Disability Standards and Guidelines

Access to premises | Education | Employment | Public transport | World wide web access | Insurance | Commonwealth government information | Other resources

Standards

Under the Disability Discrimination Act (DDA), the Attorney-General may make Disability Standards to specify rights and responsibilities about equal access and opportunity for people with a disability, in more detail and with more certainty than the DDA itself provides. The Commission has a function of advising the Attorney on making such standards. Standards can be made in the areas of employment, education, public transport services, access to premises, accommodation and the administration of Commonwealth laws and programs. This page provides links to developments in these areas. See also

The Attorney-General funded a DDA Standards Project established by disability community peak organisations to co-ordinate input by people with disabilities to standards development processes.

See also WOE or GO! - A Discussion Paper on the Disability Discrimination Standards (RTF) , National Coalition for the Development of Disability Standards, march 1994

Guidelines

The Commission may issue guidelines under the DDA to assist persons and organisations with responsibilities under the legislation to avoid discrimination and comply with their responsibilities. Unlike standards, these guidelines are not legally binding regulations. The Commission has issued guidelines in a number of areas under the title "Advisory Notes".

Guidance can also be obtained on some issues from the Commission s extensive frequently asked questions material and from decisions in complaints .

Access to premises

Background and historical documents

Further information in this area can be found on our access to premises page.

Education

Employment

Draft standards on employment were prepared by the Commission in a process involving representatives of industry, people with disabilities and government from 1994 to 1998. These draft standards are not currently proceeding towards authorisation, as consensus for adoption of regulatory standards in this area is lacking.

You may wish to refer instead to the Commission' s extensive Employment  guidance material, as well as other materials on our employment page.

Public transport

In 2002 the Parliament approved Disability Standards for Accessible Public Transport (Attorney-General's Department index page including guidelines and explanatory material; or click here for direct link to Standards). (A previous Commission advisory note is superseded by these Standards)

The first 5 year review and Government response were released on 3 June 2011

The Commission has released guidelines on accessible bus stops (MS Word version for printing also available)

See the transport page for more details of decisions and developments in this area.

See also "The way forward: Report of the Taskforce on Accessible Transport to the Australian Transport Council" (RTF) April 1995

World Wide Web access

The Commission issued a revised advisory note on accessibility of World Wide Web pages in 2010, taking account of version 2.0 of the World Wide Web Consortium's Web Content Advisory Guidelines. This note (version 4.0) replaces earlier versions 1996-1999 which were based on WCAG 1.0.

Insurance

Revised Guidelines on insurance and superannuation were adopted by the Commission in March 2005

Commonwealth government information

A discussion paper on possible standards on Commonwealth government information and communications was issued in 1996. Further work in this area has been deferred pending successful conclusion of at least some of the current standards processes on transport, access to premises and education.

Disability Service Standards

Standards under the DDA are not the same as or directly connected to the standards formulated under the Disability Services Act 1986 and equivalent State and Territory laws specifically for disability services. For convenience however we provide here links to the Disability Services Act standards for employment services and other disability services.

Other resources

European standards work on accessibility including European Committee on Standardisation Guide on accessibility elements for standards work (Note: PDF file )
Guidelines for accessible information and communications technology