Collingwood Toyota
Rear 3/4 view of a 2021 Toyota Camry in Supersonic Red

Accessible Customer Service Information

Welcome to Accessibility of Ontarians with Disabilities Act or AODA customer service training booklet. This package is designed to provide Collingwood Toyota employees with the training required under the AODA. The purpose of the Collingwood Toyota policy is to ensure all employees of Collingwood Toyota are committed to excellence in servicing all customers including people with disabilities. Goods and services will be provided in a manner that is based upon the principles of dignity, independence, integration and equal opportunity to all customers.


  • To achieve a fully accessible Ontario by 2025
  • Develop accessibility standards
  • Enforce the standards
  • To implement AODA standards to both public and private sectors


  • Readers will understand the purpose of the AODA and the requirements of the customer service standard
  • Learn how to interact and communicate with people with disabilities
  • Learn how to interact with people who use assistive devices or use the assistance of a guide dog, other service animal, or support person
  • Learn how to use equipment or devices available at your premises
  • Learn what to do if a person with a disability is having trouble accessing your services

The Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act became law in 2005 and it is the first law of its kind in Canada.

The Private Sector must comply by January 2012 with:

  • Accessible customer service policy, procedures and practices
  • Staff training
  • A feedback method
  • Alternate communication methods
  • Notice of Disruption of service

Accessible customer service entails many things. Mainly, it is the understanding that access to goods and services may at times require some modifications to be accessible to some individuals. Collingwood Toyota is committed to providing customer service to people with disabilities in a manner that:

-- Respects their dignity and independence

-- Is integrated as fully as possible into the method of delivery service

-- Ensures reasonable efforts are made to provide an opportunity equal to that offered to other customers

-- Allows people with disabilities to benefit from the same services, in the same place, and in similar ways as other customers; in other words, an equality of outcome

-- Is sensitive to an individual's needs

-- Is responsive by delivering service in a timely manner, considering the nature of the service and the specific accommodation required

Disabilities can take many forms. They may be permanent or temporary; developmental or physical; severe or mild; for the young or the old; or any combinations of these disabilities. A person can be born with a disability or someone could become injured resulting in temporary or permanent disability. Some disabilities are visible, however, many are non-visible.

When providing goods and services, we need to consider the needs of people who:

-- Have a physical disability

-- Are deaf or have some form of hearing loss

-- Are blind or have some form of vision loss

-- Are deaf-blind

-- Have a learning disability

-- Have a speech or language impairment

-- Have an intellectual or developmental disability

-- Have a mental illness

Barriers can be:

-- Physical

-- Information/ Communication

-- Attitudinal or Technological

-- A policy or procedure

-- A policy or practice

Choosing positive words can empower people. Inappropriate terms convey inaccurate information and perpetuate negative stereotypes. People with disabilities are 'people first' unique individuals who also happen to have a disability. Use words that put the person first, referring to them as a "person with a disability" or a "person with hearing loss."

-- Approximately 1 in 7 Ontarians live with a disability

-- As our population ages this will increase to 1 in 5

-- Less than 2% of Canadians with a disability require the use of a wheelchair

Being able to interact and communicate in an appropriate way to individuals with disabilities is a big part of providing accessible customer service. Sometimes the best approach is to ask the person how you can best serve them. Here are some general tips:

-- Always treat anyone with a disability with the same respect and courtesy that you would offer to everyone else

-- Treat and speak to adults with disabilities as adults

-- Speak directly to the person with a disability not to the companion, assistant or interpreter who may be with them

-- Don't shout; speak clearly and distinctly, and at a moderate pace

-- It's okay to use words like "see", "walk", or "hear." Don't avoid common expressions when they fit naturally into conversation

-- Offer assistance to a person with a disability if it seems appropriate, but wait until the offer is accepted before you help. If you are helping and aren't sure what to do, ask

-- Let a person with a disability make their own decisions regarding what they can or cannot do. Do not make assumptions

-- Do not pet, feed or distract a guide dog or service animal from doing its job

There are many types and degrees of physical disabilities, and not all require the use of mobility aids like wheelchairs, scooters, crutches or canes. People who have arthritis, heart or lung conditions or amputations may also have difficulty with stamina, moving, standing, sitting or the ability to reach or grasp. It may be difficult to identify a person with an invisible disability (one that is not obvious).

Customer Service Tips

-- If you are having a lengthy conversation with someone who uses a wheelchair or scooter, consider sitting so you are at eye level

-- Ask before you help, offer but do not insist

-- Speak directly to the person

-- If a counter top is too high or wide to interact comfortably with a customer, step from behind to provide service

-- Be prepared to provide information about accessible features offered at the location

There are varying degrees of vision loss and a distinction between blindness and low vision. The majority of people living with vision loss have some vision. Very few are totally blind. A vision loss can restrict someone's ability to read print or signs, recognize faces, locate landmarks or see hazards. Some may use a white cane or guide dog to help with orientation and movement, while others may not.

Customer Service Tips

-- Don't assume the individual cannot see you

-- Identify yourself when you approach a customer

-- Speak directly to the person

-- Don't leave without saying goodbye

-- Use specific directions like "behind you on your left"

-- If you offer assistance, wait until the offer is accepted

-- Offer your elbow to provide sighted guidance if needed. Identify obstacles before you come to them

-- Do not pet, feed or distract a guide dog from doing its job

Hearing loss ranges from mild to profound. Deaf, deafened and hard of hearing individuals may use hearing aids, cochlear implants, sign language, and/or other assistive-listening communication devices.

Customer Service Tips

-- Attract the person's attention before you speak. Use eye contact and simple wave to connect visually

-- Make sure you are in a well-lit area where your customer can see your face and read your lips

-- If your customer uses a hearing aid, reduce background noise or move to a quieter location

-- Ask one question at a time

-- Speak directly to your customer, not to their interpreter

-- Do not cover or have anything in your mouth when you are speaking

-- Speak naturally, at a normal pace

-- When writing back and forth keep sentences short

-- In group settings, talk one at a time

Bell Canada Relay Service (BCRS) lets TTY (text telephone) users and hearing people talk to one another by phone with the help of specially trained BCRS operators. Users dictate to the operator the conversation, which is then relayed to the TTY phone. TTY conversation is then relayed to the regular phone user. This service is confidential and the only cost is any long-distance charges that would regularly apply. Local calls using this are free.

The Bell Relay number is 1-800-855-0511

A person who is deaf-blind has some degree of both vision and hearing loss. This results in greater difficulties in accessing information. Many people who are deaf-blind will be accompanied by an intervener, a professional who helps with communication.

Customer Service Tips

-- Speak directly to your customer, not to the intervener

-- Ask the customer how to best communicate with them

-- Do not try to communicate from across the room or table

-- Don't leave without saying goodbye

-- Do not pet, feed or distract a guide dog from doing its job

People with speech disabilities may have problems communicating. For many reasons, people may have difficulties speaking clearly-for example as a result of a stroke, cerebral palsy or hearing loss-which may result in difficulties with verbal communication. Some people may use communication boards or other assistive devices. A speech disability often has no impact on a person's ability to understand.

Customer Service Tips

-- Talk to people with speech disabilities as you would talk to anyone else and speak in your regular tone of voice

-- Do not speak for the individual or complete their sentences. Be patient

-- Tell the person if you do not understand what they are trying to say. Ask the person to repeat the message, tell you in a different way, or write it down

-- Consider asking questions that require only short answers or a nod of the head

-- If a customer is difficult to understand, concentrate on content not voice

-- Give your customer time to fully explain themselves, don't interrupt

-- If your customer has a stammer, don't finish their words or sentences

An intellectual disability can be characterized by intellectual development and capacity that is significantly below average and involves permanent limitation in a person's ability to learn or adapt to their environment. The effects of an intellectual disability can range from mild to profound. People with intellectual disabilities do not necessarily have a recognizable condition.

Customer Service Tips

-- Use simple words

-- Keep sentences short

-- Use concrete examples

-- Don't make assumptions about what anyone can do

-- Be prepared to repeat and rephrase your sentences

People with mental illness look like anyone else. You won't know that your customer has a mental health disability unless you are told they do, nor will you need to. Usually it will not affect your customer service at all. But if someone is experiencing difficulty controlling their symptoms or is in a crisis, you may need to help out. Be calm and professional and let your customer tell you how you can best help.

Customer Service Tips

-- Create a climate of confidence

-- Accept the customer, and do not judge

-- Do not "talk down"

-- Talk to the person as you would anyone else and speak in a regular tone of voice

-- Speak in a calm manner and present one thought at a time

-- Pay attention to nonverbal cues

Learning disabilities range from mild to severe and may affect a person's ability to receive, process, remember or analyze information. Some learning disabilities can interfere with a person's ability to concentrate or focus. Some learning disabilities can interfere with a person's ability to read, write spell or solve math problems. A learning disability is not indicative of an intelligence level.

Customer Service Tips

-- Ask your customer how to best accommodate their needs

-- Provide information in appropriate formats

-- Minimize distractions so that full attention is on communication

-- Keep sentences short and clear if needed

-- Use language that is concrete rather than abstract

-- Some individuals may find it difficult to read while others may have problems with numbers

An assistive device is a tool, technology or other mechanism that enables a person with a disability to do everyday tasks and activities, such as moving, communicating or lifting. Personal assistive devices can include things like wheelchairs, hearing aids, white canes, note taking devices, grasping tools, portable magnifiers or assistive listening devices.

Customer Service Tips

-- Don't touch or handle any assistive device without permission

-- Allow customers to keep and use their assistive devices as needed

-- Don't move assistive devices or equipment out of your customers reach

-- Be prepared to tell your customer about any accessible features or assistive devices available on site that are appropriate to their needs

A support person may accompany a person with a disability to help them with communication, mobility, personal care, medical needs or access to services. A support person might be a family member, friend, volunteer or paid personnel.

Customer Service Tips

-- Speak to your customer, not to their support person

-- Allow the customer to be accompanied by the support person

-- Do not discuss confidential matters in the presence of a support person without first getting the appropriate permission to do so

People who are blind or have vision loss may use a guide dog, but there are other types of service animals as well. Service animals can assist people with other kinds of disabilities in their day to day activities and can be trained to open doors, pick up items, predict seizures, or alert someone to sounds such as a doorbell and telephone rings.

Points to Consider

-- Service animals are allowed to be with their owner at all times, unless prohibited by law

-- A kitchen where food is prepared is one of the few municipal environments that disallows a service animal

-- It may be clear that an animal is a service animal if it is wearing a harness, saddle bags, a sign or has an identification card that identifies it as a service animal. It may also be clear if a person is using the animal to assist him or her in doing things, such as opening doors or retrieving items

-- If it is not clear if an animal is a service animal, ask the customer. A medical note can be requested to confirm that the animal is necessary for reasons related to that person's disability

-- Do not feed, pet or distract a guide dog or service animal from doing its job

What happens if we can't serve a person with a disability?

It is possible that there will be disruption in services, such as renovations of buildings or outdoor spaces or technology that is temporarily unavailable. If a disruption in service is planned, it is important to provide reasonable notice.

In the event of an unexpected disruption of service, provide notice quickly and in as many ways as possible.

Feedback about the delivery of services to persons with disabilities is welcomed, as it may identify areas that require change and assist in our goal of continuous service improvement.

Customers who wish to provide feedback on the way Collingwood Toyota provides goods and services to people with disabilities can provide feedback in the following ways by telephone, in person, in writing or by delivering an electronic text via email, or otherwise.

All feedback, including complaints, will be handled in the following manner:

Collingwood Toyota will make best efforts to provide a response in the same format in which the feedback was received. Where possible, feedback will be addressed immediately. Some feedback may, however, require more effort to address and may need to be reviewed before an action is taken.

Customers can expect to receive a response in 15 working days.

Feedback may be provided directly to the Dealership and / or to:

Krista Walcroft
Dealer Principal
Collingwood Toyota
10230 Hwy 26 East
Collingwood, Ontario, L9Y 0A5
T: 705-444-1414 F: 705-444-5267

Collingwood Toyota will notify the public that our documents related to accessible customer service, are available upon request by posting a notice in the following locations:

The Customer Service Lounge and Main Reception Desk. Information about the feedback process will also be posted on the dealership website.

Any policy, practice or procedure of Collingwood Toyota that does not respect and promote the principles of dignity, independence, integration and equal opportunity for people with disabilities will be modified or removed.

Thank you for taking the time to read and understand this important information. Your efforts will help us better serve all customers at Collingwood Toyota, including those with disabilities.

As required by law under Section 6 of the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disability Act, Accessible Customer Service training is mandatory of all company employees.

It is essential that you complete and sign the attached training registration form, and return it to Management to be placed in your Employee file.

For further information, please contact either:

Krista Walcroft, 705-444-1414

Rob Hogg, 705-444-1414

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