Assistive Technology Suppliers Australasia (ATSA) welcomes the report of the Senate Committee into the regulation of motorised mobility devices and supports the principal recommendation of a nationally consistent regulatory framework under current development that must be evidence-based.
Including any future regulation of mobility scooters and motorised wheelchairs is also to be evidence-based and must recognise the importance of safety of users and others. However, this must not add any additional barriers or make access and inclusion any more difficult for a frequently marginalised section of our community.
ATSA supports the Senate Committee’s recommendation for ongoing funding to be provided as necessary, to ensure that Austroads can conduct, or commission, the collection of national motorised mobility device data on a continual basis as identified in this report to allow for evidence-based decisions into the future.
However, the suggestion in section 2.102 of the report that, “It is proposed that under the new arrangements it will be an offence to use a non-compliant motorised mobility device on public infrastructure” is of great concern to ATSA members.
ATSA’s Executive Officer, David Sinclair, said: “mobility is a basic human right and making it an offence to use certain devices in the absence of any evidence would be a fundamental infringement of that right”.
The Senate Rural and Regional Affairs and Transport References Committee Report was tabled on 20 September 2018.