Can you imagine being so restricted by toilet options that you would choose to stay at home rather than head to the football, or go to dinner with family or friends, or even to be part of the workforce?
This is the very real experience of people living with a severe or profound disability, including their families, friends and/or carers.
The Plug-in recently attended a forum hosted by the Department of Communities and Social Inclusion and hear about the State Government’s push toward access and social inclusion for people with a disability by funding Changing Places accessible toilets across the state. These toilets differ from more common accessible toilets and are designed for people with a severe or profound disability. They include a height-adjustable adult-sized change table, a tracking hoist system, non-slip flooring, and increased space to accommodate a person in a wheelchair and up to two carers.
Do we have any in South Australia yet? Well, the short answer is no, however the South Australian Government has committed $1.7 million in funding to develop some and we will soon see Changing Places in popular areas such as Rundle Mall, Adelaide Oval, Glenelg, and the U-City development in Franklin Street.
Changing Places are also set to be built in the regional cities of Port Lincoln, Whyalla, Victor Harbour and Mount Gambier. Marveloos is a portable changing place, and two are also being funded to support major community events.
It is exciting to know this will soon change for a lot of people as South Australia joins other states in supporting the development of Changing Places to better assist the social inclusion of people with a disability.
Read more about Changing Places here.