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

 

Urgent Action Need on Accessible Housing


Urgent Action Need on Accessible Housing

New Zealand’s housing stock will become a liability for future generations without urgent leadership from government, says CCS Disability Action.

While other countries including the United Kingdom and United States have mandatory accessibility standards in their building codes, New Zealand is allowing homes to be built that are not fit for the needs of all its people.

“Accessible housing is not just about making sure people with disabilities can live healthy, connected lives, but about meeting the needs of every citizen, throughout their lives,” says David Matthews, Chief Executive of CCS Disability Action.

“With an ageing population it makes social and economic sense to invest in building accessible housing upfront, at the cost of around 0.8% of the total build, significantly less than the cost of retrofitting down the track.

“Yet, right now, every time we build a home without even basic access needs like level entry access, New Zealand is burdening future generations with huge social and economic costs.”

Mr. Matthews says the situation is acute for people with disabilities who now represent an estimated one million of the population according to the 2013 Disability Survey.

Large numbers are struggling to find adequate, affordable housing, limiting their ability to be involved in the community and find employment, in turn leading to lower incomes, access barriers and discrimination in the community.

“We need leadership from government to ensure that at a very minimum; all housing we build in the future incorporates into its design the potential to become fully accessible at some stage in its life cycle. If we fail to do so, future generations will continue to be restricted by a limited supply of housing which meets their needs.. This is an issue that affects everyone.”

Mr. Matthews says the first step would be to develop and mandate accessible housing standards similar to those already developed by Lifetime Design which are used to “Lifemark” building plans.

“We need architects, property developers, councils and all sector groups to be thinking about designing homes that fit the diverse needs of every person in the community, not just the able-bodied average.

“We are all vulnerable to developing impairments. Houses have to be able to meet an individual or families’ changing needs over time. It is far cheaper and easier to get access right from the beginning.”

End


© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Gordon Campbell: On The Ch-Ch-Changes At IRD

job cuts aren’t happening at the IRD, exactly. Instead, there’s apparently a ‘transformation’ in store, and jobs won’t be axed ; no, they will be ‘transformed’ before our eyes into… non-jobs, if you happen to be among the unlucky legion of 1,900 who are being lined up for transformation, which seems to work rather like a secular version of the Rapture.

Except that at IRD, not even your shoes will be left behind. More>>

 

Christchurch Mental Health: Hospital Too 'Awful' For Reviewers To Visit

Jonathan Coleman has to stop the stalling over a new building for mental health services in Christchurch to replace the quake damaged Princess Margaret Hospital, says Labour’s Health spokesperson David Clark... More>>

ALSO:

Greens Call For Govt Action: Children Sick Because Of NZ Housing

The Royal Australasian College of Physicians president-elect said today that children with preventable respiratory illnesses are being re-admitted to hospital because they're being sent back to cold, damp homes. More>>

ALSO:

Less Tax Cut, More Spending: Labour Launches Fiscal Plan

“Labour will invest $8 billion more in health, $4 billion more in education and $5 billion more for Kiwi families through Working for Families, Best Start and the Winter Energy Payment than the Budget 2017 projections for the forecast period.” More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On The Greens’ Room For Political Pragmatism

The Greens here are currently being criticized by the commentariat for not making the same kind of pragmatic choices that sunk the Democrats in Australia. More>>

Gordon Campbell: On Being Humane About Welfare, Child Support, And Tax

It made for an unusual Venn diagram, but Greens co-leader Metiria Turei and Finance Minister Steven Joyce were briefly sharing some common elements this week in the set that says – hey, don’t use the powers of the state in ways guaranteed to make the system you’re trying to defend worse, not better. More>>

ALSO:

 
 
 
 
 

LATEST HEADLINES

  • PARLIAMENT
  • POLITICS
  • REGIONAL
 
 

Featured InfoPages

Opening the Election