City Hall, AODA, and Accessibility to Public Meetings
City Hall was renovated in 2010, but not brought into compliance with accessibility requirements for those with physical disabilities.
With the toxic culture of City Hall, it’s not a surprise that accessibility was not thought of during the lengthy renovation project.
Council will be spending hundreds of thousands near the end of 2015 to make meeting rooms accessible as required by the AODA and the City’s own building regulations for private buildings.
In the interim, those with physical disabilities have to wait for someone to open the heavy doors for them to enter the Council Chamber – that’s if they can first remove the new barriers just added to stop residents from using the main doors into Council Chambers.
It’s only in the toxic City Hall culture that the rare resident entering Council Chambers by the main doors is a problem requiring immediate action – even if that action violates AODA and the Fire Code.
The doors also serve as the Fire Exit, and the Fire Code is clear – no barriers are allowed to block an exit route.
It’s time for City Hall to root out its culture problems that creates the mindset that citizens attending public meetings serves to inconvenience staff at staff’s City Hall.
A proper City Hall culture does the opposite of the present, it works to welcome engagement and to ensure residents are welcome at their City Hall.
A simple suggestion to fix the problem of residents using the main doors into Council Chambers
— Martin Kuplēns-Ewart (@mkuplens) July 7, 2014
City staff have removed the barriers.