Kevin Minson

Kevin Minson


    Borrowing a book, enjoying a concert and even popping to the local shops are simple pleasures denied to some 300,000 Western Australians

    12/11/1996 12:00 AM



    Borrowing a book, enjoying a concert and even popping to the local shops are simple pleasures denied to some 300,000 Western Australians.


    Disability Services Minister Kevin Minson today launched the Access Resource Kit, which will help State Government agencies, local authorities and businesses open up their services to people with disabilities.


    "Since the Coalition Government introduced the 1993 Disability Service Act, over 250 public authorities have started taking real action on this issue," Mr Minson said.


    "It is vital that the 300,000 Western Australians who have some sort of disability are able to access the same services and facilities as the rest of the community.


    "The Access Resource Kit will help in this process, offering a checklist system which enables service providers to meet the needs of people with disabilities."


    The kit outlines various types of disability and how this can impede people's access to services and offers a simple system for various areas where access is required, such as transport, education and recreational and sporting venues.


    Also highlighted are some of the common factors which can impede access to services, such as the lack of audio loops to help people with a hearing impairment participate in meetings or concerts, or the size of print used in publications, which can prevent a visually impaired person from reading.


    Mr Minson said there were examples across Western Australia of access improvements, such as the Treetop Walk near Walpole and Mammoth Cave near Margaret River.


    "In the metropolitan area, local authorities such as Canning, Wanneroo and Stirling are setting excellent examples in this area," he said.


    "These authorities are willing to open up facilities such as child care centres, libraries and public open spaces to make them accessible to people with disabilities.


    "This should be the aim of all public authorities and the Access Resource Kit will help.


    "It has been put together with the assistance of people with disabilities and their carers and organisations such as ACROD and the Independent Living Centre.


    "I am also pleased to say the Western Australian Municipal Association and Institute of Municipal Management are endorsing the Kit.


    "The end result will be better access for people with disabilities."


    Media contact: Caroline Lacy 222 9211 or 015 083 526

    Tanya Coli, Disability Services Commission 426 9328