The AODA’s Transportation Standards were adopted in 2011. They include detailed technical requirements for regular transit and paratransit. They also include obligations for municipalities and for school boards, colleges, universities and hospitals that provide transportation.
Transit providers must inform the public about their accessibility services and equipment. This information must be given in an accessible format upon request.
Transit providers must give their employees accessibility training, including on the safe use of accessibility equipment and on emergency procedures for passengers with disabilities.
Regular transit, paratransit and taxis can’t charge more for passengers with disabilities or charge a fee for storing their mobility aids.
Support persons must travel for free.
Transit providers must have emergency response policies for the safety of people with disabilities.
When accessibility equipment isn’t working, transit providers must try to accommodate people with disabilities. They must also repair the equipment as soon as possible.
Regular transit providers must hold at least one public meeting per year with people with disabilities to review their accessibility plans. These plans must explain their process for dealing with feedback and accessibility equipment problems.
Vehicles must have reserved seating for passengers with disabilities.
They must also have two or more spaces for people using mobility aids.
At least one car per train must be wheelchair accessible.
All stops must be announced verbally and visually.
Other Technical Requirements
Regular transit providers must also meet technical requirements for things like:
- ramps and lifts (non-slip, audio and visual warnings)
- steps (non-slip, uniform)
- grab bars (throughout the vehicle)
- signs (high colour contrast, consistent)
- lights (near passenger doors)
- floors (non-slip, minimal glare)
- stop and emergency requests (accessible, audio and visual)
Paratransit providers must include in their accessibility plans a process for estimating service demands. They must also include steps to reduce wait times.
Paratransit must offer at least the same hours and days of service as regular transit. Whenever possible, it must provide same-day service.
Paratransit providers can’t limit the number of trips that users can request.
Children must be allowed to travel with their parents. Passengers must also be allowed to travel with someone else if space is available.
Paratransit must be available to visitors with disabilities from other cities.
Municipalities must consult their Accessibility Advisory Committees when building or renovating bus stops. They must include information about accessible bus stops in their accessibility plans.
They must also make sure that taxi companies don’t charge a higher fare for passengers with disabilities or a fee for storing their mobility aids.
School boards must develop an individual school transportation plan for each student with a disability who needs one.
Hospitals, colleges and universities that provide transportation must provide accessible transit upon request.
Click here to learn more about the AODA.