1 December 2021
Three of Australia’s biggest states will opt out of new building construction standards designed to improve accessibility features for people living with disabilities.
The changes would require all new buildings to have basic accessibility features such as at least one step-free entrance, a toilet on the entry-level, and reinforced walls in the bathroom.
New South Wales, Western Australia and South Australia have all said they will not incorporate the new National Construction Code (NCC) standards into their own state-based laws.
Chair of Catholic Social Services Australia, Francis Sullivan, said people living with disabilities are being ignored by major governments yet again.
“This is a significant issue for people living with disabilities who rent,” Mr Sullivan said.
“They don’t have a say over how the homes they are living in are built, they can’t make changes and they can’t renovate.
“Too often they are stuck with poor access and a house that is not fit for purpose.”
While the NCC sets safety, accessibility and sustainability standards for buildings in Australia, they do not need to be incorporated into state-based legislation. All other states and territories have agreed to implement the new standards.
“It seems that if you are living with a disability, you just are not seen by some Governments,” Mr Sullivan said.
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