Introducing the Accessible Customer Service standard: a part of the Accessibility for Manitobans Act
Written by: CPHR Manitoba
When you read the term “barrier”, what comes to mind?
[Take a moment to close your eyes and think about what a barrier means to you]
How about “types of barriers” – including negative, presumable or judgmental attitudes; lack of communication; physical challenges; technological issues; or systematic failures?
[Take another moment to think while observing your surroundings]
Barriers are all around us and affect all of us. Some individuals may be stronger communicators but may not understand certain advances in technology; others may be physically able to walk into a room but are held back by a negative attitude, filled with presumptions and judgements, that prevents them from meeting others.
Now take a moment to think, “what if I had a disability” – could you overcome those barriers the same way you would normally approach them? It depends – are you visually-impaired, suffer from a mental health condition, or physically disabled? There are many factors at play here, in this thought-process alone, and unfortunately over 200,000 Manitobans are living with some form of a disability and facing different types of barriers every single day.
The fact is: we need to remove the barriers and create accessibility for all Manitobans.
The Accessibility for Manitobans Act (AMA) provides a clear and proactive process for the identification, prevention and removal of barriers with respect to five key pillars, customer service, employment, information and communications, transportation and the built environment.
The first standard to be implemented under AMA is the Accessible Customer Service standard. This standard is built on the requirements of the Human Rights Code and addresses business practices and training needed to provide better customer service for people with disabilities.
Fred Dugdale, Board Treasurer at the Manitoba League of Persons with Disabilities and Manitoba Brain Injury Association who suffers from a Traumatic Brain Injury, says that the hardest barrier to overcome is attitude.
“When learning about the Accessibility for Manitobans Act and reviewing your current workplace environment, you have to be realistic and find a way where this works for everyone. People that can work, will work – you just need to find a middle ground where your measures, practices and requirements to identify, prevent and remove barriers are a win-win for everyone,” says Dugdale. “The investment you make to remove barriers will bring long-term benefits and cater to all colleagues and clients in your workplace.”
The deadlines for compliance is structured under a three-year period – Manitoba Government (November 2016), large public sector organizations (November 2017), and companies/organizations in the public, private and not-for-profit sectors (November 2018).
To assist you in the review and development of your workplace policies and practices that will welcome and serve everyone, CPHR Manitoba and the Manitoba League of Persons with Disabilities have partnered to present the Accessibility for Manitobans Act – First of Five Standards: The Customer Service Standard workshop.
The workshop will cover an overview of the AMA legislation with a focus on the Customer Service Standard, review and compare the AMA with the Manitoba Human Rights Code, identify your organizational responsibilities and learn the key principles to offering accessible customer service in your workplace.
The Accessibility for Manitobans Act – First of Five Standards: The Customer Service Standard workshop takes place on Tuesday, November 13, from 8:30 a.m. – noon at the Viscount Gort Hotel in Winnipeg. Registration fees are $150/CPHR Manitoba members and $200/non-members. To register, visit cphrmb.ca. Registration deadline is November 8.
We love shopping local, especially when it's for a good cause. Last week, Made Here and Vantage Studios opened a pop-up charity shop filled with our favourite local goods. With over 90 local artisans participating, the selection was huge and we're sure to go back for more.
Here's a look at the local goods The Chamber bought (so far):
Created out of a passion for supporting local businesses and local children’s charities, Made Here features products from more than 90 local makers and artisans with a portion of all proceeds raised going toward children’s charities in Manitoba.
Made Here chose to focus on four local, youth-based charities each year, and hope to to raise $20,000 in their first year.
Made Here's 2018/19 children’s charities:
Have you been in business for a few years and are looking to expand your business? Do you want practical advice to reach the next level in your journey? Are you looking for an opportunity to strengthen your knowledge, acquire new tools, and expand your network? Then we have a great event for you!
The WCC has collaborated with BDC to bring their WE Talk Business Boot Camp to Winnipeg on November 6, 2018 at the Winnipeg Art Gallery.
These free events, led by BDC, run across Canada with a simple purpose: to bring together women entrepreneurs (WE) who want to talk about business and grow their business.
This one-day intensive program, created by women entrepreneurs, for women entrepreneurs, offers practical advice on leadership, money, sales, marketing, and human resources - all with a focus on growth.
The Boot Camps are also hosted by two extraordinary professionals who are passionate about helping women entrepreneurs advance - Janice McDonald (@janicemcd), an award-winning entrepreneur also President of the Beacon Agency and Clare Beckton (@ownit_clare), Executive in residence at the Centre for Research and Education on Women and Work at Carleton University.
BDC is bringing together key players such as the Chartered Professional Accountants and Export Development Canada to help facilitate the day’s content. And, BDC is working closely with regional organizations like WCC, to plan the day so that women entrepreneurs can focus on issues and opportunities that are relevant to them.
As Canada’s only bank dedicated to entrepreneurs, BDC has made it their mission to support the growth and success of female entrepreneurs. Statistics tell us that only 16% of small and medium-sized businesses are majority women-owned. BDC wants to change that and has already started through some of the following initiatives:
Do not wait! The event is free, and seats are limited. Please share this event with any women in your network that you think would benefit or register today if you are ready to take your business to the next stage.
BDC’s WE Talk Business Boot Camp
Date: November 6, 2018
Time: 8 a.m. - 5 p.m.
Location: Winnipeg Art Gallery
300 Memorial Boulevard
Attendees must register HERE by October 26th.
In a surprise move, the provincial government announced last week it will not move ahead with the proposed $25/ton carbon tax that was set to take effect later this year.
In explaining the change, Premier Brian Pallister said the province did not receive assurance from the federal government that it wouldn’t implement additional carbon taxes within Manitoba to eventually bring the rate up to $50/ton.
The Winnipeg Chamber supported the province’s original plan for a made-in-Manitoba carbon tax as it gave the provincial government the opportunity to design a tax and distribute revenue in a way that reflected local priorities.
Our recommendation was that carbon tax revenue should be allocated toward:
1) helping industry transition to lower carbon operations;
2) investing in clean technology and the development of more green industries in Manitoba;
3) infrastructure improvements that contribute to carbon reductions; and
4) relief for low-income Manitobans who might have trouble absorbing an additional tax.
While the province had indicated a preference for using carbon tax revenue to pay for offsetting personal income tax and sales tax reductions, we were hopeful it might reconsider, and we were pleased the decision was Manitoba’s to make.
The Chamber is disappointed the federal government will not give Manitoba time to demonstrate whether its tax model could be as effective as the proposed federal tax in reducing greenhouse gas emissions.
“If it's a choice between a higher tax or Manitoba pushing back, we support the province in pushing back,” said Chamber CEO Loren Remillard.
While the province won’t be implementing a carbon tax, it will still proceed with its Climate and Green Plan which outlines options to reduce carbon emissions by more than a megaton over the next four years.
Waiting on Ottawa
While the provincial carbon tax is dead, that means a new federal carbon tax is on the way instead. The federal government has clearly stated it will begin charging a $20/ton fee in January 2019 in any province that doesn’t have its own carbon tax scheme (or equivalent) in place. That fee will increase by $10 per year until it reaches $50/ton.
However, Ottawa has not been as clear on what it intends to do with the carbon tax revenue. While revenue will be returned to the province where it’s collected, it’s unknown at this time whether that will be through a direct payment to individuals, by flowing the money through the provincial government, or another option.
That uncertainty is a major concern for the business community, which will bear a significant portion of the cost of the carbon tax. The Winnipeg Chamber will be following this issue closely and having direct conversations with federal representatives on how they can implement a carbon tax without stifling economic growth in Manitoba.
Director of Policy
On October 17, Canada will become the first G7 country to fully legalize recreational cannabis. Is your business ready?
Here are 5 impacts that the legalization of cannabis will have on the workplace:
1. Safety concerns
Despite cannabis legalization, adult cannabis use is not new. However, employers are concerned that with legalization a subsequent increased use will impact the workplace. Safety concerns include employees operating motor vehicles and employees using heavy machinery while under the influence of cannabis.
2. Alcohol, drug policies and testing
Cannabis is already the most commonly encountered substance in workplace drug testing, but with legalization, its use is expected to grow. Employers have the right to regulate cannabis use at work, and employees have the right to a safe workplace. It’s important to communicate any changes made to alcohol and drug policies, and focus on treatment and recovery during disciplinary actions.
3. Drug use or dependence
Due to legalization, experts expect a rise in recreational cannabis use. Effects of cannabis on individuals vary widely depending on numerous factors, so it’s important to educate employees on its effects and any new workplace policies.
4. Medicinal cannabis use
Because many people use cannabis for medical reasons, it’s important to clearly outline your workplace policies on cannabis while being cognisant of those who require cannabis to treat or relieve the symptoms of a disability. As an employer, you need to accommodate your employees’ needs and that may include the use of medicinal cannabis.
5. Problematic drug use or dependence
Just because cannabis is being legalized, it does not mean it’s a license for poor behaviour. Cannabis use can become problematic for many reasons, such as when workplace performance and attendance decreases. Employers should prepare for a potential rise in problematic cannabis use and dependence in the workplace.
Our Annual General Meetings are held to introduce a quorum of 25 Chamber members, as required, to govern the Chamber Board.
The Chamber is governed by members of a highly dedicated volunteer Board of Directors. Our directors are from companies of various sizes and sectors and reflect the diversity of our membership. We are also proud to have a gender-balanced board.
Each director brings with him/her a wealth of knowledge and experience and is committed to community leadership and supporting The Chamber’s mission. The board meets regularly to approve policy, engage in discussion around issues affecting the business community and to make decisions around the general governance of The Chamber.
Join us for our next Luncheon:
with Joseph Okpaku, VP of Government Relations at Lyft
Manitoba Race to Reduce has announced their 2018 award categories. The awards, held in April each year, have been expanded this year to recognize even more participant accomplishments. New for 2018, there will an application process for two of the categories.
Action and Innovation Award
The Action and Innovation Award recognizes participants who have demonstrated leadership and commitment to saving energy through their actions and/or innovations. Innovation examples include new ideas, methods, behaviors, plans, projects and collaborations.
Building Commitment Award
The Building Commitment Award recognizes landlords, tenants and employees who have pledged to reduce energy use in their offices and throughout their participating building. This fun and interactive application is designed for tenants and landlords to submit together.
Building Performance Awards
Building Performance Awards recognize energy efficiency accomplishments and are based on the energy consumption data taken from participants’ ENERGY STAR Portfolio Manager account. There is no application required to be eligible for the following 2018 Building Performance Awards.
Manitoba Race to Reduce is a unique energy reduction challenge that encourages collaboration between commercial office building landlords tenants and employees to improve energy efficiency in their buildings reducing greenhouse gas emissions and costs.
Each year, The Chamber recognizes a force that makes our city function: volunteers.
This year we will recognize five Chamber Volunteers for their dedicated services.
JEROD RATHBONE, SV BENEFITS
Recipient of our Volunteer of the Year Award
DAN BLAIR, BIT SPACE DEVELOPMENT
Recipient of our Volunteer of the Year Award
JAYSA TOET, ACUITY HR SOLUTIONS
Recipient of our Volunteer of the Year Award
RON GREASLEY, DESCHENES REGNIER
Recipient of our Distinguished Long Service Award
KEITH WIEBE, RBC (recently retired)
Recipient of our Director of the Year Award
Congratulations to all of our 2018 Volunteer Awards recipients!
1. What’s your favourite social media channel and why?
Kyle (Vantage Studios Inc.): It changes in every scenario. In my personal life, until something else emerges and displaces it, I like the curated visual feed of Instagram. It’s filled with friends, family, colleagues and my art/design interests in both still image and video. I like that it gives me the sense of maintaining connections with people who are a part of my life. In marketing of businesses it changes based on industry regulations, customer segments, value proposition and type of customer relationship. Some channels are better than others to grow and target key audience segments, but relevance and engagement are more important in most cases.
Susie (SPARKER Strategy Group): It really depends what your goals are. Each channel has unique benefits depending on the company goals. However, for business that is looking to invest in one channel my recommendation would be for Instagram. There are tremendous opportunities for images and video to sell, as well as advertising. The e-commerce growth for brands on Instagram will only grow.
Adam (Dooley PR): I like different channels for different reasons. They each have unique value propositions and uses. My personal favourite as a user would be Instagram (though I tend to lurk more than I post). It tends to be mostly positive and let's individuals and brands express themselves in highly creative ways. The world doesn't need any more outrage and drama.
I've also grown fonder of LinkedIn over the past two years. For a long time, many people used LinkedIn as just an online resume, but it is doing a much better job of improving its relevancy to a daily business audience. We've won clients on LinkedIn and I use it regularly to build our business and my personal network.
2. Which company do you admire for their branding/marketing and why? #BrandGoals
3. What is the biggest marketing trend we’ll see in 2019?
Kyle: Adoption of existing popular technology to enhance customer acquisition and growth.
Integration of tech can optimize investments or make workflows more efficient, re-allocating effort and budgets to higher value activities, ultimately enabling a company to deliver higher value to their customers, extend their reach or enhance engagement. All of these moves can influence customer attraction, retention and referrals enhanced also by traditional word of mouth and online reviews.
Adam: Automation will continue to steamroll through our lives and the marketing and media world will be no different. In news media, we will see traditional regional news operations continue to shrink while a few massive, national and international players will expand across new geographies (ie. New York Times, Economist, Guardian, BBC). And more media organizations will turn to automated news gathering and writing systems to generate news. We'll also see continued proliferation of hyper-niche online publications focused on a single topic or audience. In marketing, I expect to continue to see local companies relying more and more on global advertising platforms such as Facebook and Google. Automated marketing systems will continue to get better and smarter, allowing even small businesses to target potential leads with greater accuracy. All of this will require small businesses to become even more tech savvy.
The welcome mat has been rolled out at 390 on the River, Winnipeg’s newest luxury condominium in the heart of the city. Display suites are now open, providing the first finished look at this sleek new tower on the scenic southern edge of downtown.
Of the many condominiums built in Winnipeg over the past few years, this one stands above them all. Literally. The handsome tower rises 24-stories above the Assiniboine, providing panoramic views of the city and its two major rivers.
“That’s the great benefit of living in a tower – you can’t beat the views,” said Geoff Davis, who markets the condominium with his father Claude. “With the Assiniboine, the Legislative Building and the downtown skyline nearby, it’s a pretty spectacular place to be.”
The building is also a stand-out on the inside, where a sophisticated, upscale feeling runs throughout the suites and shared spaces. The kitchens feature under-mount sinks and brand names like Jenn-Air and Fisher Paykel.
“The finishes are definitely a step up from what you would normally see in the downtown market,” says Frank Cianflone, another Royal LePage Realtor marketing the units. “If someone is moving to this condo after downsizing from a family home, they’ll appreciate these touches.”
The jewels in the crown are the four penthouse suites on the 23rd and 24th floors. Each measures about 2,300 square feet. On the top floor, the two penthouses can be purchased together and combined into one 4,400-square-foot unit.
“Each penthouse space is a blank canvas, awaiting customization by its future owner,” says Claude Davis. “There are many opportunities to define the layout, including options for where kitchens and bathrooms can be located.”
The entertainment facilities are located on the sixth floor, overlooking the river. A stylish dining area with fully-equipped kitchen and fireside lounge opens onto a 2,364-square-foot outdoor terrace, where shade trees and greenery have just been planted.
Also on site are a guest suite and a 588-square-foot fitness studio. All amenities are above ground so natural light is plentiful everywhere. Even the heated parkade has a river view.
390 on the River is pet-friendly and perfect for those who enjoy a vibrant, active lifestyle. The Assiniboine River Walk is connected to the property by way of a private path, and Winnipeg’s first separated bikeway runs right past the front door. Just minutes away are the Forks, Osborne Village, Bell MTS Place and an endless array of entertainment opportunities.
The first owners will move into 390 on the River later this September, when a number of units will be ready for occupancy.
For a private tour of the display suites and amenities, contact the marketing team at 204-510-5717.