Accessibility Standards Canada: 2021 to 2022 Departmental Plan - Gender-based analysis plus

Definition of gender-based analysis plus (GBA+)

A process used to identify the impacts of policies, programs and services on different groups of:

  • women;
  • men; and
  • gender-diverse people.

The "plus" considers many factors, such as race, ethnicity, religion, age, and mental or physical disability.

Institutional GBA+ Capacity

A 10-member Board of Directors oversees Accessibility Standards Canada. The Accessible Canada Act requires the government to consider diversity when appointing Directors. This includes having Directors:

  • who are persons with disabilities;
  • that reflect the diversity of Canadian society; and
  • that reflect the diversity of disabilities faced by Canadians.

Directors are mostly persons with disabilities. They represent a variety of disabilities. There is gender equality on the Board. The Board is responsible for setting the organization’s strategic direction. It will help to make sure that GBA+ is included in departmental decision-making.

The organization was established in July 2019. It is a small departmental corporation. It has 56 planned full-time equivalents (employees) in 2021 to 2022. The organization has set the goal to have a workforce that reflects Canada’s diversity. This includes diversity at all levels including management positions. Job posters will include messaging to encourage members from the four employment equity groups to apply [1].

Part of the goal includes hiring more people with disabilities. The organization has set the goal to exceed labour market availability. The organization will continue to work with other partners such as:

  • the Public Service Commission through its Federal Internship Program for Canadians with Disabilities; and
  • Performance Plus Rehabilitative Care Inc.

The organization will have a new office space in 2021 to 2022. It will be one of the most accessible workspaces in North America.

The organization as a whole will collectively share responsibility to take GBA+ in consideration.

Highlights of GBA+ Results Reporting Capacity by Program

Program: Standards Development

This program supports the following pillars and goals in the Gender Results Framework:

  • Leadership and democratic participation – Gender equality in leadership roles and at all levels of decision-making;
  • Economic participation and prosperity – Equal and full participation in the economy; and
  • Poverty reduction, health and well-being – Reduced poverty and improved health outcomes.)

Leadership and Democratic Participation

Technical Committees

Accessibility Standards Canada encourages people from diverse communities to apply to its standards development technical committees. The selection process makes certain that there is balance between members, while ensuring the correct

level of expertise is there, to complete the work of the technical committees.

Our initial technical committees are made up of:

  • persons with disabilities;
  • organizations of and for persons with disabilities;
  • representatives from industries that would have to follow standards if they were made into regulations; and
  • other experts.

The GBA+ goal is to make sure that committees reflect diversity and gender equality. This will help to include GBA+ considerations in the standards development process. This goal means promoting the inclusion of persons with disabilities as well as:

  • women;
  • Indigenous persons; and
  • visible minorities.

The program will collect data on this GBA+ goal for future reporting.

Advancing Accessibility Standards Research

Accessibility in Indigenous communities is one of Accessibility Standards Canada’s priority areas for research in 2021 to 2022. Currently there is one funded project in this area. The organization will communicate with heads of Indigenous organizations and groups to inform them when the call for proposals is launched. They will be asked to share it within their network and to encourage organizations to submit proposals.

The GBA+ goal is to make sure that research reflects diversity. This will help to include Indigenous considerations in:

  • standards development; and
  • removing accessibility standards. 

The program will report on all research projects.

Economic Participation and Prosperity / Poverty Reduction, Health and Well-Being

Standards Development

Standards development will have a direct impact on Canadians, particularly:

  • persons with disabilities; and
  • persons experiencing intersecting identity factors.

Currently, Accessibility Standards Canada does not measure GBA+ impacts of the program on stakeholders (individuals). It does plan to collect data that supports GBA+ as the program matures.

Program: Outreach and Knowledge Program

This program supports the following pillar and goal in the Gender Results Framework:

  • Leadership and democratic participation – Gender equality in leadership roles and at all levels of decision-making.

Leadership and Democratic Participation

Stakeholder Engagement Strategy

Accessibility Standards Canada plans to engage Indigenous peoples and governments. This includes meeting with national Indigenous organizations. This also includes outreach to these organizations and Indigenous disability groups to promote:

  • the inclusion of Indigenous persons on technical committees; and
  • research funding for Indigenous-led projects.

These activities support the GBA+ goals noted above under the standards development program.

The organization also plans to engage youth. This includes holding a virtual youth accessibility forum. This forum will be held at the same time as the annual public meeting planned for 2021.

The GBA+ goal is to create an opportunity for youth with disabilities to:

  • come together;
  • share their thoughts; and
  • inform our work.

The program will report on the outcomes of the youth accessibility forum.


[1] The Employment Equity Act identifies and defines the designated groups as women, Aboriginal people, people with disabilities and visible minorities.