|January 26, 2010 Region of Peel Accessibility Advisory Committee (AAC)
|1.||Call to Order|
|2.||Approval of Minutes|
|3.||Approval of Agenda|
ACCESSIBILITY ADVISORY COMMITTEE (AAC)
of Peel Accessibility Advisory Committee met on January 26, 2010 at 1:04 p.m.
in the Council Chamber, Region of Peel Administrative Headquarters, Suite
A, 10 Peel Centre Drive, Brampton.
|Members Present:||H. Bajwa; G. Barnes; S. McFadden; W. Goursky; S. Hames; J. Hardman; N. Husain; E. Kolb*; J. Spry; M. Tymkow|
|Members Absent:||R. Paterak, due to other municipal business|
|Also Present:|| |
Region of Peel: N. Trim, Chief Financial Officer and Commissioner of Corporate Services; J. Menard, Commissioner of Human Services; C. Reid, Regional Clerk and Director of Clerk's; J. Payne, Manager, Regulatory Compliance; J. Daly, Statutory Specialist; M. Sikand, Accessibility Planning Specialist; H. West, Legislative Specialist; V. Montesdeoca, Committee Clerk
Community Stakeholder: M. Singh Sandhu, United Way of Peel Region
*See text for arrivals
¨See text for departures
William Goursky, Chair, presided.
1. CALL TO ORDER
William Goursky, Chair of the Region of Peel Accessibility Advisory Committee called the meeting to order at 1:04 p.m. and welcomed everyone present.
2. APPROVAL OF MINUTES
That the minutes of the November 24, 2009 Region of Peel Accessibility Advisory Committee (AAC-2009-9) meeting, be approved.
3. APPROVAL OF AGENDA
That the agenda for the January 26, 2010 Region of Peel Accessibility Advisory Committee meeting, be approved.
4. COMMUNICATION ITEMS
a. thenews.pl (Polanski Radio Dla Zagrancy), Article titled "Innovative Disabled Car Project"
William Goursky took a brief moment to introduce the new Regional Clerk, Carol Reid, and welcomed her to the Region of Peel Accessibility Advisory Committee.
William Goursky informed the Committee that Maureen VanRavens, Manager of TransHelp has accepted a position with the Region of Halton. He thanked her for her contributions to TransHelp and to the Accessibility Advisory Committee.
Regional Chair E. Kolb arrived at 1:07 p.m.
William Goursky also welcomed Isadora Vasic to the AAC meeting. Isadora Vasic is a student from the University of Guelph Humber who is doing her student placement with Glenn Barnes, AAC member.
As part of the first meeting of the new year, William Goursky reiterated the Committee's commitment to accessibility. He stated that fewer meetings would be held in 2010 due to the upcoming election season, noting that the last AAC meeting will be held in September 2010. He suggested that the Committee could look at training opportunities after the September meeting.
Item 5b was dealt with:
b. Lisa Jones, Transportation Accessibility Specialist, Accessible Transportation, Public Works, Providing an Update Regarding Accessible Transportation in the Region of Peel
Lisa Jones, Transportation Accessibility Specialist, Accessible Transportation, Public Works, provided an update regarding accessible transportation in the Region of Peel. She informed the Committee that TransHelp and the Accessible Transportation Coordination Office have merged under the new name of "Accessible Transportation". Lisa Jones indicated that Accessible Transportation is a one stop shop offering six different programs. The programs and services include:
- Passenger Assistant Program - a program for individuals who require assistance, but do not qualify for TransHelp.
- Community Bus - a community bus that travels a fixed route stopping at seniors residences and supported living buildings to provide transportation to places of common interest.
- Conventional Transit Access Initiative - a joint project by TransHelp, Mississauga and Brampton Transit to encourage persons with disabilities to use conventional public transit.
- Taxi Scrip - is a subsidized taxi program where the Region funds 40 per cent of the fare to persons who have difficulty in travelling due to a disability.
Lisa Jones further explained the process of the Accessible Transportation Referral Services noting that if callers are not eligible for TransHelp, other accessible transportation options are available.
Naz Husain, Committee Vice-Chair inquired about the schedule for the community buses. Lisa Jones informed that the buses run on Tuesday and Thursday in Brampton and Monday, Wednesday and Friday in Mississauga. The current hours of operation are from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Expansion of the hours and days will be considered depending on demand. Further information can be provided by calling TransHelp directly at 905-791-1015.
Glenn Barnes, Committee member thanked Lisa Jones for a very informative presentation. He pointed out that TransHelp has come a long way by offering innovative methods of travel for persons of varying disabilities who do not qualify for TransHelp. Glenn Barnes commended the Region of Peel for providing transportation services to persons that would otherwise not have any transportation options.
Councillor Sandra Hames requested clarification as to who can access the community bus and how. Lisa Jones responded that anyone can use the services of the community bus including persons with disabilities. Schedules for this service can be obtained through the TransHelp service line.
Regional Chair Kolb inquired who owns the buses used in the community bus program and how the service differs from that offered by Brampton or Mississauga Transit. Lisa Jones responded that the buses belong to the Region of Peel and operate similar to conventional transit buses with a capacity to accommodate up to three wheelchairs. The key difference is that the community buses make stops closer to the front door of an individual's residence and can deviate from the fixed route.
William Goursky thanked Lisa Jones for her assistance and leadership in enhancing the transportation services for persons with disabilities.
Lisa Jones shared with Committee members, a video which forms part of the first phase of the conventional transit access initiative. This is the first of a series of videos that will be used to encourage people with disabilities to use conventional public transit. Lisa Jones thanked the AAC for assisting with the production of the video.
William Goursky introduced Manmeet Singh Sandhu from United Way of Peel Region and welcomed him to the AAC meeting. He informed the Committee that Manmeet Singh Sandhu will be the stakeholder representative for United Way of Peel at the AAC meetings.
a. Joel Rieder, Architect, Reinders & Rieder Ltd (RRL), and Ashwani Sinha, Capital Project Manager, Region of Peel, Providing a Review of a Redevelopment Project to Accommodate a New TransHelp Operation at 2 Copper Road - City of Brampton, Ward 3
Ashwani Sinha, Capital Project Manager, Region of Peel provided an overview of the redevelopment project at 2 Copper Road in Brampton which will be the future location of the TransHelp Operation facility. He noted that the project is partially funded by the Infrastructure Stimulus Fund, which has a completion deadline of March 31, 2011 and the Federal Gas Tax, with a deadline of December 31, 2011. Ashwani Sinha noted that Reinders & Rieder Ltd. has been retained as the architect for the project.
Joel Rieder, Architect, Reinders & Rieder Ltd (RRL), stated that the project scope includes two areas of expansion for the TransHelp facility and headquarters. The first area is the addition of a two-storey office building and the second area is the expansion of the industrial building to accommodate vehicle repair, storage and wash bays.
Joel Rieder highlighted some of the accessibility features of the two storey addition which include: five new accessible parking spaces, two new barrier-free entrances, accessible washrooms, showers and locker rooms.
William Goursky inquired who will be using the building. Joel Rieder responded that the building will mainly be used by staff. Maureen VanRavens, Manager of TransHelp, clarified that the facility is shared with Public Works and therefore members of the public will also be accessing the building to pay utility bills and conduct business related to public works.
Naz Husain inquired into the type of accessible doors that will be installed in the new facility and suggested the use of sliding doors since they are more versatile in addressing the needs of person with disabilities. Joel Rieder responded that sliding doors can be considered.
Glenn Barnes inquired if the staff entrance and patio located on the second level are barrier free. Joel Rieder replied that the staff entrance is barrier free and that one of the two patio entrances will be barrier free.
The following recommendation was considered and supported by the Committee:
That the overview provided to the Region of Peel Accessibility Advisory Committee (AAC) on January 26, 2010 by Region of Peel Real Property Asset Management staff regarding the site plan for the Redevelopment Project at 2 Copper Road - City of Brampton, Ward 3, be received;
And further, that the City of Brampton, Planning, Design and Development Department be notified of the Region of Peel Accessibility Advisory Committee Support for the 2 Copper Road redevelopment site plan, as presented on January 26, 2010.
b. Lisa Jones, Transportation Accessibility Specialist, Accessible Transportation, Public Works, Providing an Update Regarding Accessible Transportation in the Region of Peel Model
This item was dealt with earlier in the meeting
a. Region of Peel Accessibility Planning Specialist Activity Report - International Day of Persons with Disabilities Update (Oral)
Update by Meenu Sikand, Accessibility Planning Specialist, Region of Peel
On behalf of the AAC, William Goursky thanked everyone involved with the International Day of Persons with Disabilities (IDPD) event which took place on December 2, 2009. He acknowledged that the event was very successful and commended Meenu Sikand, Accessibility Planning Specialist for her hard work and dedication in planning and coordinating the event.
Meenu Sikand provided an overview of the data collected from the event survey. She noted that for the survey question of "Overall Rating", 69 per cent of the respondents marked the event as "Excellent" and 29 per cent gave the rating of "Good". She stated that the statistics are excellent considering the diversity of the population that attended. Meenu Sikand informed that the speakers were very well received as they demonstrated a high level of knowledge and expertise in the area of accessibility and inspired and motivated the audience.
Areas for improvement were identified as follows: better monitoring of the vendor stations, participation by the vendors for the duration of the event. Meenu Sikand suggested that for future events, a volunteer coordinator be assigned specifically to ensure vendors are present at all times. Meenu Sikand stated that improved media coverage met the objective that the AAC had for the event.
Ninety-six per cent of the respondents marked that the event met their expectations. Four per cent of the respondents stated that the event did not meet their expectations due to the lack of language translators. These respondents suggested including translators for those persons whose first language is not English. Naz Husain commented that this request would be difficult to accommodate since there are many different languages spoken in Peel.
Meenu Sikand encouraged everyone to read the report and the feedback received. Many positive letters and comments were received from the members of the community and other organizations who indicated a desire to participate in future events. Participants also highlighted the quality of accommodations and courteous service received from staff.
Committee members agreed that the event was very successful and congratulated the Region of Peel staff on a well organized event.
Glenn Barnes thanked all those that participated in the event. In addition to many positive comments, he also received feedback that some of the participants were not completely clear on the day's objective or the event theme. Glenn Barnes further suggested including achievements by the local area municipalities in the accessibility awards presentation and perhaps extending the event to include a joint collaboration of the local AAC's.
William Goursky stated that a joint collaboration of International Day of Persons with Disabilities would be very positive and offered to address the matter at the next Joint AAC meeting. He pointed out that a celebration of achievements would also be beneficial, but reminded members that the focus of the event would need to remain as one which promotes education and awareness of issues related to accessibility.
Regional Chair Kolb provided clarification on the local government structure and the need for Accessibility Committees at the local level. He stated that the Region of Peel AAC represents all three area municipalities, however, for the benefit of its citizens, a decision was made that each local municipality have its own AAC, to better address issues that are specific to each area municipality.
James Hardman, Committee member echoed the comments of a successful IDPD Day. He inquired as to what will happen to the information gathered from the round table discussions. Meenu Sikand responded that a report is being prepared to share the results with the Committee, Regional Council and area municipal AAC's.
Meenu Sikand acknowledged the assistance of TransHelp, who was a key player in transporting individuals to the event. She pointed out that due to their support, participants from outside the Region were able to attend the event.
William Goursky suggested that a letter of appreciation be prepared and sent to all individuals who assisted with the event.
STAFF DIRECTION AAC-2010-1-01:
That letters of appreciation be considered and prepared and sent to all individuals that assisted with the preparation and coordination of the International Day of Persons with Disabilities (IDPD) event.
Mark Castro, Acting Supervisor, Administration & Support Services, TransHelp, informed the Committee that a meeting was going to be held in York Region with participants from the City of Toronto and the Region of Peel to discuss cross-boarder transportation service, a direct result of TransHelp's participation in the IDPD event.
b. Employment Accessibility Standards Development Committee Update (Oral) - Nil
c. Accessible Transportation Standards Development Committee (Oral) - Nil
7. OTHER BUSINESS
8. NEXT MEETING
The next meeting of the Region of Peel Accessibility Advisory Committee is scheduled for Tuesday, February 23, 2010, at 1:00 p.m., Council Chamber, 5th floor, Regional Administrative Headquarters, Suite A, 10 Peel Centre Drive, Brampton, Ontario.
Please forward regrets to Veronica Montesdeoca, Legislative Technical Coordinator, (905) 791-7800, ext. 4384 or at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The meeting adjourned at