Hudson’s Bay Company’s Customer Service Policy Statement:
Providing Goods and Services to People with Disabilities
HBC is committed to providing an accessible environment for people with disabilities in a way that considers each person’s independence, dignity, integration and equal opportunity. HBC will develop policies, practices and procedures, and training modules so as to ensure compliance with the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act (AODA) and the Accessibility for Manitobans Act (AMA). Each applicable associate is, in turn, responsible for ensuring that goods and services are provided in a way that is accessible and takes into account the principles of the AODA and the AMA.
2. Providing goods and services to people with disabilities
HBC is committed to service excellence, which includes accessible services for people with disabilities, and we will carry out our functions and responsibilities in the following areas:
HBC will communicate with people with disabilities in ways that take into account their disability.
HBC has provided training to associates on how to interact and communicate with people with various types of disabilities.
2.2 Telephone services
HBC is committed to providing accessible telephone service. Associates are trained how to communicate with people over the telephone in clear and plain language, and to speak clearly and slowly.
HBC will offer to communicate by mail and electronic mail if telephone communication is not suitable to the needs of a person with disabilities.
2.3 Assistive devices
HBC is committed to serving people with disabilities who use assistive devices to obtain, use or benefit from our goods and services. Associates are trained on how to interact with people with disabilities who use assistive devices while accessing our goods or services. HBC associates will receive training on use of assistive devices, which may be available on our premises for use such as a scooters, wheelchairs and lifts. HBC will provide training to new associates as they are hired, through electronic learning, paper-based training, or any other method that ensures timely and comprehensive training.
HBC is committed to providing documents, i.e.: store receipts, flyers, sale signs, product labels in a manner that takes into account a person’s disability. For this reason, associates will provide assistance upon request to review documents with customers.
This policy statement will be made available upon request to customers with disabilities in a format that takes into account their disability. The length of time it will take to provide the information in alternative formats will depend on the format requested. Every effort will be made, however, to process requests in a timely fashion.
3. Use of service animals and support persons
HBC is committed to welcoming people with disabilities who are accompanied by a service animal on the parts of our premises open to the public. All associates and volunteers dealing with the public are properly trained in how to interact with people with disabilities accompanied by a service animal. HBC is committed to welcoming people with disabilities who are accompanied by a support person. Any person with a disability who is accompanied by a support person will be allowed to enter the HBC’s premises with his or her support person. At no time will a person with a disability, who is accompanied by a support person, be prevented from having access to his or her support person while on our premises.
4. Notice of temporary disruption
In the event of a planned or unexpected disruption in our facilities and services, HBC will provide notice to the public who use these amenities. The notice will be posted where it will come to the attention of the public and will include information about the reason for the disruption, its anticipated duration and a description of alternative facilities or services, if available.
5. Training for associates
Applicable associates are trained on policies, practices and procedures that affect the way goods and services are provided to people with disabilities. Each applicable associate is responsible for ensuring that HBC goods and services are provided in a way that is accessible, and that takes into account each person’s independence, dignity, integration and equal opportunity.
HBC provides training to associates who deal with the public or other third parties on behalf of the Company, as well as to associates who are involved in the development and approvals of customer service policies, practices and procedures. Training is provided (i) as part of new hire orientation; (ii) when an associate changes positions or departments, and the training is required for the new position; or (iii) on an as-needed basis when changes are made to policies, practices and procedures, or to the legislation.
Training includes the following:
- The purposes and requirements of the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act, 2005, the Accessibility for Manitobans Act, The Ontario Human Rights Code, and The Manitoba Human Rights Code
- How to interact and communicate with people with various types of disabilities
- How to interact with people with disabilities who use an assistive device or require the assistance of a service animal or a support person
- Use of assistive devices, which may be available on our premises for use such as a scooters, wheelchairs and lifts.
- What to do if a person with a disability is having difficulty in accessing HBC’s goods and services
- HBC’s policies, practices and procedures relating to the customer service standard, information and technology standard, and employment standard
6. Feedback process
Feedback regarding the way HBC provides goods and services to people with disabilities can be made by using the Customer Feedback Form, and/or through submitting comments by mail, electronic mail, via telephone, facsimile and/or in person. All feedback is taken seriously and each customer communication is directed to the responsible operating division or department for review and necessary action.
Customers can expect to hear back from the responsible operating division or department within 30 days together with a finding, or change that the operating division or department has, or will take, based on the customer feedback. The operating division or department will respond in a way that considers the person‘s disability, if applicable, and in accordance with the principles of the AODA and the AMA.
7. Questions about this policy
This policy exists to provide customer service excellence to people with disabilities. If anyone has a question about the policy or if the purpose of a policy is not understood, inquiries should be referred to the Hudson’s Bay Company.
8. Statutory Reference
Ontario Regulation 429/07: Accessibility Standards for Customer Service, Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act (2005); Ontario Regulation 191/11: Integrated Accessibility Standards; Ontario Human Rights Code; Accessibility for Manitobans Act; Manitoba Human Rights Code; Manitoba Regulation 171/2015: The Customer Service Standard Regulation.
AODA and AMA – Customer Service Policy (reviewed December 2021)