Telecom Commission Letter Addressed to Various Parties

Ottawa, 5 January 2017

Our reference: 1011-NOC2016-0116

BY EMAIL

Lisa Anderson-Kellett
Chair, Deaf Wireless Canada Consultative Committee
lisa@deafwireless.ca

Frank Folino
President, Canadian Association of the Deaf/
Association des Sourds du Canada
ffolino@cad.ca

Dear Ms. Anderson-Kellett and Mr. Folino,

The present responds to the disagreement expressed in your 22 December 2016 email with the accommodation measures to be provided in the context of your participation in the forthcoming hearing associated with Establishment of a regulatory framework for next-generation 9-1-1 in Canada, Telecom Notice of Consultation CRTC 2016-116.

In a letter dated 14 December 2016 we responded to an earlier correspondence dealing with this matter, in which you requested clarification as to why the Commission was not proposing to provide ASL and LSQ interpretive services, as well as English CART services throughout the duration of the hearing or ASL interpretive services for a three hour period on the day prior to your organizations’ scheduled appearance.  In that letter, we informed you that ASL interpretation and English CART services would be made available throughout the morning of 19 January 2017 thereby ensuring that interpretative services would be available for the duration of your presentation to the Commission as well as for all presentations preceding yours on that day.  We clarified that the primary purpose of the hearing was to allow all parties scheduled to appear to highlight those aspects of their written submissions which are felt most important and not to respond to statements made by other parties in their respective presentations.  As indicated in that correspondence, the procedures associated with the proceeding currently provide all parties with the opportunity to file written reply comments with the Commission.  The deadline to file such written reply comments has been set for 31 January 2017, 11 days following the close of the hearing.

We remain of the view that the interpretive services provided in conjunction with timely access to official transcripts made available to you in accessible format will ensure that you can equitably and effectively participate in all phases of the proceeding.

We would further reiterate that, as with all public interest organizations participating in proceedings initiated under the Telecommunications Act, applications can be made to recover reasonable costs that were necessarily incurred in the course of participation in such proceedings.  The criteria for an award of costs are set out in the CRTC Rules of Practice and Procedures.Footnote 1

In your correspondence you refer to the Federal Court of Canada’s 2007 decision in Canadian Association of the Deaf v. Canada.  We have reviewed this decision, as well as other pertinent judicial decisions, and are of the view that the proposed measures are entirely consistent with the obligations which befall the Commission.  Interpretive services will be available to ensure that you can communicate directly with the Commission.  The provision of official transcripts and an opportunity to file written final reply comments 11 days following the conclusion of the hearing ensures that you can meaningfully participate and effectively communicate during each phase of the proceeding as required under law.

Should your organizations consider that more time is required in order to prepare your final written submissions, a request for an extension can be made. Such a request is to be filed with the Commission using the procedures set out in the Notice of Consultation initiating this proceeding and is to contain sufficient justification to allow the Commission to make an informed decision on the matter.

Sincerely,

Eric Bowles
Legal Counsel, Legal Sector
Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission
Ottawa, ON, K1A 0N2
Tel.: 819-953-5204
eric.bowles@crtc.gc.ca

c.c.: Gary Malkowski, gmalkowski@chs.ca; James Roots, jroots@cad.ca

Date modified: