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Congratulations on the appointment of Dr Huhana Hickey

13 July 2018

CCS Disability Action congratulates Hon Philip Twyford on the appointment of Dr Huhana Hickey to the board of Housing New Zealand. Dr Hickey is in a unique position to offer her perspective, knowledge and understanding about the needs of disabled people in public housing.

“Accessible housing is a vital part of inclusive living for all disabled New Zealanders so having people in positions like this to champion their needs is a wonderful step forward. We fully support the Minister’s move towards ensuring a tenant focus for Housing New Zealand,” said David Matthews, Chief Executive of CCS Disability Action. “We established the Lifemark set of design standards and support services to help ensure more accessible housing is built in New Zealand back in 2006 and in the last few years we have seen the principals of universal design finally taking off.”

The Lifemark division of CCS Disability Action works with the Access Advisors & Educators and directly with developers, architects, home builders, social housing trusts, retirement operators, local and central government to provide professional services on accessibility and universal design. The team engages at the earliest stage of any new development in the built environment to ensure accessibility is included.

“The challenge for all new housing projects is to ensure accessibility does not stop at the ground floor. Too many new developments seem to think that disabled people don’t want to live or visit someone on the second or third floor, or that they don’t need to go to the bathroom, so they create new buildings without lifts or accessible bathrooms. It’s time to have universal design in all our public housing and I hope that Housing New Zealand can lead the way,” said David.

Universal design is promoted through the Lifemark standards and means that all people are included in the design, regardless of age or ability.

CCS Disability Action Background Information

CCS Disability Action is a community organisation that has been advocating for disabled people to be included in the community since 1935. We currently provide support to around 5,000 children, young people and adults through our 18 branches, which operate from Northland to Invercargill. Our support focuses on breaking down barriers to participation. We receive a mixture of government and private funding.

CCS Disability Action has a national network of access coordinators, who work with local government and transport operators to create a more inclusive society. We also run the Mobility Parking scheme and recently developed the Access Aware smartphone app to help stop mobility parking abuse. The MPPS scheme supports more than 140,000 people to more easily access their local towns and facilities. Our fully owned subsidiary, Lifetime Design Ltd, advocates for and provides universal design guidelines to improve the accessibility of New Zealand housing.


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