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More than meets the eye

AUCKLAND CITY COUNCIL

MEDIA RELEASE

2 May 2006

More than meets the eye

Auckland City’s Draft Long-term Plan 2006 – 2016 became a step more accessible today with the release of a large print format of the summary and submission form.

“This is the first time in New Zealand that a long term plan summary has been released in a large print format,” said Mayor of Auckland City, Dick Hubbard.

“It’s important that everyone is given the chance to make informed decisions on how they want their city to look and feel in 10 years and beyond,” said Mr Hubbard.

Within Auckland city, the Royal New Zealand Foundation of the Blind (RNZFB) has approximately 1,420 members who are blind, deafblind and vision-impaired. A gradual loss of sight, which impacts on the ability to read small print, affects many people particularly when they get older.

“Every year we try to reach more Aucklanders, and build on our consultation methods in our long term and annual planning process,” said Mr Hubbard.

“There is a general understanding of the need to make buildings accessible for people with disabilities, however, this isn’t always true for information,” says Minnie Baragwanath, Auckland City’s strategic adviser for disability.

“Considering we live in an information age, access to information is essential in allowing informed citizenship and active participation in society,” says Ms. Baragwanath.

In recognising the recent signing of the Sign Language Bill, Auckland City has also arranged for sign language interpreters to be at two public forums, on Wednesday 3 May and at the youth forum on Monday 8 May.

The long-term plan is also available to visually impaired people on the website with an option to enlarge the text. Auckland members of the RNZFB can also access an audio version of the summary on the Telephone Information Service by calling (09) 302 3344.

Public consultation on Auckland City’s Draft Long-term Plan runs from 19 April to 19 May. The plan will be finalised in June after the public feedback has been taken into account.

People can get a summary of the plan or a large print summary and a feedback form from:

- www.aucklandcity.govt.nz
- Auckland City libraries and service centres phone (09) 379 2020
- the 23 April edition of City Scene

Auckland City representatives will be in shopping malls around the city during the one-month consultation period.

ENDS

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