The Canadian Transportation Agency

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The Canadian Transportation Agency's mission is to administer transportation legislation and Government of Canada policies to help achieve an efficient and accessible transportation system by education, consultation and essential regulation.

The Agency is an independent, quasi-judicial tribunal that makes decisions on a wide range of economic matters involving federally regulated modes of transportation (air, rail and marine), and has the powers, rights and privileges of a superior court to exercise its authority. Along with its roles as an economic regulator and an aeronautical authority, the Agency works to facilitate accessible transportation, and serves as a dispute resolution authority over certain transportation rate and service complaints.

Objective :
The objective is to ensure that persons with disabilities obtain access to Canada's transportation system by eliminating unnecessary or unjustified barriers.

Description :
The Canada Transportation Act is the Agency's enabling statute to implement the federal government's transportation policy. The National Transportation Policy, as set out in paragraph 5 of the Canada Transportation Act, requires that carriers or modes of transportation carry traffic under fares, rates and conditions that do not constitute an undue obstacle to the mobility of persons, including persons with disabilities. To that end, the Act gives the Canadian Transportation Agency responsibility for setting, administering and enforcing accessibility standards for all modes of transportation under federal jurisdiction (air, rail, marine and extra-provincial bus transportation).

With the approval of the Governor in Council, the Agency may make regulations to eliminate all undue obstacles in the transportation network governed by the Act. More specifically, the Agency may regulate:
- the design, construction or modification of means of transportation and related facilities and premises, and their equipment;
- training of personnel interacting with persons with disabilities;
- the tariffs, rates, fares, charges, and terms and conditions of carriage of persons with disabilities; and
- communication of information to persons with disabilities.

The Agency may also conduct investigations to determine whether unnecessary obstacles to the mobility of persons with disabilities exist.

The Agency's program of accessible transportation includes four main activities:
- complaint resolution;
- development of regulatory instruments;
- public consultation and liaison;
- monitoring.

Resources needed :
The Agency currently has seven permanent members. A staff of about 270 employees assists the members in their decision-making process and provides administrative support.

The Agency has its own Accessibility Advisory Committee. The Committee’s objective is to work with the Agency in developing regulations and standards which will enhance the accessibility of transportation by removing undue obstacles to the mobility of persons with disabilities. The Committee is composed of representatives of organizations of and for persons with disabilities, industry representatives and, other government departments. The Agency meets with the members of its committee yearly.

Results :
In 2002, the Canadian Transportation Agency completed its sixth full year as an independent quasi-judicial administrative tribunal and regulator of transportation under federal jurisdiction.
The results of the industry surveys are encouraging. Most of the criteria are at a level of full or high compliance in all three modes and only a few are at a level of low or non-compliance.
This shows the positive impact of the Agency's codes of practice and monitoring on the transportation industry. It also shows that carriers want to improve the levels of accessibility of their fleets.
In 2003, the Agency presented the survey results of the three codes of practice to its Accessibility Advisory Committee and send copies of the reports to all carriers that participated in the surveys.
Transportation service providers are encouraged to continue their commitment to overall fleet accessibility. They should regularly assess themselves against the requirements of the codes, remembering that all new equipment should meet or exceed the codes' accessibility criteria. The Agency will continue to conduct periodic surveys to measure and report on improvements in accessibility.

Key elements :
- global approach to accessibility issues for persons with disabilities;
- implementation of regulations and standards;
- partnership with public and private sectors and with organizations for persons with disabilities;
- information, guidance and publications available on the agency’s Website;
- resolution of complaints.

Contact :
Canadian Transportation Agency
Ottawa, Ontario, Canada K1A 0N9
Phone : +1-888-222-2592; +1-800-669-5575 (TTY)
Fax : +1-(819) 953-6019
E-mail :
Website :