The Regulatory Context for Assistive Technologies and Accessible Products in Canada


Phyllis Gordon, Lana Kerzner, Tess Sheldon, and Eli Hansen


ARCH Disability Law Centre




Access to assistive devices is essential for persons with disabilities to participate fully in work, social and community life. Persons with disabilities must be assured availability of a broad range of safe, reliable and affordable assistive devices that meet their individual needs. The ability to make choices in this regard is fundamental to their dignity. The goals of the project are twofold: It is aimed to assist persons with disabilities to advocate for themselves and others. It is also intended to provide essential and comprehensive information and suggestions for reform to ground the development of policy in a way that is responsive to the concerns of those who use and work with assistive devices. The project is divided into four parts: • Part I details issues identified as important to consumers of assistive devices; • Part II clarifies the political and legal landscape that governs the sale, use, importation, safety and labelling of assistive devices in Canada. It describes various funding programs for assistive devices within the federal, provincial and territorial jurisdictions. • Part III outlines additional avenues of redress for consumers who experience problems with their assistive devices. It examines the potential application of product liability law and consumer protection legislation to assistive devices. • Part IV highlights, from a consumer perspective, the barriers and obstacles that impede the availability and use of assistive devices. It also offers law reform and policy approaches for the regulation of assistive devices in a manner that maximizes their accessibility and safety.

This document is available in the following language(s):

Third-Party Information Liability Disclaimer

Some of the information on this Web page has been provided by external sources. The Government of Canada is not responsible for the accuracy, reliability or currency of the information supplied by external sources. Users wishing to rely upon this information should consult directly with the source of the information. Content provided by external sources is not subject to official languages, privacy and accessibility requirements.

English only

OCA Funded Research
This research received funding support through the Office of Consumer Affairs' Contributions Program.

Contact information

ARCH Disability Law Centre
425 Bloor Street East, Suite 110 
Toronto, ON  M4W 3R5
(416) 482-8255
(416) 482-2981

Source: Consumer Policy Research Database

Date Modified: