Gowlings is committed to ensuring that members of the public and third parties who access Gowlings' services and anyone with a disability who visits Gowlings' premises are able to use their personal assistive devices within the limits of any applicable privacy, health and safety laws or regulations.
Persons with assistive devices are entitled to use personal assistive devices while accessing any of Gowlings' services or premises.
Persons with disabilities are entitled to confidentiality and the protection of their privacy and are not required to disclose to employees of Gowlings information about their disability and/or the need for a personal assistive device unless such information is required by Gowlings' Firm Management or other appropriate persons for the purposes of creating and implementing an individualized accommodation plan.
Persons may use a variety of personal assistive devices depending on their disability to access Gowlings' services.
People who have vision loss:
- Screen readers - a software application that attempts to identify and interpret what is being displayed on the screen (or, more accurately, sent to standard output, whether a video monitor is present or not). This interpretation is then re-presented to the user with text-to-speech, sound icons, or a Braille output device.
- Digital audio player - enables people to listen to books, directions
- Magnifier - makes print and images larger and easier to read
- Portable global positioning systems (GPS) - helps orient people to get to specific destinations
- White cane - helps people find their way around obstacles
People who are Deaf, deafened, oral deaf, hard of hearing:
- FM transmitter system or other amplification devices - boosts sound closest to the listener while reducing background noise
- Hearing aid - makes sound louder and clearer
- Teletypewriter (TTY) - helps people who are unable to speak or hear to communicate by phone. The person types their messages on the TTY keyboard and messages are sent using telephone lines to someone who has a TTY, or to an operator (e.g. Bell Relay Service) who passes the message to someone who does not have a TTY.
People who have physical disabilities:
- Mobility device (e.g., a wheelchair, scooter, walker, cane, crutches) - helps people who have difficulty walking
- Personal oxygen tank - helps people breathe
People who have learning disabilities:
- Electronic notebook or laptop computer - used to take notes and to communicate
- Personal data managers - stores, organizes and retrieves personal information
- Mini pocket recorders - records information for future playback
People who have intellectual/developmental disabilities:
- Communication boards (e.g., a Bliss board) - used to pass on a message by pointing to symbols, words or pictures
- Speech generating devices - used to pass on a message using a device that "speaks" when a symbol, word or picture is pressed.
Gowlings provides several assistive devices and alternate measures on-site to enable people with disabilities to benefit from the same level of service, in the same place and in a similar way as other person's while accessing Gowlings' services.
The following assistive measures are available on Gowlings' premises:
- Automatic door openers at base of office buildings/premises
- Staff Assistance
- Video conferencing (i.e. microphones) in training and conference rooms