As a promotion of accessibility and inclusivity, the playground in Nanaimo’s Maffeo Sutton Park will see the installation of ‘we-swings’ which allow someone in a wheelchair to swing with another person. (News Bulletin photo)

As a promotion of accessibility and inclusivity, the playground in Nanaimo’s Maffeo Sutton Park will see the installation of ‘we-swings’ which allow someone in a wheelchair to swing with another person. (News Bulletin photo)

City of Nanaimo says it’s ahead of provincial legislation on accessibility and inclusiveness

Legislation will require committees like the one that already makes recommendations in Nanaimo

The City of Nanaimo is already ahead of a new provincial legislation that will require public sector organizations establish an accessibility committee, a plan and the ability to receive feedback.

Although the new requirement isn’t effective until Sept. 1, the city’s advisory committee on accessibility and inclusiveness has held regular meetings for more than two years.

“In addition to an established committee, the city is actively working to remove barriers so individuals of all diverse abilities have equitable access to choose the places they wish to live, work and play,” noted a press release from the city.

It added that the new city plan, ReImagine Nanaimo, which is being considered by council for adoption, promotes social and political equity within policies, bylaws and infrastructure. The advisory committee also works with council to increase awareness on issues related to accessibility and inclusion.

Some of the city’s efforts to improve accessibility include the installation of mats at Departure Bay Beach so those who use wheelchairs are able to reach the water more easily, the upcoming installation of ‘we-swings’ at Maffeo Sutton Park’s inclusive playground that will allow someone using a wheelchair to swing with another person, as well as touch-free sensors at crosswalks and tactile warning surface indicators on sidewalks.

“Livability is an important strategic theme for this council and we are proud to proactively plan for growth with a focus on community infrastructure that supports an inclusive, healthy, safe and desirable place to live,” said Mayor Leonard Krog in the release. “We appreciate the advisory committee on accessibility and inclusiveness’s recommendations and participation.”

READ MORE: VIU working on making buildings more accessible


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