ACCESSIBLE CUSTOMER SERVICE POLICY


Providing goods, services or facilities to people with disabilities

Stone Investment Group Limited and our wholly owned subsidiary, Stone Asset Management Limited (collectively, “Stone”) are committed to meeting our current and ongoing obligations under the Ontario Human Rights Code respecting non-discrimination.

Stone understands that obligations under the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act, 2005 (AODA) and its accessibility standards do not substitute or limit its obligations under the Ontario Human Rights Code or obligations to people with disabilities under any other law.

Stone is committed to complying with both the Ontario Human Rights Code and the AODA.

Stone is committed to excellence in serving all customers including people with disabilities.

Our accessible customer service policies are consistent with the principles of independence, dignity, integration and equality of opportunity for people with disabilities.


Assistive devices

People with disabilities may use their personal assistive devices when accessing our goods, services or facilities.

In cases where the assistive device presents a significant and unavoidable health or safety concern or may not be permitted for other reasons, other measures will be used to ensure the person with a disability can access our goods, services or facilities.

We will ensure that our staff are trained and familiar with various assistive devices that may be used by customers with disabilities while accessing our goods, services or facilities.


Communication

We will communicate with people with disabilities in ways that take their disability into account. Accessible formats for all Stone documents are available upon request. We are actively working toward ensuring that our website and all posted content adheres to the Integrated Accessibility Standards Regulation.


Service animals

We welcome people with disabilities and their service animals. Service animals are allowed on the parts of our premises that are open to the public. A service animal can often be easily identified through visual indicators, such as when it wears a harness or a vest, or when it helps the person perform certain tasks.

When we cannot easily identify that an animal is a service animal, our staff may ask a person to provide documentation (template, letter or form) from a regulated health professional that confirms the person needs the service animal for reasons relating to their disability. A regulated health professional is defined as a member of one of the following colleges:

  • College of Audiologists and Speech-Language Pathologists of Ontario
  • College of Chiropractors of Ontario
  • College of Nurses of Ontario
  • College of Occupational Therapists of Ontario
  • College of Optometrists of Ontario
  • College of Physicians and Surgeons of Ontario
  • College of Physiotherapists of Ontario
  • College of Psychologists of Ontario
  • College of Registered Psychotherapists and Registered Mental Health Therapists of Ontario

Support persons

A person with a disability who is accompanied by a support person will be allowed to have that person accompany them on our premises. In certain cases, Stone might require a person with a disability to be accompanied by a support person for the health or safety reasons of the person with a disability or others on the premises.

Before making a decision, Stone will:

  • consult with the person with a disability to understand their needs
  • consider health or safety reasons based on available evidence
  • determine if there is no other reasonable way to protect the health or safety of the person or others on the premises

Due to the confidential nature of certain financial information, in order to comply with privacy regulations Stone may request written consent in advance for the support person to be in attendance.


Notice of temporary disruption

In the event of a planned or unexpected disruption to services or facilities for customers with disabilities Stone will notify customers promptly. This clearly posted notice will include information about the reason for the disruption, its anticipated length of time, and a description of alternative facilities or services, if available.

The notice will be made publicly available on our website at www.stoneco.com and will be posted in the reception area and building lobby of our offices.


Training

Stone will provide accessible customer service training to all full-time and contracted employees, anyone involved in developing Stone’s policies and anyone who provides goods, services or facilities to customers on our behalf. Staff will be trained on accessible customer service within one month after being hired.

Training will include:

  • purpose of the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act, 2005 and the requirements of the customer service standard
  • Stone’s policies related to the customer service standard
  • 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
  • how to use the equipment or devices available on-site or otherwise that may help with providing goods, services or facilities to people with disabilities.
  • what to do if a person with a disability is having difficulty in accessing Stone’s goods, services or facilities

Staff will also be trained when changes are made to our accessible customer service policies.


Feedback process

Stone welcomes feedback on how we provide accessible customer service. Customer feedback will help us identify barriers and respond to concerns.

Customers who wish to provide feedback on the way Stone provides goods, services or facilities to people with disabilities can provide feedback in the following way(s):

  • By telephone to Stone’s Client Services Department at 416 867 8086 or 800 795 1142
  • By email to clientservices@stoneco.com
  • By fax to 416 364 8456

By regular mail addressed to:

Stone Investment Group Limited c/o Compliance Department
276 King Street West, Suite 203
Toronto, ON  M5V 1J2

All feedback, including complaints, will be handled by Stone’s Compliance Department according to our already-established processes for collecting and responding to such information. Customers can expect to hear back from us within 5 (five) business days. In the event that the feedback is of a critical nature, every effort will be made to respond immediately.

Stone will make sure our feedback process is accessible to people with disabilities by providing or arranging for accessible formats and communication supports, on request.


Notice of availability of documents

Stone will notify the public that documents related to accessible customer service, are available upon request by posting a notice on www.stoneco.com. Stone will provide this document in an accessible format or with communication support, on request. We will consult with the person making the request to determine the suitability of the format or communication support. We will provide the accessible format in a timely manner and, at no additional cost.


Modifications to this or other policies

Any policies of Stone that do not respect and promote the principles of dignity, independence, integration and equal opportunity for people with disabilities will be modified or removed.