2022-2025 Accessibility Plan

General

Document accessibility:

Although accessible formatting was considered throughout this document, if you are unable to view this electronic version of this plan or a printed version, and you require an alternate format, please contact us at one of the following addresses: 
mailto:Diversity-diversite.GEN-NHQ@CSC-SCC.GC.CA or

CSC National Headquarters
340 Laurier Avenue West
Ottawa, Ontario
K1A 0P9
Phone: (613) 992-5891
Fax: (613) 943-1630

Background:

Creating a culture of equity, diversity and inclusion is a key priority across the Public Service. The 2019 Accessible Canada Act (ACA) requires that the federal government provide an accessible environment for everyone accessing its services, including staff, offenders, victims and members of the public. This is a fundamental expansion of previous plans for accessibility, whereby changes proposed are meant to improve accessibility for all. Accessible environments provide independence to individuals with disabilities, and they benefit everyone, including those who have not identified as having a disability.

Prior to the ACA legislation, the Correctional Service of Canada (CSC) recognized the need to be more inclusive. In 2016, after cross-country consultations with employees with disabilities, the former Commissioner tasked CSC’s Persons with Disabilities Champion and Chair with establishing a National Employees with Disabilities Working Group that implemented an Action Plan entitled Working Together to Put People First: Our Journey Towards Inclusion. Since 2016, CSC has strengthened its practices and is more inclusive as a result. However, more can be done to remove barriers and allow all individuals to participate to their full potential.

This 2022-2025 Accessibility Plan identifies, eliminates, and prevents accessibility barriers within CSC in response to the ACA and the 2019 Accessibility Strategy for the Public Service. In response to the requirements of the ACA, and to continue the work of the previous National Employees with Disabilities Working Group, CSC has developed this Accessibility Plan through consultations with employees and offenders with disabilities and senior management across the organization. CSC embraces greater diversity and acknowledges its obligations under the ACA. It is committed to creating an inclusive and accessible workplace where staff, offenders, victims and members of the public can contribute while feeling safe and respected.

To this end, CSC and other federal organizations are convening diversity and inclusion networks to ensure that employees are mobilized to embrace a greater diversity of voices and to make their workplaces ones where everyone’s contributions are valued.

Methodology and consultations:

In accordance with the ACA, government departments are required to develop and implement an accessibility plan.

In June 2020, under the leadership of CSC’s Persons with Disabilities Champion and Chair, the National Employees with Disabilities Working Group (referred to as ‘the working group’ hereafter) was re-established to consult employees with disabilities and all sectors of the organization on this Accessibility Plan, which is guided by the goals of the Accessibility Strategy for the Public Service of Canada (2019). The working group is comprised of representatives from each of the six CSC regions.

A project lead from the working group was identified to oversee this initiative and the working group began meeting virtually in July 2020. In accordance with its Terms of Reference, the working group met regularly during fiscal years 2020-2021 and 2021-2022. They also consulted with sector representatives during Spring and Summer 2021 to identify, and remove accessibility barriers within CSC and to develop proposed actions to be included in CSC’s Accessibility Plan.

This Plan was developed in consultation with senior management, bargaining agents (unions), employees and offenders. For more details on how the plan was developed, please refer to Appendix C.

Accessibility Plan:

CSC’s Accessibility Plan addresses five departmental goals which are outlined in the Accessibility Strategy for the Public Service (2019). Each goal captures the actions CSC will undertake to identify, remove, and prevent barriers to accessibility. A summary of the goals and objectives are as follows:

Employment

Goal 1: Improve recruitment, retention, and promotion of persons with disabilities

Item 1: Planning strategically to hire a diverse workforce.

Activity Performance Indicator Timeline Office of Primary Interest

a) Develop hiring objectives for persons with disabilities to close gaps in the representation.

i) Representation of persons with disabilities has increased.

Ongoing.

Human Resource Management (HRM).

a) Develop hiring objectives for persons with disabilities to close gaps in the representation.

ii) Hiring objectives are integrated into the annual Human Resource (HR) planning cycle.

Annual.

HRM.

b) Promote self-identification to monitor and report on progress.

The Self-Identification Campaign is promoted and supported. 

Annual.

HRM.

c) Equip hiring managers with staffing resources and tools to address gaps for persons with disabilities, such as:

  • Increasing representation through a staffing process;
  • Real time Power Business intelligence data analysis tools;
  • Best practices in staffing;
    and,
  • Assessment of candidates.

Tools and resources are shared with hiring managers and available on the internal network.

Ongoing.

HRM.

d) Ensure that accessibility considerations are included in departmental, sectoral, regional, and unit level HR plans.

Accessibility considerations are integrated into all business planning processes.

Annual.

Executive Committee (EXCOM).

Item 2: Removing and preventing barriers during recruitment and staffing processes.

Activity Performance Indicator Timeline Office of Primary Interest

a) Address representation gaps using staffing flexibilities, available programs and tools.

Persons with disabilities representation gap has narrowed.

Ongoing.

EXCOM.

b) Job advertisements and selection processes to include accommodation procedures.

Accommodation procedures are identified in advertisements and processes.

Winter 2021-2022 and

Ongoing.

HRM.

c) Education is provided to hiring managers on how to remove potential barriers.

Managers are provided with resources and education on removing barriers for accommodation.

Winter 2021-2022 and

Ongoing.

HRM.

d) Reduce assessment barriers for candidates with disabilities by exploring the expanded use of alternate methods of assessments during selection processes.

Alternative accessible testing platforms are provided as an option during selection processes.

Ongoing.

HRM.

Item 3: Developing and promoting persons with disabilities employed at CSC.

Activity Performance Indicator Timeline Office of Primary Interest

a) Make opportunities available specifically for employees with disabilities such as micro-missionsFootnote 1 , acting, and assignment opportunities.

Acting, assignment, and promotion rates for persons with disabilities increase.

Ongoing.

EXCOM.

b) Pilot a Sponsorship Program.

Review number of persons with disabilities participating in the program.

Winter/Spring 2022.

HRM.

c) Apply a “yes-by-default” approach to accommodation and assistive technology requests.

Employee reports on the accommodation process.

Spring 2022 and Ongoing.

EXCOM.

Item 4: Supporting a culture of inclusion.

Activity Performance Indicator Timeline Office of Primary Interest

a) Through consultation with employees with disabilities and subject matter experts, review internal HR policies and processes to ensure that they are accessible and inclusive.

Consultations and reviews of HR policies and processes to ensure accessibility and inclusion are considered.

Ongoing.

HRM.

b) Communications to all staff on accessibility awareness and accommodation resources.

A promotion campaign on International Persons with Disabilities Day and Accessibility Week, and opportunities which promote accessibility.

Annual and Ongoing.

EXCOM.

c) Continue to adapt and develop resources for staff on accessibility and Duty to Accommodate processes.

i) Pilot of the Government of Canada’s Workplace Accessibility Passport (Passport):

July 2021-Winter 2021-2022.

HRM.

c) Continue to adapt and develop resources for staff on accessibility and Duty to Accommodate processes.

Phase I: Implement Pilot Passport Project at National Headquarters (NHQ).

Spring 2022 and Ongoing.

HRM.

c) Continue to adapt and develop resources for staff on accessibility and Duty to Accommodate processes.

Phase II: Regional implementation of Pilot Passport Project (including training)

Spring 2022 and Ongoing.

HRM.

c) Continue to adapt and develop resources for staff on accessibility and Duty to Accommodate processes.

ii) Promotion of Shared Services Canada’s Accessibility, Accommodations and Adaptive Computer Technology Lending Library Service Pilot Project.

Semi-annual.

HRM, Information Management Systems (IMS), and Communications and Engagement (C&E).

Built Environment

Goal 2: Enhance the accessibility of the built environment

Item 1: Reviewing accessibility standards in consultation with persons with disabilities.

Activity Performance Indicator Timeline Office of Primary Interest

a) Identify current standards of accessibility, and conduct a review with persons with disabilities for varied facility types (institutions, community correctional centres, district and parole offices, and training facilities).

*Noted that leased administrative sites are under the purview of Public Services and Procurement Canada fit-up standards and timelines.

Consultation is conducted and summarized for EXCOM distribution.

Fall 2022.

Corporate Services (CS).

b) Update CSC’s Technical Criteria, Facility Guidelines and other design documents, in consultation with persons with disabilities, to reflect approved accessibility standards within the context of security, operations, and facility type.

Various CSC standards documents were reviewed and updated to include approved elements of accessibility standards.

Spring 2022-Fall 2023 (or as part of the regular standards document updates).

CS.

Item 2: Developing an accessibility assessment strategy and facility assessments.

Activity Performance Indicator Timeline Office of Primary Interest

a) Develop an accessibility assessment strategy or other evaluation materials for varied CSC facility types.

Methodology and the timeline are determined for conducting accessibility assessments of varied CSC facility types.

Spring 2022-Fall 2022 and Ongoing.

CS.

b) Through consultation with persons with disabilities, conduct an accessibility assessment of CSC’s facilities to identify how they could be made more accessible and inclusive.

Phase 1: Accessibility assessments of varied CSC facility types are conducted by CSC and/or contracted out.

Fall 2022-Spring 2025.

CS.

b) Through consultation with persons with disabilities, conduct an accessibility assessment of CSC’s facilities to identify how they could be made more accessible and inclusive.

Phase 2: Evaluation of the assessment results is completed and a work plan is established.

Fall 2022-Spring 2025.

CS.

c) Where applicable, assess any new builds, or renovations to existing facilities to ensure they are considering accessibility needs.

Consultation process is developed and integrated into the design process. Persons with disabilities will be included as stakeholders for each new or major renovation project.

Within each project timeline.

CS.

Item 3: Providing the necessary resources to address gaps identified by facility accessibility assessments.

Activity Performance Indicator Timeline Office of Primary Interest

Based on the work plan identified (above), develop a list of prioritized projects to be submitted for funding through the Capital Program of Work

Projects are completed on a prioritized basis to meet CSC’s accessibility standards.

Ongoing beginning in Spring 2023 – timeline based on availability of funding.

CS.

Item 4: Reviewing the accessibility of emergency evacuation plans.

Activity Performance Indicator Timeline Office of Primary Interest

Ensure that emergency evacuation plans account for the needs of persons with disabilities.

A national reminder sent to all facilities that the emergency evacuation plans must account for the needs of persons with disabilities, including the self-identification of persons requiring assistance.

Annual.

Correctional Operations and Programs (COP) Sector in collaboration with CS.

Information and communication technologies (ICT) and Communication other than ICT

Goal 3: Make information and communications technology usable by all

Item 1: Reviewing technology systems.

Activity Performance Indicator Timeline Office of Primary Interest

Undertake thorough review to ensure that equipment, websites and applications are accessible, and develop a plan to address shortfalls, including building standard requirements into procurement process and documentation.

i) Equipment is accessible and a straight forward process is in place for specialized equipment requests (i.e., screen reader, ergonomic keyboard/mouse, monitor, etc.).

Current and Ongoing.

IMS.

Undertake thorough review to ensure that equipment, websites and applications are accessible, and develop a plan to address shortfalls, including building standard requirements into procurement process and documentation.

ii) CSC’s intranet meets Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) and content editors are equipped to meet accessibility standards.

Ongoing.

EXCOM with support from HRM (Learning and Development) and C&E.

Undertake thorough review to ensure that equipment, websites and applications are accessible, and develop a plan to address shortfalls, including building standard requirements into procurement process and documentation.

iii) Whenever possible, in partnership with the Application Modernization Project, applications will be assessed, recommendations will be provided, and any new or restructured applications will meet WCAG accessibility compliance.

Fall 2021- Fall 2028.

EXCOM with support from HRM (Learning and Development) and C&E.

Item 2: Promoting awareness of digital accessibility standards.

Activity Performance Indicator Timeline Office of Primary Interest

Explore opportunities to collaborate on digital accessibility training strategies and the promotion of digital accessibility with other sectors.

Collaboration on digital training strategies and digital accessibility is promoted.

FY 2021-2022 and Ongoing.

EXCOM.

Item 3: Applying accessibility standards in all documents.

Activity Performance Indicator Timeline Office of Primary Interest

Review all CSC documents (including, reports and forms) to ensure they meet accessibility standards.

Phase 1: All templates, new reports, documents and forms will be reviewed and edited for accessibility.

Spring 2022 and Ongoing.

EXCOM.

Review all CSC documents (including, reports and forms) to ensure they meet accessibility standards.

Phase 2: Documents conform to accepted print guidelines (i.e.: CSC and Public Service Writing Guide) and a provision for requesting an alternative format is available.

Spring 2024.

EXCOM.

Procurement of goods, services and facilities; Design and delivery of programs and services and Transportation

Goal 4: Equip public servants to design and deliver accessible programs and services

Item 1: Providing tools to employees and managers.

Activity Performance Indicator Timeline Office of Primary Interest

a) In collaboration with the CSC Persons with Disabilities Network, and using the Public Service Employee Survey satisfaction data results from persons with disabilities, build a continuous quality improvement review of HR tools.

i) Review of HR tools is undertaken based on feedback from persons with disabilities.

Annual.

HRM.

a) In collaboration with the CSC Persons with Disabilities Network, and using the Public Service Employee Survey satisfaction data results from persons with disabilities, build a continuous quality improvement review of HR tools.

ii) Identified barriers are reviewed and removed.

Ongoing.

HRM.

a) In collaboration with the CSC Persons with Disabilities Network, and using the Public Service Employee Survey satisfaction data results from persons with disabilities, build a continuous quality improvement review of HR tools.

iii) The Public Service Employee Survey satisfaction results for persons with disabilities improve.

Annual.

HRM.

b) Encourage employees and managers to consult both internal and external sources for guidance on developing accessible programs and services so that employees can consider accessibility factors for internal services (such as: audits, investigations, financial reporting, documents, interviews, meetings, and online surveys).

i) Employees develop accessible programs and services.

Ongoing.

EXCOM, with the department’s Designated Official for Service Management.

b) Encourage employees and managers to consult both internal and external sources for guidance on developing accessible programs and services so that employees can consider accessibility factors for internal services (such as: audits, investigations, financial reporting, documents, interviews, meetings, and online surveys).

ii) Barriers are reviewed and removed in CSC internal services.

Ongoing.

EXCOM, with the department’s Designated Official for Service Management.

Item 2: For offenders: identifying and removing accessibility barriers.

Activity Performance Indicator Timeline Office of Primary Interest

a) Develop a mechanism to gather feedback from offenders on their accessibility related needs in all interventions, programs and services.

Accessibility feedback is received from participants of offender programs and services.

March 2023.

EXCOM.

b) Remove barriers identified and ensure that any new offender programs and/or initiatives meet accessibility requirements.

Barriers are removed and new programs and/or initiatives are accessible.

Spring 2022 and Ongoing.

EXCOM.

Item 3: Preventing accessibility barriers in the workplace.

Activity Performance Indicator Timeline Office of Primary Interest

Include accessibility statements, which incorporate contact information, in all correspondence with CSC’s internal and external stakeholders to ensure accessibility for all.

Corporate correspondence includes accessibility statements and contact options.

Winter 2021 - 2022 and Ongoing.

EXCOM.

Build an accessibility-confident public service by:

Goal 5: Build an accessibility-confident public service

Item 1: Providing resources and leadership to employees and managers on accessibility.

Activity Performance Indicator Timeline Office of Primary Interest

a) Provide resources and ensure concerns can be raised confidentially.

i) Accessibility and accommodation resources are centralized and promoted to all employees.

Current and Ongoing.

HRM.

a) Provide resources and ensure concerns can be raised confidentially.

ii) Public Service Employee Survey results that reflect an increase in confidence around accessibility in the workplace.

Current and Ongoing.

EXCOM.

b) Continue to support grassroots networks and sense of belonging for persons with disabilities.

i) CSC has identified a Champion and a Chair for Persons with Disabilities.

Current and Ongoing.

HRM with support of EXCOM.

b) Continue to support grassroots networks and sense of belonging for persons with disabilities.

ii) An employee network is available and promoted.

Current and Ongoing.

HRM with support of EXCOM.

b) Continue to support grassroots networks and sense of belonging for persons with disabilities.

iii) All employees are encouraged to participate in grassroots networks.

Current and Ongoing.

HRM with support of EXCOM.

c) Promote Government of Canada initiatives, annual commemorative dates, and support all employees to proactively eliminate and prevent accessibility barriers.

CSC identified a Persons with Disabilities Chair and Champion to be involved in interdepartmental committees, to provide information to staff about initiatives, and encourage all to actively support CSC’s Accessibility Plan.

Winter 2021-2022 and Ongoing.

HRM with support of EXCOM.

d) Make information and guides available to employees in order that all employees can produce and adjust accessible documents.

Employees have access to guides on modifying documents and creating new documents that are accessible.

Ongoing.

EXCOM with support of C&E.

Item 2: Normalizing individual accountability for accessibility.

Activity Performance Indicator Timeline Office of Primary Interest

a) Equip employees to provide accessible documents.

Instructions for making accessible documents (Word, Excel, Outlook messages, PowerPoint) are available and promoted on the intranet.

Winter 2021-2022 and quarterly.

EXCOM with support of C&E.

b) Encourage innovative communication methods to increase access to accessibility information.

Develop and promote self-directed, interactive accessibility guides.

Ongoing.

EXCOM with support of C&E.

c) Ensure that all memorandums with any promulgated documents are accessible and materials include an accessibility statement (i.e.: contact information for feedback, alternative formats, accessibility, etc.)

Memorandums reviewed will include an accessibility statement prior to distribution.

Winter 2021-2022 and ongoing.

EXCOM with support of C&E.

Item 3: Improving CSC’s accessibility culture, learning and innovation.

Activity Performance Indicator Timeline Office of Primary Interest

Share best practices with the Office of Public Service Accessibility (OPSA) and other organizations to encourage collaboration within the Government of Canada and to achieve consistency across government departments, where possible.

Ideas are shared with OPSA and other departments.

Ongoing.

EXCOM.

Appendix A: Best practices and resources

Tips on how to contribute to an accessibe workplace and welcome an inclusive workforce:

  • Be supportive and implement what is needed to allow accessibility for all.
  • Challenge the norms and practices that contribute to bias and discrimination, especially with regards to recruitment, promotion and sponsoring individuals. Be an example to others by being aware of your own bias and privileges.
  • Be an ally to equity-seeking individuals, such as persons with disabilities.
  • Empower others by ensuring accessibility is the norm. Whether this is when you are sharing a document that has utilized an accessibility checker or when dialoguing with individuals struggling with mental health and strategizing changes to lessen their anxieties.
  • Create an environment where individuals are comfortable sharing their experiences and expertise on removing the accessibility barriers encountered.
  • Educate yourself on why employment equity is invaluable to achieving inclusion, innovation, and diversity.

More resources:

Government of Canada legislation on accessibility requirements

For more information on accessibility in the public service

A wealth of accessibility resources, hosted by OPSA

OPSA Progress Report

OPSA 2019 Accessibility Strategy Report

2019 OPSA at the Treasury Board of Canada Secretariat comprehensive study of workplace accommodation practices

Appendix B: Feedback

We want to hear from you!

  • Feedback regarding the Implementation of the Accessibility Plan

Employees at CSC will be consulted on the implementation of the Accessibility Plan as part of the required annual update process. As per the 2019 ACA, the annual progress reports for this plan must include the feedback on the implementation of that was received by CSC and how that feedback was taken into consideration. Upon audit, documentation will be provided to the Accessibility Commissioner.

Members of the public can submit feedback on the implementation of this plan by using this online form: https://www.csc-scc.gc.ca/contact-us/008-0001-eng.shtml, and choosing Publications.   

Offenders in the care and custody of CSC will be consulted on the implementation of the plan through inmate committees, in accordance with legislation and policy as per section 74 of the Corrections and Conditional Release Act (CCRA).

  • Feedback regarding accessibility of a CSC facility

Members of the public who wish to report feedback regarding accessibility in a CSC facility can contact the institutional administration directly. Contact information (phone number and mailing address) is listed in the National Facility Directory.  

Any complaints, comments and concerns from offenders regarding accessibility of facilities can be submitted through the offender request form and, if needed, escalated through the process described in CD 081 Offender Complaints and Grievances.  

  • Feedback regarding the barriers encountered by employees

CSC gathers anonymous feedback on the employment experience of persons with disabilities through the annual Public Service Employee Survey. Employees are encouraged to speak with their manager if they are experiencing barriers in their employment situation. The duty to accommodate (DTA) in the workplace is the legal requirement for employers to identify and review any rules, practices, expectations or procedures that have, or may have, a discriminatory impact on an individual or group. It applies to both employees and the public. Accommodations are provided to address an individual need. The goal of accessibility is to prevent barriers, in a proactive manner, rather than by a retroactive approach, which is often required when providing an accommodation.

The DTA Program can be reached at GEN-NATDTA-OPDMA@CSC-SCC.GC.CA. The Regional DTA Advisors’ phone list is available to employees on the internal network (Hub), and contains contact information for the regional advisors. The CSC/SCC Form 1555 Accommodation Form is the request form for an employee accommodation, intended to be submitted to the employee’s manager.

  • Feedback about programs and services

Any person who interacts with CSC can provide feedback about barriers they encounter in programs and services. CD 726 Correctional Programs, identifies the Assistant Deputy Commissioner, Integrated Services (ADCIS) in each region as the overseer of the quality and consistency in the delivery of correctional programs to all offenders across their respective region. The regional ADCIS can be reached at Regional Headquarters, by phone or in writing at the address found in the National Facility Directory.

In order to promote clinical independence and patient-centered care, the Health Services Sector has been, since November 2019, responsible for complaints and grievances related to Health Services. Consequently, written complaints or concerns can be addressed to the Chief of Health Services in the institution.

Any other complaints, comments and concerns from offenders regarding accessibility of programs and services can be submitted through the offender request form and, if needed, escalated through the process described in CD 081 Offender Complaints and Grievances.  

Appendix C: Consultation feedback

Wide consultations were carefully conducted to develop this Accessibility Plan and to ensure it was comprehensive and met the needs of employees, offenders, and stakeholders.

The following groups were consulted:

  • August 2021 Accessibility Plan was draft and shared to CSC HRM Branches;
  • EXCOM on December 8, 2021;
  • Two employee focus-groups were held, both in English and in French, on January 28, 2022;
  • Bargaining agents (unions) were consulted on March 28, 2022; and,
  • Offenders were consulted through Inmate Committees on April 25, 2022.
Date modified: