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
The social, cultural, physical and environmental wellbeing of our diverse communities is critical to maintaining our current high standard of living in Brisbane. Council provides a variety of community programs giving opportunities for all Brisbane residents to:
- Experience the support of inclusive, safe and diverse communities.
- Be part of a vibrant arts and cultural scene.
- Stay active and healthy.
- Appreciate Council's libraries as hubs for lifelong learning.
- Contribute to a more sustainable and environmentally friendly city.
What you have told us
When we asked for feedback on the draft plan, we learned about six key community concerns related to Council's community programs. A response to each concern has been identified in the relevant section of this plan.
Need for monitoring, reporting and partnerships to inform implementation of this plan
Brisbane's access advocates are keen to see Council develop mechanisms for ongoing monitoring and partnerships to inform the implementation of this plan. Transparency is important, and Council should put in place a reporting process that is open and accountable, identifies annual priorities and provides feedback along the way.
Reluctance to access mainstream community services and programs
Many people with a disability experience ‘siloing' of services and opportunities. Many do not access services and programs run by mainstream community organisations as their experience is that these do not meet their needs so they gravitate to specialised disability services and programs. Some mainstream organisations, on the other hand, are keen to know how to make their services and programs more accessible and inclusive.
Social isolation is significant for people with a disability from culturally and linguistically diverse communities
Many people with a disability who do not speak English well are in a position of multiple disadvantage, often socially isolated in their own communities and unable to access Council programs or disability support services. Some disability support organisations, on the other hand, are keen to promote themselves to a wider range of cultural groups.
Many arts and cultural events are not inclusive
Over 40% of survey respondents agree they are able to easily attend Council's recreational and cultural activities but this drops to 26% for respondents with disabilities. More than 37% of respondents do not attend any events, increasing to 43% of those with disabilities. There are several reasons for this.
- many are held at inaccessible sites lacking accessible toilets
- some ticketed events do not honour the Companion Card
- there is usually little information about how events have been made accessible
- wayfinding in a crowded and chaotic temporary festival environment with uneven gravel paths is often very challenging
- people who experience sensory overload need quiet ‘time-out' space to get away from the intensity that may trigger behavioural issues
Limited awareness of Companion Cards
Council has not had a consistent approach to the Companion Card which provides free entry to venues for the card owner's companion. Some of our venues have been proactive while others have not and there is limited awareness in the community of the benefits available through these cards.
Brisbane lacks accessible short-stay accommodation
There are not enough accessible hotel rooms and holiday apartments in Brisbane. Many that advertise themselves as accessible are not and there is not a reliable source of information for visitors who often show up and find they can't get over a step-up entry or through a narrow doorway. There is a growing international market in accessible hospitality and travel but people coming to Brisbane for business have had to stay on the Gold Coast.