Access Canberra Launches New Initiatives for Accessibility

Access Canberra is committed to supporting customers undertake government services in safe, inclusive and empowering spaces.

Reflecting this, Access Canberra is now a member of the Hidden Disabilities Sunflower initiative which encourages inclusivity, acceptance and understanding of disabilities, conditions or chronic illnesses that are not immediately obvious to others.

The initiative empowers people to voluntarily share that they have a hidden disability. By wearing a sunflower lanyard or pin, individuals can indicate they might need extra help, understanding, or just more time. Access Canberra staff members can then proactively provide this support and will wear a supporter pin to indicate that they have received the training.

In addition, Access Canberra has also implemented a quiet hour to support Canberrans with neurodiversity. At 10 am to 11 am every Wednesday, Access Canberra Service Centres will strive for a calmer, less stimulating environment for customers to complete their transactions. The Dickson service centre, which is appointment-only, will not offer the weekly quiet hour.

Minister for Government Services and Regulatory Reform, Tara Cheyne, says staff have been provided training to ensure inclusive support for all.

"Access Canberra has implemented a range of services that allow 'Access for All' with inclusive, accessible initiatives across their shopfronts including the Sunflower Initiative, language diversity, bookable appointments and more."

Access Canberra also reflects the diversity of our community with many frontline service staff speaking multiple languages. Over ten languages are spoken across the five Service Centre locations including Hindi, Punjabi, Japanese, Vietnamese, French, Thai, Greek, Gujarati, Croatian, Tibetan, Indian.

Staff also wear badges, so they are easily identified and to advise customers of other languages spoken.

More than 10,000 bookable appointments have also been undertaken at Service Centres and the community can also book an appointment for extra assistance or choose a time of service that meets their needs.

While our staff are working hard to provide the community the understanding and assistance they require, we also ask the community to please be patient and kind to staff when visiting our Service Centres or completing your transactions over the phone. Violence and abuse are not 'part of the job'.

Visit the Access Canberra website to find a Service Centre near you and find out more information about accessibility measures.

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