The Resort Municipality of Whistler is committed to working inclusively and collaboratively to provide equitable treatment to people with disabilities regarding the use and benefit of municipal services, programs, employment, goods and facilities in a manner that respects their dignity and that is equitable in relation to the broader public. The resort community also strives to continue to provide residents and visitors from around the world, regardless of age, ability or identity, with a seamless resort experience based not only on accessibility, but also on inclusivity. The Resort Municipality of Whistler will continue to work with the community and endeavor to allocate appropriate resources toward the identification, elimination and prevention of accessibility barriers.
Staff presented the first annual update on the implementation of the Whistler Accessibility Action Plan (AAP) to Council on September 12, 2023. The update focused on 2023 accessibility advancements and recommended priority actions for 2024.
The AAP’s purpose is to provide actions that identify, remove and prevent barriers to individuals in or interacting with the RMOW. The actions further the RMOW’s efforts to make its workplace, services and built environment accessible and welcoming to people of all ages and abilities. The final report is the outcome of a project that was conducted by municipal staff in collaboration with the Whistler Centre for Sustainability. The AAP was developed based on the principles of: inclusion, adaptability, diversity, collaboration, self-determination, and universal design.
Overall, the AAP presents a total of 59 actions. These actions are distributed across the following six AAP action areas:
- Improve Inclusive Service Design and Delivery;
- Enhance Built Environment Accessibility;
- Continue Equitable Employment Practices;
- Foster Accessible Communications and Engagement;
- Reduce Transportation Barriers; and
- Support Accessible Procurement.
Additionally, there are general actions (including training and assessment schedules) that will further advance each of the six action areas.
Community engagement and consultation
The Accessibility and Inclusion Committee provided initial action ideas, shared feedback on the preliminary draft actions, and provided comments on the final draft.
Key partner meetings were held with the Squamish Lil’wat Cultural Centre, Tourism Whistler, Whistler Blackcomb, Whistler Chamber of Commerce and Whistler Housing Authority to review and refine any actions that related to their organization.
Community input was sought from June 9 to June 30, 2022. Whistler’s community engagement portal, Engage Whistler, was used and there was an in-person display at the Whistler Public Library. One-on-one phone interviews were also available for anyone needing assistance.
On February 4, 2020, Council received Administrative Report No. 20-012 and passed a resolution to endorse the project’s proposed approach, work plan, project team and timeline.
The Accessible British Columbia Act (ABCA) was enacted in June 2021. The Accessible British Columbia Regulation under the ABCA came into force on September 1, 2022. As accessible organizations, municipalities will be required to have the following by September 1, 2023, which are further described in Section 1 of the AAP: 1) an accessibility committee; 2) an accessibility plan; and 3) a tool to receive feedback on accessibility.
For questions or comments on this project: