Forward Regulatory Plan: 2019 to 2021 - Accessible Transportation for Persons with Disabilities Regulations

Enabling act(s)

Canada Transportation Act


The Canadian Transportation Agency (CTA) proposes to create a single comprehensive set of accessible transportation regulations, the Accessible Transportation for Persons with Disabilities Regulations, pursuant to subsection 170(1) of the Canada Transportation Act.

The objective of this regulation is to help make the federal transportation network more accessible for persons with disabilities by stipulating to transportation providers how to:

  • Communicate with travellers with disabilities.
  • Train transportation workers to help travellers with disabilities.
  • Make carriers (airlines, railways, buses and ferries), as well as terminals (such as airports) accessible.
  • Provide accessible services.
  • Make border and security screening accessible.

The proposed regulations are part of the Regulatory Modernization Initiative (RMI) that was launched on May 26, 2016. The CTA launched the RMI on May 26, 2016, to review and modernize the full suite of regulations it administers. Many of these instruments date back 25  years or more, and need to be updated to reflect changes in user expectations, business models, and best practices in the regulatory field.

Regulatory cooperation efforts (domestic and international)

The proposed regulations would align Canada's regulation and practices with those of the U.S. and EU (for example, curbside assistance, accessible buses and rail requirements, and service animal relief areas on the secure side of terminals). This will allow for a predictable, more consistent level of accessibility, not only within Canada's national transportation system, but for travel between Canada and the U.S. and between Canada and EU member states. It will also alleviate the burden on carriers with respect to tracking and abiding by different requirements across jurisdictions.

Potential impacts on Canadians, including businesses

The proposed regulations establish distinct requirements for service providers in various modes, namely: large carriers that provide transportation services in the air, rail, marine and intercity bus modes, as well as the terminals that serve them, and the Canadian Air Transport Security Authority (CATSA) and the Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA).

A second regulatory package, the development of which is planned to start in fall 2019, will apply to small carriers, including those in northern, regional and remote areas of Canada that may have unique operating circumstances or infrastructure limitations to take into consideration.

The regulations are not expected to have significant impacts on international trade.


Extensive consultations have been held by the CTA from 2016 to 2018. Input from stakeholders is summarized in a What We Heard Report.

The proposed regulations were published in Part I of the Canada Gazette on March  9, 2019 for a 30-day comment period. The target date for publication of the final regulations in Part II of the Canada Gazette is summer 2019.

Other consultation information:

Further information

The cost-benefit analysis related to this regulatory initiative can be requested from the Agency contact.

Contact information

Sonia Gangopadhyay
Centre of Expertise for Accessible Transportation
Analysis and Outreach Branch
Canadian Transportation Agency
Phone : 819-953-8961

Date that the regulatory initiative was first included in the Forward Regulatory Plan

October 2016

Consult the CTA’s acts and regulations web page for:

  • a list of acts and regulations administered by the CTA
  • further information on the CTA’s implementation of government-wide regulatory management initiatives

Consult the following for links to the Cabinet Directive on Regulation and supporting policies and guidance, and for information on government-wide regulatory initiatives implemented by departments and agencies across the Government of Canada:

To learn about upcoming or ongoing consultations on proposed federal regulations, visit:

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