Accessibility Standards Canada’s Board Director Penny Hartin as the award recipient for this year’s achievement award in recognition for her work and contributions to this organization. The annual award will be presented to her on February 8, 2020, in Toronto.

The Board discussed a request from the British Columbia Aboriginal Network on Disability Society (BCANDS) that Accessibility Standards Canada annually proclaim November as Aboriginal Disability Month.

23. End of meeting

03-19 Motion to adjourn at 1:30 p.m.

Carried by all.