The Greens value all people, and we believe that the diversity of our community strengthens us all. People living with a disability must have a voice within the Inner West Council (IWC), so that barriers to participation in the community can be overcome. When barriers are removed, the majority of people with disabilities will experience greater independence and dignity, and equitable opportunities for social and economic inclusion.
In particular, the Greens will prioritise the inclusion of residents with a disability in council decision-making by expanding membership of the Access Committee and the Disability Forum Committee, and ensuring that disabled people are adequately represented within other council committees.. We believe residents with a disability should be involved in the provision of strategic, expert and impartial advice on the development, implementation and review of the IWC’s policies, strategies and plans.
Disabled people should have equal and safe access to public urban spaces. Walkways, footpaths, roads and pedestrian crossings must be accessible, continually repaired and maintained. Greens councilors will work to:
Ensure the IWC Pedestrian Access and Mobility Plan (PAMP) adopts the strongest elements of the PAMPs from the previous three councils (Ashfield, Leichhard and Marrickville Councils).
Introduce development guidelines to create a disability inclusive and accessible built environment, including:
Providing a set standard and requirements in the Development Control Plan (DCP), such as ramp design, the texture and material used on the walkways or pavement, the use of Braille, and any other tactile assistive measures recommended by the appropriate committees.
Guidelines for businesses and households in the DCP to ensure movable items (e.g. wheelie bins) are not obstacles on sidewalks.
A standard in the DCP to ensure that the placement of commonly used amenities and infrastructure, such as ATMs, rubbish bins, and street crossing buttons, will facilitate the use of wheelchair users and people with vision impairment.
That the DCP covers requirements for signage and outdoor dining areas that maximise accessibility.
Consider the needs of disabled people at the design stage of the council’s planning process.
Conduct an access audit, which will assess the adaptability of council infrastructure and venues for people with a disability. Using this information, in cooperation with local disability advocacy and community groups and council advisory groups, we will prioritise physical barriers to be addressed in order for people with disability to be able to:
- access our streets, parks, playgrounds and open spaces
- participate in events and cultural programs
- access and participate in sport and recreation
- access retail, hospitality and leisure
- Greens councillors will also work on the following:
We will provide training to assist all IWC employees to competently support customers, colleagues and employees with disability or mental health conditions.
In consultation with the relevant sections of the community, the Greens will investigate the viability of and sentiment towards returning home support services as council-run initiatives. Meals on Wheels, Individual Social Support, Home Maintenance and Modifications, and Gardening and Home Modification and Maintenance Services have all been outsourced.
We will increase awareness and understanding of people with a disability through programs that highlight their abilities. We will also increase the images of people with disability in IWC publications, digital platforms and media channels.
We will expand the selection of and access to ebooks and audiobooks in libraries within the Inner West Council.
We will provide hearing augmentation systems in community facilities and venues where appropriate and as recommended by Australian Standards.
We will continue to deliver and improve upon inclusive sport and recreation activities through the IWC recreation facilities and open spaces, and promote disability inclusive sports and recreation.
All council-owned premises and sporting fields will be required to enquire about the inclusive practices of potential lessees.
We will provide access to grants and guidelines that encourage local businesses and organisations in the inner west to be more inclusive and accessible to people with disability, and simultaneously explore recognising already inclusive businesses.
We will increase the number of accessible parking spaces in the public domain in the LGA by 5% above the Building Code of Australia standards.
We shall introduce disability inclusive park furniture.
We will increase information available to all residents in accessible formats or systems, such as the following:
- subtitles on the council livestreams, and an Auslan interpreter for all council events.
- include an accessibility map, information on accessible parking spaces and information on accessible transport routes on the council website.