(Toronto, ON – May 3, 2022) It has been more than two years since CNIB first alerted the Government of Ontario that people who are blind, partially sighted or Deafblind were unable to renew their Ontario Health Card online through the Government of Ontario website because the renewal form required a driver’s licence number.
After many discussions with the Government of Ontario, and powerful advocacy from CNIB and other disability organizations, Ontarians without a drivers licence can now renew their health card online using an Ontario photo ID card. Thanks to the advocacy of people with disabilities, including sight loss, the Ontario photo ID card was introduced in 2011 as an alternative form of government issued identification for people who do not have a driver’s licence, making it easier for them to do things such as open a bank account and any other activities that required official identification.
The Government previously extended the deadline to renew an expired health card until September 30, 2022. Ontarians will continue to be able to use their expired health card, including a red and white health card, to access insured health care services until the September 30, 2022 deadline.
CNIB continues to work with the Government of Ontario to ensure services are accessible to Ontarians with sight loss from the outset.
Earlier this year, we commissioned a research project on the accessibility of ServiceOntario services, and we completed a series of focus groups with Ontarians who are blind, partially sighted, or Deafblind to learn about their experiences. In the coming months, CNIB will be developing a survey to delve deeper into the accessibility issues that people with sight loss have encountered with ServiceOntario.