With the 2032 Olympic and Paralympic Games in their sights, the Queensland Government has declared 2023 the Year of Accessible Tourism. And it comes with funding. The fund will support small to medium sized tourism and events businesses to enhance their access for people with disability. The fund includes:
- $10m Accessible Tourism Queensland Fund.
- $1m Awareness and Capability Program.
- $1m Visitor Experience Development Initiative.
The Awareness and Capability Program is about raising awareness of the access requirements of visitors, workers and the community. The fund is also about building the capability of the tourism sector to support workers with disability. That includes making sure operators have the skills to employ people with disability.
The aim of the Visitor Experience Development stream is to promote the accessible tourism experience for everyone. This will include capturing images, videos and stories for marketing campaigns.
The Queensland Government wants to change the perception of what it means to be an accessible business. The aim is to support businesses to develop a wider range of accessible tourism itineraries and promote accessible tourism experiences.
While this is a great initiative, the media release makes it sound as if accessible experiences are separate from other “normal” experiences for everyone. The Queensland Government has links to resources for anyone interested in these projects.