Accessibility for People with Disabilities
The Ministry of the Attorney General is committed to equal access to justice for all Ontarians. We are working to ensure that people with disabilities can use and benefit from our services and programs equally and free from discrimination in keeping with the following principles:
- Respect for the dignity and independence of people with disabilities
- Equal opportunity for people with disabilities to access, use, and benefit from our services or programs
- Integration of people with disabilities with others, unless alternative ways of providing our service or program are necessary for equal opportunity.
We comply with all Ontario Public Service accessibility policies and are continuously improving accessibility for people with disabilities in our services, programs, information and communications, websites and facilities. Please see our Annual Accessibility Plans to find out about our plans for improving accessibility.
Select a link below to find out more about accessible services for people with disabilities.
Accessible Services Provided by the Ministry of the Attorney General
Ministry staff understand the importance of accessibility for people with disabilities in all our services. Please tell us what you need. We will work with you to determine the type of disability-related assistance or accommodation that can be provided.
If you're going to a courthouse, you may speak with any staff member or contact the courthouse Accessibility Coordinator. Contact information for courthouses and Accessibility Coordinators can be found on the ministry's website in the Court Address Section.
Please provide us with as much advance notice as possible. It may not be possible to provide an accommodation or support unless we receive enough advance notice. If it is not possible to provide your preferred disability-related accommodation, we will work with you to explore different options. In some cases, we will request information about your disability so that we can understand your needs.
The types of accommodation or support that we can provide will depend on your disability, the purpose of your visit to a ministry office or courthouse, and the availability of different types of equipment and services. Here are some examples:
- Assistive listening devices
- Real-time captioning or Communication-Access Real Time (CART)
- Visual language interpretation such as American Sign Language (ASL) or langue des signes québécoise (LSQ). See below for more information about ASL and LSQ interpretation
- Communication support for people who have difficulty speaking and use alternate ways of communicating
- Scheduling of meetings or proceedings in rooms that can accommodate your disability
- Scheduling of meetings or proceedings at times that allow you to deal with your disability or medical-related needs
- Providing some services by phone or by email in order to meet a disability-related need
- Accessible or alternative formats of documents, such as electronic formats, large print, audio, and braille. See below for more information about alternative formats
These are examples only and may not be suitable in all cases. Other requests will also be considered if they are needed for disability-related reasons to access and use a ministry service or to participate in a court proceeding. Staff will work with you to determine the most appropriate accommodation.
Please note that judicial officials have authority over court proceedings and what happens in a court room. If you need disability-related accommodation for a court proceeding or to participate in jury duty, a judicial official will usually be informed about your request for accommodation and may need to approve it. The courthouse Accessibility Coordinator can provide information about how to make a request to a judicial official.
Accessibility and Jury Duty
If you have received a Jury Summons and need disability-related help to participate in jury duty, please contact the court office indicated in the upper left corner of your Summons as soon as possible. Users who are Deaf or have hearing or speech disabilities may use Bell Relay.
Every effort will be made to provide necessary accommodations to participate in the jury selection process and to serve on a jury. Adequate time is needed to make arrangements for some types of disability-related accommodations. Refer to Accessible Services Provided by the Ministry of the Attorney General for a list of examples. Please note that the presiding judge will decide whether your request for accommodation will be granted.
Sign Language Interpretation
American Sign Language (ASL) and langue des signes québécoise (LSQ) interpreters are available for people who are Deaf for ministry services and all types of court proceedings (civil, small claims, family and criminal).
Please provide as much advance notice as possible and ask for an interpreter as soon as you know you may need one. Adequate time is needed to book the interpreter for the date and time required.
For court proceedings, ASL or LSQ interpreters can be requested by calling the courthouse or through the Accessibility Coordinator. A judge can also order an ASL or LSQ interpreter.
For other ministry services, you may make your request to any staff member or the Accessibility Coordinator.
Contact information for courthouses and Accessibility Coordinators can be found on the ministry's website in the Court Address Section.
Please note TTY users may use Bell Relay Services to contact a courthouse, Accessibility Coordinators or other ministry offices.
Accessible and Alternative Formats of Documents
Over time, the ministry is improving the accessibility of ministry documents for people with disabilities. Please contact us if you need ministry documents or forms in a format that is accessible to you.
The length of time that it takes to prepare the accessible alternative format will vary depending on the length of the document.
We will not charge you an additional fee for the alternative format. If there is normally a fee for a document or to submit a document, then you will be charged the same fee as would be charged to everyone else.
Personal Assistive Devices or Technology, Service Animals, and Support Persons
You may use your own personal assistive devices or assistive technology.
Service animals are welcome in all parts of our premises that are open to the public.
You may also use your disability-related support person. The support person may be asked to sign a confidentiality agreement and the role of the support person may need to be agreed to in advance of the meeting or court proceeding.
Please note, for court proceedings, a judicial official may need to approve the use of some types of assistive devices and technologies, and the role of a support person. The courthouse Accessibility Coordinator can provide information about how to make a request to a judicial official.
Ministry staff and the courthouse Accessibility Coordinator cannot provide legal advice including advice on legal procedures to any member of the public or any party (including people with disabilities) in a legal proceeding.
If you need legal advice or legal procedural advice, you may speak with a lawyer. The ministry's website provides information about finding a lawyer or a community legal clinic.
Municipal Provincial Offences Act Courthouses
Most Provincial Offences Act (POA) matters are dealt with in courthouses that are operated by municipalities, not in provincial courthouses operated by the Ministry of the Attorney General. For example, municipal POA matters are fines and tickets for speeding, traffic, noise or trespassing issues.
If you want to know about accessibility or disability-related accommodations for a POA courthouse, please contact the court office that is shown on your ticket, summons, or other court document you received.
The types of accommodation that can be provided will depend on your disability, the purpose of your visit to the courthouse, and the availability of different types of equipment and services.
Please visit the municipal Provincial Offences Court contact page for more information about finding a municipal court location near you.
You may also find contact information for courts in the blue pages of your local telephone book under "municipal Provincial Offences Court" or "Court".
Contact us if you need help to find the information you are looking for.
Accessibility of the Ministry's Website
We work to ensure our website is accessible to the widest possible audience, including people with disabilities. We comply with OPS accessibility policies and standards and the World Wide Web Consortium Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) 2.0, at Level AA according to the schedule set out in section 14 of the AODA Integrated Accessibility Standards Regulation.
If any information on our website is not accessible to you, you may contact us to request an accessible or alternative format.
The Ministry of the Attorney General owns, operates and leases a number of buildings, spaces and courthouses across the province. Accessibility features vary and are improved as we update our facilities or build new ones. Some areas of a building or courthouse may not be accessible, but our staff will do their best to assist you.
Refer to information above about how to make a request for disability-related assistance and accommodation.
Feedback and Complaints
The Ministry of the Attorney General is committed to continuously improving the accessibility of our services and programs. We welcome feedback and suggestions for improvement.
Feedback can be provided in any of the following ways:
- In person, by phone or mail where the service was received: List of Ontario Court Addresses
- Customer comment form available at courthouses
- Our online form
- By phone, Bell Relay, or in writing to the Ministry of the Attorney General. See contact information listed at the end of this document.
What Do I Include in Feedback?
Please mark correspondence or e-mail with the heading "accessibility feedback".
If your feedback is about a specific incident, please provide as much information as you feel comfortable giving, for example:
- The date that the incident occurred
- What happened
- What made the experience a good experience
- What went wrong and your suggestions for improvement
You don't have to provide your name if you don't want to. However, providing your name and contact information is required if you would like a response to your feedback.
How Does the Ministry Deal with Complaints?
Ministry staff or a manager will work directly with you to resolve a complaint. If your complaint is about a disability-related accommodation that you require to access and use ministry services, it will be addressed as soon as possible.
When we receive complaints we will try to resolve the complaint directly with you. If it cannot be resolved immediately, it will be acknowledged within two business days, and will be recorded and forwarded for action as soon as possible.
All comments, feedback or complaints received in writing by e-mail, fax, or mail will be answered or acknowledged within 15 business days. If it is not possible to resolve the complaint during that time, the acknowledgement will outline what steps are being taken and whether there will be any further response from the ministry.
Collection of Information
All government ministries are required by the Accessibility Standards for Customer Service (Ontario Regulation 429/07) to have a process in place to receive feedback on the accessibility of services in order to assess their quality. If you provide personal information when providing feedback or making a complaint, the ministry will only use this information to acknowledge and respond to the submission.
Contact us if you have questions about the use of personal information.
Annual Accessibility Plans
Since 2003 the Ministry of the Attorney General has developed annual accessibility plans as required under the Ontarians with Disabilities Act, 2001. You can review these plans to find out how the ministry is improving accessibility over time.
Who Can I Contact?
Ministry of the Attorney General
720 Bay Street, 11th Floor