New support for people with accessibility needs

Written by: CIBIS, 23 Oct 2019

The Better Access Map, a new App set to make life easier for people with a disability, was launched in Gosford, NSW today.

It provides easy to use information on a broad spectrum of physical, hearing, visual and sensory access needs giving people with disability the confidence to go out independently and with dignity.

As a new initiative, we know that what is accessible for one person is not always accessible for another. This is why people with a broad range of access needs were consulted to determine the information collected.

Trained assessors have visited thousands of premises (shops, restaurants, service providers, medical centres etc) to determine their suitability for people having specific access needs. They consider how friendly they are in terms of whether there is accessible parking, outdoor seating, toilets, door handles types, tables heights, whether you can recharge devices, braille, ramps, sensory friendliness, steps and the new App also includes photos of each property.

CIBIS was selected as the development partner for the Better Access Map which is an initiative of Ability Links, run by The St Vincent de Paul Society and funded by the State of New South Wales.

Tony Heitmeyer, General Manager, CIBIS said “It’s taken some time to develop the entire solution, but working with people who know about the issues facing people with disability has been both rewarding and provided us with new insights into how simple changes can make a huge and positive difference to people living with disability.”

During the development phases, people with various needs were consulted and the build requirements were tweaked many times. Belinda McDaid, Special Project Manager for St Vincent de Paul Society said “CIBIS have been exceptionally flexible and accommodating over the past two years as we explored the various pathways involved with this new initiative.  We are thrilled with the end result and the support we had from the team a CIBIS throughout”.

The new App, available for web browsers and both Apple and Android devices will have results initially limited to the Gosford area. Listings for other areas including Newcastle and Sydney will be announced soon.

To download the App, visit the Better Access Map website.