Disability Programme 2017-2020

The Equity Office led collaboration on the Disability Programme 2017-2020. The University's Disability Action Plan 2022-2025 incorporates some of the Programme’s initiatives.

The programme aimed to:

  • Put in place initiatives to help students and staff with disabilities succeed
  • Support a commitment to be a safe, equitable and inclusive place to work and study.

Partners on the programme included Digital Services, the Centre for Learning and Research in Higher Education (now Learning Design Services), Property Services and Human Resources. Work was also undertaken with external stakeholders from New Zealand’s disability sector.

The Disability Programme covered three broad workstreams. Key outcomes included:

Culture and work/study environment workstream

  • Enhanced collection and reporting of data on students with disabilities
  • Undertaking student awareness surveys to help us understand information gaps
  • Partnering with disability employment service, Workbridge, to provide student career advice
  • Development of a new Student Disability Services website
  • The publication of inclusive and accessible events information
  • The development of staff and student web profiles
  • Establishing a Student Disability Services service satisfaction mechanism.
  • Employment application forms show more positive acceptance of people with disabilities
  • Increased awareness of capability needs of staff to become disability confident
  • Resources to encourage engagement, retention, and career development of staff with disabilities
  • The formation of a Network for staff with disabilities.

Communications and digital accessibility workstream

  • Some actions were very broad and required significant resourcing. Advocacy was undertaken by staff across the University recognising revenue limitations.
  • Actions on inclusive and accessible online teaching and learning progressed. The move to blended learning accelerated by Covid-19 has highlighted digital access issues.
  • Developing training material on producing accessible documentation progressed.
  • In addition, Victoria Cockle’s researched showed online learning experiences for Māori and equity group students. A staff survey captured staff experiences.

Physical environment workstream

Commitment to resourcing an audit of campus physical accessibility