Return to the Brisbane Access and Inclusion page.
Table of contents
- Lord Mayor's introduction
- Executive summary
- Our shared vision for Brisbane
- A profile of people who benefit from better access and inclusion in Brisbane
- Council's history of access and inclusion initiatives
- Reflection on Council's changing approach to access and inclusion
- How this plan was developed
- Implementation, monitoring and reporting
- An innovative local government role
Brisbane residents have access to a broad range of community facilities providing recreational, social and cultural opportunities in suburbs across the city. Council is responsible for most local and district community facilities in Brisbane including:
- 20 public swimming pools and aquatic centres
- 14 suburban community halls that are available for groups and families
- 550 community leases such as sports and recreation clubs, community arts groups, Meals on Wheels and seniors' centres
- outdoor recreation facilities, sports fields and hard courts across the city and suburbs
Other important local facilities used for community purposes are owned by the Queensland Government (state schools, TAFEs and community health centres), universities, religious organisations, sports, recreation and service clubs and community organisations.
Where we are
Council is committed to providing accessible and inclusive community facilities. Our challenge is that our portfolio of community facilities includes many old community halls, scouts huts, guides huts, sports clubs and other structures that are either partly or fully inaccessible.
Of the 20 public swimming pools Council owns around the city, nine have access ramps and four have pool access hoists to assist in lifting people in and out of the pool. In 2009 and 2010, new pools at Runcorn, Mt Gravatt East and Colmslie were built with high levels of accessibility, and the upgrades to the Manly and Ithaca pools have included new access ramps into the pools.
The vast majority of Council's community facilities are leased to community groups across the city and are managed by volunteers who have different levels of appreciation and understanding of the diverse needs within the community.
Council's community grants fund non-profit organisations to upgrade their facilities. Some recent examples have had a focus on access and inclusion:
- Community Initiatives Resource Association, West End, construction of a ramp to provide access to community centre
- Women's Legal Service, Annerley, building renovation provided for disability access
- PCYC Bayside Branch, Lota, installing a ramp for the hydrotherapy pool
- Autism Queensland Inc, Brighton, developing a sensory-based recreational space
Where we want to be
We want Brisbane residents and visitors to connect with one another in local community halls, sports clubs, swimming pools and other community meeting places.
- Ensure all Council owned community facilities are accessible, fit for purpose and have good asset and risk management plans that maintain public safety.
- Provide accessible signage regarding facilities and services, and documentation in accessible formats using clear and concise language.
- Improve staff awareness of access and inclusion issues, enhance their skills to relate to users with different types of needs and provide advice to stakeholders enquiring about accessibility.
- Encourage inclusion of all community members in a variety of activities through proactive programming.
- Provide leadership through practical good practice examples, where appropriate, to demonstrate to other community facility owners the value of providing access and inclusion features over and above the minimum standards.
Existing actions that will continue
Audit and retrofitting community halls
We will continue to audit and retrofit community halls to enhance accessibility.
Accessible public swimming pools
As we build new or upgrade existing swimming pools, we will continue to include improvements to access. We will review our swimming pool asset management plans and prioritise capital works that address access issues.
Planning more accessible facilities
When planning for construction or refurbishment of our local community facilities, we will continue to focus on design for universal access (and, where appropriate, particular accessibility features to make them fit-for-purpose) from the initial briefing through to final specifications and operational arrangements.
We will continue to provide community grants for non-profit organisations to upgrade their facilities and over the life of this plan will prioritise allocations to projects with a focus on enhancing access and inclusion.
New initiatives or extensions
- Community facilities – accessibility audits. We will equip staff with an easy-to-use audit tool (developed in New initiative 3.1.2) to assess the accessibility of our community facilities when they do regular condition audits and look at practical ways to improve accessibility.
- Promoting access in community leased facilities. We will work with community organisations that lease our community facilities and support them to understand the benefits of accessible facilities and to take appropriate action to be more inclusive in their programs.
- Supporting community lessees to provide access enhancements. When groups that lease our community facilities want to renovate or make improvements, we will review their plans to ensure they provide appropriately for universal access and provide advice, information and support to enhance access and inclusion.
- Access awareness training. We will develop and deliver a training program for people who manage our community facilities on enhancing accessibility and inclusion of their facilities.
- Review provision of heated pools across Brisbane. We will review the demand for heated pools for therapy and, if necessary, plan for expanded provision over the life of this plan in partnership with other providers such as Queensland Health.