I hereby give notice that an ordinary meeting of the Disability Strategic Advisory Panel will be held on:

 

Date:                      

Time:

Meeting Room:

Venue:

 

Monday, 19 May 2014

11.00am

Boardroom, Ground Floor
Auckland Town Hall

301-305 Queen Street

Auckland

 

Disability Strategic Advisory Panel

 

OPEN AGENDA

 

 

 

MEMBERSHIP

 

Chairperson

Dr Huhana Hickey

 

Deputy Chairperson

Colleen Brown, MNZM, JP

 

Members

Sandra Budd

 

 

David Hughes

 

 

Tania Kingi

 

 

Clive Lansink

 

 

Don McKenzie, CNZM, OBE

 

 

Dr Terry O'Neill

 

 

Ezekiel Robson

 

 

Susan Sherrard

 

Liaison Councillor

Sharon Stewart, QSM

 

 

(Quorum 5 members)

 

 

 

Mike Giddey

Democracy Advisor

 

14 May 2014

 

Contact Telephone: (09) 307 7565

Email: mike.giddey@aucklandcouncil.govt.nz

Website: www.aucklandcouncil.govt.nz

 

 


 

 

TERMS OF REFERENCE

 

 

The Disability Strategic Advisory Panel (DSAP) was established by the Mayor in June 2011.

 

Its purpose is to provide strategic advice on pan-disability issues to the Mayor, governing body, local boards, Council Controlled Organisations (CCOs) and Council on:

 

·         the interests and preferences of persons with disabilities in Auckland in relation to regional strategies, policies, plans, and bylaws of the Council;

·         any other matters that the Panel considers to be of particular interest or concern to persons with disabilities in Auckland; and

·         processes and mechanisms for engaging with persons with disabilities in Auckland.

 

The DSAP has up to 11 members who are appointed on the basis of their individual expertise and experience in strategic thinking, governance and communication skills, knowledge of disability and accessibility issues and connections with disability organisations and networks across Auckland.

 

 


Disability Strategic Advisory Panel

19 May 2014

 

 

ITEM   TABLE OF CONTENTS                                                                                        PAGE

1          Apologies                                                                                                                        5

2          Declaration of Interest                                                                                                   5

3          Confirmation of Minutes                                                                                               5

4          Extraordinary Business                                                                                                5

5          Universal access to regional facilities                                                                         7

6          Universal access and design position paper                                                             9

7          Developing a Disability Policy                                                                                    11

8          Input to Local Boards                                                                                                  21

9          Inclusive Engagement                                                                                                 25

10        Significance and Engagement Policy                                                                        53

11        Chairperson's report                                                                                                   57

12        General Business                                                                                                        59 

13        Consideration of Extraordinary Items 

 

 


1          Apologies

 

At the close of the agenda no apologies had been received.

 

2          Declaration of Interest

 

Members are reminded of the need to be vigilant to stand aside from decision making when a conflict arises between their role as a member and any private or other external interest they might have.

 

3          Confirmation of Minutes

 

That the Disability Strategic Advisory Panel:

a)         confirm the ordinary minutes of its meeting, held on Monday, 28 April 2014 as a true and correct record.

 

 

4          Extraordinary Business

 

Section 46A(7) of the Local Government Official Information and Meetings Act 1987 (as amended) states:

 

“An item that is not on the agenda for a meeting may be dealt with at that meeting if-

 

(a)        The local authority by resolution so decides; and

 

(b)        The presiding member explains at the meeting, at a time when it is open to the public,-

 

(i)         The reason why the item is not on the agenda; and

 

(ii)        The reason why the discussion of the item cannot be delayed until a subsequent meeting.”

 

Section 46A(7A) of the Local Government Official Information and Meetings Act 1987 (as amended) states:

 

“Where an item is not on the agenda for a meeting,-

 

(a)        That item may be discussed at that meeting if-

 

(i)         That item is a minor matter relating to the general business of the local authority; and

 

(ii)        the presiding member explains at the beginning of the meeting, at a time when it is open to the public, that the item will be discussed at the meeting; but

 

(b)        no resolution, decision or recommendation may be made in respect of that item except to refer that item to a subsequent meeting of the local authority for further discussion.”

 

 

 


Disability Strategic Advisory Panel

19 May 2014

 

 

Item 5 - Universal access to regional facilities

 

File No.: CP2014/09458

 

  

 

 

Purpose

1.       To discuss universal access to regional facilities.

Executive summary

2.       Judy Lawley, Manager Local Board Engagement, Regional Facilities Auckland, wants to ensure that Regional Facilities Auckland keeps a good working relationship with the Disability Strategic Advisory Panel to ensure all regional facilities are fully accessible. Judy will give a brief presentation at the meeting to encourage discussion on universal access to regional facilities.

 

Recommendation/s

That the Disability Strategic Advisory Panel:

a)      thank Judy Lawley for her presentation on universal access to regional facilities.

 

 

Attachments

There are no attachments for this report.     

Signatories

Author

Kevin Wright - Manager: Transport Strategy – Lead Officer Support DSAP

Authoriser

Kevin Wright - Manager: Transport Strategy – Lead Officer Support DSAP

 


Disability Strategic Advisory Panel

19 May 2014

 

 

Item 6 - Universal access and design position paper

 

File No.: CP2014/09463

 

  

 

 

Purpose

1.       To seek DSAP feedback on the emerging priorities for the council in relation to access, inclusion and design.

Executive summary

2.       At its March meeting, DSAP received a report on the development of a position paper to identify key opportunities for council to lift its game in terms of universal access, design and inclusion.  A short position paper is being developed in consultation with this Panel and other key stakeholders and partners by a council group which includes representatives from Human Resources, the Built Environment team, Auckland Transport, Communications and Public Affairs, and Community Development, Arts and Culture.

3.       Current focus areas of the group are:

·        developing a position paper on current activity, opportunities and priorities for the council in relation to access, inclusion and design

·        exploring a potential one day event on universal access, design and inclusion hosted by Auckland Council in 2014 for local authorities nation-wide, on good practice, successes, what works and how to achieve step changes

·        learning from demonstration projects on how to promote universal access and design principles (current projects are the Wilsher Village housing development and the redevelopment of the Glen Eden town centre)

·        preparing for a national universal design conference in Auckland to be held in 2015, in partnership with Lifemark.

4.       In the workshop session at the March meeting, DSAP members provided initial feedback.  Members stressed the importance of the Auckland Design Manual and the ability of DSAP to influence its content. Members requested confirmation of whether the Urban Design Panel included disabled representation and asked if they could attend the workshop proposed at the next meeting.

5.       At this May meeting, Rachael Trotman, CDS Principal Advisor, will discuss the priorities for the council in relation to access, inclusion and design that are emerging.  Feedback from DSAP will be sought on what priorities DSAP considers to be most important.

 

Recommendation/s

That the Disability Strategic Advisory Panel:

a)      thank Rachael Trotman for her presentation on emerging priorities.

b)      provide feedback on these emerging priorities and the development of the Universal access and design position paper.

 

 

Attachments

There are no attachments for this report.    

Signatories

Author

Kevin Wright - Manager: Transport Strategy – Lead Officer Support DSAP

Authoriser

Kevin Wright - Manager: Transport Strategy – Lead Officer Support DSAP

 


Disability Strategic Advisory Panel

19 May 2014

 

 

Item 7 - Developing a Disability Policy

 

File No.: CP2014/09467

 

  

 

Purpose

1.       To finalise the proposal for Auckland Council to develop a Disability Policy.

Executive summary

2.       At previous DSAP meetings there was discussion about the need for Auckland Council to develop a Disability Policy.  Clive Lansink’s draft proposal was discussed and feedback was provided at the previous meeting.  Clive has incorporated this feedback in the attached proposal for DSAP to approve (Attachment A). 

3.       At the previous meeting, DSAP considered that once finalised a request would be made directly to the Governing Body for the council to develop a Disability Policy.

 

Recommendation/s

That the Disability Strategic Advisory Panel:

a)      approve the proposal for Auckland Council to develop a Disability Policy.

b)      request the Governing Body to develop a Disability Policy as outlined in the proposal.

 

 

Attachments

No.

Title

Page

aView

Disability Policy Proposal

13

     

Signatories

Author

Kevin Wright - Manager: Transport Strategy – Lead Officer Support DSAP

Authoriser

Kevin Wright - Manager: Transport Strategy – Lead Officer Support DSAP

 


Disability Strategic Advisory Panel

19 May 2014

 

 

A Comprehensive Disability Strategy for Auckland

 

Submission By the Disability Strategic Advisory Panel (DSAP)

 

June 2014

 

Recommendation

 

1  That the Disability Strategy Advisory Panel recommends to the Governing Body that Council works with DSAP, the disabled people of Auckland and other interested parties to develop a comprehensive strategy to ensure people with disabilities are fully included in all Council activities and services.

 

Background

 

the Disability Strategy Advisory Panel was initially established in 2010. Its purpose is to provide strategic advice on pan-disability issues to the Mayor, governing body, local boards, Council Controlled Organisations (CCOs) and Council on:

 

•  the interests and preferences of persons with disabilities in Auckland in relation to    regional strategies, policies, plans, and bylaws of the Council;

•  any other matters that the Panel considers to be of particular interest or concern to persons with disabilities in Auckland; and

•  processes and mechanisms for engaging with persons with disabilities in Auckland.

 

We support Auckland's aspiration to be the world's most liveable city. A liveable city is one that is inclusive of all citizens, values participation, encourages social engagement and enables Barrier Free movement for everyone. Since its inception, the DSAP has had input into numerous plans, strategies and policies being developed for Auckland. We acknowledge that some progress is indeed being made in some areas towards achieving this vision for people with disabilities. This paper builds on our earlier submissions, and calls for a more strategic approach to be adopted. Auckland must act decisively if it is to really become more liveable for people with disabilities.

 

It is no longer appropriate to think of people with disabilities as being a distinct and separate sector within the general public. People with disabilities can be found throughout the entire community. We are tax payers, rate payers, customers, citizens, workers, residents, students at all levels of education, visitors, tourists, and so on. We aspire to participate fully in the community. We seek employment and educational opportunities like everyone else. We contribute like everyone else to the economic life of the city. While most disabled people have permanent disabilities, anyone at any time, and without warning, may have to face the reality of having a disability, even if temporarily. Even a parent with a pram or a wheeling suitcase is likely to use a ramp, if one is at hand, rather than the stairs.

 

This is why the underlying focus must be on universal (inclusive) access to Council's activities, programmes and services. We encourage Council to embrace the principles of inclusion, including:

•  Put people at the heart of the design and development process;

•  Acknowledge diversity and difference;

•  Offer choice where a single design solution cannot accommodate all users;

•  Provide for flexibility and ease of use;

•  Provide buildings and environments that are convenient and enjoyable to use for everyone;

•  Ensure necessary information is readily available to all;

•  Use requires low physical effort.

 

Auckland's liveability will, to an extent, also depend upon Council fronting advocacy to central Government for the elimination of legislative barriers to full inclusion, participation and integration. (E.G. need for an objective, ideologically-free Disability access review; independent secret voting at local body elections; a whole of Council culture of avoiding exclusion).

 

Ideally, there should be no need for a strategy focusing specifically on people with disabilities. All the major strategies, plans and policies that guide how Auckland develops and operates should address our needs simply because we are members of the whole public community Auckland serves.

 

However we have reached the view that a clear strategy is needed to encourage Auckland to more directly accommodate the needs of people with disabilities. This strategy must focus Auckland's attention on altering certain policies and practices over time that tend to exclude rather than include us. Some of these "sticking points" can be found in existing policies that have not as yet been reviewed by the DSAP. Other sticking points arise from current operational practices that, albeit unintentionally, contribute to our exclusion. We call on Auckland to commit to working with the disabled community to develop a comprehensive strategy to remove the barriers that currently prevent us from being fully included in this most vibrant city.

 

Auckland has a great opportunity to show leadership and set a new high standard in how cities can be disability friendly even within today's legislation and within current resources. We urge Council members, management and staff to see meeting the needs of people with disabilities as an integral part of delivering services to the public in general. No longer should the Council's ability to meet our needs be dependent on and perhaps limited to special allocations of disability-related funding.

 

Maori, Pacific and Disability

 

Over the last decade the disability movement has recognised that specific issues exist for Maori and Pacific peoples regarding hauatanga or disability and its relationship to wellbeing. The role of family, self and community; obligations, values, access and inclusion as well as the space to define has largely been determined by western philosophy, practice and populations. While all disabled experience similar struggle, those of Maori and Pacific are not only distinctive but are particularly evident when reviewing national and regional deprivation statistics across all socio-economic indices.

 

In response, the formation of Te Roopu Waiora Trust, Tamaki Ngati Kapo, Mana Tangata Turi, Waaka Tuuru and Whanau Hinengaro as autonomous groups operating as a unified community has occurred. This presence and communal approach founded on cultural principles and the experience of disability is unique to Auckland.

 

More must be done by authorities and decision makers to recognise these communities, their struggle and the solutions they bring forth to aid the city's vision. DSAP supports strategies to ensure Maori and Pacific disabled, their families and communities can contribute and claim an active role in defining the way forward for an inclusive Auckland.

 

Aspirational Statements

 

The following statements illustrate what we aspire to as people with disabilities living in a modern society.

•  people with disabilities have the right to carry out all our everyday transactions with the same equity and dignity as everyone else.

•  People with disabilities live throughout the community and we should be able to easily find affordable and accessible housing in all neighbourhoods.

•  People with disabilities should have access to the same information and communications from Council as everyone else.

•  People with disabilities need to be able to move freely and easily throughout the urban environment like everyone else.

•  People with disabilities can be found succeeding at all levels of education.

•  People with disabilities have the same aspirations as everyone else to be fully and productively employed.

•  People with disabilities should be able to participate fully in the social life of the city.

•  People with disabilities like to go to concerts, museums, the theatre and to other artistic, entertainment, recreation and sport events like everyone else.

•  People with disabilities can be found actively participating in and contributing to Auckland's local and neighbourhood communities.

 

Developing a Comprehensive Disability Strategy

 

Auckland must now adopt a committed and strategic approach to meeting our needs if we as people with disabilities are to achieve our aspirations. The strategy we envisage should be well researched and considered, and achievable within agreed resources and with agreed milestones and time frames. The Chief Executive should be directly responsible for overseeing the implementation of the strategy.

 

Currently DSAP does not have the resources to develop the strategy. However with appropriate resources to carry out consultation and consider information received, we anticipate a comprehensive strategy could be developed and ready for formal adoption within 12 months.

 

The strategy must at least address the following points which we have so far identified as crucial if Auckland is to really deliver on its aspiration of being a truly liveable city for everyone including people with disabilities.

 

Accessible Environment

 

It is crucial that Auckland's physical environment is accessible to people with disabilities, if we are to achieve our aspirations to be fully included in city life. We need to be able to move readily and freely throughout the city and right throughout public buildings.

 

Unfortunately at this stage, relevant legislation such as the Resource Management Act 1991, the Building Act 2004, New Zealand Standard 4121 and associated regulations do not currently reflect all the aspirations of people with disabilities. But even under the current legislation, there are too many instances of new or recently refurbished buildings that in our view do not comply with accessibility requirements. Until this legislation can be fully reviewed and updated, we would urge Council staff to take a liberal and holistic view of the legislation when issuing such documents as resource and building consents.

 

Auckland must review all relevant policies that impact on the physical environment to ensure the needs of people with disabilities are fully accounted for. For example, policies that determine which intersections should be controlled by traffic lights seem to depend largely on an assessment of vehicle traffic, with apparently little regard to the needs of the neighbourhood and of pedestrians. An example of such policies at work would appear to be the Onehunga shopping area, which in recent years has changed from being a pedestrian only mall to now being a through-way for traffic with roundabouts rather than controlled intersections. Despite the development of a new railway station and transport hub in the area, which ought to encourage patronage from people using public transport, the result is a shopping area that is particularly disability unfriendly and which even non-disabled people find difficult to negotiate. Surely this is an example of Auckland developing in the wrong direction.

 

At the same time, staff responsible for maintenance of footpaths, parks, reserves and Council buildings etc. must become fully aware of the needs of people with disabilities and do what they can within current resources to ensure the general urban environment is disability friendly. Areas of Auckland are notorious for uneven and badly maintained footpaths and overhanging trees that are hazardous not just to people with disabilities but to all pedestrians.

 

Urban Design

 

People with disabilities live throughout the community and we should be able to easily find affordable and accessible housing in all neighbourhoods. We no longer live in institutions. There is a need for adequate stocks of accessible housing.

 

A liveable and accessible city will emerge only if the Unitary Plan backs planners and consents officers with regulatory controls and incentives to match Council's aspirations for inclusion. Everyone will benefit. An up-front commitment by Council to access with dignity for people of all ages and abilities is needed in the final Unitary Plan. The long-term liveability of Auckland depends on having the courage to commit to barrier-free design and project delivery.

 

We believe that even within today's legislation, Council can work proactively with major developers to ensure all new subdivisions have at least a proportion of houses or apartments that are accessible and disability friendly, or which can be easily made so. With a steadily ageing population, it should be understood that designing the urban environment so it meets our needs ultimately benefits everyone.

 

Accessible Information and Communications

 

People with disabilities should have access to the same information and communications as everyone else. Nowadays it can be safely said that practically all information published by the Council and its CCOs, and almost all items of personal correspondence, originate on a computer. People with various disabilities can readily access computerised information through a variety of end user equipment, provided that information is accessible.

 

We note with pleasure the efforts Council is already making in this respect. Council has developed and is continuing to improve its operational guidelines for the production of accessible documents in various formats. We noted with appreciation that Council went to considerable effort to ensure people with disabilities would be able to access the draft Unitary Plan in a variety of ways. Our Auckland is another good example of Council publishing information in multiple formats, including making it available on the Blind Foundation's Telephone Information Service.

 

But there are many examples of communications which are generally inaccessible to many people with disabilities, including rates bills, water bills and even registering a dog. Local information is particularly inaccessible, such as knowing when rubbish collections will take place in an area or being advised of local disruptions to normal services.

 

Auckland must ensure that well established standards and principles are followed through all stages of the information production process, that maximise accessibility of information to people using a variety of equipment. Auckland must recognise that its communications with the public and individuals covers the whole spectrum from carrying out everyday personal transactions such as paying rates and other charges to participating in the democratic process. Therefore Auckland and Council Controlled Organisations must follow principles of accessibility with respect to all aspects of its websites, documents, reports, brochures, bills, personal correspondence, and other forms of Council communications. Accessibility of information need not be expensive if the right decisions are made at all steps throughout the information production process, and often it is far more expensive to retrospectively make information accessible if correct decisions were not made early in the process.

 

In practical terms, Council must give thought to how it can deliver its public information through multiple channels and formats, including electronic accessible formats, and in plain language and sign language.

 

Council must also ensure the front line call centre staff are well versed with the kinds of issues likely to be raised by people with disabilities, so these can be handled most effectively when they arise.

 

Accessible and Effective Public Transport

 

If people with disabilities are to live, work, learn, do our everyday business and recreate in a modern city such as Auckland, then we need to be able to move freely and easily throughout the urban environment like everyone else. Many people with disabilities are unable to drive and are fully reliant on public transport.

 

We acknowledge real efforts are being made to address the transport needs of people with disabilities. But it is apparent from the proceedings of Auckland Transport's Transport Accessibility and Advisory Group, and from our own lived experience, that there are many on-going difficulties that are taking some time to overcome that seriously detract from people with disabilities being able to easily move throughout the area.

 

Auckland Council must direct Auckland Transport to develop its own comprehensive plan complete with milestones and time frames, to show how and when it will make public transport fully accessible to people with disabilities. Auckland must ensure the needs of people with disabilities are factored into all levels of planning and implementation of transport services. As vehicles are replaced and upgraded, Auckland Transport should ensure they are physically accessible and equipped with signs and other equipment so people with disabilities can make full use of them with full independence and dignity in the same way as anyone else. This includes knowing which is the right vehicle to use, getting on and off, paying the fare, finding a suitable seat and knowing when to get off. Auckland Transport must also ensure physical facilities such as terminals and bus stops and information such as timetabling are accessible to people with disabilities. Auckland must also remain committed to an effective Total Mobility taxi scheme to provide other transport options for people with disabilities

 

Inclusive Events and Access to Arts and Culture

 

People with disabilities want to participate fully in the social life of the city. We like to go to concerts, museums, the theatre, and to other artistic, entertainment, recreation and sport events like everyone else. We acknowledge Council's commitment to a comprehensive events policy, and we hope this will lead to people with disabilities participating more in such events, not just as members of the public but also as artistic performers.

 

Council staff responsible for public events or granting permits must take all reasonable steps to ensure events cater for the needs of people with disabilities. As a matter of course, when allocating funding and/or issuing permits for events, Council staff must give due consideration to aspects such as accessible information and publicity, sign language, guides and helpers, and accessible portaloos.

 

Auckland must ensure organisations that receive Council funding or which use Council owned venues will take all reasonable steps to include people with disabilities in their activities. Strategies to achieve this may include providing sign language and audio description on certain sittings, making ushers available who can give extra help, and targeted advertising. We note with pleasure that The Edge, which manages some public venues for the Council, is developing such strategies.

 

Auckland must also ensure its venues are accessible to people with disabilities. Certainly many such venues are accessible. The DSAP has noted however that some venues such as swimming facilities tend not to be accessible or are not properly equipped for people with disabilities. Venues such as concert halls, meeting rooms and recreational facilities are there for public use, and over time Auckland must make every effort to ensure all such facilities are accessible to people with disabilities so we can have the same opportunity to use them as everyone else.

 

Local Boards

 

People with disabilities can be found actively participating in and contributing to Auckland's local and neighbourhood communities. Council must ensure Local Boards have clear objectives and obligations in their plans designed to ensure local community environments are fully accessible and inclusive and aligned to DSAP principles. We note with pleasure the recent work done to develop an accessibility plan for the Waitemata Local Board and hope that this will serve as a good example for other areas.

 

Management and Reporting

 

A comprehensive disability strategy will have little practical effect unless there is clear reporting to the governing body and to the general public on how Auckland is implementing the strategy and progressing towards being fully inclusive.

 

Auckland must build into the Performance agreements for the Chief Executive, key management staff and CCOs, an obligation to report on the strategies and procedures that are implemented to ensure the needs of people with disabilities are met.

 

Valuing the Voice of People with Disability

 

A comprehensive disability strategy cannot be developed without the voice of people with disabilities. Auckland must actively involve the entire disabled community. This involves gaining a good understanding of the various groups and organisations that make up the disability community, how they differ and how they should be included in consultation. The DSAP can help ensure consultation with the disability community is effective and fully representative of our diverse needs.

 


Disability Strategic Advisory Panel

19 May 2014

 

 

Item 8 - Input to Local Boards

 

File No.: CP2014/09468

 

  

 

Purpose

1.       To consider a standard input from DSAP to Local Boards.

Executive summary

2.       At the previous meeting, DSAP considered advice provided by Colleen Brown and Ezekiel Robson to the Local Board Engagement Advisor in relation to the needs of the elderly and people with disabilities in Manurewa and Papakura Local Board areas. 

3.       DSAP requested that a standard input to Local Boards be prepared.  Colleen Brown and Ezekiel Robson have prepared the attached for DSAP’s consideration (Attachment A).

4.       It was suggested that Local Board Advisors be requested to attend the May meeting of DSAP when considering input from DSAP to Local Boards.

 

Recommendation/s

That the Disability Strategic Advisory Panel:

a)      approve the proposed standard input to Local Boards.

 

 

Attachments

No.

Title

Page

aView

Needs of the elderly and people with disabilities in Local Board areas

23

     

Signatories

Author

Kevin Wright - Manager: Transport Strategy – Lead Officer Support DSAP

Authoriser

Kevin Wright - Manager: Transport Strategy – Lead Officer Support DSAP

 


Disability Strategic Advisory Panel

19 May 2014

 

 

To: All Local Boards in the Auckland Region

Re : Needs of the elderly and people with disabilities in Local Board areas

 

The Auckland Council’s Disability Strategic Advisory Panel has lived experiences of disability, living in the Auckland region, and we would like to make the following observations and recommendations. 

 

First of all, congratulations for recognising the varying and diverse needs that exist in our community, by ensuring there is a focus on input by older people, and those with disabilities. 

 

We trust that all pertinent information about any consultation process, the means to submit feedback, and any draft plans themselves are available in a range of accessible formats, to maximise participation.  This means electronic documents compatible with screen reading software, Easy Read or plain language summaries, and methods of communicating with NZ Sign Language. 

 

People with disabilities should have ready access to the same information and communications from Auckland Council as everyone else, and at the same time as everyone else.  We would recommend a continuing commitment on the part of the Local Boards to inclusive practice around accessible information for all public documents, notices and consultation activities. 

 

We believe that the systemic and practical approach to accessibility matters and concerns as outlined in the Waitemata Local Board Plan for 2014 (see below) is a good pathway to follow. 

 

Accessible Auckland – Waitemata Local Board 2014

We will support and develop an environment that is accessible for people of all abilities, ages and cultures to enjoy and participate in. Twenty per cent of the population have a differing ability, while 80 per cent will experience periods in which they are disabled. This may be as a part of growing older or may be temporarily reduced mobility due to injury or as a parent with a child in a pushchair. We will support the aims of the Be. Institute to enable a more accessible society with a focus on the built environment, information access, inclusion of disabled people in employment and the community, and changing attitudes and behaviours. The Waitemata Local Board is committed to becoming an accessible board and area. We will act as an advocate and champion for the rest of Auckland to become more accessible.

 

It is relatively easy to highlight individual people’s needs about a particular access issue or concern.  A Local Board can then potentially ‘fix’ that one issue or concern or indeed a number of them, without addressing the systemic factors which re-enforce barriers for those with on-going access needs in a community. 

 

The Disability Strategic Advisory Panel’s desire is not to propose special provisions or budgets to address ‘disability needs’, but to highlight the necessity to factor accessibility into all ‘mainstream’ activities.  It is no longer appropriate to think of people with disabilities as being a distinct and separate sector within the general public.  Children, young people and adults with disabilities can be found throughout the entire community as residents, ratepayers, customers, students at all levels of education, tourists etc.  People with disabilities aspire to participate fully in social, cultural, sporting, employment and educational opportunities like everyone else. 

 

A significant barrier to participation is lack of access to buildings that all people can enter, use and leave with dignity.  Only comprehensive and systemic auditing will ensure an accessible journey to and unencumbered use of civic amenities such as libraries, swimming pools, sports grounds and community facilities by people with disabilities as both participants and spectators. 

 

There are many areas throughout Auckland which deny or limit access to people with disabilities and the elderly.  For example, historical poor planning means pedestrian access can be fraught with danger for people using wheelchairs or a walking stick; there are limited opportunities for hearing impaired people to cross main arterial routes safely with the assistance of vibrating traffic/crossing phase signals; there are limited bus stops fitted with sound prompts for bus arrival times for vision impaired residents, playgrounds may not be connected to the footpath for easy access, or provide nearby seating for disabled parents supervising their children, or for those prone to fatigue; information in libraries is generally targeted to a visual audience with few technical opportunities for vision impaired people, or those with an intellectual disability. 

 

In light of Special Housing Areas planned throughout the region, it is important to note that people with disabilities live throughout the community in a variety of circumstances, including being parents of children, or living with extended family members.  People with disabilities should be able to find affordable and accessible housing easily in all neighbourhoods, and this housing should be capable of adaptation as necessary across the life span of the home-owners.  The pre-dominant design of Special Housing Area accommodation should not impose unusual arrangements on families, i.e. mostly consisting of multi-level homes which depending on layout of bedrooms and bathrooms either eliminates such housing as an option, or restricts the disabled person to either the upper or lower levels, potentially separating them from their family members for many day-to-day tasks. 

 

The Waitemata Local Board is recommending in its local plan to commit $50,000 annually to make sure their vision is realised.

 

Become an accessible local board and area     Lead and facilitate      $50,000      Ongoing (page25)

 

We would recommend that Local Boards follow a similar vision to Waitemata Local Board in partnership with the Be. Institute to realise such a plan in a staged incremental manner, and/or engage and meaningfully collaborate with people with disabilities, their representative organisations and supporters, and the Disability Strategic Advisory Panel, for a more inclusive, accessible region. 

 

 

Dr Huhana Hickey

Chair - Disability Strategic Advisory Panel

May 2014


Disability Strategic Advisory Panel

19 May 2014

 

 

Item 9 - Inclusive Engagement

 

File No.: CP2014/09746

 

  

 

 

Purpose

1.       To seek the Panel’s input to the development of Inclusive Engagement guidelines.

 

Executive summary

2.       Auckland Council is developing Inclusive Engagement guidelines to inform the ways in which council staff engages with the public. Katie Watson, Consultation and Engagement Advisor, and Paul Brown from council’s Community Development and Safety Unit, are seeking feedback on the draft inclusive engagement guidelines and draft accessible events checklist.

3.       Katie and Paul will also provide an update on how DSAP’s advice in March on principles of inclusive engagement and accessibility is being addressed within council.

 

 

Recommendation/s

That the Disability Strategic Advisory Panel:

a)      receive the Inclusive Engagement report.

b)      receive and provide feedback on the following draft documents:

i)        Inclusive Engagement - an events guide for Auckland Council

ii)       Checklist for an accessible and inclusive event

 

 

Attachments

No.

Title

Page

aView

Inclusive Engagement - an events guide for Auckland Council

27

bView

Checklist for an accessible and inclusive event

41

     

Signatories

Author

Katie Wilson – Consultation and Engagement Advisor

Authoriser

Kevin Wright - Manager: Transport Strategy – Lead Officer Support DSAP

 



Disability Strategic Advisory Panel

19 May 2014

 

 

Inclusive Engagement – an events guide for Auckland Council

Contents:

Introduction

Clarity about the purpose and nature of the event

Accessible venue and facilities

Sign language interpreters

Event design

Accessible pre-event information and event booking

Accessible written materials and powerpoint presentations

On the day – inclusive chairing, facilitation and activities

Accessible follow up

 

Introduction

This document has been written to assist Auckland Council in making community engagement events inclusive to all participants, no matter their access needs. We acknowledge the input from Auckland Disability Law in the production of this guide.

 

Why?

UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (UNCRPD) requires “that persons with disabilities should have the opportunity to be actively involved in decision-making processes about policies and programmes, including those directly concerning them” (section ‘o’ of the preamble). State parties have a responsibility to facilitate and promote inclusive engagement, so it is important that people coordinating engagement events have the information they need to make these as inclusive as possible.  

 

Actively involving disabled people in the policy-making process means you can help to create a more accessible and inclusive society. Disabled people make up approximately one in five of the population and have a right to participate in making decisions that impact on our lives. You shouldn’t just seek to engage with disabled people on issues deemed to be only of interest to disabled people.  Disabled people also belong to the local community, are members of ethnic groups, are women or young people or old people, have an interest in the development of housing, transport, leisure facilities; in fact disabled people are part of any community you might want to engage with. 

 

What does this guide cover?

This guide deals specifically with short public consultation events, up to a maximum of about four or five hours. It looks at planning and designing your event, some practical issues of access, communication and the provision of information. However, its main focus is on how to make the process of engagement inclusive so that everyone who comes can participate.

 

This resource is not intended to be an exhaustive guide on accessible events.  There is lots of guidance available on accessibility, for example guides about physical access or booking sign language interpreters. Links to some examples can be found at the end of this resource. 

 

Whilst some of the information might be useful for organising longer conferences or hui, seminars and other such events, the specific focus of this guidance has meant that we have not dealt with issues such as accommodation, conference dinners or outings which might be features of longer events.

 

 

Planning for inclusion

There isn’t a single way of doing things that will make your event accessible to everyone – that’s why this guide is about planning your event with inclusion in mind and helping you to understand that flexibility and thinking ahead about the kind of people who might come along is good practice. 

 

Disabled people are likely to come to your event whether you expect them to be there or not. When the information you have provided or the way you run a session is inaccessible to blind or Deaf people, or your venue is not wheelchair accessible, for example, it can be an embarrassing and frustrating waste of time for everyone. The issue is not whether someone can see, hear, or walk, but whether inclusion and accessability has been incorporated into the planning process. It should be remembered that inclusive planning is usually beneficial to all participants, disabled or not. 

 

With some straightforward planning, you can not only make your event more meaningful and accessible for everyone, but you can make sure that disabled people are able to engage along with everyone else. With some thought about how you describe and publicise your event, you can also make it more likely that disabled people will want to come along. 

 

This resource does not focus on people’s individual impairments. Instead, it guides you through the stages of planning an event, encouraging you to think about inclusion at each step. The ultimate goal is that you incorporate this planning into all of your future events, not just those aimed at disabled people. 

 

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Clarity about the purpose and nature of the event

For any public engagement, the kind of information you hope to obtain from the participants and what relationship you plan to have with them will determine the nature of the entire event. This includes consideration of: how many and which groups of people you expect to come; how you will invite them and how you will describe the event in the publicity; where the event will be held; how long the event will be; what follow up will flow from the initial engagement. These are basic planning issues relating to engaging any community, however, it should be noted that failure to think about inclusion at this stage often leads to disabled people being excluded. Poorly planned events irritate everyone, but disabled people often leave feeling particularly marginalised and frustrated that their views weren’t considered. If you begin this stage of planning by assuming and hoping that disabled people will come along and participate, then the rest of the process will be much more straightforward. 

 

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Accessible venue and facilities

While it is of course important to use the most accessible venues available, it is equally important to tell potential participants about the accessibility of the venue, facilities and human support available. Furthermore, it is worth contacting participants, after looking at the information on their booking forms, to discuss how to best meet their access requirements. Never make claims about accessibility that you can’t substantiate – nothing will cause more anger and upset than claims that an event is accessible when clearly it is not. Ideally the venue should have been audited by Access consultants, but as a minimum it should be visited. 

 

You may also want to consider how people travel to your event - the cost and ease of travel can sometimes be a barrier to people attending. You may want to consider the possibility of giving participants petrol vouchers or providing accessible transport.

 

Venue

Check: 

·    The venue is accessible to wheelchair users including the external approach and parking areas

·    That there is adequate parking and sufficient mobility parking

·    The distance from the parking spaces to the venue

·    That the venue will allow you to put up accessible signage - in large print and contrasting colours

·    That all rooms to be used have movable furniture

·    That all rooms to be used will be laid out in such a way as to provide circulation space for wheelchair users

·    That all rooms to be used will enable all participants to sit together

·    That areas used for break out discussions, stalls, and dining areas are easily accessible (avoid narrow corridors or dining rooms with fixed chairs)

·    That there are adequate accessible toilets

 

Sound Systems

Check:

·    The volume and clarity of the sound system

·    That loop or infra red systems are available and in working order

·    That radio or infra red systems used for translation do not interfere with those used by hearing-aid users (ensure liaison between the providers of both)

·    That there are working roving microphones and people to take them to participants called to speak

·    That microphone stands or lapel microphones are  also available for participants or speakers making longer contributions

Lighting

·    Avoid venues with bare strip lighting or flickering fluorescent tubes

·    Prevent glare by closing blinds and curtains

·    If lights are require to be dimmed for showing videos or slides ensure that both the speaker and the sign language interpreters are well spot lit

·    When lights are dimmed ensure there is good light to read by

 

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Sign language interpreters

For Deaf people to participate, you will need to make sure you have booked sign language interpreters – there is a list of preferred suppliers at the back of this guide. Due to short supply, you will need to book interpreters as soon as you have a date in mind. Booking them early will be the only way of guaranteeing their availability, and most will be happy to negotiate a cancellation date if they are not required. You should notify potential participants in the publicity material that interpreters have been booked, and ask them to let you know by a given date if they require this service.

 

When booking interpreters, it is useful to give information about the nature and length of the event. You will almost certainly need two interpreters, and where you plan to have breakout sessions or for longer events, you may need to book more interpreters to ensure that Deaf people can participate in different groups or during lunch and tea breaks or informal sessions. You should also make sure that you send copies of the agenda, speeches and powerpoint slides in advance of the event to enable interpreters to prepare the material.  

 

Check:

·    Sign Language Interpreters are available on your chosen date and have been booked

·    You know the final cut off date for cancelling if interpreters are not required

·    Deaf people know to contact you to let you know if they will need interpreters

·    Presenters send you material in advance and this is passed on to the interpreters in good time

·    You build in sufficient time in your programme to allow for interpreter breaks, and you ensure the event doesn’t overrun the time booked for interpreters

 

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Event Design

Designing your event in a way that maximises the involvement of disabled people will ensure that everyone gets the most out of the event. It is often the case that disabled people feel that they are “consulted” but not really listened to. Build in plenty of time for your event to so that disabled people feel that their views count.

 

Check:

·    That the event starts late and ends early enough for people to be able to get there. This is of particular importance in areas with limited access to mobility taxis. 

·    There are sufficient breaks and that the lunch break is long enough, including negotiating with the sign language Interpreters regarding their required breaks

·    Sign Language Interpreters and other assistance is available during breaks, meals and informal networking activities

·    There is sufficient time for some communication taking longer

·    Time is built in for participants to get to breakout sessions on time

·    All participants can participate in all activities or that reasonable accommodations can be made to chosen activities to ensure the inclusion of all

·    Staff involved with all aspects of the event are briefed on disability equality/awareness

 

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Accessible pre-event information and event booking

In order to encourage disabled people to come along to your event you will need to ensure that your pre-event and promotional material is accessible and welcoming to disabled people. Make sure that you make the booking process helpful and accessible and inform potential participants about the venue accessibility, human support available and facilities. 

 

Publicity:

·    The event invitation should be in accessible formats, large enough fonts with good contrast. Discuss this with your Communications Advisor or consult the Auckland Council Accessible Communication and Information guidelines.

·    The invitation includes access information including letting people know that the venue is accessible, sign language interpreters have been booked, and who people should contact for more information on access requirements. Make sure you provide both email address and phone number so people can contact you in the way that makes most sense for them.

·    The event is publicised around networks that include disabled people and their organisations. You can forward your invite to Disability Advisor Martine Abel within CDAC to publish through their networks. Some people do not use email to access information, so networks and organisations will help get the word out through their own channels.

·    Websites used to promote the event should be accessible, which means complying with Government Web Standards 2.0 as a minimum. If in doubt, ask your Communications Advisor.

 

Event Booking

Disabled people may be reluctant to attend events if they are unsure whether there will be good access on the day. You should encourage people to contact you if they want to check access arrangements, and the people dealing with these enquiries should provide clear information, be ready to offer additional accommodations, and keep a proper record of and follow up any accommodations agreed. It is important that booking forms provide information on the accessibility of the venue including facilities and parking, for example.

 

Check:

·    Booking forms should be in accessible formats

·    Booking forms should state what human support is available including Sign Language Interpreters, guides etc

·    Alternative ways of booking should be available e.g. online, mail, email, phone, fax, text. 

·    A telephone number and email address should be provided in order that potential participants can contact organisers to discuss access issues.

·    The booking form should ask for the following information:

o preferred format for materials e.g. email, disc, audio, braille, large print, easy read etc

o If the person requires a Sign Language Interpreter

o If the person will be bringing a support worker or facilitator (support workers and facilitators should be exempt from any attendance payments)

o If the person will be bringing an Assistance dog

o Any dietary requirements

o Any other access requirements (provide a space for these to be included)

o Contact details so you can discuss any access requests

·    The booking form should state a date by which people need to say they require an Interpreter. 

 

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Accessible written materials, powerpoint presentations, signage

In order to include disabled people all material relating to all aspects of your event requires to be made accessible and in plain language. This does not mean for example getting all material transcribed into braille just in case a braille reader is attending. It means reminding all presenters to make their standard materials as accessible as possible, and then asking participants in advance about their preferred reading formats and trying where possible to meet specific requests. 

 

Emailing material to all participants before the event can be a useful and generally effective way of maximising the accessibility of written materials. Please be aware that some people using screenreading technology will not be able to access PDFs, so it is best to provide information in html or word versions.

 

However, remember that not everyone will have access to email, and if there is information you plan to give out on the day for people to read, or if you need people to follow written text during the event, you will need to have sufficient copies in alternative formats for all participants. Remember that all written information will need to be sent to sign language interpreters in advance.

 

The following are some basic points to follow regarding written material. If you would like further detail on accessible communication please refer to the Auckland Council Accessible Communication and Information guidelines.

 

Written Material

·    Remind presenters of the need to use plain language and follow good practice guidelines on accessibility when preparing any materials for the event, such as using sans serif fonts, and providing materials in 14pt print if possible, but never smaller that 12pt. 

·    Ensure that speakers, workshop facilitators and presenters provide copies of all material to be used in advance of the event so you have time to check them for accessibility, have them converted into alternative formats if required, and can send them to participants and sign language interpreters in advance. 

·    Email material to participants in advance of the event, remembering to provide html and word versions of any PDF documents.

·    Make sure you leave plenty of time to have materials converted into accessible formats, particularly braille and easy read versions. 

 

Presentations using powerpoint slides

When it is used well PowerPoint can be a creative communication medium. When used badly, it becomes a significant barrier to disabled peoples’ participation. We recommend that PowerPoint presentations try to conform to the following general guidelines:

 

Slide backgrounds

·    Backgrounds should be in pastel colours.

·    When using slides that are predominantly text based, background colour should be in a solid block, not textured or graduated

·    Text should never be overlaid across images.

 

Text:

·    text should be in a sans serif font

·    minimal use of capitalisation and underlining

·    recommended sizes: headings 36 point in bold, subheadings 28 point in bold, text at least 24 point (not bold)

·    There should be clear line spacing

·    Avoid large blocks of text.

·    Avoid italics wherever possible.

·    Use bullet points consistently and have no more than four per slide, wherever possible.

 

Coloured text on coloured backgrounds

·    The text colour should contrast clearly with the slide background.

·    Avoid red, dark grey, brown, green or purple for text and backgrounds and don’t use these colours next to each other as they do not provide enough contrast.

 

Animation

·    Animation should be used sparingly to maximise impact and minimise confusion.

 

Slide numbering

·    All slides should be numbered in both the presentation and if they are to be given as handouts.

 

Images

·    These should be clear and uncluttered.

·    Text should never be overlaid across images.

·    Complex images, such as flow charts etc, should be provided in hard copy and accessible formats with a text descriptor.

·    Images should be described by the speaker during the presentation to ensure any information conveyed by the image is also conveyed to those who are not able to see the image. This includes any diagrams or maps that may be within the presentation.

 

Use of multi media clips

·    Sound clips should be available in alternative formats and/or subtitles.

·    Visual clips with no sound should be accompanied by descriptors in alternative formats and should be described by the speaker.

 

Slide transition

·    Slide transition should be wiped left to right, at medium speed.

·    A sound should also indicate slide transition.

 

Signage

Clear, legible, accessible signage is important for all participants, but will be vital to some disabled peoples’ participation at your event. Having clear signs from the carpark through to the rooms you are using means that people feel welcomed as soon as they arrive, can be confident they are in the right place, and means they don’t have to keep asking for directions.  

 

Signage should:

·    Be in a minimum of 20 point print in sans Serif font, such as Arial and not in blocked capitals

·    On matt rather than glossy paper

·    Provide a high contrast between words and background

·    Lead people from the exterior of the venue into the venue

 

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On the day – inclusive chairing, facilitation and activities

Organiser’s Briefing           

If your event is properly planned and structured to be inclusive of all participants then a few simple tasks on the day should ensure that disabled people are enabled to take full advantage of the opportunity to engage with you. Provide a copy of this section to all event organisers working on the day.

 

·    Arrive at the venue in plenty of time

·    Check that agreed access arrangements have been put in place – including any hearing loops.

·    Put up accessible signage

·    Arrange rooms in an accessible layout including reserving seats at the front for people using the sign language interpreters

·    Ensure the sign language interpreters and those who need to use them have agreed requirements

·    Ensure water is available for assistance dogs  and that dog users know where to exercise their dogs

·    Make sure there are plenty of people available at a well-marked reception desk to greet participants, assist them to get copies of paperwork, write name tags and assist people to their seats as required. 

 

Housekeeping

Housekeeping at the start of an event ensures the comfort and safety of all participants as well as providing an overview of the event. It also ensures that people feel welcomed and know who to ask for assistance if they need it.

 

Before the start of the event the Chair should:

·    Check with participants that the loop or PA system is working and set at an appropriate volume

·    Identify organisers and support staff to participants (use different colour badges for different groups at the event)

·    Inform participants of the location of all toilets including accessible ones. Describe the location fully, do not say “over there” and point!

·    Inform participants of the emergency evacuation procedure. Describe to participants the location of exits and explain which are fully wheelchair accessible. 

·    Tell participants where they can exercise assistance dogs and get water for them

·    Tell participants what materials are available in different formats, and check that people have the paperwork they need. 

 

Chair’s Briefing

Good chairing facilitates the inclusion of all participants. Being flexible and aware that “one-size doesn’t fit all” in terms of participants’ participation will go a long way to maximising the involvement of disabled people at your event. Provide Chairs with a copy of this section.

 

·    Give an overview of the day or session, even if the agenda is in front of people.

·    Explain how speakers should indicate that they wish to speak and explain how you are going to call speakers. 

·    If a traffic light system is being used to indicate speaking time explain how you will make this accessible to all participants (use a bell or tap on the microphone)

·    Inform participants not to shout through the microphone

·    Remind participants about the need to use language that is respectful of disabled people

·    If roving microphones are being used explain how they will be brought to participants

·    Avoid a “first come first served” approach to calling speakers

·    Don’t allow contributions from the floor without the person having a microphone

Facilitators’ briefing for breakout groups or small group exercises

Breakout groups are a useful way of involving participants in more focused and in-depth engagement. They need not pose barriers to the involvement of disabled people if they are appropriately planned and structured. Be aware that some individuals will need assistance to move into groups – so don’t just indicate group areas with numbers on a wall and wait for people to gather. Where possible, you should have a facilitator and a notetaker for each group. Provide facilitators with a copy of this section.

 

·    Introduce yourself and check that everyone is comfortable with the seating arrangements, which should include people facing each other in a circle where possible. 

·    Have all participants introduce themselves

·    Explain clearly the purpose of the group and how feedback will be collected

·    Remind the group that you will ensure that only one person speaks at a time and stick to this rule

·    If written materials are to be used allow sufficient reading time

·    Encourage everyone to speak, but don’t “Pounce” on individuals

·    Ensure that the meeting is not being dominated by any one person or small group

·    If issues raised are not relevant or time is pressing tell the person raising them that you’ll talk to them about the issue outside of the group

·    Read back any information written up on flipcharts etc

·    Read and agree points to be fedback to larger group whether in writing or orally presented

·    Don’t set tasks that involve individuals writing – it is better to use small group writing exercises

 

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Accessible follow-up

As with all engagement events, it is important to let attendees know how their input has been used and recognised, perhaps how it has influenced a particular policy or project. You may choose to do this in the form of a summary document of the event, or a letter of thanks. Any follow-up contact or documentation should take into account preferred alternative formats, as stated by attendees within RSVPs.

 

If you have any doubts on how to communicate event outputs in accessible formats, please contact Disability Advisor Paul Brown or the Consultation and Engagement team consultation@aucklandcouncil.govt.nz.

 

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Hui on Marae

Hui on marae can be a rich and rewarding experience for all involved. The pointers for enhancing access and inclusion in previous sections of this publication also apply to hui held on marae. There are however some additional issues to consider.

 

Talk to the Kaitiaki on issues of access and inclusion – they know their marae and will provide support on cultural issues. You may want to discuss the following points with them:

 

·    Ensure people know where to meet and how they will be ‘coming-on” to the marae

·    Ensure seating is available outside the whare if people are expected to be standing for a while

·    Ask whether people can ‘come-on” with guides of  a different gender and if not provide guides of the same gender for those who need one

·    Make sure that the marae you have chosen allow service dogs in the whare – marae have different kopapa around this and it is important that you check

·    Book trilingual Sign Language Interpreters i.e. Interpreters who can communicate in New Zealand Sign Language, Te Reo and English. There are very few qualified trilingual interpreters, so be sure and book them early! Check out the iSign website for trilingual interpreters.

·    Provide assistance to help people remove and put on their shoes if necessary

 

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Useful Resources:

·    Checklist for accessible events (to be approved)

 

·    Recommended New Zealand Sign Language Interpreters:

o www.connectinterpreting.co.nz 021 555 181

o www.iSign.co.nz 0800 934 683

 

·    UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities

 

·    Auckland Council Accessible Communication and Information guidelines.

 

·    List of Accessible Council Venues (to be confirmed)

 

·    Accessible AC events sign template (to be confirmed)

 

·    Blind Foundation Accessible Signage Guidelines

 

Further information

·    If you have further questions about making your event accessible, contact Auckland Council Disability Advisors Paul Brown or Martine Abel.

·    If you would like some further advice on inclusive engagement please contact consultation@aucklandcouncil.govt.nz or check out the Consultation and Engagement intranet pages

·    If you can’t find the answer you are looking for on accessible communications, contact the brand and channel team brand@aucklandcouncil.govt.nz

 

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Disability Strategic Advisory Panel

19 May 2014

 

 

Checklist for an accessible and inclusive event

Contents

Choosing a venue

Inviting attendees

Event design

Prior to event

On the day:

Setting up the venue

Registration desk

Facilitators

Communication tips

Further Information

 

Choosing a venue

Venue

·    Check that assistance dogs are welcome. If it is all day event, check that there is a designated area where assistance dogs can be toileted.

·    Check for step-free access to the venue and suitable drop off points and adequate accessible parking close to the entrance

·    Check there are accessible toilets available at the venue

·    Check that there is enough circulation space for wheelchair users and that furniture in all rooms is movable

·    Check that areas used for break out discussions or catering are easily accessible (avoid narrow corridors or dining rooms with fixed chairs)

·    Check acoustics and consider microphones/PA system and/or hearing loops

·    Ensure roving microphones are available for large group discussions and stands or lapel microphones are available for those who are making longer contributions

·    It is best to use a venue which isn’t too bright and isn’t too dim and that lighting can be regulated if needs be. Ensure there are spotlights for sign language interpreters if the lights need to be dimmed for a film or presentation.

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Inviting attendees

Invite

·    Request that attendees include any access requirements in their RSVP, including whether they need a New Zealand Sign Language (NZSL) interpreter, if they will be bringing a support worker (at no extra cost), if they have an assistance dog, or if they have a preferred format for receiving event materials, such as large print, disc, audio, braille, easy read, email etc.

·    Provide accurate accessibility information about the venue, e.g. that it is step-free, has accessible toilets and that assistance dogs are welcome

·    Ensure invite uses plain language and is available in Word or html format

·    Provide a phone number and an email address for RSVPs to cater for recipients’ preferences. They may also want a contact to discuss their access needs.

NZSL interpreters

·   Book two NZSL interpreters in anticipation of any requests in RSVPs. This booking can be cancelled nearer to the time if this service is not required – make sure you know the final cut off date for cancellation.

TOP TIP:  If you are keen to make your event as inclusive as possible, you may want to consider forwarding your invite through Disability Advisors’ (CDAC) network by emailing Martine Abel. This means that disability organisations can forward your invite through the channels that make most sense for them – e.g. NZSL video (may be a cost), or the Blind Foundation’s Telephone Information Service. 

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Event design

Timings

When designing the timings of your event, ensure that:

·    The event starts late and ends early enough for people to be able to get there. This is of particular importance in areas with limited access to mobility taxis. 

·    There are sufficient breaks and that the lunch break is long enough, including negotiating with the NZSL Interpreters regarding their required breaks

·    NZSL Interpreters and other assistance is available during breaks, meals and informal networking activities

·    There is sufficient time for some communication taking longer

·    Time is built in for participants to get to breakout sessions on time

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Prior to event

Attendees

·    RSVPs – make a list of names, dietary and access requirements for registration on the day

·    Follow up any access requirements if necessary or if you are unsure as to what else they might need

Briefings

·    Ensure facilitators and presenters are aware of the access needs of attendees prior to the event as this may help them to prepare. For example:

o Some facilitation techniques, such as moving around the room or recording ideas on post its may need extra support so that everyone can participate.

o Powerpoints need to be prepared in advance, including a word version that can be sent out to participants before the event (see tips below on Powerpoint presentations). Presentations will also need to be explained in full on the day, including describing any images.

o Decide whether you want the MC to lead a round of introductions so everyone knows who is in the room.

Technology

·    Book microphone/PA system if necessary.

·    If hearing loop is required ensure someone at the venue has confirmed it is working.

·    Ensure any powerpoint presentations are created with large font and suitable colour contrast to ensure they are as readable as possible (see communications tips below). If you are using different equipment at the venue, you may want to check formatting.

NZSL interpreters

·    Re-confirm interpreters if they have been requested, or cancel if they have not.

·    Ensure the interpreters are fully briefed and have all the information they need about the event. This may include sending presentations before the event.

 

Written resources and presentations

·    All information produced, including printed material on the day, should follow the Auckland Council Accessible Information and Communications Guidelines which are available on the intranet. You will find a quick guide to follow in the communication tips below.

·    Ensure that written resources, such as powerpoint presentations, agendas and other hand outs are made available in Word or HTML and are emailed or distributed to those who request them before the event. This enables those who use screen reading or magnification technology to access the visual material that will be used on the day. (PDFs and Powerpoints are not always accessible to screenreaders.)

·    Furthermore, make sure the Word version of your powerpoint presentation is not just a cut and paste of your bullet points. Those points may need further explanation if they do not make sense on their own. For more tips, see Powerpoint presentations below.

·    Ensure that any other formats requested via RSVPs are made available. This may include large print, email, disc, audio, braille, easy read etc.

·    You will need to request presentations from speakers in enough time before the event so you can make alternative formats available.

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On the day

Setting up the venue

Environment

·    Check PA system/microphone works and any hearing loop is functioning.

·    Check lighting is not too bright nor too dim.

·    Check layout provides enough circulation space for wheelchair users or those with other mobility equipment, including guide dogs. Seating may need to be slightly adjusted to allow a little extra space.

·    Reserve seats at the front for people using the NZSL interpreters and set out chairs for the interpreters themselves, near enough to presenters and with an unobstructed view to those they are interpreting for.

·    Make sure there is water available for assistance dogs and that staff are aware of the designated toileting area.

Signage

·    It is always useful to make sure you have clear signage through to your venue, particularly for people who have not been there before. Clear signage should have a large sans serif font, with a good colour contrast between text and background. (AC event signage template currently in development)

Catering

·    Ensure straws and cups with handles are available for those with limited mobility

·    Ensure catering is in an area that is accessible for those using mobility equipment.

·    You may also want to make sure that there are one or two people to assist on the day. For example, those who are blind or have low vision may appreciate knowing what is available.

TOP TIP: Never assume someone needs assistance, and similarly do not assume they don’t. If in doubt, ask.

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Registration Desk

Access requirements

·    Check with participants to ensure you are aware of their access and dietary requirements and that they have received appropriate reading material beforehand, where relevant.

Assistance available

·    Let participants know about any arrangements (e.g. area for toileting assistance dogs, human assistance available, NZSL interpreters)

Name badges

·    Name badges can be used, but be aware there may be some attendees who cannot read them. Ideally these should be printed in large, clear, sans serif font, sentence case. For those attendees who have not registered, they may need assistance to complete a name badge.

Further assistance

·    Check with attendees if they need any further assistance, perhaps with finding a seat etc.

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Facilitators

All Facilitators

·    Facilitators refer to the communications tips at the end of this document, especially the tips on speaking at a medium pace and using plain language. Ensure all facilitators are comfortable with fully explaining any powerpoint slides, including images.

Interpreters

·    Facilitators to liaise with the NZSL interpreters, especially if there have been any last minute changes to the programme.

·    Ensure interpreters are happy with their positioning.

MC

·    Decide whether you want to do a round of introductions. If it is a large event you may decide that it is easier to do introductions later on if you break into smaller groups.

·    Explain how you will signal that presenters are coming to the end of their allotted time (e.g. a bell or tap on the microphone)

Housekeeping

·    Check with participants that the PA system is working and set at an appropriate volume

·    Identify organisers and support staff to participants

·    Inform participants of the location of all toilets including accessible ones. Describe the location of the toilets fully, e.g. don’t say “over there” or point, give directional instructions.

·    Inform participants of the emergency evacuation procedure. Describe to participants the location of exits and explain which are fully wheelchair accessible. 

·    Tell participants where they can exercise assistance dogs and where water has been provided for them.

·    Tell participants what materials are available in different formats, and check that people have the material they need.

Microphone etiquette

·    Avoid a ‘first come, first served’ approach to taking contributions from the floor. Tell participants how to indicate they want to speak and how you will confirm who you are calling to speak. Don’t allow contributions from the floor without the person having a microphone.

·    If roving microphones are being used explain how they will be brought to participants and inform participants not to shout through the microphone.

·    If needed, remind participants about the need to use language that is respectful of people with disabilities

Workshops

·    Check that everyone is comfortable with the seating arrangements, which should include people facing each other in a circle where possible.

·    Introductions.

·    Explain clearly the purpose of the group and how feedback will be collected

·    Remind the group that you will ensure that only one person speaks at a time and stick to this rule.

·    If written materials are to be used allow sufficient reading time. Be aware that if some participants have not received these reading materials prior to the event, they may need assistance.

·    Encourage everyone to speak, but don’t “pounce” on individuals

·    Ensure that the meeting is not being dominated by any one person or small group

·    If issues raised are not relevant or time is pressing tell the person raising them that you’ll talk to them about the issue outside of the group

·    Read back any information written up on flipcharts etc. to ensure that everyone in the group is included.

·    Read and agree points to be fed back to larger group whether in writing or orally presented.

·    Don’t set tasks that involve individuals writing – it is better to use small group writing exercises.

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Communication tips

The tips below are based on the Auckland Council Accessible Information and Communications Guidelines which are available on the Auckland Council intranet. We recommend you read these guidelines to ensure all your communication is accessible. The tips below are quick hints to ensure your event collateral and presentations are inclusive.

 

Use plain language

·    ‘Plain language’ is everyday language that people will be familiar with. Using plain language will help get your information across more effectively to everyone but is especially important for people with a learning or intellectual disability.

·    Avoid using jargon. Don’t use acronyms or technical terms without first explaining what they mean in plain language.

·    The Auckland Council written communications style guide, Our Voice, gives comprehensive advice on using plain language and is available on the Auckland Council intranet.

 

Text and layout in documents

The text in any materials should follow these guidelines:

·    Left align. Avoid justified text which creates uneven spaces between words making it harder for people with dyslexia or those with vision impairment to read.

·    Arrange in a single column (like in these guidelines)

·    Sans serif font (e.g. Arial). Minimum size 12 font, with 1.2 line spacing. Sans serif fonts make materials easier to read, especially for people with vision impairment. Please note powerpoint presentations should have a larger font size (see Powerpoint presentations below).

·    Use consistent formatting including headings, which allows those using screen reading technology to navigate the document more effectively.

·    Colour contrast. Make sure the text contrasts strongly with the background colour and never overlay text on to an image or multi-coloured background. Black text on a white or light coloured background is ideal.

·    Images, including graphs. If your document has images in it, include a detailed description (alternative text) of the image for the screen reader to interpret. If your document includes graphs, charts or maps for example, ensure that the same information is also available in a non-image format such as a table or description.

·    Non-glossy paper reduces glare.

·    Use bold for highlighting and emphasising. Never use only colour to convey information. Italics and excessive underlining should be avoided.

·    Avoid sentences in capitals. Sentence case is recommended.

 

Speaking

·    Speak at a medium pace. Don’t speak too quickly, especially when listing things, using names or using technical language. Sign language interpreters need time to finger spell names or determine the most appropriate interpretation, which takes longer than if spoken.

·    Use the microphone when speaking as it is helpful for everyone, especially people with a hearing impairment. Some people with a hearing impairment may not consider themselves as having an access need so may not request any assistance.

 

PowerPoint presentations

·    Supply a Word version of your powerpoint prior to the presentation so this can be provided to those who need to access the information using a screenreader or magnification technology.

o Ensure that each slide is on a separate page.

o A simple cut and paste of the bullet points may not be sufficient to explain the slide, particularly if there are related images which also covey information. Make sure you write your bullets in full sentences for the purposes of this accessible word document. For more information, please refer to the inclusive engagement guidelines (tbc).

o All slides should be numbered in both the presentation, in the Word version and as handouts.

·    Text should largely follow the text and layout guidelines above, with the following additions:

o Make sure there is good contrast between the words and the background. Backgrounds should be in pastel colours. Avoid red, dark grey, brown, green or purple for text and backgrounds, and don’t use these colours next to each other as they do not provide enough contrast.

o For slides that are predominantly text based, the background colour should be in a solid block, not textured or graduated.

o The recommended sizes for powerpoint fonts are:

§ Main headings  = 36 point in bold

§ Subheadings = 28 point in bold

§ Text = at least 24 point (not bold)

o Large blocks of text should be avoided as they are hard to read. It is better to use bullet points consistently and have no more than four per slide, wherever possible.

·    Slides with key bullet points accompanied by relevant pictures to help explain the bullet point can be very helpful for people with a learning or intellectual disability. Pictures should be clear and uncluttered. However, please ensure that you fully describe each slide and any images throughout the presentation, including indicating when you have moved on to the next slide.

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Further Information

·    Inclusive engagement guidelines (to be published on intranet) discuss the information above in more detail and contain a list of further resources, including NZSL interpreters and a discussion on hui on marae.

·    Auckland Council Accessible Information and Communications Guidelines

·    If you can’t find the answer you are looking for on accessible communications, contact the brand and channel team brand@aucklandcouncil.govt.nz

·    If you would like some further advice on inclusive engagement please contact consultation@aucklandcouncil.govt.nz or check out the Consultation and Engagement intranet pages

·    If you have further questions about making your event accessible, contact Auckland Council Disability Advisors Paul Brown or Martine Abel.

 

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Disability Strategic Advisory Panel

19 May 2014

 

 

Item 10 - Significance and Engagement Policy

 

File No.: CP2014/09751

 

  

 

 

Purpose

1.       To provide information on the proposed process to develop a Significance and Engagement Policy in line with updated legislative requirements.

Executive summary

2.       The Local Government Act 2002 Amendment Bill (No 3) proposes all councils adopt a significance and engagement policy by 1 December 2014. Carol Hayward, Team Leader Consultation and Engagement will attend the meeting to talk about the principles involved and seek feedback from the Panel.

 

Recommendation/s

That the Disability Strategic Advisory Panel:

a)      receive the Significance and Engagement Policy report.

b)      consider the process and provide initial feedback about the development of the policy.

 

 

Attachments

No.

Title

Page

aView

Memo - Significance and Engagement Policy

55

     

Signatories

Author

Carol Hayward – Team Leader Consultation and Engagement

Authoriser

Kevin Wright - Manager: Transport Strategy – Lead Officer Support DSAP

 


Disability Strategic Advisory Panel

19 May 2014

 

 

Memo                                                          12 May 2014

To:                   Disability Strategic Advisory Panel

cc:                  

From:              Carol Hayward, Team Leader Consultation and Engagement

 

 

Subject:           Significance and Engagement Policy

 

Purpose

 

The purpose of this memo is to provide information on the proposed process to develop a Significance and Engagement Policy in line with updated legislative requirements.

 

 

Background

 

As part of the LTP 2012-2022 process, Auckland Council approved a Significance Policy to provide a mechanism for establishing which decisions are significant with reference to thresholds and general criteria. This was a requirement under the LGA2002 and the policy requires all council reports to state the degree of significance.

 

The Local Government Act 2002 Amendment Bill (No 3) proposes all councils adopt a significance and engagement policy by 1 December 2014. This was one of the recommendations of the Local Government Efficiency Taskforce to review the decision making and consultation provisions of the Act (particularly part 6) to:

 

·    provide councils with a clear and flexible mandate to determine whether to engage with the community and the most appropriate way to do so;

·    replace the prescriptive rules related to decision making with a clear set of relevant principles for councils to consider when making decisions.

 

It was intended that these principles would improve the engagement process by being clear with the community when and how council will engage, depending on the significance of the issue. It is likely that this will increase community input into council’s decision-making processes, but in a less prescriptive way that will allow more flexibility in trying to reach some of our less engaged communities.

 

While the Bill has not yet been passed, a work plan is currently being finalised along with a programme of engagement to develop this policy in time.

 

 

Proposed objectives and scope

Objectives

·      To meet requirements in the Local Government Act 2002 Amendment Bill (No 3);

·      To set the tone and process for how Auckland Council will engage with Aucklanders;

·      To be an engagement leader in New Zealand and best representation of how we talk to our communities;

·      To identify any amendments required in the existing significance policy.

 

Scope

·      Develop new engagement policy based on past learnings, previous policy development work and LGA requirements

·      Carry out consultation and engagement with internal stakeholders

·      Engage and seek input from local boards and advisory panels

·    Engage and seek input from external stakeholders and the public

·      Link with existing work to update and improve guidelines, process and protocols for consultation and engagement

·    Review existing significance policy to determine amendments required

 

 

Proposed process to develop the policy

 

While the Local Government Act has provided principles around consultation and engagement to ensure that affected parties are consulted, the scale of Auckland is larger than many other New Zealand councils and it is important to provide complementary principles and a framework to ensure that the council is effective in reaching Auckland’s diverse communities.

 

The Governing Body, local boards, advisory panels, the IMSB and key stakeholders will be involved at an early stage to input into the development of the draft policy which is expected to go out for public consultation in September 2014.

 

The draft policy is intended to be principles based, to allow flexibility with the approach taken in delivering consultation and engagement depending on the audience and scale of the issue. It will be developed with input from teams across council and will be supported by updated and improved processes, templates and guidance material so that we move towards a centre of excellence for consultation and engagement.

 

It will also take into account the Treaty Audit as well as feedback already received by the public and stakeholders relating to consultation and engagement and lessons learned on past processes such as the Unitary Plan and local board plans.

 


Disability Strategic Advisory Panel

19 May 2014

 

 

Item 11 - Chairperson's report

 

File No.: CP2014/09737

 

  

 

 

Purpose

1.       Providing the Chairperson with an opportunity to report on events since the last meeting of the Panel.

Executive summary

2.       Dr Huhana Hickey will advise the Panel of events attended during the past month by way of a verbal report at the meeting.

 

Recommendation/s

That the Disability Strategic Advisory Panel:

a)      receive the Chairperson’s report.

 

 

Attachments

There are no attachments for this report.    

Signatories

Author

Mike Giddey - Democracy Advisor

Authoriser

Kevin Wright - Manager: Transport Strategy – Lead Officer Support DSAP

 


Disability Strategic Advisory Panel

19 May 2014

 

 

Item 12 - General Business

 

File No.: CP2014/09738

 

  

 

 

Purpose

1.       To update the Panel on issues and events that occurred since the last meeting.

Executive summary

2.       This standard agenda item provides each member of the Panel an opportunity to update the meeting on issues and events that occurred since the last meeting of the Panel.

 

Recommendation/s

That the Disability Strategic Advisory Panel:

a)      receive the verbal discussion on issues and events occurring since the last meeting of the Panel.

 

 

Attachments

There are no attachments for this report.    

Signatories

Author

Mike Giddey - Democracy Advisor

Authoriser

Kevin Wright - Manager: Transport Strategy – Lead Officer Support DSAP