Disability and Access Inclusion
The Disability Discrimination Act (DDA) is the key legislative requirement for ensuring that primarily, access to buildings and services is available in the Community. The Southern Midlands Council is committed to “Universal Access and Inclusion” rather than “access for people with disabilities”, with the emphasis on mainstream facilities and services being accessible for all including children, seniors and people with disabilities. The Council recognises that people with disabilities are valued members of the Community who make a variety of contributions to social, economic and cultural life within the Southern Midlands area. The Council also believes that a Community that recognises its diversity and supports the participation of all its members makes for a richer Community life. As such, Council has recently adopted a Disability Access & Inclusion Policy.
Councils are required, under the DDA, to work towards providing equity of access to services and facilities to all sectors of the Community, including people with disabilities. The Southern Midlands Council has made steady progress in improving access since the Access Survey and Assessment undertaken by Council in 1997. As well as the 2009 review. The Council also recognises that full compliance with the intent of the DDA comes at a financial cost that cannot be easily achieved in the short term. However Council is committed to implementing the spirit and intent of the legislation.