Arthur Rendall, a member of Burlington’s Accessibility Advisory Committee, has won the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act 10th Anniversary Champion.
Rendall was presented the award for his successful efforts in getting text-based 911 services for those who are deaf, hard of hearing or have speech impairments. (AODA) award recognizes outstanding individuals who demonstrate leadership, passion and commitment in the promotion of accessibility and inclusiveness in their community.
Rendall worked closely with the Canadian Radio-Television and Telecommunications Commission – Emergency Service Working Group, beginning in 2008, to come up with a system that allows those who are deaf, hard of hearing or have speech impairments to text 911 from their mobile device.
“At the start of the discussions, it was thought that developing such a service would be too expensive, but Arthur, did not give up and provided the leadership and drive to make this project a success,” said Judi Lytle, the city’s accessibility co-ordinator.
In January 2013, the CRTC announced enhancements to 911 services that would allow Canadians who are deaf, hard of hearing or have speech impairments to communicate with 911 call centres by text message. The service is now available across Canada and is being rolled out across the United States.