Removing barriers for disabled people in 2014

  • Nicky Wagner
Disability Issues

The release of the Annual Report on implementation of the New Zealand Disability Strategy highlights several significant achievements and gains for the disability community in 2014, says Minister for Disability Issues Nicky Wagner.

Achievements in the Report include:

  • Expansion of the Enabling Good Lives approach
  • New funding for New Zealand Sign Language
  • Approval of the Disability Action Plan 2014-18 and the new way in which Government works with Disabled People’s Organisations
  • The review into the accessibility of public buildings for disabled people
  • Examination on the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities

“Each of these achievements on their own represents a gain in removing barriers for disabled people, and ensuring they have good lives like all New Zealanders,” Ms Wagner says.

“But taken together, they provide an overall picture that New Zealand can be proud of.

“Enabling Good Lives is a new approach that gives disabled people and their families more choice and control over the support they receive. The approach has been demonstrated in Christchurch for just over a year and I’m pleased it has recently been expanded to the Waikato.

“New Zealand Sign Language (NZSL) is one of our official languages and is an important part of deaf people’s identity. This year the Government agreed to establish a NZSL Advisory Board and Fund to promote the language.

“I am also proud of the change in the way Government works in partnership with Disabled People’s Organisations as representatives of disabled people. This ensures the issues that matter to disabled people are reflected in the delivery of disability policy and disability services.

“I look forward to building on the good work achieved, and to make more positive change for disabled people and their families in 2015 and beyond,” Ms Wagner says.

The report can be found here: