REVEALED: Plan to help solve problem for carers at parks
A CHANCE meeting during the council election campaign inspired a push for a unique addition to local parks which will be officially pitched in this week's meeting.
Division Five's Jade Wellings wants the council to look at the cost and site suitability for all ability amenities blocks in both Maryborough and Hervey Bay.
Referencing a recent study carried out by KPMG, which shows the Fraser Coast has double the number of residents living with a disability than the Queensland average, Cr Wellings will put forward a motion asking the council "to direct the CEO to conduct a feasibility study on an inclusive amenities block for those who are unable to use a standard facility".
Earlier this year Cr Jade Wellings was delivering quilts made by the Toogoom Linus Group to the Queensland Children's Hospital when she met Raina, a mother whose child had been in and out of hospital her whole life, suffered from seizures and was incontinent.
"I shared with her that I was running for council and she asked me to consider when I was elected, older children and adults with special needs who have nowhere to change nappies when out in public enjoying the parks," Cr Wellings said
"She encouraged me to look in to Changing Places which is an organisation who supply such facilities to councils in Australia.
"It's something I'd never thought of until I met her."
According to the Changing Places website, facilities provided in these type of amenities blocks include a height-adjustable adult-sized change table, a constant-charging ceiling track hoist system, a centrally-located peninsula toilet, circulation spaces as defined in the design specifications, an automatic door with a clear opening of 950mm at a minimum (1100mm for beach and lake locations) and a privacy screen.
Cr. Wellings was recently appointed to the Fraser Coast Inclusive Advisory Committee along with Cr Zane O'Keefe.
"Everyone should be able to go out in public and enjoy our facilities with the knowledge and peace of mind that there is a bathroom they can use if they need to," she said
"Carers deserve facilities that they can use to safely do their jobs.
"The Fraser Coast council has an objective to "Build Better Communities" and this is one of the ways we can do this."