Skip Navigation Links

Accessibility plan 2023-2025

Summary

This easy-read summary is a simpler and shorter version of our Accessibility Plan. For the full plan, skip to the section Telefilm Canada’s Accessibility Plan.

Telefilm Canada (“Telefilm”) is a federal Crown corporation that has supported the development of Canada’s screen-based industries for more than half a century. Telefilm is committed to fostering and supporting an audiovisual industry, across Canada, in which all communities are represented. Telefilm funds Canadian companies and organizations that produce Canadian film content. We do so with an eye to equity, inclusion and sustainability.

Telefilm is committed to being more accessible for people living with some form of disability. To that end, our Accessibility Plan details what we plan to do in the next 3 years to become more accessible. Under the plan, we will:

Telefilm Staff and offices

  • provide education and training on disability and accessibility:
    • to relevant departments, focusing on how accessibility relates to specific tasks and how to accommodate needs
    • to all existing and newly hired employees
    • to staff who manage people
  • audit accessibility in our offices to see what changes are needed, focusing on:
    • making relevant changes that are high priority or low-cost
    • planning changes that are more difficult and more expensive to make
  • consult with employees who have disabilities, and with disability advisors as needed, to make sure the space is as accessible as possible
  • consider changes in all our offices to make sure that common areas are accessible:
    • among other things, we will create 1 “quiet workspace” in the Montréal office where employees can work if they need a break from the open-plan office
  • update and adapt our emergency evacuation plan
  • complete training on digital accessibility for all IT staff. We will develop a document on our digital accessibility standard

Self-identification

  • make sure all employees are well informed of Telefilm’s procedure for self-identification and that they know how to proceed if they have a disability to declare
  • make sure we better communicate information about the self-identification process and the confidentiality of personal information

Applying for a job

  • encourage people with disabilities to submit a job application on Telefilm’s careers page
  • review our recruitment process to find barriers
  • make sure that we offer accommodations at each step of the hiring process; this means we will consider updating our onboarding guide to include accommodations
  • explore how we can offer accommodations to new employees before their first day

Telefilm’s website

  • address and remove barriers to accessibility on our public website; we will also do user testing of the website to find other barriers
    • make sure all future videos include captions and transcripts that are reviewed by a person, wherever possible
  • make sure we can provide documents in alternative formats (for example, in Audio, Braille) when requested
  • create a frequently asked questions (FAQs) page on the website telling users where to find specific information; we will also identify a staff member whom filmmakers with disabilities can contact when they have questions, for example on the issue of accommodations

Other initiatives

  • consult people in the audiovisual industry with disabilities to identify other barriers to funding and identify potential solutions
  • use plain language for all written information posted on our website; we will also update the high use documents on our website using plain language such as program guidelines or industry advisory
  • use plain language for all documents we create
    • our writing guides will contain information on when and where to use plain language
    • we will add a simplified version of documents that can’t be in plain language (ex: legal documents)
  • include accessibility in our processes for buying office supplies and material, computer equipment, technology, and anything else we need to operate
  • review “accessibility compliance reports” from the manufacturer when buying technology
  • finish implementing our process of collecting self-identification data about clients, partners and creators who receive Telefilm’s services and who identify as having a disability. We will use this data to consider financing that is tailored to support people with disabilities in the audiovisual industry.

We welcome your feedback on this plan and on the issue of accessibility at Telefilm. You can use the following communication channels to contact us.

E-mail:accessibilite_accessibility@telefilm.ca
Phone:1-800-567-0890 (toll-free)
Mail:Telefilm Canada
360 St. Jacques Street, Suite 600
Montreal, Quebec H2Y 1P5
The response time by mail can take from 5 to 10 business days.   
Social media:Twitter
Facebook
Instagram

An Equity, Diversity & Inclusion Advisor will acknowledge receipt of your feedback and follow up with you within 5 business days (unless you submitted a comment anonymously). Your comments or questions will be forwarded to the appropriate department.

You can also use these communication channels to request our accessibility plan or progress reports in print, large print, Braille or audio format. 

Table of contents

General

Areas described under Section 5 of the Accessible Canada Act

Consultations

Conclusion

General

Statement of commitment

Telefilm Canada (“Telefilm”) is a Partner of Choice for Canada’s screen-based industry. As such, we are committed to an industry that fosters a culture of mutual respect, dignity and inclusivity. We acknowledge that Canadian creators of underrepresented identities face greater challenges in obtaining funding, career development opportunities, training and education.

Telefilm is firmly committed to ensuring that creators with disabilities have better access to its financing programs. We also intend to better meet their overall accessibility needs when they interact with us. We will enhance the self-identification process, so we hire and promote more people living with disabilities. We will also help raise the visibility and capabilities of creators with disabilities.

We want Telefilm to be as accessible as possible to our employees, stakeholders and members of the public. We recognize that accessibility needs evolve over time, that disability is fluid—neither fixed nor permanent. When it comes to their own experience and to the issue of accessibility, people with disabilities are the experts. That is why we want people with disabilities—their experiences, their voices—to be at the centre of this work. We will continue to consult with people with disabilities and learn from their experiences. We will look for and address any future accessibility barriers. This plan is one part of our commitment to always do better for people living with disabilities—filmmakers, our employees, other members of Canada’s screen-based industry.

About Telefilm

Telefilm was established in 1967 as a federal Crown corporation dedicated to enhancing the Canadian screen-based industry and supporting people in the audiovisual industry across Canada.

We do this in 3 ways:

  • by providing funding to help filmmakers create their works
  • through initiatives that help promote and spread awareness of Canadian productions and filmmakers
  • by helping the industry work together and form partnerships to further promote the works of Canadian filmmakers and enhance the overall industry

Contact and feedback

Telefilm welcomes your comments and questions about our Accessibility Plan, including those submitted anonymously. We also welcome any feedback you might have about accessibility at Telefilm. We are committed to reviewing the feedback we receive and taking steps to address barriers identified through your comments and questions.

You can use the following communication channels to contact us.

E-mail:accessibilite_accessibility@telefilm.ca
Phone:1-800-567-0890 (toll-free)
Mail:Telefilm Canada
360 St. Jacques Street, Suite 600 
Montreal, Quebec H2Y 1P5
The response time by mail can take from 5 to 10 business days.   
Social media:Twitter
Facebook
Instagram

An Equity, Diversity & Inclusion Advisor will acknowledge receipt of your feedback and follow up with you within 5 business days (unless you submitted a comment anonymously). Your comments or questions will then be forwarded to the appropriate department.

You can also use these communication channels to request our accessibility plan or progress reports in print, large print, Braille or audio format. 

Alternative formats

You can request alternative formats of this Accessibility Plan by contacting us:

E-mail:accessibilite_accessibility@telefilm.ca
Phone:1-800-567-0890 (toll-free)
Mail:Telefilm Canada
360 St. Jacques Street, Suite 600
Montreal, Quebec H2Y 1P5  

The Accessibility Plan is available in an electronic format compatible with assistive technology. It can be downloaded here.

Telefilm will provide other alternative formats upon request, based on the following delivery schedule (maximum number of days):

  • print: 15 days
  • large print (larger text): 15 days
  • audio (a recording of someone reading the text out loud): 45 days
  • Braille: 45 days

Definitions

This plan uses the following definitions:

Disability: An impairment, or difference in physical, mental, intellectual, cognitive, learning or communication ability. Disabilities can be permanent or temporary or can change over time.

Barrier: Anything that might prevent a person’s full and equal participation in society. Barriers can be based in attitudes, the built environment (for example, how office space is organized), technology, in how information is communicated. A barrier can also be the result of a policy or procedure.

Accessibility: The design of products, devices, services, environments, technologies, policies and rules in a way that allows all people, including people with a variety of disabilities, to access and use them, as independently as the person wishes.

Definitions source: Accessible Canada Act (justice.gc.ca)

Areas described under Section 5 of the Accessible Canada Act

As a federal Crown corporation, Telefilm is subject to the Accessible Canada Act (ACA). Beyond following the legislation, Telefilm has always been committed to the values of inclusion within its organization. The ACA is an opportunity for Telefilm to reiterate these values through all the initiatives it implements with its employees and clients.

Organization-wide initiatives

Telefilm is committed to providing leadership training on accessibility and disability to all staff. Disability training will help us improve accessibility and develop accommodations in all aspects of our operations.

These are our organization-wide goals:

  • Starting in 2023, Telefilm will begin to roll out training customized for each relevant department on accessibility, with a focus on how accessibility directly relates to job-specific tasks
  • By the end of 2023, Telefilm will roll out training on disability awareness and accessibility for all existing and newly hired employees
  • By the end of 2025, all managers with staffing responsibilities will have received mandatory disability training

Design and delivery of programs and services

Telefilm works with people in the audiovisual industry across Canada to support their productions. We also help promote their works at home and abroad—at awards galas, festivals, film markets and other industry events. We also work to enhance the audiovisual industry in Canada. We do this, in large part, by offering a range of services to filmmakers and to the broader screen-based industry.

These include:

  • financing programs and industry initiatives
  • initiatives to help filmmakers promote and market their projects
  • partnership initiatives to further support the promotion and recognition of Canadian filmmaking projects

Because we work to meet the needs of Canadian audiovisual industry, we want to make sure our programs and services are as accessible as possible. We also recognize that barriers to accessing our programs and services exist. These barriers include a lack of financing opportunities and programs tailored to the needs of filmmakers with disabilities.

With that in mind, we set the following goals:

  • By the end of 2023:
    • Telefilm will complete its first full intake process of collecting data around filmmakers and creators who receive Telefilm’s funding and who self-identify as having a disability
    • Once the data collection process is completed, Telefilm will use the data to consider specific measures that should be taken to support filmmakers with disabilities
    • Telefilm will consult people in the audiovisual industry with disabilities, and related-organizations to pinpoint other barriers to funding and identify potential solutions
  • By the end of 2024, Telefilm will explore the feasibility of establishing funding mechanisms specifically for filmmakers with disabilities

Built environment

Telefilm’s head office is in Montréal, with additional offices in Toronto, Halifax and Vancouver. Employees, clients, suppliers and business partners use our offices, which we have made accessible in several ways. This includes providing adapted workstations and installing a lift where applicable.

Our offices have not been audited for accessibility. However, we are aware of barriers that make access to our offices more difficult. For example, the main entrance to the Montréal office is not easily accessible for persons with disabilities, however, there is an accessible entrance for people with disabilities in the back of the building. Also, navigating the inside of the Toronto office can also be difficult for some.

Our goal is to improve accessibility of our build environment, as described in the following:

  • In 2023, Telefilm will conduct an accessibility audit of its offices to identify needed improvements
  • By June 2023, Telefilm will establish 1 or more “quiet workspaces” in the Montréal office where employees can work if they need a break from the open-plan office
  • By the end of 2023, Telefilm will:
    • consider changes to the kitchen areas in the offices, where applicable, to ensure they are accessible to employees with mobility-related disabilities
    • making relevant changes that are high priority with low-cost
    • revise our emergency evacuation plan
  • By the end of 2024, Telefilm will develop a plan for addressing major office changes that have been identified

As office leases expire, Telefilm will look at leasing space that is as accessible as possible. This will be done in consultation with employees who have disabilities and with accessibility advisors

Employment

Telefilm employs more than 200 staff across our 4 offices, most of whom work at office-based jobs. Since the COVID-19 pandemic, the majority of employees have been working remotely and coming into our offices occasionally. Working from home can eliminate barriers for many people.

We have established a formal accommodations process to improve accessibility to our workspaces for employees living with disabilities. However, we know that accessibility barriers continue to exist. Also, we do not consistently offer accommodations to job applicants and new employees during recruitment and onboarding processes. Our aim is to improve accessibility for employees and applicants with disabilities.

Our ultimate objective is to ensure that more people with disabilities work at Telefilm. To this end, we plan to do the following:

  • By the end of 2023, Telefilm will:
    • launch a communication tool to ensure that all employees living with disabilities know how to self-identify; we will also ensure that all disclosures are kept confidential
    • add a statement to our careers page encouraging people with disabilities to apply for a job at Telefilm
    • ensure that we offer accommodations to all candidates at each step of the recruitment process
    • review our onboarding processes to ensure that all new employees are offered accommodations before their first day at Telefilm and as part of the onboarding process
    • update the Telefilm onboarding guide distributed to new employees; the updated guide will include information about the accommodations process in the section about meeting with human resources
  • By the end of 2024, Telefilm will conduct a review of our online application system to identify barriers to employment for people with disabilities

Information and communication technologies (ICT)

Telefilm uses a variety of technologies and digital tools to conduct its business. These include our public websites (https://thetalentfund.ca, https://telefilm.ca and https://rdvcanada.ca), online portal for applicants (Dialogue) and social media platforms. We have worked to make our technologies accessible for everyone, for example by following international web standards (Web Content Accessibility Guidelines 2.0) to improve the accessibility of our public website.

We recognize, however, that we can make further improvements. For instance, we need to conduct user testing of our website and our online portal, Dialogue, to identify any barriers to navigation.

We have set the following goals to address these barriers and improve accessibility:

  • Starting in 2023, all IT staff members, including the digital and web teams will receive training on supporting digital accessibility
  • By the end of 2023-2024, Telefilm will address and remove accessibility barriers related to graphic design on our public website (for example, colour contrast, adjustable text size, the use of alternative text on images). These barriers were identified through consultation with people who have disabilities
  • By the end of 2023, Telefilm will review Dialogue to remove identified barriers (to the extent this is technically feasible)
  • By the beginning of 2024, Telefilm will ask people with disabilities who use assistive technologies to test our website to find any additional barriers to accessibility. By the end of 2025, our online portal will undergo the same kind of testing

Communication with filmmakers and the public

Telefilm communicates with Canadian people in the audiovisual industry and the public in a variety of ways. These include news releases, advisories, videos, FAQs and social media posts. Our communication provides essential information on the work we do to support filmmakers in the creation and promotion of their projects. We inform them, for example, of funding opportunities, promotion opportunities and partnerships—in Canada and abroad.

Telefilm also welcomes comments and questions from members of the public, who can contact us by phone, email, mail or social media.

 In our consultations with people with disabilities, we identified several barriers in our communication channels. For example:

  • The images and videos we post do not always offer alternative text or captions
  • There is no existing process in place to respond to requests for materials in alternative formats
  • There is no clear information about who at Telefilm filmmakers can contact for support

We are committed to addressing these barriers and improving accessibility in our communication. To this end:

  • At the start of 2023:
    • All social media images will be appropriately labeled with alternative text
    • Telefilm will conduct an accessibility review of our internal document templates to identify changes that need to be made
    • All new videos that Telefilm creates will include captions and transcripts generated by artificial intelligence and reviewed by staff. By 2024, new videos will include human-generated captions and transcripts, whenever possible
  • By March 2023, processes will be in place to provide users with documents in alternative formats
  • By the end of 2023:
    • Telefilm will create a frequently asked questions (FAQs) web page for clients, partners and creators seeking accommodation for disability needs. Among other things, these FAQs will provide information on specific Telefilm employees that stakeholders and filmmakers with disabilities can contact.
    • Telefilm will consult clients/ partners/ people in the audiovisual industry with disabilities to identify other barriers to funding programs
    • Telefilm will gather information and implement best practices to maximize accessibility on each platform according to the platform’s capabilities.
    • We will identify older but high-priority PDFs that should be made available in an alternative format
  • In 2024, Telefilm will prioritize relevant older PDFs that were distributed to the public. By the end of 2024, relevant older but high-priority PDFs will also be made available in accessible HTML and Microsoft Word formats
  • By the end of 2024:
    • All new website content and documents will be written in plain language
    • Telefilm will ensure that communications standard practices are updated to include standards for plain language
    • Telefilm will identify high-priority content on the website that is not in plain language. Documents that cannot be written in plain language will have a plain language alternative
    • Telefilm will update internal templates for accessibility

By the end of 2025, Telefilm will update high-priority content to ensure it is written in plain language

Procurement

Telefilm uses applications, goods and services purchased from external vendors to support its operations and services. As part of our broader accessibility initiatives, Telefilm will identify and assess to include accessibility in our formal procurement process for buying goods and services.

Our goals are:

  • By September 2023, Telefilm will identify and assess best practices to include accessibility considerations into procurement processes and activities
  • By December 2023, relevant staff responsible for procurement will receive training on how to support other Telefilm departments make accessibility a part of procurement activities
  • From October 2024, Telefilm will assess feasibility for monitoring whether accessibility considerations in procurement activities comply with best practices
  • By December 2025, Telefilm will ensure that best practices for accessibility are embedded in the development or procurement of IT goods and services. We will request and review “accessibility compliance reports” when purchasing technology

Consultations

Telefilm is fully committed to listening to the concerns of people with disabilities. To ensure we uphold this commitment, Telefilm consulted with people with disabilities to develop this accessibility plan, so that it would address the needs of the community. We will also continue to engage with people with disabilities as we take on new projects.

We collected information for this plan through:

  • an anonymous survey for employees with disabilities
    • 57 employees filled out the survey, with 10 of them indicating that they have a disability
  • an anonymous survey for clients/stakeholders with disabilities
    • 41 people filled out the survey, with 10 of them indicating that they have a disability
  • interviews with employees with disabilities

The surveys asked whether people with disabilities experienced any barriers while working at or interacting with Telefilm. We also asked people who answered the survey to give details about the barriers they encountered. Finally, we asked for suggestions for improving accessibility at Telefilm.

Through the surveys, employees and clients identified accessibility barriers, such as:

  • issues accessing the front door of the Montréal office
  • a lack of training/awareness around invisible disabilities
  • a lack of funding available to filmmakers who have disabilities
  • confusion about whom to reach out to for support at Telefilm

We also interviewed various employees who have disabilities to collect additional feedback. The most common feedback we received from employees had to do with the built environment of the Montréal office. The goals of this Accessibility Plan reflect all barriers identified during the consultations.

Conclusion

Telefilm is dedicated to improving accessibility, addressing current and future barriers to accessibility, and making our operations accessible and accommodating to everyone. Since we support the needs of people in the audiovisual industry across Canada, we want to ensure that accessibility is a priority in everything we do.

We also realize that disability is fluid. Therefore, we will continue to revisit our Accessibility Plan on an annual basis to ensure that barriers to accessibility are addressed on an ongoing basis. We also acknowledge that accessibility is not an outcome but, rather, a process. With that in mind, we will work to meet the needs of our employees and stakeholders with disabilities, and we will continue to improve accessibility moving forward.