Low sensory areas, relaxed performances and more accessible resources across Cairns Regional Council’s creative venues are just some commitments announced the 2024-2026 Disability Access and Inclusion Plan (DAIP).
Cairns is home to about 28,000 residents with disability and nearly 4,000 NDIS registered individuals, with many continuing to be disproportionately affected by the impacts of COVID, climate change and ongoing housing challenges.
Population growth, along with a significant increase in the number of residents who will be aged over 65 in the next 20 years, highlights the importance of planning and investing in infrastructure and services.
This DAIP recognises these challenges and builds on the achievements of Council’s Access and Inclusion Action Plan 2017-21.
Cairns is also identified as a premier and maturing accessible tourism destination; the DAIP positions the region to tap into the estimated $3.2 billion dollar industry nationally and reinforces Council’s long-term commitment to the inclusion of people with disability.
The DAIP has four focus areas that are aligned with the direction of federal and state disability strategies and plans, providing context for Council’s role in creating an accessible and inclusive environment.
It was informed by shared knowledge from local disability service providers, accessible tourism providers, peak bodies, people with lived experience of disability and members of the broader Cairns community.