Universal Accessibility Standards and Rick Hansen Accessibility Certification

Universal Accessibility Standards and Rick Hansen Accessibility Certification

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Universal Accessibility Standards and Rick Hansen Accessibility Certification

Link: https://vancouversun.com/news/local-news/canadians-anxious-about-accessibility-issues-as-they-age

Hi everyone,

I recently came across this great article in the Vancouver Sun (see link above) which discusses a survey of 1,800 Canadians from the Rick Hansen Foundation on aging and accessibility. The survey  found that ‘two-thirds of Canadians are anxious about developing disability and challenges in the next decade that will impact where they live, shop, and go for any reason’. In addition, the survey found that ‘a quarter of Canadians say they already have mobility, vision or hearing challenges’. The article goes on to discuss accessibility in homes and in the built environment for people with mobility, hearing, and vision challenges.

I thought one really interesting finding from the survey was ‘about 70% of respondents said Canada should have universal accessibility standards for newly constructed buildings and homes’! I was interested to know if universal accessibility standards were a topic that is currently being discussed at public health, planning, and/or policy tables?

The article also mentioned that the Rick Hansen Foundation has developed an Accessibility Certification Service, which is an accessibility rating system (described as similar to LEED certification) for homes, stores, businesses, buildings, etc. I had actually never come across this rating so I thought I would share a link to their website: https://www.rickhansen.com/become-accessible. I was curious to know if any individuals in this forum are involved with a building/project that is currently being assessed?

Looking forward to hearing your thoughts!


Hey Salimah!

Halifax currently has a project Cogswell Redevelopment in the design stage (construction set to begin this fall) that staff and council have set to achieve Rick Hansen Foundation Gold Accessibility Standard! They want it to be a "Rick Hansen Gold Zone". Here's the report from municipal staff https://www.halifax.ca/sites/default/files/documents/city-hall/standing-committees/esc180920item1221.pdf