AODA Inspections allow the government to find out if businesses are complying with the Act. Inspectors can perform inspections with or without warrants. The AODA states that the deputy minister appoints inspectors. However, the Act does not state who a deputy minister is.
An inspector can enter a business without a warrant if the inspector believes the place contains relevant documents or things. However, the inspector must enter during the hours the place is open for business. Alternatively, if a place does not have business hours, an inspector must enter during daylight hours.
Moreover, during the inspection, the inspector can ask for any item that is related to the inspection. For instance, the inspector can request a document or record. However, the inspector must make this request in writing. Furthermore, the inspector can use any equipment, such as a computer, to retrieve the items they need to view. In addition, the inspector can borrow these documents, records, or things, to make copies. However, the inspector must give a receipt for the documents, records, or things they borrow. In addition, the inspector must give the owner of the documents or things access to them, if needed. This access must take place at a time convenient for both the inspector and the owner.
Other People Involved in Inspections
Inspectors can bring other people, such as people with expert knowledge, to help with inspections. In addition, the inspector can question any person on the premises about the inspection. People on the premises must give the inspector all the help they can. For instance, they must help the inspector use computers or other devices to retrieve documents, if required.
Inspections with Warrants
If an inspector believes that a business is not complying with the AODA, thee inspector can acquire a search warrant from a justice of the peace. A warrant gives inspectors more power than they have during inspections without warrants. For instance, warrants allow inspectors to:
- Enter dwellings
- Search before or after business hours
- Use force, or ask for assistance from police officers
Inspectors have thirty (30) days, after a warrant has been issued, to conduct a search. However, this time limit can be renewed for another thirty (30) days.
AODA inspections help the government learn whether businesses are obeying the law. Moreover, they encourage people to comply with the AODA and make their businesses accessible to Ontarians with disabilities.