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Royal Canadian Mounted Police

Building an Accessible RCMP: The Framework to Deliver the First Departmental Accessibility Strategy and Accessibility Plan 2023-2025

On this page

  1. Alternate formats
  2. List of acronyms and abbreviations
  3. A message from Nadine Huggins, Chief Human Resources Officer
  4. Accountability and governance
  5. General
  6. Consultations
  7. RCMP Operational Accessibility Plan – Moving forward
  8. Conclusion
  9. Annex A – Definitions of disability
  10. Footnotes

Alternate formats

List of acronyms and abbreviations

2SLGBTQI+
Two-Spirit, Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer, Intersex, Plus
IT
Information technology
HRMIS
Human Resources Management Information System
PTSD
Post-traumatic stress disorder
RCMP
Royal Canadian Mounted Police

A message from Nadine Huggins, Chief Human Resources Officer

As the RCMP's 150th anniversary approaches in 2023, the organization acknowledges that it can no longer rely on old ways of being and doing. Today's RCMP is advancing important people-focused change initiatives that aim to modernize, renew, and improve its workplace and service delivery in an informed, respectful, and inclusive way.

In support of this, in the fall of 2020, the RCMP put forward its Vision 150 Plan to Advance Equity, Accountability and Trust to set a strategic direction to address racism, discrimination and harassment across the organization. In January 2021, the RCMP launched its first comprehensive Equity, Diversity and Inclusion Strategy – Setting A Foundation: Serving Employees and Communities with Dignity and Respect.

As we transform our culture, it is important that we remain committed to becoming more accessible and as an employer, we aim to create a work environment that is respectful, healthy, and inclusive for all employees. As a service provider, we aim to remove barriers to fully accessible services for all.

The Accessible Canada Act came into force on July 11, 2019. Its purpose is to create a Canada without barriers by 2040. The Accessible Canada Act is a major advancement in federal disability rights legislation. It challenges us to be proactive about accessibility and to consult with persons with disabilities to make programs and services accessible from the start.

This Accessibility Plan was developed in consultation with employees with disabilities and subject matter experts representing various regions across the country. Many initiatives are already implemented, including standing up the RCMP Accessibility and Disability Network and Action Group and in-house Equity, Diversity and Inclusion training for managers and employees. These are important first steps starting up our journey to becoming fully accessible. This Accessibility Plan is evergreen and will be updated as we continue to learn and grow through consultation and co-development, and within the context of our continuously evolving environment.

We all benefit when we make accessibility a part of our every-day considerations. Together, we will achieve a fully accessible RCMP.

Nadine Huggins,
RCMP Chief Human Resources Officer
Equity, Diversity and Inclusion Champion

Accountability and governance

The accountability for implementing the Accessible Canada Act in the RCMP lies with the defined Accessibility Leadership. Accessibility related proposals go through the department's existing governance footnote 1 structure in an effort to ensure that across the organization, we are embedding accessibility priorities in order to collectively advance this work.

Accessibility leadership

Accessibility Lead

  • Nadine Huggins, Chief Human Resources Officer

Equity, Diversity and Inclusion Unit

  • Tahanee McKnight, Executive Director, Human Resources Policies, Strategies and Programs
  • Tooneejoulee Kootoo-Chiarello, Director, Human Resources Policies, Strategies and Programs
  • Sayeeda Jaigirdar, Project Lead, Equity Diversity and Inclusion Advisor

RCMP Governance

Level 1 committees

  • Senior Executive Committee
  • Communications and Coordination Committee

Level 2 committees

  • Finance, IT and Human Resources Committee
  • Integration and Results Management Committee footnote 2

Governance structures

  • Departmental Lead for the implementation of the Accessible Canada Act (Nadine Huggins, Chief Human Resources Officer)
  • Human Resources-Policies, Strategies and Programs Directorate (Tahanee McKnight, Executive Director)
  • Equity, Diversity and Inclusion Unit (Tooneejoulee Kootoo-Chiarello, Director)
  • Technical Working Groups on the pillars footnote 3
  • RCMP Portfolio Accessibility Community of Practice
  • RCMP Accessibility and Disability Network and Action Group

Pillar leads

As the identified pillar leads, the business units below will own both the responsibility and accountability for the development and implementation of the pillar-specific Plans inside the broader Accessibility Plan.

  1. Communication (other than Information and Communication Technologies) (with 3 separate themes) Chief Human Resources Officer and others as identified in the Accessibility Plan
  2. Employment – Chief Human Resources Officer and others as identified in Accessibility Plan
  3. Built environment – Property Management and others as identified in the Accessibility Plan
  4. Design and delivery of programs and services – Various leads as identified in the Accessibility Plan
  5. Procurement of goods services and facilities – Procurement and Contracting and others as identified in the Accessibility Plan
  6. Information and Communication Technologies – Information Technology and Information Management and others as identified in the Accessibility Plan
  7. Transportation- Fleet Management and others as identified in Accessibility Plan

General

Organizational context

The Royal Canadian Mounted Police is more than just Canada's national police service. We have been part of the fabric of Canada since 1873. We are one of only a few police services recognized around the world for both our policing excellence and our image – the "Mountie".

The RCMP fulfills its mandate from coast-to-coast-to-coast, at the community, provincial, territorial and federal levels, by preventing crime, enforcing the law, investigating offences, and assuring public safety. We also offer our renowned expertise at the international level by conducting international policing activities, including peacekeeping, and sharing intelligence with trusted partners to support investigations, and to disrupt and dismantle criminal operations. Operations focus on three key areas: Contract and Indigenous Policing, Federal Policing, and Specialized Policing Services. We work in over 700 detachments in 150 communities across the country, and provides policing services in more than 600 Indigenous communities.

The composition of the RCMP workforce is unique, adding a distinctive dimension of diversity to our strength in delivering high-quality work that keeps our communities safe. As of April 1, 2022, the RCMP employs 30,726 people. Of these, 19,116 are Regular Member police officers, and 2,940 are Civilian Members, employed under the Royal Canadian Mounted Police Act. 8,670 are Public Service Employees, employed under the Public Service Employment Act.

As the RCMP approaches its 150th anniversary in 2023, our top priority is to be the modern, inclusive, and healthy organization that our employees and all residents of Canada expect of us. This means continuously finding ways to take better care of our employees, treating all those we serve with dignity and respect, and carrying out our police work in ways that builds trust and confidence. This will ensure we can fulfill our primary mandate, which is to keep people safe.

Through the RCMP Equity, Diversity and Inclusion Strategy – Setting A Foundation: Serving Employees and Communities with Dignity and Respect (Equity, Diversity and Inclusion Strategy), released in January 2021, the RCMP is reinforcing its commitment to becoming an organization that actively works to denounce and prevent systemic racism and all forms of discrimination and harassment. Key actions are identified under the Equity, Diversity and Inclusion Strategy's four pillars: (1) Provide Leadership and Guidance, (2) Be Clear, Accountable and Transparent, (3) Enhance Awareness and Education, and (4) Change Culture and Transform. The Vision 150 and Beyond Plan to Advance Equity, Accountability and Trust and the People Strategy bolster the RCMP's commitment to tackling systemic racism and discrimination through the modernization and organizational culture change we wish to accomplish. Initiatives underway include a rollout of the RCMP's Unconscious Bias, Anti-Racism and Anti-Discrimination training courses, the implementation of a new suite of Equity, Diversity and Inclusion performance metrics, and a renewal of the RCMP's Core Values. These actions and more are supporting the organization's development and application of an Accessibility Strategy to identify, address, and prevent barriers to inclusivity for all employees, partners, and clients of the RCMP, especially persons with disabilities.

The Accessible Canada Act

The Accessible Canada Act came into force on July 11, 2019 to help "Realize a Canada without barriers especially for persons with disabilities".

The Act defines disability as any impairment or functional limitation that hinders a person's full and equal participation in society. It applies to a wide range health challenges - visible and invisible - including those related to pain, flexibility, cognitive development, mental health and chronic illness. Most Canadians have a disability at some point in their lives, whether temporary (such as a broken leg) or permanent (a chronic illness).

The Act applies to Parliament, Government of Canada departments and agencies, crown corporations, and private sector businesses that fall under federal jurisdiction, such as banking, telecommunications and transportation.

While the Act has a long-term vision for full accessibility to be achieved by 2040, it imposes many requirements in the interim. By 2022-2023, federally regulated entities must:

  • Prepare and publish an initial multi-year Plan to address accessibility for the people that they hire, and the way that they do business
  • Establish a feedback process with two-way exchange with individuals, groups and networks within the disability community
  • Report annually on the progress we have made to improve accessibility and to address the feedback received

Nothing Without Us: An Accessibility Strategy for the Public Service of Canada

The Government has mandated the Public Service of Canada to lead by example and become an international model of accessibility for others to follow. Nothing Without Us: An Accessibility Strategy for the Public Service of Canada presents a policy roadmap for departments to design an initial accessibility Plan that will ensure that decision-making related the inclusion of person with disabilities is more deliberate, transparent and accountable.

At the heart of this strategy are five interconnected goals to guide the public service in its response to the requirements of the Act. They are:

  • Recruitment, retention and promotion practices that are inclusive of persons with disabilities
  • Built environments that are stress-free to navigate
  • Clear communications and technology that is usable by all
  • Program and service design and delivery that is barrier-free
  • Public servants who are equipped to confidently engage, manage and serve persons with disabilities

Strategic framework

As the Employer of the federal public service, the Treasury Board of Canada Secretariat's Office of Public Service Accessibility is leading the charge on the implementation of the Accessibility Strategy for the Public Service of Canada, "Nothing Without Us". Employment and Social Development Canada is responsible for overseeing the implementation of the Act and Regulations as the Government of Canada's lead department on labour-related programs.

At the RCMP the Chief Human Resources Officer is the organizational lead for Accessibility, via the Equity, Diversity and Inclusion Unit, which has monitored ongoing developments related to the Accessibility legislative framework and has been assigned responsibility for framing the Accessibility Plan for the RCMP.

In October 2021, Employment and Social Development Canada consulted federal departments on guidance for developing Accessibility Plans. The RCMP's Equity, Diversity and Inclusion Unit and National Council for Diversity and Inclusion provided input. The RCMP also consulted with Persons with Disabilities coupled with expertise from other departments in formulating this Plan. The Equity, Diversity and Inclusion Unit attended the "Accessibility Plans Boot Camp" events and many others held by the Treasury Board Secretariat's Office of Public Service Accessibility prior to the formulation of the operational Plan. This consultation is an ongoing process and will remain so for the entirety of the Plan.

Current state

The RCMP's Equity, Diversity and Inclusion Unit conducted and prepared an Accessibility Strategy Gap Analysis in June 2019 for the Chief Human Resources Officer. The Gap Analysis included recommended actions for addressing accessibility within the organization.

The Gap Analysis found that the RCMP's most significant employment equity gaps involve the representation of people with disabilities. Employees with disabilities are unrepresented among the public service leadership ranks, and remain largely underrepresented among Senior Officer Ranks. As of 2020-2021, employees with disabilities represent 1.4% of Regular Member police officers (unchanged from 2019-2020), 2.7% of Civilian Members (down from 2.8% in 2019-2020), and 3.5% of Public Service Employees (down from 3.6% in 2019-2020). As we continue implementation of this Strategy, future iterations of the gap analysis will include an intersectional lens, to further unpack the compounding barriers that are faced by persons with disabilities who also identify as members of other equity seeking communities.

The RCMP accessibility statement and vision

The RCMP will have enhanced accessibility for its employees and the public through 2023-2025 and moving forward:

The RCMP will have identified and addressed barriers within its direct control, resulting in employees and clients with disabilities having every opportunity to participate fully and equally in an inclusive, barrier-free environment where they can realize their potential and feel they belong.

Departmental feedback process

As articulated in the Accessible Canada Act, the RCMP has established a departmental process for receiving and addressing feedback regarding the implementation of the present Accessibility Plan and barriers experienced by our employees and people who interact with our organization.

Below, is a description of our feedback process, which will facilitate the provision of anonymous feedback both internally and externally:

  • The present Accessibility Plan is to be published on the RCMP internal and external website. It will also be published on open.canada.ca
  • The designated person for receiving feedback is Ms. Galina Ivanova, Employment Equity Research Analyst and Project Coordinator, at the following email address: rcmpaccessibility-accessibilitegrc@rcmp-grc.gc.ca
  • A survey is published on the RCMP website, which will capture employee and client feedback on the implementation of the present Accessibility Plan
  • As they are surfaced, relevant issues will be addressed through governance structures
  • Periodically as the Accessibility Plan is updated, it will reflect the feedback received
  • A person may use the contact information listed to request a copy of the feedback process description in an alternate format
  • The RCMP will ensure acknowledgement of receipt of all its feedback if it is not received anonymously

Contact information to reach out to the RCMP

By email
The designated contact person for receiving feedback or for an accessible version of this document is Ms. Galina Ivanova, Employment Equity Research Analyst and Project Coordinator, at the following email address: rcmpaccessibility-accessibilitegrc@rcmp-grc.gc.ca
By mail
Equity, Diversity and Inclusion Unit
73 Leikin Drive
M5-4 Mailstop 52
Ottawa ON  K1A 0R2
By toll-free number
1-833-690-3508

Consultations

The present Accessibility Plan leverages input from employees, partners, and clients, particularly those who identify as persons with disabilities, that we received through a variety of consultation and engagements, which will remain an ongoing element of this Plan footnote 4. Consultation Plans and progress reports will also be forthcoming as a result of these ongoing consultations.

The following section outlines the methods through which the RCMP has consulted with employees and members of the public in matters related to accessibility, accommodations, barriers, harassment and discrimination, and other experiences with respect to accessibility at the RCMP, as well as analysis of the results from these consultations.

2020 Public Service Employee Survey

The 2020 Public Service Employee Survey was conducted from November 30, 2020 to January 29, 2021. This comprehensive survey measured federal government employees' opinions about their engagement, leadership, workforce, workplace, workplace well-being, compensation, diversity and inclusion, and the impacts of COVID-19. The final response rate for the overall public service was 61%. At the RCMP, 37% of all employees responded to the survey, of which 44% were Public Service Employees, 41% were Civilian Members, and 33% were Regular Member police officers (Source: RCMP Survey Centre).

The survey results of Public Service Employees footnote 5, particularly as analyzed by the demographic of employees who identified as a person with a disability compared to those who did not identify as a person with a disability, reveal important information that has informed the RCMP's Accessibility Plan. Overall, employees with a disability have disproportionately less positive experiences on the job and higher incidences of reported harassment and discrimination. Results indicated that employees with disabilities report experiencing disproportionately greater barriers to career development and progression, and promotion, and more work-related stress compared to those who did not identify as persons with disabilities.

RCMP Innovation Inbox

The RCMP's Action, Innovation and Modernization Office maintains an inbox through which employees can submit their ideas and suggestions for making the RCMP more modern, agile, people-focused and effective. To date, over 2,400 employee submissions have been reviewed and analyzed. Members of the Action, Innovation and Modernization Office have personally responded to over 150 submissions and held over 50 meetings to share employees' ideas with Senior Management, Business Lines, Divisions and Directorates.

Many of the submissions that have come through the Innovation Inbox have highlighted accessibility barriers faced by employees, and have proposed innovative approaches for addressing these barriers. A selection of these submissions is synthesized below:

  • The organization can support employees with disabilities and those with accessibility needs by making physical/site accessibility information available on the RCMP's internal website, Info Web. This could include information related to accessible public transport, accessible entrances, and more.
  • The RCMP is called to take further action to implement accessibility into the Vision 150 and Beyond Plan to Advance Equity, Accountability and Trust.
  • Employees suggest that the organization pay greater attention to listening to and implementing their suggestions, as well as communicating steps that are being taken to address diversity and innovation conjointly. Members are threatened with code violations for making suggestions.
  • Employees have identified that there is a need for greater attention to the accessibility of the Info Web. It is reportedly difficult to navigate Info Web and employees seek a more user-friendly interface.

The above barriers are being addressed in the RCMP Accessibility Strategy and the Accessibility Plan.

2021-22 RCMP Client and Partner Survey: Canadians' Views of RCMP Policing Services

Each year, the RCMP surveys Canadians to determine their perspective on policing services to make meaningful changes by meeting the public's needs. For the period 2021-2022, a total of 2,934 persons agreed to participate in the survey, of which 1,503 (50%) were women, 1413 (48%) were men, and 18 (1%) considered themselves as the other gender. In addition, 338 (12%) of responders identified themselves as disabled, 221 (8%) were considered a member of a visible minority group,footnote 6 199 (3%) were either First Nations, Métis, or Inuit, and 167 (8%) were from the 2SLGBTQI+ communities.

To optimize its efforts through the evaluation of survey data, the RCMP has decided to identify respondents with disabilities as its target population to answer questions from six divided sections.

The first section refers to the attitudes toward the RCMP. Most responders with disabilities (83%) approved of the importance of the RCMP's contribution to the safety of Canadians. However, only 57% were satisfied with the RCMP's assistance. Also, 53% said they were feeling safe because of RCMP.

In the second section, which focuses on General Questions, over half of the responders with disabilities were satisfied that the RCMP strives to provide service in the official language of choice (68%) and demonstrates professionalism (56%). Yet only 48% admitted to having confidence in the RCMP, and 35% agreed that the RCMP provides the same quality of service to all citizens, which is considered as low.

Another section, linked to Service and Responsiveness, indicates that 52% of respondents with disabilities thought the RCMP personnel had a visible presence in their community, province, or territory. However, the percentage dropped significantly to 34 when asked about the RCMP as an innovative and forward-looking organization.

For the final section, representing the Priorities of the RCMP, more than half of respondents with disabilities (58%) agreed that the RCMP is effectively involved in a range of international activities, such as peacekeeping missions and providing training to foreign police forces. The same goes for its effective response to threats at the border between different ports of entry (58%). Yet, regarding safety and reconciliation with Aboriginal communities, respondents were less convinced (35% and 30%).

As for respondents with disabilities, 32% have been in contact with the RCMP in the past year, specifically men (37%). The reasons for contacting the RCMP were to inform about accidents or traffic violations (21%), to declare being a victim of a crime (21%) or to witness a crime (19%), to make a complaint about a disturbance (18%), to get a check for criminal record, and other purposes (26%).

Regarding contact with the RCMP, 81% of respondents with disabilities found it easy to reach the RCMP. They also found that RCMP staff treated them courteously and respectfully. However, only half of the respondents saw that RCMP staff were doing more than the minimum to provide quality service.

RCMP Disability and Accessibility Action Group and Network

The RCMP launched its Disability and Accessibility Action Group and Network on September 16, 2022. This group's mission is to advocate for disability- and accessibility-related issues by identifying and communicating best practices and solutions to challenges faced by employees with disabilities. The Action Group will consist of employees from all categories of employees in our organization and will provide input and advice to the Accessibility leadership, the Equity, Diversity and Inclusion Unit, our senior management team, and the National Council for Diversity and Inclusion to improve the working environment for all employees with disabilities.

On September 16, 2022, the group held its inaugural meeting attended by a number of employees who identify as a person with a disability, want to be an ally to persons with disabilities, or who are in a position to assist in the implementation of the RCMP's Accessibility Strategy. Employees in attendance included those representing Regular Member police officers, Civilian Members, and Public Service Employees from various Divisions and Business Lines. At this meeting, the Equity, Diversity and Inclusion Unit held a consultation session where we heard directly from employees with disabilities about their lived experiences and their hopes for the organization's Plan to address accessibility barriers. This was one of many steps towards further intentional and meaningful consultation directly with employees with disabilities.

The following section, "Barriers – What We Heard" details the accounts of these employees. The following section also details some accounts from employees who joined the network and spoke with Equity, Diversity and Inclusion Advisors after the network meeting. The comments are also summarized from email correspondence from the Accessibility and Disability network in the last year.

Barriers – What we heard

Programs and services

In this section, all categories of employees (Regular members, Civilian members and Public Servants) expressed concern over the RCMP's disability management system. Regular Member police officers and Civilian Members expressed their concern regarding properly trained Disability Advisors and the merit criteria applied in the hiring process. Regular members spoke about PTSD concerns among members and the lack of resources such as psychologists.

Public Service Employees also expressed concerns regarding the disability management system and how it was inappropriate to have Disability Management falling under Labour Relations Advisors. They echoed the Regular Member police officers and the Civilian Members in expressing the need for better training for Labour Relations advisors in Human Rights and Disability Management. They also expressed concern that accommodation needs were not being met. An employee also expressed concern with the Grievance Handbook which a tool for recourse for employees.

Employees also suggested that the service animal program requires a thorough review.

When an animal comes into the workplace with a person of disability, it should not create a cascading effect on other accommodation needs in the workplace. It was suggested that one disability should not trump another in respect to a service animal.

The above concerns have been addressed under Communication (other than Information and Communication Technologies) and Design and Delivery of Services and Programs in the Accessibility Plan.

Employment

Regular Member police officers had concerns about the Regular Member police officer Staffing process and disability management. They spoke about numbers being assigned to members with a disability and that members are often assigned to jobs where there is no work. All categories of employees also expressed concern about the return to work for persons with disabilities. They expressed the suggestion that working remotely facilitates employment and well-being for persons with disabilities. It was also suggested that the review and update of the RCMP retention practice/policy of injured/disabled employees (including Regular Member police officers, Civilian Members and Public Servants)

The above concerns have been addressed under Employment in the Accessibility Plan.

Information and Communication Technologies

All categories of employees suggested that there should be accessible documents for persons with Disabilities. They also said that there should be accessible courses on Agora for Persons with Disabilities.

The above suggestions have been incorporated into the Computer Technology and Information Management of the Accessibility Plan.

RCMP Operational Accessibility Plan – Moving forward

RCMP Operational Accessibility Plan 2023-2025

The Operational Accessibility Plan is a multi-year, results-based Plan, consisting of the priority areas for action, desired results and targeted activities to achieve them. The Accessibility Plan identifies leads, partners, timelines and specific activities over a 3-year period, from 2023 to 2025 and will be updated annually.

The Operational Accessibility Plan is significant starting point for making RCMP barrier free. To be truly inclusive and diverse, our organization is focused on building accessibility into aspect of our business lines, including our meetings and materials, interactions with employees and public, and products and services. This Plan is a multi-year and results-based, consisting of the priority areas for action, desired results and targeted activities to achieve them, in alignment with Equality, Diversity and Inclusion Strategy. The Accessibility Plan identifies leads, partners, timelines and specific activities over a 3-year period, from 2023-2025 and will be updated annually, in consulting with networks.

RCMP will create governance structures to ensure internal implementation activities are completed within the timeline 2023-2025. This work will position the organization in addressing solutions to systemic barriers within policies, programs, services and work environment. This accessibility plan outlines the actions we will take to identify, remove and prevent barriers at RCMP, in ongoing consolation with networks and other relevant patterns.

1. Communication, other than information and communication technologies

The overall desired result for Communication (Other than Information and Communication Technologies) is to ensure existing and new communication content are accessible for all users.

Barriers
  • Ambiguous policy and program governances
  • Poor leadership awareness or training in Inclusion and Diversity
  • Lack of awareness of the needs of the disability community
  • Lack of communications in accessible, plain language formats and related training

Policy and program governance structures will be established to build clear, actionable accessibility commitments. Diversity and Inclusion, Anti-Racism, and Leadership training plans for Senior Leaders in various capacities will be offered between 2023-2025. Curriculum may be modified as needed, in consultation with networks.

Key awareness campaigns, resources and tools will be socialized across the organization to promote the full implementation of the Accessibility Strategy on an annual basis between 2023-2025. The RCMP will fully support Government of Canada awareness campaigns including the National Disability Employment Awareness Month and Persons with Disabilities programming.

Executive National Champion and Divisional Co-Champions for Accessibility will support the implementation of the Accessibility Plan process will begin in 2023 with nominations finalized in that year. These processes will be conducted in consultation with networks and key stakeholders. Communications will be accessible and written in plain language.

2. Employment

The overall desired result for employment is RCMP recruit, retain and promote persons with disabilities and offer timely workplace accommodations.

Barriers
  • A lack of effective employment equity analysis and benchmarking of recruiting, retention and promotions rates for employees with disabilities
  • Lack of equity, diversity and inclusion training and disability management
  • Lack of disability recruitment milestones for Public Service employees, Regular Members, Civilian Members and students
  • Inefficient staffing practices recruitment of persons with disabilities

In 2023-24, the RCMP will conduct an employment equity analysis and benchmarking of recruiting, retention and promotions rates for employees with disabilities. This work will be instrumental in identifying where systemic barriers exist in staffing processes at the corporate and hiring manager levels, as well as possible solutions. Additionally, a self-identification and inclusion campaign and other initiatives will be implemented as needed, to improve information about diverse groups while creating organizational capacity to understand their lived experiences. In 2023-24, the development of training plan models for Managers will include Equity, Diversity and Inclusion topics with emphasis on disability management and launch of the Accessibility Passport for all RCMP employees.

The RCMP will set disability hiring recruitment milestones (Regular Member police officers, Civilian Members and Public Service Employees) for each Division (via targeted events such as October's Disability Employment Month) and focus on student recruitment campaigns between 2023-2025. Hiring tools and resources for interview boards will be created to reflect adequate EE representation and promote fairer hiring practices. In addition, targeted staffing inventories will be created to support continuous recruitment initiatives in all occupational groups across the RCMP, specific to persons with disabilities.

Sponsorship and mentoring programs for equity seeking groups, including employees with disabilities will be designed and piloted between 2023 through 2025.

The RCMP will review and update the policy suite for injured and disabled employees (including Regular Member police officers, Civilian Members and Public Service Employees) and establish an implementation plan for a more robust understanding of why employees with disabilities leave through a mandatory exit survey. Strengthened commitments to improve the analysis of accessibility barriers in the hybrid work environment in order to explore the potential of updating the Gap Analysis to reflect both an intersectional and post-pandemic lens.

3. Built environment

The overall desired result for built environment is have welcoming, barrier-free access to RCMP buildings, offices and facilities across the country.

Barriers

Barriers are faced by clients and employees with respect to:

  • accessible parking places not available
  • accessible pathways and doorways
  • accessible washrooms
  • accessible issues with service animals in the workplace

Starting in 2023 through 2025, the RCMP will create and maintain internal and external networks to monitor progress. Accessibility audits for all sites will be completed, addressing base-building elements and the RCMP tenant space within, including client service spaces and Animal policy and program. This will support development and implement of an action Plan to ensure all RCMP owned and leased spaces, including but not limited to Divisional detachments, meet or exceed accessibility standards.

4. Designs and delivery of programs and services

The overall desired result for Designs and Delivery of Programs and Services is to ensure In-person, phone and online client services are accessible for persons with disabilities.

Barriers
  • Availability of disability management services for Public Service employees
  • Modest understanding of accommodation, disability and disability management by RCMP managers, supervisors and labour relations advisors
  • Disability management seen as adversarial by management and employees

In 2023, RCMP will begin to explore and establish an office or a virtual hub for Disability management and Accessibility. Ongoing review of Disability Management programs for all categories of employees will be monitored. The RCMP will create Manager's training tools to better increase awareness of the unique needs required by persons with disabilities (for example Human Rights Training, invisible disabilities, soft skills such as building trust and coaching, the value that employees with disabilities bring to their teams, how to avoid confusing job supports and performance issues, designing and implementing accessible programs, services and policies, etc.).

Key elements will include the review and update of the Bias Free Policing Program, the Service Animal policy and program, and finalization and launch of the updated Duty to Accommodate guidelines.

5. Procurement of goods, services and facilities

The overall desired result for procurement of goods, services, and facilities is to ensure Accessibility criteria are considered when buying goods, services and facilities, and products include accessibility features where appropriate.

Barriers
  • Need for procurement and contracting processes that reflect accessibility-related goods and services to support employees and clients with disabilities
  • Lack of central fund for the purchase of workplace related goods and services to facilitate accommodation

In 2023, RCMP will respond to requests to establish new supply arrangements/standing offers and other tools to better meet managers' needs for accessibility-related goods and services to support employees and clients with disabilities (for example preparation of alternative format documents, job coaches). Processes will be established to ensure contracting and procurement processes are reflective of accessibility requirements. Between 2023 through 2025 the RCMP will ensure Accessibility criteria are fully understood and included as part of performance indicators. There will be ongoing commitment to explore options for creating a central fund for the purchase of workplace related goods and services to facilitate accommodation.

6. Information and Communication Technologies

The overall desired result for Information and Communication Technologies is to ensure our organization has relevant, update to Technology and Information Management infrastructure that meet the needs of persons with disabilities.

Barriers
  • Training and support for adaptive IT tools and technologies required
  • Accessible documents in the workplace required
  • Accessible Learning content required
  • Detailed accessibility assessment of HRMIS required

In 2023, work will begin to create Technology and Information Management framework for accessibility, with input from employee networks. Processes will be put in place to enhance training and support for adaptive IT tools and technologies, with a particular focus on the hybrid work environment.

Throughout 2023-2025 the RCMP will make accessible fonts the defaults in Word, PowerPoint, Excel and other applications widely used in the work environment; and develop templates for accessible briefing notes, PowerPoint presentations and meeting agendas and other documents to facilitate online publication consistent with proactive disclosure requirements.

The RCMP will continue to implement learning content that is accessible by design through technological enhancements and supports, and complete a detailed accessibility assessment of Human Resource Management Information System (PeopleSoft), prioritize issues and identify next steps.

7. Transportation

The overall desired result for transportation is to ensure the RCMP's transportation framework embeds accessibility and aligns with all accessibility requirements.

Barriers
  • Lack of guidelines for accessible transportation to RCMP facilities in every region
  • Updated review of transportation network

In 2023, the RCMP will commence review of the transportation framework including policies, programs, procedures and infrastructure (that is vehicles). Throughout 2023 to 2025, the organization will update, streamline and improve processes for meeting the needs of employees with disabilities for adaptive transportation tools and technologies, including guidelines for accessible transportation in every region.

Conclusion

The RCMP continues to take deliberate action toward building a diverse, inclusive and accessible organization equipped to provide modern policing services. In the face of these and other evolving priorities, the RCMP remains focused on providing service excellence to Canadians and in all of the communities in which we serve.

The Accessibility Strategy and the Accessibility Plan reiterate this commitment. It was developed in consultation with employees with disabilities and subject matter experts representing various perspectives from across the country. As we look towards the future as an organization, we are committed to the RCMP Accessibility Statement and Vision and to ensuring enhanced accessibility for its employees and the public within the next 5 years:

The RCMP will have identified and addressed barriers within its direct control, resulting in employees and clients with disabilities having every opportunity to participate fully and equally in an inclusive, barrier-free environment where they can realize their potential and feel they truly belong.

Annex A – Definitions of disability

Source:

Below is a list of acts and definitions pertaining to disability, persons with a disability and, disabled.

Employment Equity Act (section 3)

persons with disabilities means persons who have a long-term or recurring physical, mental, sensory, psychiatric or learning impairment and who

  1. consider themselves to be disadvantaged in employment by reason of that impairment, or
  2. believe that an employer or potential employer is likely to consider them to be disadvantaged in employment by reason of that impairment,

and includes persons whose functional limitations owing to their impairment have been accommodated in their current job or workplace.

The Employment Equity Team at Treasury Board Secretariat is now using the French term "Personnes en situation de handicap" which aligns with international usage and replaces the legislative term "Personnes handicapées" that appears in the Employment Equity Act and the Employment Equity Regulations. The legal definition has not changed.

Accessible Canada Act (section 2)

barrier means anything — including anything physical, architectural, technological or attitudinal, anything that is based on information or communications or anything that is the result of a policy or a practice — that hinders the full and equal participation in society of persons with an impairment, including a physical, mental, intellectual, cognitive, learning, communication or sensory impairment or a functional limitation.

disability means any impairment, including a physical, mental, intellectual, cognitive, learning, communication or sensory impairment — or a functional limitation — whether permanent, temporary or episodic in nature, or evident or not, that, in interaction with a barrier, hinders a person's full and equal participation in society.

Canadian Human Rights Act (section 25)

disability means any previous or existing mental or physical disability and includes disfigurement and previous or existing dependence on alcohol or a drug.

Public Service Superannuation Act (section 3)

disabled means incapable of pursuing regularly any substantially gainful occupation.

Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms

Equality rights are intended to ensure that everyone is treated with the same respect, dignity and consideration (that is without discrimination), regardless of personal characteristics such as race, national or ethnic origin, colour, religion, sex, age, or mental or physical disability, sexual orientation, residency, marital status or citizenship.

United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities

(e) Recognizing that disability is an evolving concept and that disability results from the interaction between persons with impairments and attitudinal and environmental barriers that hinders their full and effective participation in society on an equal basis with others.

Footnotes

Footnote 1

This is referring to Senior Executive Committee and Senior Management Team.

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Footnote 2

To be created.

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Footnote 3

To be created.

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Footnote 4

It is to be noted that the Accessibility Strategy and Plan will receive ongoing input from key partners and will be addressed during the period from 2023-2025.

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Footnote 5

The Treasury Board of Canada Secretariat's Office of the Chief Human Resources Officer, as the Employer of Public Service Employees under the Public Service Employment Act, provides disaggregated Public Service Employee Survey results for Public Service Employees only. As Civilian Members and Regular Members are employed under the RCMP Act, disaggregated survey results are not available for these categories of employees.

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Footnote 6

It is to be noted that the term "Visible Minority" has been replaced by the more suitable term "Members of Racialized Groups" in updated Equity, Diversity and Inclusion terminology.

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