UD Policy Document

Front cover of the policy statement.Having a universal design policy statement to go beyond access compliance is a relatively new thing. And it is a lot of work to start it from scratch. Fortunately Hobsons Bay Council in Victoria has a good example to refer to. Their Universal Design Policy Statement for council buildings and the public realm is comprehensive and nicely written in 18 pages. It covers cost (or lack thereof), the regulatory framework, applying UD principles and advocacy with business and governments. The last part of the Background section sums up Council’s approach. 

“Council is committed to exceeding minimum standards to include Universal Design principles when building new buildings, undertaking significant upgrades to existing buildings, the public realm, and where possible during minor upgrades and maintenance works to existing buildings. In addition, Council will work with private developers and businesses to encourage the use of Universal Design principles as well as advocate to the Victorian and Australian Governments to include the principles of Universal Design into relevant regulatory frameworks.”

There is also a Universal Design Fact Sheet from the Office of the Victorian Government Architect which could be pinned up on all desks to remind staff to think about universal design principles in all they do.