Mutual Recognition of Parking Permits for Persons with Disabilities – Resolution 97/4 of the European Conference of Ministers of Transport (ECMT)
Canada’s Participation in implementing Resolution 97/4
In 1978, the European Conference of Ministers of Transport (ECMT) Council of Ministers agreed that all ECMT Member Countries would grant the same parking concessions to people with disabilities they offer their own nationals. These concessions usually allow special parking in areas reserved for people with disabilities, or allow longer parking periods or exemptions from charges.
This Resolution was updated and extended in scope in 1997. In addition to all ECMT Member Countries, this Resolution now applies also to the ECMT Associated Countries (Australia, Canada, Japan, Korea, New Zealand and United States). This means that disabled motorists from all ECMT Member and Associate Countries have the right to the same parking concessions as nationals in all ECMT Countries. The only condition is the vehicle must display a badge showing the international wheelchair symbol.
Parking Badge Policies in Canada
In Canada, parking badge policies and programs for persons with disabilities come under provincial and territorial government authority. These governments then delegate the responsibility for enacting and enforcing their own bylaws on parking permits and the use of designated parking spaces for persons with disabilities, to cities and municipalities. As a result, parking badge policies for persons with disabilities may vary from one jurisdiction to another. There are, however, important common elements:
- All jurisdictions provide designated parking spaces for vehicles carrying persons with mobility disabilities.
- These designated parking spaces are marked by a traffic control sign bearing the international wheelchair logo. The international logo is often painted on the pavement of the parking space, as well.
- A parking permit is issued to a person with a disability, not a specific vehicle, and is for that person’s use only.
- The driver must hang the parking permit from the rearview mirror or place it in plain view on the dashboard, when it is parked.
- The person with the disability must leave and board the vehicle while it is parked in the designated parking space.
Visitors to Canada must bring their valid parking permit from their home jurisdiction with them and hang it from the rearview mirror or place it in plain view on the dashboard of their vehicle. Canadian jurisdictions will recognize disabled parking permits from other Canadian provinces and territories, from the United States, and from Europe. It is the responsibility of the permit holder to comply with local parking bylaws.
Unlike most European countries, in Canada:
- Persons with disabilities holding a valid parking badge cannot normally park their vehicles in pedestrian zones or no parking zones or loading and unloading zones.
- Permit holders must usually pay parking meter fees where such charges apply. We recommend visitors check with local authorities whether fee exemptions are available.
- Canadian jurisdictions do not use time limitation devices, parking discs or other devices in addition to the parking permit itself.
For more specific information on the parking badge policies of a particular Canadian jurisdiction, visitors may wish to contact the office that issues parking permits, of their provincial/territorial destination, listed in the grid below.
|PROVINCES/ TERRITORIES||PARKING PERMIT ISSUING OFFICE|
Social Planning and Research Council of BC (SPARC BC)
Society for Manitobans with Disabilities (SMD)
Service New Brunswick – Department of Public Safety
|Newfoundland and Labrador||
Services NL - Motor Registration Division
NWT Disabilities Council
Service Nova Scotia – Registry of Motor Vehicles
Nunavut issues accessible parking permits. For more information, please contact the Motor Vehicles Division of the Ministry of Economic Development and Transportation
|Prince Edward Island||
PEI Council of People with Disabilities
Société de l'assurance automobile du Québec (SAAQ)
Saskatchewan Abilities Council
The Government of Yukon does not have a territorial regulation on parking permit programs for persons with disabilities. However, the City of Whitehorse does have an accessible parking program in place for persons with disabilities administered by the Bylaw Services Department.
City of Whitehorse