Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | News Video | Crime | Employers | Housing | Immigration | Legal | Local Govt. | Maori | Welfare | Unions | Youth | Search

 


Access to buildings is a human right, says monitoring group

Embargoed until 2.30pm, Thursday 7 August 2014

Media Release: Access to buildings is a human right, says monitoring group

A key group monitoring disability rights in New Zealand says proposed changes to building regulations are unnecessary and infringe disabled people’s right to access buildings.

When a building is upgraded, reasonable and adequate access must be made for people with disabilities. The proposed changes to the Building Act 2004 will allow councils to issue building consents for earthquake strengthening without triggering this requirement.

In its second report, launched this week, the Independent Monitoring Mechanism (IMM) of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities criticises this proposal.

Chief Ombudsman Dame Beverley Wakem says the proposal sends a clear message that the rights of disabled people are a low priority.

“Inaccessible buildings limit disabled people’s opportunities for education, employment, and their ability to contribute to and participate in their community.”

The IMM includes the Office of the Ombudsman, the Human Rights Commission and the New Zealand Convention Coalition made up of eight disabled people’s organisations (DPOs).

In the report, the IMM has contrasted the Building Act proposals with other areas where progress has been made since July 2012. It welcomes increasing involvement by disabled people and their organisations in practical and policy decisions about their lives. For example, the Earthquake Disability Leadership Group (EDLG), established to advocate for the rights of disabled people in Canterbury during the recovery, is making progress.

“The EDLG has been particularly successful in ensuring that disabled people have an effective and united voice in the rebuilding of Christchurch,” says the IMM’s report.

The EDLG’s aim is to make Christchurch the most accessible and liveable city in the world. This is picked up as the focus of the IMM’s report launch in Christchurch tomorrow (August 7).

However, Disability Commissioner Paul Gibson says accessibility continues to be an issue in Christchurch and across the country.

“The Commission’s December 2013 report Monitoring Human Rights in the Canterbury Earthquake Recovery identified two and three level buildings constructed without lifts or the capacity to include them at a later date,” he says.

The IMM welcomes the current Government review into building access for disabled people. Its report recommends considering whether the existing accessibility standard should be mandatory and extended to cover residential housing.

ENDS

Find out more at: http://www.hrc.co.nz/

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

 

Spy Update: Appointment Of GCSB Acting Director

GCSB Chief Legal Advisor Lisa Fong will become the Acting Director of the Government Communications Security Bureau (GCSB) from 15 February 2016, Minister Responsible for the GCSB Christopher Finlayson announced today. More>>

Protests Close Roads: TPP Signed In Auckland

“TPP was signed by Australia, Brunei Darussalam, Canada, Chile, Japan, Malaysia, Mexico, New Zealand, Peru, Singapore, the United States and Viet Nam.” More>>

ALSO:

Emails Behind 'Diplomatic Immunity' Case: Whitehead Report Released

“As previously indicated the conclusions reached by Mr Whitehead’s investigation are not unexpected but they are very disappointing,” Mr Mccully says. “At the heart of the matter is a single email, along with procedural shortcomings, which gave Malaysian officials the impression it would be acceptable for Mr Rizalman to return to Malaysia." More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On The Treaty/TPP Overlap, And Iowa

The fears about the ISDS provisions in the Trans Pacific Partnership deal are well-founded. The reality is that there is a sharp uptick in the occurrence of ISDS litigation in developed countries, and even the right wing likes of The Economist have been souring on the process for some time. More>>

ALSO:

Christchurch Red Zone Offers: Fresh High Court Proceedings

Grant Cameron, Solicitor for the Quake Outcasts said “the action seeks judicial review of the Crown’s recent decision to make a fresh offer to purchase properties from uninsured property owners in red zones. More>>

ALSO:

PM's Post-Cabinet Press Conference: Waitangi And TPP

Prime Minister John Key on Tuesday said his office has received an invitation for him to visit the Lower Marae on Waitangi Day, but was waiting for a meeting of the Te Tii Marae Trustees. More>>

ALSO:

Flagged: 'Wrong Colour' Bridge Flag To Change

NZ First: Only 13 days after National trumpeted its legally questionable flag on Auckland Harbour Bridge, it is now coming down because it is the wrong colour... “Mr Key’s latest flag fiasco is another waste of taxpayers' money. Given it is coming down, down is exactly the location where it should remain. More>>

ALSO:

School's In: Children Head Back To School

“Across the whole of this year we expect 61,820 five year olds will begin their primary schooling for the first time,” says the Ministry of Education head of sector enablement and support Katrina Casey. More>>

ALSO:

Dog & Lemon: FBI Disagrees With NZ Government Over Police Chases

Multiple studies, quoted by the FBI, show that once suspects realise they're no longer being chased; they tend to slow down to normal driving speeds and therefore become far less of a risk. The FBI report also categorically rejected the argument that abandoning police chases meant ‘giving in’ to offenders. More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Politics
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news