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Accessing New Zealand Via Non-Visual Means

Association Of Blind Citizens Of New Zealand

AS WE SEE IT Accessing New Zealand Via Non-Visual Means

This afternoon “AS WE SEE IT: Accessing New Zealand Via Non-Visual Means” is being launched by the Association of Blind Citizens of New Zealand (ABC NZ) in conjunction with its Wellington Seminar.

This comprehensive report objectively details the current status about access issues, and measures New Zealand's performance in these against ideal definitions received from members of the blind community surveyed for this report. Broad issues addressed include civil rights, employment, education, information access, environmental access, and public transportation. Each area has been summarised in terms of existing New Zealand law or policy, and then assessed against standards developed via survey results. Finally, international comparisons on each issue are offered along with constructive recommendations suggested for improvement in the particular subject area.

The Association’s National President Carolyn Weston says "we believe this resource will be useful to government officials and others who are interested in promoting a usable and convenient society for blind and vision impaired people in New Zealand. We know there is great goodwill among government and others serving the public to be of support, and this is our commonsense set of suggestions in answer to the frequently asked question, 'what can we do to help?' ".

"As we speak with members of Parliament and policy representatives for the Government, we look forward to answering questions that might arise from reading the report" said Daniel Frye, the ABC NZ’s National Advocate.

Mrs Weston said “as much as identifying the problem is an important job, we also value the opportunity through our recommendations, to being part of the solution".

Now that many of the issues of access that daily impact the lives of our members have been documented for review, the ABC NZ stands ready to work with officials of New Zealand government and other interested parties to breaking these social barriers down.

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