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


Disability Advocates to present stories at Parliament

Disability Advocates to present stories at Parliament in Support of an Accessibility Act

Accessibility campaigners will assemble at Parliament today in a public presentation of their personal stories to Minister for Disability Issues, Hon. Carmel Sepuloni.

Supporters of the Access Matters campaign will gather at parliament to present a booklet of stories of kiwis living with disabilities to Minister for Disability Issues Hon. Carmel Sepuloni. These stories are representative of a range of systemic barriers, which the one in four New Zealanders living with a disability face on a daily basis and highlight the imperative for accessibility legislation.

Access Matters campaigner and wheelchair user Juliana Carvalho, who will present the giant booklet of stories to the Minister, said “We are sharing our stories because we need accessibility legislation to implement minimum standards for access to everyday things others take for granted like transport, public services, websites, buildings, workplaces, and events.

“We know that changing the law to introduce an Accessibility Act can help remove so many of these barriers. We believe that together, our stories have the power to influence and create a truly accessible society that benefits everyone” said Ms Carvalho.

The campaign is coordinated by the Access Alliance, a group of 12 organisations in the disability sector who have come together to co-design with the government an Accessibility Act that would enable people with disabilities to more actively participate in society.

Chair of the Access Alliance and CEO of Alliance member Kāpo Māori Aotearoa, Chrissie Cowan, said “This presentation to the Minister for Disability Issues represents an important milestone and significant moment for the campaign.
“We have received a positive response from across parliament and we look forward to Hon. Minister Sepuloni updating us on the positive steps she has taken toward the introduction of an Accessibility Act.

“An Accessibility law can open the door so that everyone, disabled and non-disabled, benefits from the contributions of us all” Ms Cowan said.

Blind Foundation Policy and Advocacy Advisor and Access Matters Community Organiser Aine Kelly-Costello said, “Advocates have received overwhelming support during meetings with their local MPs up and down the country”.

“Canada has introduced A Bill to Ensure a Barrier-Free Canada recently, and many other countries have disability legislation too. We believe the time is right for the New Zealand government to introduce an Accessibility Act for New Zealanders” said Ms Kelly-Costello.

Research commissioned by the Blind Foundation for the Access alliance last year showed that the unemployment rate for people with a disability is 50 percent higher than the unemployment rate of the total workforce. There are 14,000 New Zealanders with disabilities who are ready and able to work yet struggle to gain employment.

Ms Cowan said, “Increased accessibility presents one of the largest opportunities for social and economic development for all New Zealanders”.

Event Details - Note change of location.

When: Tuesday September 4, from 11am to 12pm
Where: Bowen House, 70-84 Lambton Quay. This area is wheelchair-accessible. The event will be NZSL-interpreted.
Who: Access Alliance organisations and supporters from across the disability sector


© Scoop Media

Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Report On Consultation: Future Of Tomorrow's Schools

“The 1989 Tomorrow’s Schools reform introduced one of world’s most devolved schooling systems where each school operates largely in isolation of each other,” Chris Hipkins said.

“It empowered local communities and modernised an overly bureaucratic system but also led over time to uneven outcomes between schools.

“That has meant young people in some areas have missed out, and it’s been particularly challenging for Māori, Pacific peoples, and people with disabilities and additional learning needs. This is reflected in a 2018 Unicef report ranking New Zealand 33rd out of 38 developed countries for overall educational equality.” More>>


Gordon Campbell: On Why Sustainable NZ Isn’t Self-Sustaining

Asking whether this new, environmentally focussed party can make the 5% MMP threshold may be the wrong question, though. It's more achievable goal would be to knock the Greens below the 5% threshold ... More>>


Discussion Doc: 'Firearm Prohibition Orders' Power For Police

“In practice this may mean a person subject to a FPO could not live in or visit a property where firearms are held, even if the firearm owner is licensed. They could not be in a vehicle which is carrying a firearm. They could not go hunting even under supervision..." More>>


Police: Armed Response Team In Low Level Arrest, 'Preventative' Patrols

Police later said the stop was entirely appropriate, and resulted in the man being arrested without incident for "breaching conditions". More>>


Children's Commissioner Comment: Damning Oranga Tamariki Review Of Uplift Case

“The practice review released by Oranga Tamariki today is rigorous and robust. However, it describes a litany of failure at every step. It is a damning indictment of inadequate social work practice. Many social workers will welcome the light being shone on this case." More>>


Environment Commissioner: ‘Huge’ Data Gaps Undermine Stewardship

Environment Commissioner Simon Upton says ‘huge’ gaps in data and knowledge undermine our stewardship of the environment and is calling for concerted action to improve the system. More>>

  • Image via Out-Link - Focusing Aotearoa New Zealand’s environmental reporting system
  • Science Media Centre - Measuring changes to our environment – Expert Reaction
  • Local Govt NZ - LGNZ backs call for better environmental reporting
  • Environmental Defence Society - EDS endorses Commissioner for the Environment’s report
  • Federated Farmers - Environment data gaps no basis for current policy swings
  • Zero Carbon Bill Passes: "Historic Day For Landmark Climate Change Legislation"

    The landmark legislation which provides a framework to support New Zealanders to prepare for, and adapt to, the effects of climate change delivers on the Government’s Coalition and Confidence Supply agreements, and is a key part of the Government’s plan to tackle the long-term challenge of climate change. More>>


    Gordon Campbell: On National’s Anointing Of Christopher Luxon

    Clearly, the National Party hierarchy is very, very excited about Christopher Luxon... Such are the levels of anticipation that this week, Luxon was instantly forgiven for making up welfare policy, off the top of his head. More>>





    InfoPages News Channels