At the close of the inaugural universal design conference in 2014 there was a call from delegates to set up a centre for universal design in Australia. In the final panel session “Where to from Here”, Ageing and Disability Commissioner The Hon Susan Ryan spoke passionately for it, along with other members of the panel. Kathryn Greiner AO, Chair of the Ministerial Advisory Committee on Ageing, also added her support. This website was the first step.
The second step was to set up a not-for-profit organisation. That step has now been completed with the minimum three founding directors. There are five more positions on the board to be filled and the call for expressions of interest is now open. People passionate about universal design in all its forms are invited to submit. There will be two main tasks for the board: to oversee the governance of the organisation, and to seek funds and support. All tasks will need to be carried out voluntarily by board members until such time as we can employ staff. To be clear, there is no money as yet for travel for face to face meetings. The number and timing of meetings and operational tasks will be decided by the board members once they are appointed. The call for expressions of interest will close 12 September 2016.
An announcement about the establishment of the Centre and call for expressions of interest will be made at the 2nd Australian Universal Design Conference on the afternoon of 31 August 2016.
Picture shows Dr Ger Craddock, Chief Officer, Centre for Excellence in Universal Design in Ireland speaking as a member of the final panel session.
Jane Bringolf, Editor