The Committee is working closely with provincial partners on the implementation of the Accessible B.C. Act. This Act received Royal Assent in June 2021, and will focus on key action in four different areas in years 1 - 10 of implementation:
1. Culture change. There will be an emphasis on ongoing awareness; and working closely with stakeholders and the public to help increase accessibility.
2. Requirements for the B.C. government. Government is required to:
- Build a tool to provide feedback to government
- Develop government's accessibility plan
- Establish the Provincial Accessibility Committee
- Develop initial regulations prescribing organizations
Government will also release accessibility plans on a regular basis.
3. Monitoring and evaluation. The provincial government will report each year on progress and success. The first independent review will occur after 5 years.
4. Standards development. Standards will be developed two at a time and will be implemented in a phased approach. As implementation begins for a standard, work will begin on developing the next one.
UBCM met with provincial staff to discuss the legislation at the July 2019, May 2021 and November 2021 Committee meetings. Feedback was also provided in September 2021 for the provincial consultation on which public sector or quasi- public sector organizations that the Act should apply to; and in December 2021 on changes to the BC Building Code to make new buildings more accessible for all people.