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Departmental Correspondence

Dáil Éireann Debate, Thursday - 7 October 2021

Thursday, 7 October 2021

Questions (112)

Thomas Gould

Question:

112. Deputy Thomas Gould asked the Minister for Children, Equality, Disability, Integration and Youth if Cork City Council has presented her with the results of an accessibility audit undertaken in the city and if he will request same. [48658/21]

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Written answers (Question to Children)

Neither I nor Minister O'Gorman, have yet received the results of the audit the Deputy mentioned but I look forward to reviewing it in due course.

Both I and Minister O'Gorman are supportive of all measures that seek to improve the experience of those with disabilities in their everyday lives. I recently lent support to the 'Make Way Day' initiative which asks all members of the community to consider the needs of people with disabilities in the public spaces we all use and share. This is particularly relevant at a time that we are using our open spaces more than we have ever done.

The National Disability Inclusion Strategy (now extended to 2022) contains a number of actions to improve accessibility generally. These include improving the accessibility of websites and the customer communications of the public sector. The actions also cover the accessibility of public buildings and also of public transport. I chair the NDIS Steering Group which monitors the implementation of these actions.

More widely, the Disability Act 2005 established the Centre for Excellence in Universal Design, at the National Disability Authority, which is a public body under the aegis of my Department. The Centre is dedicated to the principle of universal access, enabling people in Ireland to participate in a society that takes account of human difference and to interact with their environment to the best of their ability. This includes public places in the built environment such as buildings, streets or spaces that the public have access to; products and services provided in those places; and systems that are available including information and communications technology (ICT).

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