January 31, 2006 Joint Peel-Caledon Accessibility Advisory Committee (AAC)
Page Content:
1. Call to Order
2. Approval of Minutes
3. Approval of Agenda
4. Communication Items
5. Presentations
6. Reports
7. Report from the Accessibility Planning Coordinators
8. Report of the Accessibility Advisory Committee Chair
9. Other Business
10. Next Meeting
11. Adjournment







The Joint Peel-Caledon Accessibility Advisory Committee met on January 31, 2006 at 1:07 p.m. in the Council Chamber on the 5th floor of the Region of Peel Headquarters Building, Brampton.

Members Present: H. Bajwa; G. Barnes; G. Carlson¨; W. Goursky; S. Hames; M. Horn; N. Husain; E. Kolb*¨; T. LeRoux; R. Paterak; M. Tymkow*
Members Absent: Nil
Also Present:

R. K. Gillespie, Commissioner of Corporate Services and Regional Solicitor; A. Macintyre, Acting Regional Clerk and Director of Clerk's; E. Schuppert, Manager, Customer Services, Town of Caledon; J. Payne, Acting Manager, Legislative Services; M. Sikand, Accessibility Planning Specialist, Region of Peel; S. Jurrius, Acting Legislative Co-ordinator, Legislative Services

*See text for arrivals
¨See text for departures

Glenn Barnes, Chair, presided


Glenn Barnes, Chair of the Joint Peel-Caledon Accessibility Advisory Committee called the meeting to order at 1:07 p.m. and welcomed everyone present.

Glenn Barnes announced the appointment of Councillor George Carlson as the elected representative from the City of Mississauga to the Committee. Councillor Carlson replaced Councillor Saito who resigned from the Committee effective December 15, 2005.



That the minutes of the November 1, 2005 Joint Peel-Caledon Accessibility Advisory Committee meeting, be approved.



That the agenda for the January 31, 2006 Joint Peel-Caledon Accessibility Advisory Committee meeting, be approved.

*E. Kolb arrived at 1:09 p.m.


a. News Release: Accessibility Ontario, Ministry of Community and Social Services, dated December 13, 2005, Announcing the Launch of the Accessibility Standards Advisory Council and Introducing its Members


Glenn Barnes provided the Committee with a brief background on the Accessibility Standards Advisory Council launched in December, 2005.

The Accessibility Standards Advisory Council will advise the Province on accessibility standards and on sector-specific and general public education programs to support and educate individuals, businesses and other organizations about accessibility and accessibility standards. Glenn Barnes noted that City-TV veteran David Onley and community leader Tracy MacCharles will serve as Chair and Vice-Chair, respectively of the Advisory Council.

*M. Tymkow arrived at 1:15 p.m.


a. Mauricio Fuenzalida, Fire and Life Safety Co-ordinator, Housing Department, Region of Peel Regarding Evacuation Procedures at 10 Peel Centre Dr. for Individuals Requiring Assistance


Mauricio Fuenzalida, Fire and Life Safety Co-ordinator, Housing Department, Region of Peel, provided the Committee with a detailed overview of the fire and life safety systems and evacuation procedures in place at the Regional Headquarters,10 Peel Centre Dr. (10 PCD). He advised that should an emergency occur at 10 PCD, the Fire Team (comprised of Region of Peel staff) will be available to ensure building occupants evacuate in a safe and timely manner; advise the Fire Department of any persons left in the building; ensure building occupants are assembled in the designated areas (west parking lot); and, assist persons requiring assistance. The Fire Team consists of 2 Chief Fire Wardens, 14 Fire Wardens and 40 Fire Team Members.

He stated that on an annual basis, the Fire Safety Co-ordinator sends an e-mail to 10 PCD staff about the fire evacuation procedures and also asks staff to identify those who will need assistance in case of an emergency. Those who will require assistance will be required to submit a "Persons Requiring Assistance" form which is confidential and only the Fire Department has access to the submitted forms.

William Goursky, Vice-Chair, inquired if the Fire Team are aware of who will require assistance ahead of time. Mauricio Fuenzalida assured the Committee that Fire Team members are aware of who requires assistance in advance, particularly the Chief Fire Wardens - Region of Peel Maintenance and security personnel. In the case of an emergency, each floor at 10 PCD has designated Fire Team members. The Fire Team is responsible for remaining with persons requiring assistance, and advising the Fire Department of their location. One elevator will remain operational by the Fire Department in the event of an evacuation. With the aide of the Fire Department, only persons requiring assistance are allowed to use the elevator. If the Fire Department determines that it is unsafe to use the elevator, persons requiring assistance will be evacuated by the Fire Department using slings or by other means.

Naz Husain, Citizen Member, inquired if there is an evacuation plan in place for the hearing impaired in the building. Mauricio Fuenzalida stated that there is no specific evacuation plan for the hearing impaired at 10 PCD. However, there are plans to install horns with strobe lights in the future. The proposed system will resonate with a sound for those who are visually impaired and flashing lights as a visual aid for those who are hearing impaired.

Meenu Sikand, Accessibility Planning Specialist, Region of Peel, requested the Committee to provide feedback to Mauricio Fuenzalida as to what future recommendations the Committee can incorporate in the emergency evacuation system at 10 PCD to meet the needs of persons with disabilities or requiring assistance. She also pointed out that the Joint Peel-Caledon Accessibility Advisory Committee (AAC) meets on a regular basis at 10 PCD and it would be beneficial for the Committee members to complete a "Persons Requiring Assistance" form. This will enable the Fire Team to know who the regular AAC members are and ensure members requiring assistance can be evacuated safely. Meenu Sikand also reiterated that there is an existing buddy system at 10 PCD, whereby someone will stay with the person requiring assistance during the entire evacuation process.

Meenu Sikand also inquired if the Region of Peel has evacuation equipment, such as a light weight chair, at 10 PCD to help evacuate staff or visitors when the elevators are out of service as a result of the fire alarm having been activated. The power wheelchairs are extremely heavy making it difficult to evacuate persons without having lighter wheelchairs available. She asked if the Fire Department would bring lighter equipment to carry persons using power wheelchairs or if such equipment was available at 10 PCD. Mauricio Fuenzalida informed the Committee that the Fire Department brings all the necessary equipment to assist persons with disabilities, if the need arises.

Glenn Barnes requested Meenu Sikand to follow-up with the Housing and Property Department on the availability of an evacuation chair for persons using power wheelchairs; verify if the Region has plans to purchase a lighter chair to help in the evacuation in case the elevators are not working and the possibility of installing a strobe system for the hearing impaired. He requested that this information be provided to the Committee at a future meeting.

Glenn Barnes inquired if all exits at 10 PCD are levelled. Mauricio Fuenzalida stated that the safe route exits on each floor lead to the stairwells. However, the first floor and P1 at 10 PCD are the only ones in the building that have at grade exits.

Marlowe Horn, Citizen Member, inquired if the continuous sounding alarm in the building will harm a persons hearing. Mauricio Fuenzalida replied that the sound level at 10 PCD is under 100 db and it is in accordance with the Fire and Building Code Regulations.

Councillor Paterak asked if all the elevators are accessible by the Fire Department. Mauricio Fuenzalida said in the case of an emergency, all elevators are programmed to go to the main floor. The Fire Department will have access to only one elevator.

Terri LeRoux, Citizen Member, noted that the Evacuation Routes and Assembly Area maps located on each floor at 10 Peel Centre Dr. are posted too high. She suggested to Housing and Property staff that these maps be posted at eye level. In addition, Maureen Tymkow, Citizen Member, requested that the size of the signage be increased to make it easier for persons with vision disabilities to use or read the maps. Mauricio Fuenzalida agreed to review the signs according to the request of the AAC members.

A discussion among members took place about the option of having the AAC meetings on the first floor at 10 PCD, to enable easier access to the regular AAC meetings and facilitate smooth evacuation processes in the case of an emergency.

Glenn Barnes noted that the AAC meetings are held in the Council Chamber because of all the amenities it offers (i.e. audio/visual equipment) especially during presentations but he left it up to the discretion of the Committee to decide where they want to hold future AAC meetings.

Staff Direction AAC-01-2006-01

That staff assess the feasibility of holding future Joint Peel-Caledon Accessibility Advisory Committee (AAC) meetings on the first floor at Regional Administrative Headquarters, 10 Peel Centre Dr..

Naz Husain suggested that the Committee members complete the "Person Requiring Assistance" form and she further requested staff to coordinate a fire drill solely to orient AAC members on what to do in case of an evacuation. The Committee concurred with the proposal.


That Housing and Property staff be requested to arrange a fire drill for the members of the Joint Peel-Caledon Accessibility Advisory Committee (AAC) at a future scheduled meeting.

b. Nadia Frantellizzi, Senior Research Consultant, Research and Information Transfer Team, Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC) Providing a Broad Overview of Research and Publications of Interest for Individuals with Disabilities


Nadia Frantellizzi of Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC) provided an extensive overview of the CMHC Research and Information Transfer Program addressing distinct housing needs of the homeless, persons with disabilities, seniors, aboriginal people, newcomers and low income families.

Nadia Frantellizzi further highlighted CMHC Special Initiatives Program. The program includes:

HASI is a program that helps homeowners and landlords pay for home adaptations to extend the time that low-income seniors can live in their homes independently.

RRAP for Persons with Disabilities offers financial assistance to homeowners and landlords to assist in the repair, improvements or modification of existing house or rental housing for low-income persons with disabilities. This program is available in all areas of need and serves to eliminate physical barriers, imminent life safety risks and improve quality of living for persons with disabilities.

RRAP - Secondary/Garden Suites assists in the creation of affordable housing for low-income seniors and adults with disabilities. This program is also available in all areas of need and offers financial assistance to convert/develop existing residential properties that can reasonably accommodate a secondary self-contained unit.

Detailed information about the RRAP and HASI programs are available at the CMHC website (www.cmhc.ca).

William Goursky inquired if the RRAP program will continue with the newly elected government. Nadia Frantellizzi assured that funding of the RRAP program has been extended for an additional year.

¨E. Kolb departed at 2:00 p.m., due to other municipal business

c. Mel Watson, Acting Manager, Development and Construction, Facilities Asset Management, Housing and Property, Region of Peel, Providing an Update on Region of Peel and Peel Living Design Guidelines


Mel Watson provided a status update on the design guidelines in the Region of Peel. The design guideline for the Region will be created by amending the CSA standards and will be more comprehensive compared to the build code with regard to accessibility standards.

Meenu Sikand advised the Committee that she has not shared CSA guidelines with the Committee because the proposal has not been finalized by the Housing and Property department, the initiative was mentioned by Keith Ward, Commissioner of Housing and Property, at the November 1, 2005 AAC meeting. However, as soon as the CSA guidelines are finalized, a presentation will be made to the Committee.

Mel Watson stated that the design guideline is geared towards the residential area, focusing on high-rise residential. The next step is to expand the guidelines to include low-rise housing. Mel Watson advised the Committee that the CSA document is an excellent tool to use as a reference. He noted that in his opinion, the design guidelines of the Cities of Mississauga, Brampton, London and Toronto are at par with those set out by the CSA.

William Goursky requested that staff requested Keith Ward, Commissioner of Housing and Property and General Manager of Peel Living to present the finalized guidelines to the AAC, once approved.

The Committee concurred that Mel Watson and Chris Bullock, Manager of Development and Construction, Region of Peel Housing and Property Department, be requested to make a presentation to a future AAC meeting with a comparative analysis on the design guidelines.

Additional Item

Initial Meeting for Review of Joint Use Facility (JUF) Accessibility (oral)


Glenn Barnes informed the members of the Committee that a subcommittee is being created to review the drawings and accessibility needs for the new Joint Use Facility to be constructed beside 10 Peel Centre Dr.. The subcommittee is expected to report back to the Joint Peel-Caledon Accessibility Advisory Committee (AAC) on February 28, 2006 on the outcome of the meeting. Interested AAC members are requested to contact Meenu Sikand, Accessibility Planning Specialist.

¨Councillor Carlson departed at 2:35 p.m.

d. Sandra Hames, Chair, Ontarians with Disabilities Act Committee, Association of Municipalities of Ontario (AMO), Providing an Update on the Outcome of a Meeting with Sandra Pupatello, Minister of Community and Social Services, Regarding Accessibility Advisory Issues


Councillor Hames updated AAC members on what transpired at her meeting with Sandra Pupatello, Minister of Community and Social Services. She met with the Minister to seek clarification regarding the plans of the Ministry with respect to the Ontarians with Disabilities Act. Minister Pupatello informed Councillor Hames that an Advisory Committee will initially be created and subsequently two sector tables will be created for Transit and Customer Service. Minister Pupatello assured Councillor Hames that plans are underway and that the Ministry is expecting to see some progress with the Advisory Committee by spring of 2006. Once the Transit Committee and Customer Service Committee are established, several round tables will be created in different areas to deal with the Act.

Councillor Hames emphasized to Minister Pupatello that changes to the building code are necessary to ensure that recommendations of the committee are acted upon.



a. Eric Schuppert, Manager, Customer Service, Town of Caledon, on behalf of Colleen Grant, Town Prosecutor and Solicitor, Town of Caledon - August (Oral)


b. Eric Schuppert, Manager, Customer Service, Town of Caledon, on behalf of Colleen Grant, Town Prosecutor and Solicitor, Town of Caledon - September (Oral)


c. Eric Schuppert, Manager, Customer Service, Town of Caledon, on behalf of Colleen Grant, Town Prosecutor and Solicitor, Town of Caledon - October (Oral)


d. Eric Schuppert, Manager, Customer Service, Town of Caledon, on behalf of Colleen Grant, Town Prosecutor and Solicitor, Town of Caledon - November-January (Oral)


Eric Schuppert, Manager, Customer Service, Town of Caledon, on behalf of Colleen Grant, Town Prosecutor and Solicitor, Town of Caledon, provided the AAC Members with an update on recent activities at the Town of Caledon:

Glenn Barnes inquired as to the outcome of the direction to post the accessibility plan for Caledon on the Town of Caledon website. Eric Schuppert will report back to the Committee about the status of the request.

e. Meenu Sikand, Accessibility Planning Specialist, Region of Peel


Committee Members commented on the impressive number of completed surveys received with respect to the International Day of Disabled Persons in 2005. The positive response indicates that the Committee is on the right track.

Meenu Sikand summarized the feedback she received from volunteers who participated in the International Day of Disabled event. Some of the comments were to have more training for volunteers and a number of additional topics were suggested for next year including; work-place accommodation; hearing impairment; and youth with disabilities. Further, Meenu Sikand thanked the Committee for their support during her absence. The Committee extended their appreciation to Meenu Sikand for her dedication to her work.

Meenu Sikand informed the Committee that there are plans to hold a joint meeting with the Cities of Mississauga and Brampton is tentatively set for June 13, 2006 to discuss "Interior Accessibility Design". More details will be provided as they become available.




Glenn Barnes invited the Members of the Committee to upcoming events:




Tuesday, February 28, 2006
1:00 p.m. - 3:00 p.m.
Region of Peel Headquarters
Location - to be determined


Meeting adjourned at 3:10 p.m.