Access and inclusion at Perth Airport
Perth Airport has introduced its Hidden Disabilities programme alongside a newly constructed Changing Places facility, to ensure access and inclusion for passengers disabilities.
To ensure prioritisation of access and inclusion for all passengers with disabilities, Perth Airport (PER) has introduced its Hidden Disabilities programme, as well as the newly constructed the Changing Places facility at Terminal 1 (T1).
The new facilities and developments will provide convenient access and appropriate access to public restrooms for passengers with disabilities, that meet their requirements and needs when away from home. The Changing Places facility is secure and has been created for people with disabilities who need space and assistance, with the aim to reduce further stress caused by, what can sometimes be, a hectic and overwhelming airport environment.
Perth Airport’s Chief Commercial Officer Kate Holsgrove commented that the airport is committed to ensuring that its facilities, information and services are inclusive and accessible to everyone.
“We work closely with our Access and Inclusion Advisory Group to determine where we can improve access and inclusion within our existing infrastructure and how we can include new initiatives in future terminal designs.
“This is the motivation for many new projects launched by the airport that look to remove barriers to inclusion for our customers, employees, partners, and the community we serve.
“The COVID-19 pandemic has been challenging for our business, but I am pleased that we were still able to prioritise and push on with a number of projects which will improve the travelling experience for people with disability.
“We have recently completed construction of a Changing Places facility at T1. The new Changing Places facility is secure and has been designed for people with disability who need space and assistance,” added Holsgrove.
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Coralie Flatters, State Manager WA of National Disability Services, applauded the inclusion of a Changing Place facility at Perth Airport, which would give people with disability the freedom to travel beyond their communities.
She said: “This will be transformative for people with disability, their families, carers and friends when making plans to travel.
“These facilities are vital in breaking down barriers and helping to ensure people can access convenient and appropriate public restroom facilities that meet their needs when away from home.”
For some customers, the stress caused by the busy and overwhelming airport environment can be a barrier to travel.
In response to this, Perth Airport has launched the Hidden Disability programme, which will provide support to passengers with disability that aren’t always immediately obvious to airport team.
“Customers will be able to request a Hidden Disability Sunflower lanyard to wear through the airport, which will be a discreet way for them to indicate to our Team that they may need a little extra help, guidance or time with airport processes,” further stated Holsgrove.
“The Perth Airport team have been trained to recognise the lanyard and how to best provide the assistance and support customers may need.
“In the past 12 months, we’ve also delivered our $36million International Gate Upgrade Project, which replaced the old stair boarding process with new ramps and lifts at gates 52,53 and 54.
“The new gates deliver an improved boarding experience for passengers, particularly for those travelling with small children or reduced mobility.
“And, our two new Service Animal Relief Areas in T1 and T4 are making it easier for passengers travelling with an assistance animal.”