CFS Canada provides a multitude of quality and efficient barrier-free solutions that will allow your business to be accessible to all. But sometimes, businesses don’t have the financing to make that happen.
If you are an Ontario business owner, landlord or contractor and wondering if there are financial support options for accessibility renovations – you’ve come to the right place. The rules can be confusing as grants and funds come and go – as of February 2020, these are your options.
Does My Business Need To Be Accessible?
Before considering whether or not you qualify for any accessibility funds or grants, you want to find out if your business needs to abide by Ontario’s accessibility rules. In Ontario, it all depends on the type of business and the number of employees.
For businesses and non-profits with 1 to 19 employees, they’re required to make new or redeveloped public spaces accessible, like parking lots, service counters, outdoor paths etc.
For businesses and non-profits with 20 or more employees, they’re required to complete the Accessibility Compliance Report. This report basically confirms that you’ve met the proper accessibility requirements for a business to operate in Ontario.
Any employee, whether full-time, part-time, seasonal or contract worker counts when determining how many employees you have working for you. Counted employees are paid wages or salary, and are assigned work that you control.
Employees that don’t count are:
- Outside of Ontario
- Volunteers or independent contractors
Read the full list of Accessibility Rules for Businesses and Non-Profits in Ontario.
Accessibility Funds and Grants
Updated for 2020
Enabling Accessibility Fund
As of July 2018, the Enabling Accessibility Fund is no longer available. This fund was in place to provide financial assistance for projects that will improve accessibility for Canadians with disabilities. The fund applied to all manner of projects in the public and private sphere.
Capital Grants – Ontario Trillium Foundation
The only funding option in Ontario right now is the Capital Grants from the Ontario Trillium Foundation. Both CFS Canada and the Ontario Trillium Foundation share the same vision: to broaden access and improve community spaces to achieve global accessibility.
The Ontario Trillium Foundation is the largest capital funding foundation in Canada, providing financial backing to projects that promote healthy and vibrant communities in Ontario. In regards to the Capital Grant, their objective is to broaden access and improve community spaces to achieve accessibility for everyone.
How Does It Work?
Capital Grants provides funding for projects focused on; the purchase and installation of equipment, renovations, installations, repairs, the improvement of building structures and providing more efficient technological resources. The Capital Grant provides applicants funds from $5,000 to $150,000 through terms which last one year.
Who’s Eligible For This Grant?
To become eligible for the Capital Grant, you will be required to explain:
- Your priority outcome and what the grant will result in
- The purpose of your project and how it’ll improve the community
- The scale of your project
- Provide pictures and diagrams to support your statements
- What you need to complete the project
- Who or what do you need in place to make it happen
In regards to builders, you require proof of ownership or a five-year lease agreement to apply for any renovations or improvements to the property. If your existing lease expires during your five-year term, you’re required to provide documentation from your lessor stating the renewed lease.
If the funding from the Ontario Trillium Foundation is a part of a larger capital project, applicants must prove they have full funds to complete the entire project (within three years of signing the contract) before the Capital Grant funds are released.
Learn more about all the policies for the Capital Grants.
Is Your Commercial Business Eligible?
During the application process, an assessment is made surrounding your strategy, process, people involved, infrastructure and value for money. Not sure if your commercial project is eligible for the Capital Grants? Ask yourself these questions to see if your project aligns with the Capital Grant guidelines.
- What is the purpose of the project?
- Explain the need or opportunity that you want to explore with this project
- Who will this benefit?
- How close does the need or opportunity align with the Capital Grant’s goals?
- What are the key steps that you will complete to successfully implement your project?
- What and how are collaborative organizations partnering with you to successfully implement this project?
- Who are the core team members of this project?
- What is their position, and how will their skills and experience lead to the success of the project?
- Do you have photos and diagrams to demonstrate why you require the funding and how your project will be implemented?
Value For Money
- What is your cost per output ($/metric)?
- Can you provide your financial workbook to present details to support your project’s activities?
For more information, check out the Capital Grants application template.
Find All Your Barrier-Free Solutions Under One Roof!
CFS Canada is the right choice to install accessibility equipment that’s up to building code and the AODA requirements. Whether you’re in need of automatic entrances or any other accessibility services, CFS Canada provides commercial clients with custom design options to meet their specified requirements. Request a quote with our team today!