The Customer service Standards under the AODA and the Accessible Customer service Standard under the Accessibility for Manitobans Act both require organizations to make service accessible to customers with disabilities. Moreover, both standards require many of the same processes and practices to ensure accessibility. However, there are many important differences between the standards. The third review of the AODA recommends that the Ontario government should coordinate with other provinces and the federal government to ensure that accessibility laws are consistent across Canada. Therefore, requirements in the AODA may one day change to align with mandates under the Accessibility for Manitobans Act. In this article, we will explore accessible customer service feedback processes in Ontario and Manitoba.
Accessible Customer service Feedback Processes in Ontario and Manitoba
The AODA’s Customer service Standards and the Accessible Customer service Standard of the Accessibility for Manitobans Act (AMA) both require accessible customer service feedback processes. In both provinces, organizations must create and implement processes for receiving and responding to feedback about the accessibility of their customer service. Customers should be able to offer feedback in accessible formats or with communication supports, upon request. Moreover, organizations must receive and respond to any feedback they receive about the accessibility of their feedback processes.
The AODA’s Customer Service Standards specifically mandate that organizations must respond to complaints as part of their feedback processes. In contrast, the AMA’s Customer Service Standard does not directly mandate that organizations must receive and respond to complaints. However, Manitoba organizations must document their responses to customers’ feedback. Furthermore, these organizations must make these documents available, upon request. In other words, any customer can easily learn about the positive or negative feedback an organization has received. Likewise, customers can easily learn whether the organization responded to this feedback, including to any complaints. As a result, these organizations are publicly accountable in a way that Ontario organizations are not.