Disability Policy

Statement of Intent

Hatfield Peverel Parish Council provides public services and functions and takes very seriously its responsibilities to comply with the requirements for disability equality. The Parish Council recognises its general duty to have due regard to promote disability equality in proportion to its relevance.

The Council will seek to:-
 Promote equality of opportunity between disabled persons and others
 Eliminate unlawful discrimination
 Eliminate harassment of disabled persons which relates to their disabilities
 Actively promote positive attitudes towards disabled persons
 Encourage participation by disabled persons in all aspects of public life
 Take steps to account for disabilities, recognising that this may involve treating disabled persons more favourably than other persons.
 Encourage the involvement of disabled people in policy-making

Legal Framework

The Disability Discrimination Act 1995 (DDA) as amended by DDA 2005 which came into effect on 4th December 2006, places a general duty on all local authorities to promote disability equality. It focuses on two main types of discrimination:
a) less favourable treatment
b) failure to make reasonable adjustments.

The Act makes it unlawful to discriminate against disabled people when providing goods facilities and services. There is a legal duty to make reasonable adjustments to ensure services are accessible. A service provider must take reasonable steps to:-

 Change a practice, policy or procedure which makes it impossible or unreasonably difficult for disabled persons to use a service
 Provide an auxiliary aid or service which makes it easier for a disabled person to use services
 Remove, alter or provide a reasonable means of avoiding a physical feature which makes it difficult to use a service, or provide the service by a reasonable alternative method

The DDA 2005 places a general duty on local authorities not only to have due regard to disability equality when making future decisions, but to take action to tackle consequences of decisions made in the past which have failed to give due regard to disability equality.

Definition of Disability

The Council recognises that a disabled person is a person with an impairment which has a substantial and adverse impact on their normal day-to-day activities in one or more of the following categories:

 Mobility
 Manual dexterity
 Physical co-ordination
 Continence
 Ability to lift, carry, or otherwise move everyday objects
 Speech, hearing or eyesight
 Memory or ability to concentrate, learn or understand
 Perception of the risk of physical danger

Some conditions included in DDA are “progressive” whereas others, such as cancer, multiple sclerosis are counted as a disability from when they develop or are detected.
The DDA recognises disability as a mental or physical impairment which has a substantial and long-term adverse effect on ability to carry out normal day to day activities.

Issue 1
August 2008