Accessibility

Global is committed to excellence in serving all its customers, including Persons with Disabilities. “It is the right thing to do” and Global acknowledges and endorses the principles of the provincial Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act (2005).

Global has created a policy with respect to the Customer Service Standard of the AODA and undertaken training for staff who interact with members of the public who may visit our premises for business purposes.

Global allows Persons with Disabilities to utilize either Support Persons or Support Animals as required. 

Global has an employment policy to address employment-related issues for persons with disabilities in the workplace.

Copies of Global’s policies for applicable AODA standards are available upon request to the company.

Questions concerning Global's compliance in this regard are welcome to contact Tony Davis, Director of Corporate Human Resources at 416-661-3600 (ext 4335) or e-mail at tdavis@globalfurnituregroup.com.


CUSTOMER SERVICE POLICY

Corporate Statement 

Global Furniture Group is committed to excellence in serving all its customers, including persons with disabilities. “It is the right thing to do” and Global acknowledges and endorses the principles of the provincial Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act. For the purposes of this policy, the definition of “disability” is set out in the attached Schedule “A”.

Communication 

Global will communicate to persons with disabilities in ways that take into account their disability. 

Global does not sell its products or services to the public. However, occasionally invitations are extended by Global to members of the business and design communities to visit company non-restricted premises and will ask whether such visitors require any accommodation due to a disability. 

In the event of a planned or unexpected disruption to facilities for visitors with disabilities (eg, preventative maintenance/breakdown of elevators, assistive scooters), Global will notify invited visitors promptly and take appropriate measures, if available, to accommodate visitors who require assistance.

Visitors to Global: Service Animals/Support Persons 

Global welcomes persons with disabilities and their service animals. Service animals are allowed in the specified areas of our premises that are open to invited guests. A person with a disability who is accompanied by a support person will be allowed to have that person accompany them on visits to our premises. 

Global endeavours to ensure that members of our staff who interact with invited guests are trained and familiar with assistive devices that may be used by customers with disabilities while accessing our facilities.

Training of Staff 

Global will provide training to those employees who deal with the public and, in the course of their duties, interact with persons with disabilities. 

Employees in the following positions will receive such training: 

  • Customer service representatives 
  • Showroom staff
  • Sales personnel 
  • Marketing personnel 
  • Human resources and payroll staff 
  • Health and safety personnel
  • Security and facilities 

Such training will be undertaken for a new hire, transfer or promotion to one of the above positions as well as for any amendments to the Global Accessible Customer Service Policy. 

Training will include the following: 

  • A review of the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act, 2005 (AODA) and requirements in particular of the customer services standard 
  • Global’s Accessible Customer Service Policy and should the Policy be amended, employees will be briefed in a timely manner 
  • How to effectively interact and communicate with persons with disabilities 
  • How to interact with persons with disabilities who use an assistive device, a service animal or support person 
  • How to use any assistive device which is available on site at Global (eg, elevators, washrooms, scooters, etc) 
  • What to do in the event that any barriers are identified at the company which limit or restrict access to the facilities that visitors are permitted to visit at Global

Feedback Process 

Customers accessing Global’s services by electronic means or physical visits who wish to provide feedback on the way Global provides such services can address any concerns in writing to Allan Bartolini, Vice-President Organizational Development or Tony Davis, Director, Corporate Human Resources. 

Such feedback will be accordingly addressed and customers can expect to receive a reply in this regard within five working days of our receipt of such feedback.

Policy Review 

Any Global policy which does not respect and promote the dignity and independence of persons with disabilities will be modified or removed.

If you have any questions regarding this policy, please contact Tony Davis, Director of Corporate Human Resources at 416-661-3600 (ext 4335) or e-mail at tdavis@globalfurnituregroup.com.

Schedule “A”

“Disability”, for purposes of this policy, is defined in the “Ontarians with Disabilities Act, 2001” as follows:

“Disability” means 

(a) any degree of physical disability, infirmity, malformation or disfigurement that is caused by bodily injury, birth defect or illness and, without limiting the generality of the foregoing, includes diabetes mellitus, epilepsy, a brain injury, any degree of paralysis, amputation, lack of physical co-ordination, blindness or visual impediment, deafness or hearing impediment, muteness or speech impediment, or physical reliance on a guide dog or other animal or on a wheelchair or other remedial appliance or device, 

(b) a condition of mental impairment or a developmental disability, 

(c) a learning disability, or a dysfunction in one or more of the processes involved in understanding or using symbols or spoken language, 

(d) a mental disorder, or 

(e) an injury or disability for which benefits were claimed or received under the insurance plan established under the Workplace Safety and Insurance Act 1997.


CUSTOMER SERVICE FEEDBACK POLICY

Customer Service Standard Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act (Reg. 429/07)

Customer Feedback Policy & Procedures

Policy

Global Furniture Group (“Global”) recognizes feedback from its customers as a means of improving its customer service and forms part of the company’s continuous improvement business philosophy.

Feedback from the public may be given by means of telephone, in writing, in person or by other electronic means.

Global’s Customer Feedback Form (HRD01/12/14) is used for the feedback process.

 Goal

The goal of the Customer Feedback Policy and Procedures is to implement and maintain a process for persons to provide feedback on how Global provides services to members of the public, specifically – Persons with Disabilities – and in turn responds to any provided feedback. The company accordingly will review and act on any recommendations, suggestions or complaints in this regard. Such feedback enables Global to better serve the all members of the public and enhance the quality of our customer service function.

Scope

This policy applies to all employees and facilities of Global operating in the province of Ontario.

Responsibility

It is the responsibility of company management to ensure that employees follow the policy and procedures detailed in this document.

Members of company management are responsible in ensuring that employees who interact with the public are trained in the principles and guidelines of the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act and the Accessibility Standards for Customer Service.

Procedures

The Customer Feedback Form should be completed when either customer service representatives conduct follow-up surveys of visits to company premises or are contacted by members of the public – specifically Persons with Disabilities.

Feedback can be communicated to Global by e-mail, telephone, verbally, in person, by posted or couriered mail, or by any other means that may suit the requirements of the sender.

The form should be completed by the customer service representative. If the feedback requires any action, it must be addressed accordingly – with management (if applicable) or review by appropriate personnel (eg., the Human Resources Department or Global’s Employment Equity Committee). If specified by a member of public providing the feedback, the company will contact the person by a requested means of communication. Any actions taken arising from such feedback will be recorded.

The form will be filed and kept by the customer service department.


TRANSPORTATION STANDARD POLICY

Date of Implementation: January 2014

Statement of Policy & Procedures

Under the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act’s integrated accessibility standard, Global Upholstery Company Inc. (“the Company”) is responsible as a non-conventional transportation service provider to comply with the regulation (191/11).

The Company is committed to comply with this transportation standard and accordingly is implementing this multi-year policy in order to respect the rights and dignity of persons with disabilities.

To meet with this compliance the Company undertakes through its policy and practices to introduce measures which meet the needs of persons with disabilities with respect to transportation.

The Company undertakes to assess and review possible barriers to persons with disabilities in the implementation of this policy and its procedures. Such reviews and assessments will take into account feedback from persons with disabilities, changes to the specialized transport and emergency measures with respect to passenger safety.

The goal of this procedure is for the Company to improve accessibility for persons with disabilities in its provision of specialized transportation.

The Company will provide training to its employees whose tasks involve them in matters of transportation. 

The policy and procedures apply to:

  • Employees
  • Customers
  • Visitors
  • Any other third party

Procedures apply to the monitoring and review of the policy by Company Human Resources and members of Senior Management on an ongoing basis, taking into account the AODA legislation and possible future amendments to same. Such reviews will ensure that the issue of accessibility in this regard is given due consideration by the Company. 

The Policy is made available to interested parties upon request. Any input or feedback by such visitors with respect to accessibility issues will be taken into account during reviews of the policy and its procedures by the Company.

Company employees involved in this regard include (but not limited to), the President, Senior Vice-President Administration, Vice-President Organizational Structure and Human Resources, in-house Legal Council and Human Resources Directors. The Company Health & Safety Coordinator will be consulted with on matters of safety and emergency planning.

Responsibility

Responsibility for the development, formulation, training and follow-through for the Transportation Standard at the Company lies ultimately with the Human Resources Department and Committee. Respective Managers, particularly in the Sales and Marketing Department, are responsible for the day-to-day implementation of the standard.

Any employees who play a role in the operation and functioning of the transportation standard are required to follow the guidelines and undertaking of this policy and its procedures.

Passengers for the Company bus are composed of vendors, designers, potential customers and industry associates.  Tours of company premises, which include bus usage, are prearranged with the Company’s Sales and Marketing Departments, whose employees are trained in the AODA’s Customer Service Standard and accordingly are well aware of accommodation requirements for persons with disabilities. Outside visitors are asked at the time of booking such tours if there are any accommodation requirements beforehand.

Passengers on the Company bus will be invited, on an ad hoc basis, for their opinions as to the driving experience and whether or not improvements can be made in this regard in future. Any problems arising with respect to the driver or bus will be reviewed and addressed by the Human Resources Committee.

Definitions

For purposes of the policy, accommodation is defined as “the arrangements made or assistance provided so that persons with disabilities can freely participate in the activities available to persons without disabilities.” Accommodation will vary depending upon the nature of disability (physical, mental, learning, developmental, speech, visual, etc).

Bus is defined by the standard as “a motor vehicle designed for carrying 10 or more passengers and used for the transportation of persons”. The Company bus is a vehicle utilized to transport visitors, dealers, etc, to Company premises for sales or marketing purposes and, as such, is intended to meet the needs of such visitors as required on an ad hoc basis.

Note: the Company bus is a privately-owned vehicle which is not available to general members of the public but available only through invitation and prior arrangement. There are no fees associated with this private bus service. As tours are all pre-arranged it is anticipated that there will be no problems regarding cancellations or rescheduling.

Company Bus – Its Role & Features

The Company is a manufacturer of office furniture – seating, casegoods, desk systems, etc.

The function of the Company bus is to convey its passengers from either a pre-arranged, central location, or for out-of-city or out-of-country passengers, from their place of accommodation, to assorted premises on company property. Such premises include product showroom, training centre, production units, test labs, or the production facilities of suppliers of product components.

The driver is required to be currently licensed by the Ministry of Transport in Ontario for operating such a vehicle; maintain a safe driving history and be experienced in bus transportation.

The Company bus, a 2012 model Ford F550 DRW, seats 24 persons, is 32 feet long and uses gasoline. The bus is equipped with a Global Positioning System (GPS) to ascertain its location at all times and monitor vehicle speed. There is a grab-rail installed at the bus entrance/exit.

The Company undertakes to be in compliance with the requirements under the Integrated Standard for Transportation upon future bus acquisitions or planned retrofitting of the current vehicle. In this respect, the Sales Office Manager and Transport Department Manager will liaise with the Human Resources Department to ensure such compliance is met.

Most of the visits undertaken by the Company bus are within a five to ten-mile radius of the Company’s showroom. There are occasions when the bus collects its passengers at a nearby hotel where the visitors are staying. An average ‘outing’ is 6-10 hours.  

Emergency Preparedness

Passengers on the Company bus are in the care of its driver. In the event of an emergency, the driver will undertake measures to ensure the safety of passengers.

Emergencies can be categorized under the following headings:

  • Inclement weather
  • Urgent stop request by a passenger
  • Medical/health concern
  • Traffic hazards
  • Road hazards
  • Bus breakdown

In the event of an emergency, the driver is responsible for: reporting the emergency to the appropriate manager/general manager (based on the tour); evaluating the emergency and taking appropriate action; if necessary contacting emergency response personnel (eg, EMS assistance); protecting passengers; evacuating passengers in an orderly manner; keeping company management informed; and restoring normal operations.

The bus is equipped with a properly maintained first aid kit.

Driver Training & Conduct

It is the responsibility of the Company’s Human Resources Department to train its drivers about the AODA’s Transportation Standard and the Company policy and procedures in this regard.

The driver undertakes a routine inspection on each occasion when the bus is in use and completes a checklist (see attached example) to ensure safety and maintenance standards are met.

The driver is responsible for assisting any person with disability (and support person or animal) on and off the bus.

The driver will ensure the safe handling, storage and return of any medical aid, mobility aid or assistive device (eg. wheelchair, scooter, walker).

The driver will allow for adequate time for any identified person with disability to enter, exit and be seated properly on the bus.

The driver will conduct him/herself at all times in a respectful, courteous manner.

The driver will adhere to posted speed limits and drive with consideration for road conditions at any given time.

When dropping off passenger at a venue on the tour, the driver will ensure that the egress allows for safe departure, especially during inclement weather conditions. 

Where the driver communicates with passengers, the driver will take into consideration the need to utilize visual cues should any bus passenger have an identified auditory disability.

As of January 2014, three employees act as drivers for the Company bus. They are: Ariel Iankelevic, Eli Shitrit and Harvey Fields. These employees were trained about the AODA transportation standard policy and procedures in January 2014. Such training also included materials relating to the Customer Service Standard of the AODA with respect to persons with disabilities, the nature of various disabilities and the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act in general.

Members of the Company’s sales and marketing staff who are involved in the arrangement of visitors to company premises have been trained by Human Resources personnel about the AODA’s Customer Service Standard.

Records of such training are kept on file in the Human Resources Department.