After many years of campaigning, the Government has introduced the ‘Accessibility for New Zealanders Bill’. Submissions on the bill are now open.

The bill is aimed at addressing the accessibility barriers faced by disabled people, tāngata whaikaha, and others, so they can live independently and participate fully in all areas of life.

It would do three main things:

  • establish an accessibility committee of up to 10 members, the majority of whom would be disabled. This committee would provide advice and recommendations about accessibility to the Minister for Disability Issues.
  • enhance accountability and co-ordination across the Public Service and Government to progress accessibility issues by creating clear responsibilities for the Minister for Disability Issues, the chief executive of Whaikaha – Ministry of Disabled People, and the Accessibility Committee.
  • build knowledge and awareness about the importance of addressing accessibility barriers.

It does not include:

  • Accessibility standards
  • Any enforcement mechanism

Read the Social Services and Community Committee's press release, "Increasing accessibility for disabled people - tāngata whaikaha"

Making a submission

Submissions close Monday 07 November 2022.

Access for All: Access Matters Aotearoa Petition
A petition has been launched to strengthen the Accessibility for New Zealanders Bill. It calls for an Accessibility Legislative Framework that includes standards, a regulator, a barrier notification system and a dispute resolution process to remove access barriers.

Find out more and to sign the petition - Petition to Strengthen the Accessibility for New Zealanders Bill