Toronto Pearson International Airport (YYZ) is the first airport in North America and second in the world to receive the Airports Council International (ACI) accreditation under the Accessibility Enhancement Accreditation (AEA) program, a first-of-its-kind program dedicated to airport accessibility.
The program is designed to help airports measure, evaluate, and improve their accessibility management and culture. It is the only international assessment or accreditation program dedicated to airports’ accessibility to passengers with disabilities.
“As the largest airport in Canada, we are leading the way in providing equal, respectful, and professional treatment that extends to our passengers and our employees,” said Deborah Flint, president and CEO, Greater Toronto Airports Authority. “While we are proud of this recognition, our entire ecosystem plays a role, and we will champion accessibility with our partners and advocate until there is joy from the beginning to the end of everyone’s travel experience.”
ACI’s AEA program launched earlier this year and provides a continuous path of improvement for airports in accessibility and passengers with disabilities, including people with physical and non-apparent disabilities.
“At Pearson, accessibility is about creating an experience that enables everyone to participate fully in the exploration of travel, as well as the enjoyment of reuniting with friends and family,” said Kurush Minocher, director, passenger experience and development, Greater Toronto Airports Authority. “We thank ACI for recognizing our efforts, but more importantly our partners in accessibility that helped make this possible. I am truly appreciative of the hard work and dedication of our collective teams as we embark on a journey to become the most accessible airport in the world.”
The program is based on existing international best practices and recommendations, including those in the ACI Airport and Persons with Disability Handbook, the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD), and Universal Design concepts.