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					      Disability Action Plan
                       2008-2011




  “Creating a more
inclusive Community”         
Golden Plains Shire Disability   Action Plan
2008 - 2011





                                                                Golden Plains Shire Disability   Action Plan
                                                                                                  2008 - 2011




                                             Ballarat
                  Smythesdale                  Buninyong
                                                             Bacchus Marsh
              Skipton Linton
                           Enfield
                                                                               Melbourne
                                             Meredith          Steiglitz       Werribee
                      Rokewood                                        Anakie

               Lismore                                        Bannockburn
                                 Cressy
                                               Inverleigh
                                     Hesse
                                                                           Geelong
                                   Winchelsea

                                                            Torquay
                             Colac


Copies of this document are available from Golden Plains
Shire’s Customer Service Centres
I	 For	collection	from:
	  -		Pope	Street,	Bannockburn	
	  -	68	Sussex	Street,	Linton


	      To	request	a	copy:		
(	     phone:	(0)	50	7		
ö	     or	email:	enquiries@gplains.vic.gov.au
:	 	   On	Council’s	website:	www.goldenplains.vic.gov.au


Alternate Formats and Enquiries
Alternate	formats	of	this	document	are	available.		For	an	alternate	format	document	or	for	
enquiries	about	the	Golden	Plains	Shire	Disability	Action	Plan,	please	contact	Council	on:
(	 00	6	0	6	(local	call	from	within	the	Shire)
(	 (0)	50	7
ö		 enquiries@gplains.vic.gov.au

Disclaimer:	Whilst	every	effort	has	been	made	to	ensure	the	accuracy	and	currency	of	information	contained	
herein,	Council	accepts	no	responsibility	for	any	omissions	or	errors.




                                                                                                              
Golden Plains Shire Disability     Action Plan
2008 - 2011




Foreword from the Mayor
I	 am	 pleased	 to	 present	 Golden	 Plains	 Shire’s	 Disability	
Action	Plan	008-0,	which	sets	out	Council’s	objectives	
in	 providing	 and	 improving	 accessibility,	 infrastructure,	
support	and	services	to	people	with	a	disability	who	live	in	
or	visit	the	Shire.	
Golden	Plains	Shire	has	a	diverse	community	of	more	than	
7,000	 people	 and	 it	 is	 estimated	 that	 more	 than	 ,00	
residents	 have	 some	 form	 of	 impairment	 or	 disability.	 It	
is	 important,	 therefore,	 for	 Council	 to	 be	 proactive	 and	
responsive	to	the	needs	of	people	with	a	disability.
This	 plan	 includes	 a	 range	 of	 strategies	 and	 actions	
to	 remove	 barriers	 that	 face	 people	 with	 a	 disability.
Implementation	 of	 the	 plan	 will	 be	 staged	 over	 the	 next	
three	years,	starting	with	areas	of	immediate	need.	

The strategies in this Disability Action Plan cover:
   • Improved physical access to Council buildings and public spaces
   • Improved access to information
   • Improved access to services
   • Improved inclusive work practices, and
   • Removing barriers to community participation

Importantly,	the	plan	will	be	monitored	by	people	with	disabilities	to	ensure	its	effectiveness.
I	urge	you	to	make	yourself	aware	of	the	strategies	and	actions	in	this	plan	and	the	associated	
issues	for	people	with	a	disability.		Copies	of	the	plan	are	available	in	a	range	of	formats	including	
large	print,	DVD	and	audio.		Please	contact	Council	for	your	copy.

Cr	Des	Guinane
Mayor, Golden Plains Shire





                                                       Golden Plains Shire Disability     Action Plan
                                                                                            2008 - 2011




Message from the Chief Executive Officer
Golden	Plains	Shire	Council	aims	to	provide	services	and	
facilities	that	are	accessible	to	all	people	who	live,	work	
in	or	visit	the	municipality.

Preparation of this Disability Action Plan has identified
opportunities	 to	 improve	 service	 and	 facility	 planning	
and	 delivery,	 and	 eliminate	 barriers	 preventing	 access	
and	participation	by	people	with	disabilities.	
Development of this plan reflects Council’s commitment
to	 the	 principles	 of	 the	 Disability	 Discrimination	 Act	
(99)	and	the	Disability	Act	(006)	by	seeking	to	provide	
equitable and dignified access to Council planning,
services,	 facilities,	 programs,	 communications	 and	
employment	processes.	

Our	achievements	in	disability	access	so	far	include:
     •	Commitment	by	Council	to	develop	a	Disability	Action	Plan	and	Disability	Advisory
     	 Committee	as	a	way	of	planning	for	a	more	inclusive	community
     •	Providing	accessible	community	transport	options	for	residents	with	a	disability	
     •	Accommodation	of	children’s	special	needs	at	the	Bannockburn	Family	Service	Centre
     •	Creation	of	an	accessible	events	checklist
     •	Employment	of	a	part	time	RuralAccess	and	Deaf	Access	Co-ordinator	
     •	Support	for	the	parents	and	carers	of	children	with	disabilities	through	the	Golden	
     	 Plains	Parent	Support	Group
     •	Installation	of	automatic	doors	in	the	reception	area	at	the	Bannockburn	Customer	
     	 Service	Centre
     • Retrofitting the entrance to the Linton Customer Service Centre.

Through	 the	 implementation	 of	 this	 plan,	 we	 look	 forward	 to	 making	 further	 progress	 over	 the	
next	three	years	and	beyond.		This	plan	is	an	important	step	along	the	road	to	reducing	barriers	
and	increasing	access	to	people	with	disabilities,	but	our	efforts	will	be	more	profound	if	other	
organisations	and	businesses	across	Golden	Plains	Shire	adopt	an	“Access	for	All”	philosophy.	            	
I	urge	you,	therefore,	to	join	with	Council	in	this	effort.


Rod	Nicholls
Chief Executive Officer




                                                                                                        5
Golden Plains Shire Disability                Action Plan
2008 - 2011




Golden Plains Shire Disability Action Plan
Table of Contents	
1.	 Summary:	Council’s	commitment	to	people	with	a	disability	 ..................................................7
                                                             .
2.		 Facts	and	Figures	on	Disability	...............................................................................................7
3.		 What	is	a	Disability	Action	Plan?	.............................................................................................7
4.			What	is	a	Disability?	................................................................................................................8
5.			What	is	Discrimination?	..........................................................................................................8
                            .
6.			A	summary	of	relevant	Legislation	and	Victorian	Policies	.......................................................8
7.			Objectives	of	the	Disability	Action	Plan	...................................................................................9

8.			Disability	Action	Plan	Strategies	............................................................................................0
                                      .

	    	 Objective		-	Services	for	the	Community...........................................................................0
	    	 Objective		-	Planning	for	the	Community	..........................................................................
	    	 Objective		-	Communication	for	the	Community	...............................................................7
	    	 Objective		-	The	Built	Environment	for	the	Community	.....................................................8

9.			Acknowledgements	................................................................................................................9

10.	Stakeholders	..........................................................................................................................9

11.	 References	.............................................................................................................................0

12.	Appendices	............................................................................................................................0

Appendix 1: Useful	Terminology	and	Acronyms	.........................................................................0
                                           .

Appendix 2:	Legislation	–	further	information:.............................................................................

Appendix 3:	Summary	of	Community	Consultation	....................................................................

Appendix 4:	Methodology	...........................................................................................................6

Appendix 5:	Etiquette	for	communicating	with	people	with	a	disability	.......................................6

Appendix 6: Useful	Government	contacts...................................................................................




6
                                                         Golden Plains Shire Disability      Action Plan
                                                                                               2008 - 2011




1. Summary: Council’s commitment to people with a disability
Golden	Plains	Shire	will	aim	to	be	more	inclusive	of	people	with	disabilities	in	all	of	its	activities.	     	
Council	will	seek	to	identify	barriers	that	people	with	a	disability	face	and	how	these	barriers	can	
be removed - particularly those within Council’s immediate sphere of influence.
Golden	 Plains	 Shire	 will	 comply	 with	 the	 spirit	 and	 intent	 of	 the	 Disability	 Discrimination	 Act	
99	 (DDA),	 and	 within	 its	 own	 structure	 and	 processes	 will	 implement	 the	 principles	 and	
recommendations	of	the	State	Disability	Plan.
Council	commits	to	working	to	implement	the	strategies	contained	in	this	Disability	Action	Plan	
(DAP)	over	the	next	three	years	and	to	regularly	monitor	our	progress	in	doing	so.


2. Facts and Figures on Disability
In	 any	 community	 at	 any	 one	 time,	 0%	 of	 the	 population	 have	 a	 permanent	 disability	 whilst	
another	6%	have	a	temporary	disability.	This	means	that	one	in	four	will	have	a	disability.	The	
percentage	of	people	over	65	years	of	age	who	have	a	disability	is	5%,	whilst	the	percentage	of	
people	over	8	years	old	with	a	disability	is	8%.
Golden	Plains	Shire	has	a	population	of	around	7,000.		Some	,00	of	these	have	a	permanent	
disability	 and	 ,0	 will	 have	 a	 disability	 at	 any	 one	 time.	The	 006	 census	 forecasts	 indicate	
that	the	Shire’s	population	in	0	will	be	,000	people,	meaning	that	around	,00	will	have	a	
disability.	


3. What is a Disability Action Plan?
The	Victorian	Disability	Act	(006)	requires	all	government	organisations	to	develop	and	implement	
a	 DAP	 and	 the	 Human	 Rights	 and	 Equal	 Opportunities	 Commission	 (HREOC)	 encourages	
organisations	 to	 formally	 register	 their	 DAP	 on	 their	 website.	 This	 is	 widely	 recognised	 best	
practice	amongst	service	providers.
The	Golden	Plains	Shire	DAP	sets	out	strategies	and	actions	to	improve	disability	access	over	the	
next	three	years	to	0.	Many	strategies	involve	changes	to	regular	practice	and	attitudes,	whilst	
changes	designed	to	improve	physical	access	within	Council	buildings	and	facilities	will	be	more	
costly.		Therefore,	the	DAP	includes	a	longer-term	strategy	to	address	physical	access	barriers	
after	due	consideration	of	funding	implications	and	priority	works.	
Good	physical	access	not	only	helps	people	with	a	disability,	but	many	other	people	including:
   •	Parents	with	prams
   •	Elderly	people	with	walking	frames	or	sticks
   •	People	with	sports	or	other	injuries	
   •	People	with	temporary	disabilities	or	medical	conditions
   •	Delivery	people	with	trolleys.




                                                                                                           7
Golden Plains Shire Disability      Action Plan
2008 - 2011




In	addition	to	the	physical	aspects	of	access,	great	change	can	occur	by	thinking	differently	about	
how	people	with	a	disability	can	be	included	in	all	aspects	of	community	life.	The	DAP	aims	to	
prompt	and	guide	such	thinking.	
Golden	Plains	Shire	has	consulted	a	wide	range	of	stakeholders	whilst	developing	this	DAP,	including	
residents	with	a	disability,	local	disability	service	providers,	the	general	community	and	relevant	Council	
staff.		The	DAP	will	be	lodged	with	the	Human	Rights	and	Equal	Opportunity	Commission	(HREOC)	
and	will	be	distributed	to	local	residents,	organisations	and	other	interested	parties.		
Once	 the	 DAP	 has	 been	 published	 and	 distributed,	 expressions	 of	 interest	 will	 be	 sought	 from	
residents	for	membership	of	a	Disability	Advisory	Committee	(DAC).	The	DAC	will	comprise	people	
who have a disability, are a carer, or have experience in the disability field. The DAC will be chaired
by	an	elected	Councillor	and	will	meet	regularly	to	monitor	the	progress	of	the	DAP	to	ensure	it	
remains	a	‘living’,	working	document.


4. What is a Disability?
The	term	‘disability’	includes	an	impairment	of	a	physical,	intellectual	or	sensory	nature	(i.e.	vision	
and	hearing).	An	impairment	can	be	life-long,	acquired	by	accident	or	as	part	of	the	ageing	process.	
The DDA also defines ‘disability’ as a chronic medical condition, psychiatric, neurological disability,
learning disability, physical disfigurement, the presence in the body of disease causing organisms
(like	HIV/AIDS)	and	short-term	or	temporary	disability.


5. What is Discrimination?
The	DDA	describes	the	term	‘discrimination’	as:	
“….	treating	people	with	a	disability	less	favourably	than	people	without	that	disability	would	be	
treated	under	the	same	circumstances.”
Discrimination	also	exists	where	a	condition	or	requirement	is	imposed	equally	for	everyone,	but	
which	unfairly	excludes	or	disadvantages	people	with	a	disability.


6. A summary of relevant Legislation and Victorian Policies
The	Disability	Discrimination	Act	99	was	enacted	by	the	Federal	Government	to	promote	fairness	
and	equity	for	people	with	a	disability	and	to	ensure	that	people	who	have	a	disability	have	the	
same	rights	and	level	of	access	to	opportunities	and	services	as	other	members	of	the	community.	
The	DDA	makes	it	unlawful	to	discriminate	-	in	the	provision	of	goods,	services	or	facilities	-	against	
people	on	the	basis	that	they	have,	or	may	have,	a	disability.	It	also	makes	it	unlawful	to	discriminate	
against	 a	 person	 on	 the	 basis	 that	 one	 of	 their	 associates	 has,	 or	 may	 have,	 a	 disability.	 This	
Commonwealth	Act	overrides	any	state	act	or	legislation.




8
                                                      Golden Plains Shire Disability    Action Plan
                                                                                          2008 - 2011




The	Victorian	Disability	Act	006	provides	for	a	stronger	whole	of	government,	whole	of	community	
response	to	the	rights	and	needs	of	people	with	a	disability	and	a	framework	for	the	provision	of	
high	quality	services	and	support	for	people	with	a	disability.	Section	8	of	the	Act	requires	public	
sector	bodies	to	prepare	a	DAP	and	to	report	regularly	to	the	State	Government.	
A	 Fairer Victoria 2005 and updates sets out the Victorian Government’s first steps in an effort
to	reduce	disadvantage	in	Victoria.	The	policy	document	recognises	that	a	long-term,	whole	of	
government	approach	is	essential	in	ensuring	social	sustainability.	
The	State	Disability	Plan	00-0	sets	out	the	Victorian	Government’s	future	vision	for	disability	
and	strategies	to	achieve	this	vision.	The	plan	outlines	the	Government’s	approach	to	disability	
and reaffirms the rights of people with a disability to live and take part in community life as citizens
of	Victoria.
For more details about legislation please refer to Appendix 2


7. Objectives of the Disability Action Plan
The	objectives	of	the	DAP	are	based	on	the	understanding	that	the	main	issues	facing	people	with	
a	disability	are	interconnected	and	require	a	number	of	simultaneous	initiatives	to	address	them	
effectively.	Four	key	objectives	underpin	the	strategies	and	actions	in	this	DAP:	

Objective 1 	
Services for the community –	 To	ensure	that	community	capacity	building	processes	
and health and well-being services reflect ‘Access for All’ principles.

Objective 2 	
Planning for the community –	To	achieve	best	practice	in	governance	and	advocacy	to	
ensure	the	Shire	is	an	attractive	and	desirable	place	to	live	and	work,	and	that	facilitates	equitable	
access	for	all	people.

Objective 3
Communication for the community –	To	ensure	that	all	Council	information,	website	
and	resources	are	accessible	to	people	with	a	disability	and	available	in	alternate	formats.	

Objective 4
The built environment for the community –	To	ensure	that	the	community	is	able	
to	access	all	Council	facilities	and	open	spaces,	and	that	Council	will	seek	to	remove	current	and	
potential	barriers	to	accessibility.




                                                                                                     9
Golden Plains Shire Disability     Action Plan
2008 - 2011




8. Disability Action Plan Strategies
Objective 1 -	Services	for	the	Community
To ensure that community capacity building processes and health and
well-being services reflect ‘Access for All’ principles.

 1.1	   Aged & Disability Services Objective -	To ensure high-quality support
        services are provided to the elderly, frail aged, people with a disability and
        their carers to maintain independence, safety in their home and
        community, and to enhance their quality of life.

 Action                                           Performance indicator        Timelines

 ..			Develop	alliances	and	service            • Providers identified       July	009
         agreements	with	disability	service	      •	Service	agreements
         providers	in	the	Grampians	Region,	      		developed
         Department	of	Human	Services	            •	Promotion	undertaken.
         and	Barwon	South	West.	Clarify	
         conflicts boundary and promote
         availability	of	services	to	residents.

 ..	 Develop	database	of	people	with           Database	developed.          November	
        a	disability	who	require	support                                       008
        during	an	emergency	evacuation.

 ..	 Respite	care	study	undertaken.            Development	of	Disability    September	
                                                  Respite	Action	Plan	         008
                                                  008	–	00.


 1.2	   Transport Services Objective – To ensure people with a disability are
        provided with accessible community transport.
 Action                                           Performance indicator        Timelines
 ..	 Develop	service	agreements	with           Service	agreements           July	009
        private	and	community	transport           developed.
        providers	to	best	utilise	existing	
        wheelchair	friendly	services.
 ..	 Lobby	for	accessible	public               More	accessible	public       Ongoing
        transport	in	the	Shire.                   transport	services	in	the	
                                                  Shire.
 ..	 Prepare	fact	sheets	that	list	            Fact	sheets	developed	and	   June	009
 											avaiable	accessible	transport	        available	to	residents	in
 											options	within	the	Shire,	region	     alternate	formats.
 											and	metropolitan	centres.


0
                                                 Golden Plains Shire Disability   Action Plan
                                                                                   2008 - 2011




1.3	   Youth Objective - To ensure that all youth initiatives are inclusive of
       people of all abilities.

Action                                          Performance indicator         Timelines

..	 Run	all	youth	events	and	projects        Projects	and	marketing        Ongoing	
       to	meet	the	needs	of	young	people	       implemented.	
       with	a	disability	and	market	all	with	
       a	statement	promoting	‘Access	for	
       All’.	


1.4	   Arts Objective -		Include ‘Access for All’ principles in the delivery of all
       arts projects.

Action                                          Performance indicator         Timelines

..	 Run	all	arts,	cultural	events	and        Projects	and	marketing        Ongoing	
       projects	to	meet	the	needs	of	           implemented.
       people	with	a	disability	and	market	
       all	with	a	statement	promoting	
       ‘Access	for	All’.


1.5	   Community Development Objective -	Ensure all community
       development projects champion the needs of people with a disability.
Action                                          Performance indicator         Timelines
.5.	 Ensure	people	with	a	disability	are      Annual	feedback	on            Ongoing	
       encouraged	to	participate	in	the         implementation	of	‘Access	
       community	planning	process.              for	All’	principles	in	
                                                community	planning.
.5.	 Review	the	Community	Grants	             Policy	reviewed	and           December	
       policy	to	include	the	requirements	      implemented.                  00
       for	applicants	to	address	‘Access	
       for	All’	issues.


1.6	   Events & Activities Objective -	Ensure that all Council managed
       events provide for ‘Access for All’.

Action                                          Performance indicator         Timelines

.6.	 Provide	Accessible	Events	Guide	         Guidelines	distributed	and	   August	
       to	all	staff.                            implemented.                  008



                                                                                          
Golden Plains Shire Disability    Action Plan
2008 - 2011




 1.7	   Recreation Objective –	Ensure that all recreation opportunities are
        accessible to all.

 Action                                          Performance indicator          Timelines

 .7.	 Provide	disability	awareness	            Feedback	on	implementation	 December	
        information	to	all	groups	that	          of	‘Access	for	All’	        00
        access	recreation	opportunities.         abilities.

 .7.	 Identify	the	accessibility	of	all	       Audit	complete	and	plans	to	   December	
        publicly	available	open	spaces	          retrofit in place.             009
        and	trails	(eg.	Rail	Trail)

 .7.	 Plan	to	create	more	accessible	          Planning	in	place.             Ongoing
        public	footpaths.		

 .7.	 Support	Section	86	Committees	           Annual	Committee	of            Ongoing
        of	Management	in	their	                  Management	feedback	on	
        understanding	of	‘Access	for	All’	       implementation	of	‘Access	for	
        principles	to	increase	participation	    All’	principles.
        in	recreation.	



 1.8	   Health and Wellbeing Objective –	Promote available health and
        disability service to the community.

 Action                                          Performance indicator          Timelines

 .8.	 Develop	a	health	services	resource       Guide	completed	and	           December	
        guide.                                   available	in	alternate	        008
                                                 formats.

 .8.	 Ensure	all	health	and	wellbeing          Activities	and	marketing       Ongoing
        activities	are	adaptable	and	            indicate	‘Access	for	All’.
        accessible	to	people	of	all	abilities	
        and	market	accordingly.





                                                 Golden Plains Shire Disability   Action Plan
                                                                                   2008 - 2011




1.9	   Family Services Objective –	Ensure that Child and Family Services are
       accessible for all.

Action                                          Performance indicator         Timelines

.9.	 Bannockburn	Family	Services	             Retrofitting completed.       December	
       Centre to be retrofitted to be                                         008
       accessible	for	all.

.9.	 Maintain	or	improve	the	accessibility    Meet	all	indicators	that	     Ongoing
       rating	within	long	day	centre	and	       relate	to	accessibility	in	
       family	day	care	centre	accreditation	    the	system.
       status.

.9.	 Continue	to	develop	partnerships	        Partnerships	developed	       Ongoing
       with	disability	support	agencies	to	     and	services	increased.
       increase	services	for	children	with	
       additional	needs.

.9.	 Advocate	for	increased	gap	funding       Funding	granted.              Ongoing
       for	support	of	children	with	addition-
       al	needs	in	approved	childcare	
       services	on	request.

.9.5	 Continue	to	support	inclusive            Playgroups	well	supported	 Ongoing
       playgroups	in	the	Shire.                 and	inclusive.	



1.10	 Organisational Development Objective –	Ensure that the Council
      organisation in general is focussed on disability and ‘Access for All’
      principles.

Action                                          Performance indicator         Timelines

.0.	Provide	disability	awareness	            All	staff	trained.            Ongoing
       training	for	all	staff	

.0.	Develop	a	policy	that	                   Policy	developed	and          December	
       accommodates disability specific         implemented.                  008
       issues/complaints	and	follow	up,	
       with	referral	to	the	DAC	where	
       appropriate.	




                                                                                          
Golden Plains Shire Disability   Action Plan
2008 - 2011




Objective 2 -	Planning	for	the	Community
To achieve best practice in governance and advocacy to ensure the Shire is an
attractive and desirable place to live and work, and that facilitates equitable access
for all people.

 2.1	   Advocacy Objective - Golden Plains Shire to provide advocacy for all
        people with disability in the Shire.
 Action                                        Performance indicator        Timelines
 2.1.1 Affiliate, promote and lobby for        Registered affiliate of      December	
       support	of	the	Companion	Card.          Companion	Card.              008
 ..	 Lobby	government	for	changes	to        Lobbying	activities	         Ongoing
        legislation	when	appropriate.          undertaken	and	recorded.



 2.2	   Human Resources Objective -	Non-discriminatory practices followed at
        all times with current staff and when employing new staff.
 Action                                        Performance indicator        Timelines
 ..	 Provide	traineeship	or	work	           Traineeships	and	work        Ongoing
        experience	opportunities	for	          experience	provided.
        people	with	a	disability.	
 ..	 Review	all	position	descriptions	      Position	descriptions	       December	
        to	ensure	non-discriminatory	          updated.                     008
        language	and	practices.
 ..	 Advertise	that	GPS	is	an	equal	        Advertisements	include	      Ongoing
        opportunity	employer	in	all	           equal	opportunity	statement.
        recruitment	notices.
 ..	 Accommodate	the	needs	of	staff         Staff	members’	needs         Ongoing
        members	who	have	a	disability.         accommodated.





                                                  Golden Plains Shire Disability   Action Plan
                                                                                    2008 - 2011




2.3	   Customer Service and Rates Objective -	To provide the highest
       quality customer service delivery that is timely, open and accountable,
       and responsive to all customer needs.

Action                                          Performance indicator          Timelines

..	 Provide	a	teletypewriter	system	to       Installation	of	the	system.	   August	
       assist	people	with	hearing	and	                                         009
       speech difficulties.
..	 Install	the	most	appropriate	            Hearing	loops	installed.       June	00
       hearing	loop	or	equivalent	for	
       the	Council	chambers	and	in	
       all	reception	areas.
..	 Provide	a	communication	board	           Communication	board            July	009
       at	customer	service	desks	to	use	        available	at	each	reception	
       when	appropriate.                        desk.
..	 Improve	lighting	in	all	customer         Adequate	lighting	installed.   July	009
       service	areas	to	assist	people	
       with	a	vision	impairment.	
..5	 Relocate	the	accessible	parking	         Parking	bay	relocated.         December	
       bay	at	the	Bannockburn	Customer	                                        008
       Service	Centre	to	provide	safe	and	
       easy	access	to	the	building.
..6	 Provide	an	accessible	parking	           Parking	bay	installed.         December	
       bay outside the Linton office.                                          008
..7	 Removal	of	step	at	the	entrance	to       Step	removed.	                 June	008
       the	Linton	Customer	Service	
       Centre.

..8	 Reprint	Council	stationery	to	larger     New	stationery	with	           Ongoing
       font size according to the style         accessible sized text.
       guide.
..9	 Information	brochures	in	the             Brochures	at	an	               December	
       customer	service	areas	to	be	            accessible	height.             008
       easily	accessible	to	people	in	
       wheelchairs.
..0	Provide	a	sign	at	all	key	locations	     Signs	erected.                 Ongoing
       in	the	Shire	to	notify	residents	that	
       information	is	available	in	alternate	
       formats.



                                                                                           5
Golden Plains Shire Disability   Action Plan
2008 - 2011




 2.4	   Strategic Planning and Policy Development Objective –	Ensure that
        plans and strategies reflect ‘Access for All’ principles.

 Action                                        Performance indicator         Timelines

 ..	 Include	‘Access	for	All’	principles	   All	plans	incorporate	the       Ongoing
        in	all	new	and	updated	Council	        principles	of	‘Access	for	All’.
        strategies,	policies	and	plans,	and	
        ensure	they	are	non-discriminatory.	




6
                                                     Golden Plains Shire Disability   Action Plan
                                                                                       2008 - 2011




Objective 3 - Communication for the Community		
3.    To ensure that all Council information, website and resources are accessible
      to all.
Action                                             Performance indicator        Timelines
.				Provide	information	to	the	public	in        All	information	is	in	       Ongoing
       accessible	formats	(compliant	with	         accessible	format.
       Vision	Australia	Guidelines).	This	
       includes forms, rates notices, flyers,
       newsletters,	fact	sheets,	stationery	
       etc.
.				Provide	alternate	forms	of	contact          Alternate	contacts	          Ongoing	
       details	in	all	correspondence	and           provided.
       communications.		This	includes	
       phone,	fax,	email	addresses	and
       teletypewriter	options.
.				Incorporate	into	Standard	Operating         Standard	Operating           June	009
       Procedure for official events and           Procedure	amended.
       civic	functions	the	need	for	Council
       functions	to	be	held	in	buildings	that	
       are	accessible	for	all.
.				Develop	a	Corporate	Style	Guide	as          Style	Guide	complete.        December	
       the	protocol	for	all	internal	and                                        008
       external	Council	publications,
       promotional	materials,	documents	
       and	advertisements	to	meet	the	
       needs	of	people	with	a	disability.
.5				Ensure	the	redesign	of	Council’s            Website	compliant.           December	
       website	and	the	design	of	its                                            008
       intranet	meet	WC	standards
       (accessibility).
.6				Ensure	all	media	releases	that              No	complaints	from           Ongoing
       relate	to	people	with	a	disability	are      readership.
       respectful	and	non-discriminatory.
.7				File	examples	of	respectful	and             File	available	on	request.   Ongoing
       apprpriate	reporting	to	use	as
       examples	of	good	practice.
.8					Advocate	with	other	media	outlets          Systemic	change              Ongoing
        for	respectful	reporting	in	relation	to	   noticeable	in	other	media	
        people with a disability (Use file as      outlets.	
        mentioned	above	to	lobby	other	
        media	outlets).


                                                                                              7
Golden Plains Shire Disability      Action Plan
2008 - 2011




Objective 4 - The Built Environment for the Community

 4.    To ensure that the community is able to access all Council facilities and open
       spaces, and that Council will seek to remove current and potential barriers to
       accessibility.

  Action                                             Performance indicator         Timelines

 .						Conduct	an	audit	of	community
          buildings,	signage,	lighting,	                                           December	
                                                     Audit	complete.
          accessible	parking	bays	and	                                             008
          facilities	to	assess	accessibility.	

 .						Prioritise	remedial	actions	where                                        December		
                                                     List	complied.
          appropriate	for	current	infrastructure.	                                 008

                                                     ‘Access	for	All’	principles
 .						Include	‘Access	for	All’	principles	in
                                                     included	in	building	de-      July	008
          design	framework	for	new	buildings.
                                                     signs.

 .						Ensure	parking,	pathway	and	access
          to	playgrounds	are	suitable	for	people	    Retrofitting program
                                                                                   Ongoing
          with a disability via retrofitting         developed.
          program.	

 .5						Provide	advice	on	regulatory
          requirements	of	the	Building	Act	and       All	enquiries	are	
                                                                                   Ongoing
          Building	Regulations	to	all	staff	and      answered.
          residents	on	request.

 .6						Provide	advice	on	compliance	with
          AS8	Design	for	Access	and
          Mobility	and	advocate	for	more             Advice	given.                 Ongoing
          generous	measures	than
          minimum	standards.

 .7						Develop	a	guide	for	building	permit
                                                     Guide	completed	and	
          applicants	to	inform	them	of	their                                       July	009
                                                     being	distributed.
          DDA	requirements.

 .8						Develop	a	process	to	ensure	that	all
                                                     Compliance	
          planning	permits	issued	by	Council                                       July	009
                                                     demonstrated.
          comply	with	the	DDA.	




8
                                                         Golden Plains Shire Disability    Action Plan
                                                                                             2008 - 2011




9. Acknowledgements
The	Golden	Plains	Shire	Council	would	like	to	acknowledge	the	contribution	of	the	members	of	
the	Disability	Action	Plan	Reference	Group	in	the	preparation	of	this	action	plan,	and	thank	them	
for	their	participation.
The reference group includes:
Cr Geraldine Frantz ............. Chairperson	
Fayth Andrews	..................... Human	Services	Manager
Deb Whitecross	................... RuralAccess	Coordinator	(Facilitator)
Skye Cook	............................ Team	Leader	Aged	and	Disability	Services
Trevor Halamicek ................. Team	Leader	Community	Development
Jaclyn Reriti	......................... Health	and	Wellbeing	Coordinator
Matthew Dawson	................. Team	Leader,	Child	and	Family	Services
Di Quigley ............................. Customer	Service	and	Rates	Coordinator
Louisa White	........................ Manager	Community	Development
Amy Gibson ......................... Communications & Marketing Officer (until December 2007)
Jessica Chappell	................. Communications & Marketing Officer
Marcus Collard..................... Municipal	Building	Surveyor
Doug Gowans ...................... Community	Projects	Engineer
Robyn Olsen	........................ Strategic	Planner
Ed Harvey ............................. Development	Manager	(Executive	supervisory	role)
Dean Miller ........................... Director	Corporate	Services	(Executive	supervisory	role)
Sue Morgan	.......................... Community	Representative
Noela Miller	.......................... Community	Representative
June Cameron...................... Community	Representative

10. Stakeholders
•		 Councillors
•		 Managers	and	staff	of	all	Council	Departments
•		 People	with	disabilities	who	live	and/or	work	in	the	Shire,	their	families	and	carers
•		 Organisations	providing	services	to	people	with	disabilities,	consumer	groups	and	service
	 providers	representing	the	issues	of	people	who	have	a	disability
•		 Businesses	who	provide	appropriate	access.




                                                                                                    9
Golden Plains Shire Disability   Action Plan
2008 - 2011




11. References
Victorian Department of Premier and Cabinet, 2006, A Fairer Victoria: Progress and Next
Steps. Melbourne: State Government of Victoria.
Victorian	Department	of	Human	Services,	006,	Disability	Act	006.		Melbourne:	State	
Government	of	Victoria,	Department	of	Human	Services.
Commonwealth Government, 1992, Disability Discrimination Act 1992. Canberra

Human	Rights	and	Equal	Opportunity	Commission	(Online),	from		http:	www.hreoc.gov.au	
Victorian Department of Human Services, 2002, Victorian State Disability Plan 2002-2012.
Melbourne: Disability Services Division.

12. Appendices
Appendix	:	Useful	Terminology	and	Acronyms
“Access for All” -	principles	are	based	on	all	aspects	of	the	DDA	and	ensure	that	no-one	is	
discriminated	against	directly	or	indirectly	through	the	actions	or	inactions	of	Council.		It	also	
includes	equitable	access	and	inclusion	within	the	Shire	to	facilities,	services	and	employment.	
This	approach	recognises	that	planning,	development	and	implementation	for	these	areas	need	
to	include	the	whole	community	regardless	of	levels	of	mobility	or	disability.
A&D -	Aged	and	Disability
Access -	The	term	‘access’	refers	to	the	removal	of	barriers	and	is	generally	used	to	describe	
outcomes. For example, an accessible toilet is one which is modified in a way in which all
members	of	the	community	can	use	the	facility	regardless	of	their	level	of	ability	or	disability.
Access Standards -	any	set	of	standards	which	specify	the	requirements	for	accessibility	
such	as	the	Australian	Standards	for	Access	and	Mobility	and	the	Accessible	Public	Transport	
Standards.
Alternate formats -	This	terminology	is	about	providing	information	in	other	formats	for	people
who	may	have	very	limited	or	no	vision	at	all.	Alternate	formats	that	need	to	be	considered	when	
catering	for	all	levels	of	vision	impairment	include:
   •	Audio - either	audio	cassette,	DVD	or	CD	with	fast	forward	options	to	skip	each	topic	that	is		
   		not	of	interest.	
   •	Large Print - font size minimum 16 points in non serif fonts as described above.
   •	Website -	organisation	websites	need	to	be	compliant	with	the	international	WC	standards
   		for	web	design	and	targeted	content	must	be	in	word	format	(screen	readers	cannot
   		read	PDFs).	
Auslan - visual-gestural	language	used	by	the	deaf	community.
Australian Standards -	Building	standards	legislation	that	includes	‘access	to	premises’	in	the	
AS	8.




0
                                                     Golden Plains Shire Disability   Action Plan
                                                                                        2008 - 2011




Barrier - the	term	‘barrier’	refers	to	an	obstacle	that	may	be	encountered	which	restricts	a	
person	with	a	disability	from	fully	participating	in	community	life.	Access	is	not	just	about	ramps	
and	accessible	toilets.	Barriers	can	include	attitudinal	and	communication	barriers	as	well	
as physical. Barriers can often be easily removed or modified so that the level of acceptable
access	is	increased.	Often	a	person	with	a	disability	is	only	restricted	from	participating	in	an	
activity,	or	accessing	a	service,	not	because	of	the	limitations	imposed	by	their	disability	but	by	
the	limitations	imposed	on	them	from	their	environment	(barriers).	
CALD -	Culturally	and	Linguistically	Diverse.	
CEO - Chief Executive Officer
Communication Board -	a	board	with	pictures	and	symbols	that	people	with	communication	
difficulties use to communicate.
Companion Card - wallet-sized card issued to people with a disability who require the
assistance	of	a	companion	to	access	community	activities	and	venues.	The	card	can	be	
presented	when	booking	or	purchasing	a	ticket	at	events	and	venues,	provided	the	cardholder	
requires	the	assistance	of	a	companion	in	order	to	access	that	particular	activity.	
DAC -	Disability	Advisory	Committee
DAP -	Disability	Action	Plan
DDA -	Disability	Discrimination	Act	99.	Commonwealth	piece	of	legislation	which	protects	the	
rights	of	people	with	a	disability	in	the	areas	of	employment,	education,	access	to	premises,	
provision	of	goods,	services	and	facilities,	accommodations,	buying	land,	activities	of	clubs	and	
associations,	sport	and	administration	of	Commonwealth	Government	laws	and	programs.	
DHS - Department of Human Services
“Good Access is Good Business”	-	is	a	program	providing	information	to	support	businesses	
to	meet	the	legal	and	community	expectations	of	fair	access	for	all	to	goods,	services	and	
opportunities
GPS - Golden	Plains	Shire
Hearing Loop - device	installed	into	a	room	which	allows	people	who	use	hearing	aids	to	hear	
more	clearly.	
HREOC - Human	Rights	and	Equal	Opportunity	Commission.	HREOC	is	responsible	for	
administering	a	range	of	federal	laws	including	the	Disability	Discrimination	Act	99.
JAWS -	interactive	talking	software	for	people	with	a	vision	impairment	which	can	be	used	in	
conjunction	with	the	Microsoft	software	programs.	
MAV -	Municipal	Association	of	Victoria
MetroAccess -	initiative	of	the	Department	of	Human	Services	in	collaboration	with	local	
metropolitan	councils	that	aims	to	build	the	capacity	of	local	communities	so	that	they	are	more	
welcoming	and	inclusive	of	people	with	a	disability.			
MPHP -	Municipal	Public	Health	Plan
National Relay Service (NRS) -	telephone	access	service	available	to	all	Australians	which	
enables	communication	between	a	standard	telephone	and	someone	who	is	deaf	and	uses	TTY.



                                                                                                
Golden Plains Shire Disability    Action Plan
2008 - 2011




Office for Disability	(OfD)	-	OfD	was	established	with	a	mandate	to	put	disability	on	the	agenda	
across the Victorian Government. The Office is the first of its kind for Victoria.
RuralAccess -	initiative	of	the	Department	of	Human	Services	in	collaboration	with	local	rural	
councils	that	aims	to	build	the	capacity	of	local	communities	so	that	they	are	more	welcoming	
and	inclusive	of	people	with	a	disability.			
Screen Reading software -	computer	software	which	reads	aloud	text	on	a	computer	screen	
(see	JAWS).
Section 86 Committees -	Council	elected	and	facilitated	committees.
SMS -	messaging	system	which	can	operate	from	either	mobile	to	mobile	or	web-based	
(computer	to	mobile).
Stakeholders -	people	who	directly	have	an	interest	or	are	active	on	a	particular	project	or	topic.
Style Guide -	a	guide	to	writing,	grammar	and	presentation.
TTY - keyboard	which	connects	into	a	standard	phone	outlet	to	enable	people	who	are	deaf	
to	send	or	receive	messages	to	and	from	other	people	who	also	have	TTY	through	the	phone	
system.
WC3 -	standards	for	website	accessibility	for	people	with	a	vision	impairment	who	may	use	
computer	technology	to	access	web	information.


Appendix 2: Legislation – further information:
Disability	Discrimination	Act	(99)	–	Brief	Summary
The DDA covers everyone with a disability. The DDA also protects relatives, friends, carers and
co-workers of people with disabilities from discrimination.

The objectives of the DDA are:
To	eliminate,	as	far	as	possible,	discrimination	on	the	grounds	of	disability	in	the	areas	of:	
   •	work;	accommodation;	access	to	premises;	and	
   •	the	provision	of	goods;	facilities;	services	and	land	and	
   •	existing	laws	and	
   •	the	administration	of	Commonwealth	laws	and	programs.	

The DDA also protects people with disabilities being discriminated against because:
  •	they	are	accompanied	by	an	assistant,	interpreter	or	reader	or	
  •	they	are	accompanied	by	a	trained	animal,	such	as	a	guide	or	hearing	dog;	or	
  •	they	use	equipment	or	an	aid,	such	as	a	wheelchair	or	a	hearing	aid.	

The DDA specifically applies to the work of Local Government in a number of areas including
Access	 to	 Premises	 (Section	 ),	 Goods,	 Services	 &	 Facilities	 (Section	 ),	 Administration	 of	
Commonwealth	Laws	and	Programs	(Section	9),	Harassment	in	Employment	(Section	)	and	
Harassment	in	relation	to	goods	and	services	(Section	9).





                                                          Golden Plains Shire Disability      Action Plan
                                                                                                2008 - 2011




Types of Discrimination
Direct Discrimination
Direct	discrimination	occurs	when	a	person	with	a	disability	is	treated	less	favourably,	or	it	is	
proposed	to	treat	the	person	less	favourably,	than	a	person	without	the	disability	would	be	
treated	in	similar	circumstances.	
Indirect Discrimination
Indirect	discrimination	occurs	when	a	person	with	a	disability	is	expected	to	comply	with	a	
requirement	or	a	condition	that	is	unreasonable	and	that	cannot	be	complied	with	due	to	the	
disability,	but	which	a	person	without	a	disability	would	generally	be	able	to	comply	with.

The	DDA	covers	access	to	all	the	below:
 Banks,	credit	unions	etc               Libraries, Government offices              Restaurants	and	cafes
                                        and	services
 Cinemas	and	theatres                   Parks	and	gardens	                         Shops	/	stores
 Educational	institutions               Pools	/	leisure	facilities                 Community	centres
 Hospitals,	medical	centres	and	        Public	paths	and	walkways                  Social	clubs
 dental	services	
 Hotels	and	accommodation               Public	toilets                             Sports	and	entertainment	
                                                                                   venues
 Legal	services                         Public	transport	–	trains,	trams,	         Travel	agents	and	tourist	
                                        boats,	planes                              venues	

A Fairer Victoria 2005
A Fairer Victoria 2005 sets out the Victorian State Government’s first steps in an effort to
reduce	disadvantage	in	our	State.	The	report	recognises	that	a	long-term,	whole-of-Government	
approach is essential in ensuring social sustainability. Specific commitments include:
   •	People	with	a	disability	share	the	same	rights	and	responsibilities	as	all	members	of	our	community;
   •	People	with	disabilities	have	the	right	to	access	and	participate	in	the	activities	of	the	community	of			
   	 the	Golden	Plains	Shire;	
   • A person with a disability is an individual first and must not be defined by their disability;
   •	The	needs	of	people	with	disabilities	change	across	their	lifespan,	as	do	the	needs	of	all	people.	
   •	Ensuring	that	universal	services	provide	equal	opportunity	for	all;
   •	Creating	new	opportunities	for	people	with	a	disability;
   •	Making	Victoria	a	more	accessible	place	for	people	with	a	disability.




                                                                                                          
Golden Plains Shire Disability   Action Plan
2008 - 2011




The Disability Act 2006, Section 38 - Disability Action Plans
()	A	public	sector	body	must	ensure	that	a	Disability	Action	Plan	is	prepared	for	the
   purpose	of—
    (a)	reducing	barriers	to	persons	with	a	disability	accessing	goods,	services	and	facilities;
    (b)	reducing	barriers	to	persons	with	a	disability	obtaining	and	maintaining	employment;
    (c)	promoting	inclusion	and	participation	in	the	community	of	persons	with	a	disability;
    (d)	achieving	tangible	changes	in	attitudes	and	practices	which	discriminate	against	persons	
    with	a	disability.

()	Any	plan	lodged	by	a	public	sector	body	or	a	Council	with	the	Human	Rights	and
    Equal	Opportunity	Commission	in	compliance	with	Part		of	the	Commonwealth	Disability	
    Discrimination	Act	99	is	to	be	taken	to	be	a	Disability	Action	Plan	prepared	by	that	public	
    sector	body	or	Council	for	the	purposes	of	this	section.
()	A	public	sector	body	must	report	on	the	implementation	of	their	Disability	Action	Plan	in	its
    annual	report.
()	If	a	Council	determines	to	prepare	a	Disability	Action	Plan,	the	Disability	Action	Plan	should	
    be	consistent	with	this	section.
(5)	If	a	Council	determines	not	to	prepare	a	Disability	Action	Plan,	the	Council	must	ensure	that
    the	matters	referred	to	in	sub-section	()	are	addressed	in	the	Council	Plan	prepared	under	
    the	Local	Government	Act	989.
(6)	In	this	section—
   “Council” has	the	same	meaning	as	it	has	in	section	()	of	the	Local Government Act 1989;
   “public sector body”	means—
    (a)	a	Department	within	the	meaning	of	section	()	of	the Public Administration Act 2004;
    (b)	a	statutory	authority	which	is	prescribed	for	the	purposes	of	this	section;
    (c)	a	statutory	corporation	which	is	prescribed	for	the	purposes	of	this	section.

Appendix 3: Summary of Community Consultation
A	process	of	consultation	with	residents,	service	providers	and	staff	was	undertaken	mid	007.	
The summary of their responses has been grouped in accordance with the identified DAP
objectives:

Services for the community:
 •	Emergency	responses	need	to	be	developed	for	people	with	a	disability
 •	Confusion	over	service	provision	boundaries	between	Ballarat	and	Geelong	(no	service
 	 	agreements)
 •	Not	enough	communication	re:	service	delivery	between	services
 •	Not	enough	carers	to	service	residents
 •	Public	transport
 •	Need	windows	cleaned	and	more	home	maintenance	services
 •	Need	podiatrist.




                                                     Golden Plains Shire Disability   Action Plan
                                                                                        2008 - 2011




Corporate planning for the community:	
 • The economic development strategy identifies that providing health and disability services
   could	be	a	major	employer	in	the	Shire	and	therefore	we	would	work	towards	providing			           	
   these	services
 •	Policies	need	a	review	with	access	in	mind.

Communications for the community:
   •	Lots	of	work	to	be	undertaken	re:	accessible	Council	information	to	ensure	it	is	available	in
					alternate	formats	
   •	Need	accessible	website
   • Stationery font size too small.

The built environment for the Community Offices:
 •	“Linton	not	wheel	chair	friendly	but	I	often	meet	people	on-site”	
 •	No	disabled	toilets
 •	Bannockburn	has	heavy	manual	front	doors,	high	reception
 • Offices not appropriate for staff with a disability
 •	No	ramps	or	rails,	heavy	doors.

Accommodating staff members with a disability:
   • Wheelchair may be difficult to cater for
   •	“It	would	be	hard	for	someone	in	a	wheelchair	to	work	as	a	Maternal	&	Child	Health	Nurse	
   	 	with	home	visits	and	examining	babies,	but	I’m	sure	there	would	be	a	way	around	that.”
   •	Access	requirements	to	building	sites	would	prevent	some	people	from	being	able	to	conduct
		 		the	work	required.

Complaints received:
 • Accessibility to Linton Office
 •	Access	to	Smythesdale	recreation	centre
 •	Gravel	paths.

General:
 •	Not	enough	footpaths
 •	Not	enough	accessible	parking	bays
 •	Waterways	need	to	be	cleared	for	accessibility	to	edges
 •	Not	enough	accessible	retail	outlets
 • Inverleigh post office inaccessible.




                                                                                                 5
Golden Plains Shire Disability     Action Plan
2008 - 2011




Appendix 4: Methodology	
The development of the DAP has been based on the following procedures:
 •	A	general	information	session	about	the	need	for	a	DAP	to	Senior	Management	Team	at	the
 		Shire
 •	Presentation	of	the	same	information	to	Councillors
 •	Recruitment	of	community	members	to	a	reference	group
 •	A	general	information	session	about	the	DDA	and	the	processes	for	developing	a	DAP	was
 	 held	for	selected	members	of	staff	and	community	members	who	make	up	the	DAP
 	 Reference	Group
 •	Media	campaign	launched	through	print	media,	local	newsletters,	client	newsletters,
 	 RuralAccess	newsletters	and	community	coordinators	to	raise	awareness	of	the	consultation
 •	Consultation	performed	and	analysed	with	input	from	service	providers,	residents	and	staff
 •	Each	reference	group	member	allocated	to	provide	departmental	strategies	based	on	the
 	 consultation	results,	personal	knowledge	and	a	‘wish	list’
 •	Development	of	framework	for	draft	Plan
 •	Presentation	of	draft	to	GPS	Full	Management	Team	for	approval
 •	Presentation	of	draft	to	GPS	Human	Services	Committee	and	Council	for	approval	and	adoption
 •	Publication	in	alternate	formats
 •	Public	launch	arranged
 •	Distribution	to	interested	community	members.

Appendix 5: Etiquette for communicating with people with a disability
It	is	not	uncommon	for	people	to	be	uncomfortable	around	individuals	with	disabilities	because	they	
are	unsure	of	what	to	do,	what	is	correct,	and	what	will	offend.	The	best	strategy	is	to	be	sensitive	and	
flexible. A lack of sensitivity or flexibility makes situations awkward at best, and at worst it can cause
unintentional discrimination. Talking about disability is often difficult, partly because the terminology is
unclear	and	laden	with	connotations.
The	accepted	terminology,	“person	with	a	disability,”	puts	the	emphasis	on	the	person,	not	the	limitations	
or disability. Treat people as people. Address people who have disabilities by their first names only when
extending	the	same	familiarity	to	all	others.	
Don’t	assume	you	know	what	the	disability	is.	Many	different	conditions	can	present	in	similar	ways.	
Some	disabilities	are	“invisible”	–	they	are	not	immediately	obvious	when	you	are	speaking	to	the	
person	but	they	may	still	face	challenges	in	communicating	with	you.	Relate	to	the	individual	person	and	
respond	to	their	individual	needs.
Different	cultures	also	view	disability	differently	and	may	not	share	the	common	view	of	disability	as	a	
physical	or	physiological	issue.	Be	aware	that	people	from	other	cultures	may	be	embarrassed	if	you	
draw	attention	to	the	person	with	a	disability.
Above	all,	use	common	sense,	be	respectful,	polite,	considerate,	offer	assistance,	communicate	and	
don’t	hesitate	to	ask	questions.	Treat	all	people	in	the	same	way	you	would	wish	to	be	treated	yourself.




6
                                                       Golden Plains Shire Disability         Action Plan
                                                                                               2008 - 2011




Correct Terminology
 Say:                                              Avoid saying:
 ✓	Person	with	a	disability                        ✘	victim,	suffers	from,	deformed

 ✓	person	with	cerebral	palsy	or	vision
                                                   ✘ afflicted by/with, or blind/can’t see
   impairment	etc.

                                                   ✘	crippled,	the	crippled,	crippling,	invalid,	
 ✓	person	with	a	physical	disability	
                                                     spastic

 ✓	person	who	uses	a	wheelchair                    ✘ wheelchair bound, confined to a wheelchair

 ✓	person	with	a	hearing	impairment,
                                                   ✘	deaf	and	dumb,	deaf	mute,	mute
   hearing	loss	or	person	who	is	deaf	

 ✓	accessible	parking,	accessible	toilets,	etc.    ✘	Disabled	toilets,	handicapped	parking,etc.

Note: Place the emphasis on the person not the disability. Remember that people with disabilities
are as diverse as others. They may have terminology preferences that should be respected.

Communication tips:
 Do:                                               Don’t
 ✓	Look	at	the	individual	when	addressing          ✘	Tell	an	individual	you	admire	his/her
   him	or	her.                                       courage	or	determination.
 ✓	Ask	an	individual	about	the	best	way	to         ✘	Stare	at	or	avoid	looking	at	a	visible
   communicate	if	you	are	unsure.                    disability.
 ✓	Speak	directly	to	a	person	with	a               ✘	Express	sympathy	for	the	individual.
   disability,	even	if	he	or	she	is	accompanied	
   by	a	person	without	a	disability

 ✓	Offer	assistance	if	it	appears	necessary,       ✘	Presume	the	individual	is	more	fragile
   but	don’t	assume	he	or	she	will	accept	it.	       or	sensitive	than	others.
   Wait	for	acceptance	and	instruction	before	
   proceeding.	Respect	peoples	wishes.
 ✓	Extend	your	hand	to	shake	when                  ✘	Assume	someone	with	a	speech	or
   meeting	someone,	even	someone	with	a	             hearing	impediment	is	intellectually
   physical	disability.                              impaired.
 ✓	If	you	offer	assist,	wait	for	acceptance        ✘	Feel	uncomfortable	using	the	word	“see”
   and	instructions	before	proceeding.	              when	addressing	a	person	with	a	vision	
   Remember	that	not	everyone	will	want	or	          impairment,	or	“hear”	when	addressing
   need	assistance,	and	their	wishes	should	         a		person	with	a	hearing	impairment.
   be	respected.

Note:	
A ramp that makes a doorway accessible helps people using wheelchairs, or who have recently
had a hip replacement as well as people pushing strollers, or delivering items in trolleys.


                                                                                                      7
Golden Plains Shire Disability   Action Plan
2008 - 2011




Communicating or supporting people with ...
... a hearing impairment
   •	To	get	a	person’s	attention,	gently	touch	the	person	on	the	shoulder	or	tactfully	wave	your
   	 hand.	
   •	Make	sure	the	person	is	looking	at	you	when	you	speak	to	them.
   •	Be	aware	of	room	or	window	lighting	and	position	yourself	to	ensure	maximum	light	on	your
   	 face	so	that	they	may	read	your	lips.
   •	Look	directly	at	the	person	and	speak	clearly,	especially	if	the	person	wishes	to	lip-read.	You
   	 may	also	want	to	speak	a	little	bit	slower.	Do	not	exaggerate	lip	movements.
   • Be flexible. If the person doesn’t understand something, reword it instead of simply
   	 repeating	it.		Use	notes	or	visual	expressions	/	clues	to	illustrate	what	you	are	saying.
   •	You	can	always	use	a	pad	and	pencil	to	communicate	if	it	becomes	necessary.	
   •	Reduce	unnecessary	background	noise	–	this	can	interfere	with	hearing	aids	and	make
     communication difficult.
   •	Do	not	shout.	It	may	not	be	necessary	or	appropriate.	
   •	Ask	if	the	person	can	hear	you	and	how	they	would	prefer	to	communicate.		
   •	Ask	short	clear	questions	that	require	only	short	answers	if	possible.	
   •	Don’t	refer	to	a	deaf	person	as	“deaf	and	dumb.”	Some	people	who	are	deaf	can	speak,		 	
   	 others	are	“nonverbal”	and	use	sign	language.
   •	Relax	and	don’t	be	embarrassed	if	you	use	terms	like	“Did	you	hear	about….”
   •	Make	sure	the	person	has	understood	you.	If	not	sure,	write	it	down	anyway.
   •	If	there	is	a	sign	language	interpreter	present,	face	the	individual	when	talking,	not	the
   	 interpreter.	
   •	Position	a	signing	interpreter	so	that	he	or	she	is	near	you	and	visible.	
   •	Do	not	walk	between	the	interpreter	and	the	person.
   •	In	a	group,	speak	one	at	a	time	and	ensure	you	have	eye	contact	before	speaking.

... a vision impairment
   •	Speak	directly	to	the	person	in	a	normal	tone	of	voice.	
   •	Don’t	shout.	Vision	problems	and	deafness	are	not	related	impairments.	
   •	When	meeting,	identify	yourself	and	others	with	you.	When	conversing	in	a	group,	identify	to
   	 whom	you	are	addressing.	
   •	Offer	assistance	if	it	appears	necessary,	but	pay	attention	to	the	person’s	response	-	take			
   	 your	cues	from	him	or	her.	
   • Be specific with verbal directions to places, give approximate distances and don’t use
   		comments	like,	“Over	there...”.	
   •	Do	not	presume	that	the	person	can’t	see	anything,	if	appropriate	it	is	OK	to	ask	what	they
   	 can	see.
   • When preparing printed information, ensure that font size is at least 16 and preferably in a
   	 plain	font,	(for	example	–	‘Arial’)	and	avoid	using	coloured	paper	where	possible.
   •	Ensure	good	lighting	–	subdued	lighting	or	very	bright	lighting	makes	things	particularly		 	
     difficult for people with vision problems.




8
                                                    Golden Plains Shire Disability   Action Plan
                                                                                       2008 - 2011




   •	Walk	alongside	and	slightly	ahead	of	the	person;	don’t	hold	onto	the	person’s	arm,	allow		 	
   	 them	to	take	your	arm	if	they	need	assistance.	
   •	Avoid	escalators	and	revolving	doors	if	possible.	On	the	stairs,	assist	the	person	by	putting		
   	 his	or	her	hand	on	the	railing.	Always	give	the	person	an	option	when	using	stairs,	escalators		
   	 or	a	lift.
   •	When	seating	people,	put	the	person’s	hand	on	the	back	of	the	chair.	
   •	Don’t	leave	people	who	are	blind	in	an	open	area	or	without	saying	that	you	are	leaving.		 	
   	 When	you	leave,	lead	the	person	to	a	landmark	so	he	or	she	can	get	a	sense	of	direction.	
   •	Do	not	move	items	that	the	person	is	familiar	with	in	their	environment.	
   •	Do	not	pat	a	guide	dog	-	you	may	distract	the	dog	from	its	important	job.	
   •	Relax	and	don’t	be	embarrassed	if	you	use	terms	like	“See	what	I	mean?”	or	“See	you	later”.
   •	Close	or	open	doors	fully	rather	than	leaving	them	ajar.
   •	Ask	people	with	a	vision	impairment	what	they	need	and	want.
   •	Speak	directly	to	the	person	rather	than	directing	questions	through	their	companion.	

... a physical disability
   •	If	possible,	be	seated	so	the	person	doesn’t	have	to	look	up.	Communicate	at	eye	level	with		
   	 the	person.	Speak	directly	to	the	individual,	not	to	a	person	who	is	assisting	him	or	her.	
   •	Don’t	shout.	Deafness	and	physical	disabilities	are	not	related	impairments.	
   •	Never	patronise	people	who	use	wheelchairs	by	patting	them	on	the	head	or	shoulder.
   •	Ensure	that	they	have	a	clear	pathway	to	their	intended	destination	and	at	meetings	or
   	 restaurants,	make	a	chair-free	space	at	the	table	for	the	wheelchair	user
   •	Push	the	wheelchair	only	when	asked.	Don’t	presume	a	person	in	a	wheelchair	needs	your		
   	 help	to	push	him	or	her.
   •	When	assisting	in	going	up	or	down	a	curb,	ask	if	he	or	she	prefers	going	forward	or		      	
   	 backward.	
   •	Keep	the	chair	tilted	back	when	assisting	on	steps.	
   •	Be	prepared	-	learn	the	locations	of	ramps	and	accessible	facilities.	
   •	Never	hang	or	lean	on	a	person’s	wheelchair	-	the	chair	is	part	of	one’s	personal	body	space	 	
   	 and	hanging	on	it	can	be	very	annoying.	
   •	NEVER	presume	that	a	non	verbal	person	does	not	understand	what	you	are	saying.


… a speech impairment
The following are some tips for talking to people with speech that is difficult to understand.
Some people may have difficulty understanding speech as well but many do not – don’t assume.
   •	Don’t	raise	your	voice	they	may	not	be	deaf.
   •	Talk	in	a	quiet	environment	if	possible.
   •	Be	patient	and	don’t	take	over	the	conversation	because	you	are	afraid	you	won’t		 	      	
   	 understand	the	person	speaking.
   •	Don’t	be	afraid	to	ask	the	person	to	repeat	themselves,	they	are	aware	their	speech	is	hard		
   	 to	understand.




                                                                                               9
Golden Plains Shire Disability   Action Plan
2008 - 2011




   •	Ask	the	person	to	rephrase	with	different	words	if	you	can’t	understand.
   •	If	the	person	is	using	a	communication	aid,	refrain	from	reading	the	screen	as	they	type.
   •	Don’t	pretend	to	understand	if	you	haven’t.
   •	Ask	if	there	is	someone	nearby	to	interpret	for	you.
   •	Acknowledge	if	you	have	not	been	successful	despite	all	efforts	and	ask	whether	the		     	
   	 message	was	urgent.
   •	Never	presume	that	a	person	who	is	non	verbal	does	not	understand	what	you	are	saying,		
   	 they	may	require	the	assistance	of	a	communication	aid.


... a cognitive impairment
A	cognitive	impairment	is	a	disability	which	affects	a	person’s	ability	to	process	information.	It	
may	be	due	to	an	intellectual	disability	which	a	person	was	born	with	or	it	may	be	due	to	an	
acquired	brain	injury	like	a	stroke	or	injury	to	the	head.	People	with	a	cognitive	impairment	
vary	greatly	in	their	abilities,	so	always	respond	to	the	individuals	needs	rather	than	making	
assumptions	about	their	abilities.
   •	Be	patient.
   •	Make	instructions	clear	and	brief,	but	don’t	be	condescending	-	they	deserve	your	respect.
   •	Don’t	be	frustrated	if	you	have	to	repeat	yourself.	
   •	Don’t	be	afraid	to	ask	the	person	to	repeat	something	if	you	don’t	understand.
   •	Pay	attention,	particularly	if	the	person	has	a	speech	impediment.	Don’t	complete	sentences	
     for	him	or	her.	
   •	Speak	directly	to	the	individual,	not	to	a	person	who	is	assisting	him	or	her.	
   •	Sometimes	it	may	be	helpful	to	write	information	down	or	to	use	pictures	for	people	who	have	
     difficulty with memory. Ask if they would like you to write it down.


… mental illness
One in five adults will experience a mental health problem at some time in their life. Mental
health	issues	at	different	times	can	cause	changes	to	a	persons	thinking,	perception,	feeling	
and	emotional	state.	These	changes	can	lead	to	behaviours	that	are	out	of	context	and	do	not	
match	the	situation	as	you	would	expect.	People	living	with	mental	illness	usually	manage	these	
symptoms	with	medication	and	support.
Social interaction can often be difficult for a person experiencing and period of illness. Be
non-judgemental	and	allow	time	for	interaction	and	decision	making.	If	a	person	speaks	slowly	or	
appears	unfocussed,	it	is	usually	due	to	the	impact	of	the	illness	or	medication.	
If	you	are	interacting	with	a	person	and	you	notice	that	the	person:
    •	Is	disoriented	and	responding	to	events	and	perceptions	that	you	do	not	share,	this	indicates	
      that	the	person	may	have	lost	touch	with	reality.
    •	Is	becoming	highly	anxious	and	frightened	to	the	extent	that	the	belief	of	threat	is	governing	
      their	behaviour,	this	indicates	paranoia.
    •	Is	displaying	unusual	or	inappropriate	behaviour	or	emotion.
    •	Be	calm!




0
                                                 Golden Plains Shire Disability    Action Plan
                                                                                    2008 - 2011




•		Read	the	body	language	to	assess	the	situation.	Non	verbal	communication	can	be	very	
   helpful	in	times	of	confusion.	Allow	the	person	their	space	and	initially	avoid	eye	contact	and	
   touch.
•	Show	understanding	and	compassion.	Empathise	with	their	feelings	without	necessarily	
   agreeing	with	what	is	being	said.
•		Ask	how	you	can	help.	The	person	may	ask	you	to	sit	with	them,	they	may	be	carrying	an	
   emergency	contact	number	that	you	could	ring.		Respect	the	person’s	situation	and	do	not	
   pressure	your	assistance	on	them.
•		Don’t	take	things	personally.	Remember	that	the	individual	may	not	have	the	insight	into	
   their	behaviour	and	its	impact	on	other	people.
•	Use	short	clear	direct	sentences	to	minimise	confusion	and	keep	your	voice	tone	low	and	
   unhurried.
•	Do	talk	to	the	individual	again.	Symptoms	of	a	serious	episode	are	successfully	managed	
   with	medication	and	support.	See	the	person	not	the	illness.	




                                                                                             
Golden Plains Shire Disability   Action Plan
2008 - 2011




Appendix 6: Useful Government contacts

 Organisation       Role                                 Contact information

 Human	Rights	      Disability	rights,	information	on	   PH:	00	69	7
 and	Equal          the	Disability	Discrimination	Act	   TTY:	800	60	
 Opportunities	     and	guidelines	to	developing	a	      Fax:	(0)	98	96
 Commission         Disability	Action	Plan	              Website:	www.hreoc.gov.au


                                                         PH:	98	7
 Equal              Victorian	Legislation,	
                                                         TTY:	98	70
 Opportunity        rights	and	responsibility	
                                                         Fax:	(0)	98	77
 Commission         and	training
                                                         Website:	www.eoc.vic.gov.au


                                                         PH:	00	650	7		
                    Information	on	Victorian	            Fax:	(0)	9096	90		
 Department	of	
                    disability	services	and	             Email:	disability.services@dhs.vic.gov.au	
 Human	Services
                    service	providers                    TTY:	(0)	9096	0	
                                                         Website:	www.dhs.vic.gov.au


                    OfD	was	established	with	a	          PH:	908	05		
                    mandate	to	put	disability	on	the	    TTY:	908	6		
 Office for
                    agenda	across	the	Victorian	         Fax:	908	6
 Disability	
                    Government. The Office is the        Email:	OFD@dpcd.vic.gov.au
                    first of its kind for Victoria.      Website: www.officefordisability.vic.gov.au


 Building                                                PH:	0	985	600
                    The	BC	administers	all	building	
 Commission                                              Fax:	0	985	66
                    legislation	and	regulations
 (Victoria)                                              Website:	www.buildingcommission.com.au


                    The	ABCB	is	a	joint	                 PH:	00		6
 Australian
                    commonwealth	initiative	of	          Fax:	6	787
 Building	Codes	
                    all	levels	of	Government	and	        Website:	www.abcb.gov.au
 Board
                    the	building	industry                Email: abcb.office@abcb.gov.au


 Municipal
                    The	MAV	is	the	peak	body	and	        PH:	0	9667	5555
 Association	of	
                    advocate	for	Victorian	Councils      Website:	www.mav.asn.au
 Victoria





        Golden Plains Shire Disability   Action Plan
                                          2008 - 2011




Notes
Golden Plains Shire Disability   Action Plan
2008 - 2011




Notes
        Golden Plains Shire Disability   Action Plan
                                          2008 - 2011




Notes
      2 Pope Street, Bannockburn 68 Sussex Street, Linton
                      phone: (03) 5220 7111
email: enquiries@gplains.vic.gov.au www.goldenplains.vic.gov.au

				
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