Kymberly Martin
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Disability survey callout: For Far North Qld.

 People with disability living in Far North Queensland are being encouraged to participate in a survey intended to help improve accessibility across the Cairns region.

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The goal of the Community Access and Inclusion Survey, which is being run by Mission Australian, is to understand the experiences of people living with a disability in the six council areas across the Far North.

NDIS Cairns service area manager, Sarah Brown said the survey was an important opportunity for council and community leaders to understand ways to reduce barriers in the community.

“The purpose of the 2020 survey is to hear from, and work with, the community to find practical solutions to ensure the Far North is accessible and inclusive for everyone who calls this region home,” Brown said.

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“It provides an avenue for respondents to discuss how included they feel in their community and allows them to identify specific projects and initiatives they would like delivered to improve access in their local area.”

This year’s survey followed the success of a similar initiative last year.

“Around 150 people completed the survey last year and Mission Australia took those results to the region’s local councils. In response, the Douglas Shire Council is establishing the accessibility and inclusion group, which is dedicated to ensuring equal opportunity and allocation of resources to all residents,” she said.  The survey has been translated into Auslan to give more people the opportunity to be heard.  

Cairns mayor, Bob Manning said the Cairns Regional Council was always looking for ways to make Cairns a more inclusive city. “From improving access for people using a wheelchair to installing braille and tactile street name signs, we are continuing to find ways to remove barriers for people to participate in activities within the community and improve the quality of life for people with disability,” he said. “Initiatives like this survey can help identify areas for improvement and enhancement.”

 The survey can be completed here. It closes December 9, 2020.