In Part 1: leading by doing, we offered a high-level outline of AODA legislation and its aims.
Today, we’re going to explain the timeline requirements for Ontario-based organizations to meet AODA requirements without risking fines.
In Ontario, our AODA regulations distinguish the types of organizations that must comply with each of these three levels.
- By January 1st of 2012 – the Ontario Government mandated that all of its own new internet and intranet websites and web content must comply with Level AA. This applies to the many sites related to Ontario Government Ministries, as well as the Legislature.
- By January 1st of 2014 – all designated public service organizations (e.g. hospitals, universities, and other public institutions) must comply with Level A.
- By January 1st of 2014 – all ‘large organizations’ (institutions with 50+ employees that offer goods, services, or facilities) must comply with Level A for new internet/web content
- By January 1st of 2016 – the Ontario Government mandated the AA standard to ALL Ontario Government internet websites and web content (e.g. videos or other non-site-specific media).
- By January 1st of 2020 – This AA standard applied to all Ontario Government internet sites, all intranet sites, and all web content.
- By January 1st of 2021 – Compliance with Level AA for ALL internet and web content of designated public service organizations
- By January 1st of 2021 – ALL internet and web content from ‘large organizations’ must comply with Level AA
There are some exclusions and exceptions with certain parts of the outline above, specifically regarding live video captions and pre-recorded video audio descriptions. You can view the details about the different organizational structures and requirements with this PDF from Accessibility Canada. The legislation also has some nuances with new domain names, or overhauling of existing websites.
It’s important to remember that these timelines and compliance levels are absolutely mandatory in the province of Ontario. Any non-compliant organizations do risk fines.
Our team is excited to see a new era of web accessibility in Ontario with this AODA legislation and especially enthusiastic to bring these new standards and values to our clients in the years ahead, helping you achieve mandated requirements today, while better serving all customers through ongoing best practices.
In Part 3, we’ll review the levels of WCAG 2.0 compliance, as well as other legislation and standards your organization should be aware of for compliance, including ADA and AODA.
Get started with meeting AODA compliance requirements with the Inclusive Website Audit
Make your website more usable, accessible, and inclusive for all with the Inclusive Website Audit. Don’t miss out on expanding your reach and engagement!