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DPA's Information Exchange - 21 November 2020

In this week's Info Exchange:

Face covering / mask exemption cards

As you are probably aware, from yesterday the use of masks or face coverings are mandatory for:

  •  people travelling on public transport services in, into and out of the Auckland region (except for children under 12 years of age)
  • the drivers of small passenger service vehicles in Auckland, such as taxis and app based ride services, but not their passengers
  • people travelling on passenger flights throughout New Zealand

If you have a medical condition that prevents you from wearing a mask or face covering safely or comfortably, you are exempt - you don't have to.  This could be for a range of reasons including disability or asthma.

The Ministry of Health has developed an Exemption Card that can be shown when in public, for example to transport operators.

Users are not required to show the card, but you may feel more comfortable showing something official that confirms you are exempt from wearing a face covering.

The use of this card is self-regulated and decided upon by the individual. The ministry encourages people to do the right thing and only use this Exemption Card if you need to.

Getting and using the Exemption Card

The Card is available in credit card, A4 or A5 size. You can download the card (PDF) and then either:
  • Print it and carry it in your wallet
  • Download it to your phone (maybe use it as a screensaver)
  • Print off a poster sized version to carry in your bag

DPA also has physical versions of the card that we can send to you. If you would like us to send you an Exemption Card - or if you know someone who would like a card and does not have internet access - please email or call 04 801 9100. 

New Zealand Health Survey results by disability status

The New Zealand Health Survey results were released this week; for the first time they are also available by disability status.

They show that disabled people experience poorer health outcomes and are less likely to visit the GP or fill a prescription than non-disabled people; however they are more likely to experience psychological distress.

  • Disabled adults were less likely to have reported ‘good’, ‘very good’, or ‘excellent’ health than non-disabled adults.
  • Disabled adults were 2.3 times as likely to report not visiting a GP due to cost.
  • Disabled adults were 3.8 times as likely than non-disabled to be unable to collect a prescription due to cost.
  • Disabled adults were 6.1 times as likely as non-disabled adults to have experienced psychological distress.
  • Disabled adults were 1.6 times more likely to be obese than non-disabled adults.
  • Disabled adults were 1.9 times more likely to smoke than non-disabled adults.
  • Disabled adults were less likely to have drunk alcohol in the past year than non-disabled adults.
For more information see the Ministry of Health website.
Picture of the Hapai Access Card. Over a fern background is printed Hapai Access Card, ID# - 39678 Expiry Date. To the left is a silhouette head and shoulders ID photo and at the bottom there are nine icons representing different access requirements, including one with the wheelchair symbol, one of a guide dog and one reading WC.

New Hāpai Access Card launched

The Hāpai Foundation launched a new "Hāpai Access Card" in Christchurch this week.

The card was started by Nimbus Disability about five years ago in the UK where it has over 30,000 card holders and 1,000+ businesses participating.​ The scheme was designed by disabled people for disabled people. 

The Hapai Foundation has partnered with Nimbus to bring the card to Aotearoa New Zealand calling it the Hāpai Access Card.

What the card does

The card translates your disability/impairment into symbols which highlight the barriers you face and the reasonable adjustments you might need when out and about in your community.​

This then informs providers / businesses quickly and discreetly about the support you need and may gain you access to things like concessionary ticket prices and complex reasonable adjustments without having to go into loads of personal detail.

To be eligible for the card you will need to provide evidence that you have an impairment that has a substantial and long-term effect on your ability to carryout out normal day-to-day activities. ​

Your card can have up to 9 barrier icons depending upon the additional information you provide about your accessibility challenges. 

The card costs $30 and needs to be renewed every three years.

To find out more about the Hāpai Access Card and to apply for a card visit the Hāpai Foundation website.

Video screen shot showing Mojo Mathers signing "me" with the caption reading "is for me"
DPA Policy Advisor Mojo Mathers features in the intro video for a Universal Design awareness video series showing her support by signing "Universal Design is for me".

Universal Design video campaign launched

Lifemark, with Henry McTavish from gud collective, have launched a video campaign to promote Universal Design (UD) for housing. 

Currently only around two percent of New Zealand’s housing stock is accessible; the inability to find accessible housing a huge barrier to disabled people being able to live good lives in the community.

Homes designed using Universal Design principals are designed to be usable and safe for people of all ages, abilities and stages.

Featuring a show home that achieved a Lifemark 4-Star rating, the video series aims to raise awareness of Universal Design and highlight the great design that can be achieved.

It will cover various tips and highlight Universal Design features in a home, spreading a message about designing homes for a diverse population.

Watch the intro video 

If this newsletter has been forwarded to you and you would like to receive the Information Exchange weekly, please subscribe here

You can read previous newsletters here.
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