Tourism Industry Association of Ontario

Tourism Industry Association of Ontario

November 26, 2012 12:31 ET

EnAbling Change: Making Ontario's Tourism and Hospitality Industry More Accessible

TORONTO, ONTARIO--(Marketwire - Nov. 26, 2012) - The Tourism Industry Association of Ontario (TIAO) has partnered with the Government of Ontario through the EnAbling Change Program to focus on raising awareness and training Ontario business owners and managers in the tourism and hospitality industry on the Accessibility Standard for Customer Service.

The tourism and hospitality industry is dedicated to providing excellent customer service. The quality of customer service is often the differentiator when guests select a business to frequent. In the next 20 years, an aging population and people with disabilities will represent 40 per cent of total income in Ontario -- that's $536 billion. Making sure all Ontarians have accessible customer service is not only the right thing to do, it makes good business sense.

Providing accessible customer service can be as simple as making some small changes and training staff to serve customers of all abilities. The TIAO has developed an awareness presentation, a half-day industry workshop as well as a condensed 60 minute webinar to help businesses get started. These sessions are available to equip owners and managers with training and tools to effectively train their staff on the requirements of the Accessibility Standard for Customer Service and to file their compliance reports.

The goal for this initiative is to reach small and medium sized businesses in Ontario's tourism and hospitality industry.

The Tourism Industry Association of Ontario is the umbrella organization for the 60 leading associations, destination marketing organizations and regional tourism organizations serving Ontario's diverse tourism industry.


  • "Our government is working to build an Ontario where everyone is able to participate fully. Providing accessible customer service is simply about understanding that people with disabilities may have different needs - it's easy to do and makes good sense for communities across the province." - MPP John Milloy, Minister of Community and Social Services.
  • "The Tourism Industry Association of Ontario works to position the tourism industry to grow - increasing the number of jobs for Ontarians and the total receipts that the industry contributes to the province. By working with the EnAbling Change Program, we are able to deliver knowledge, tools and resources to the industry on how to provide accessible customer services that will help position them to better serve visitors to our province." - Beth Potter, President & CEO, Tourism Industry Association of Ontario.


  • 1.85 million people in Ontario have disabilities, that is 15.5% of Ontario's population.
  • According to the Royal Bank of Canada, people with disabilities have an estimated spending power of about $25 billion each year in Canada.


  • Businesses can visit to learn about changes that apply to their organization and find free tools and guides to help.
  • Additional resources are also available on the TIAO webpage at, for businesses to access information and tools on an ongoing basis.
  • Tourism Industry Association of Ontario -

Current EnAbling Change webinar training dates are December 13, 19 and January 15 and 24, 2013.

Contact Information

  • To register for a webinar or to schedule a workshop for your
    organization or for further information, please contact:
    Lisa Hems
    Project Manager 416
    483-1691 ext. 223