Local Government's Role

LGNSW works with all levels of government to help create more inclusive and liveable communities. In a liveable community, all people feel engaged, can participate in local activities and do not face barriers to carrying out their regular daily lives.

Some features of a liveable community are:

  • Walkable pathways, road crossings and ramps.
  • Seating in public places.
  • Accessible and well located public toilets.
  • Public spaces are well lit and have weather protection and hand rails.
  • Parking is located near essential services.
  • Signage is clear, and includes Braille.

We have collected photos of examples of liveable communities, based on the World Health Organization's Age Friendly Cities checklist (PDF,1.41MB).

Lift & Change Facilities Trial

LGNSW is working with councils to identify sites where Lift & Change facilities can be installed with a co-contribution from the NSW Government.

The NSW Government provided a co-contribution of up to $35,000 to provide Lift & Change facilities in local communities.

The trial aims to demonstrate how Lift & Change facilities in varying locations work best, including at swimming centres, near beaches and in tourist information centres.

Blue Mountains, Campbelltown, Clarence Valley, Cootamundra-Gundagai, Kiama, Northern Beaches, Orange and Shoalhaven councils have received co-contributions and are developing Lift & Change facilities.

To date, Lift & Change facilities have been completed at South Grafton Lifestyle Centre, Macquarie Fields Leisure Centre, Orange Aquatic Centre, Echo Point Visitors Centre, Collaroy Surf Life Saving Club, Mollymook Reserve and Kiama Harbour.

Further updates will be provided on recipient councils as works progress. For more information see the Family and Community Services website.

Download a checklist of specifications for Lift & Change facilities (PDF, 1.11MB).

Funding for councils

Councils can apply for funding for Lift & Change facilities and other community infrastructure projects that promote community participation, inclusion and cohesion  through the Community Building Partnership.

Master Locksmith Access Key (MLAK)

The Department of Family and Community Services and LGNSW reaffirm the use of the Master Locksmith Key (MLAK) system for accessible toilets and recommend using the system for Lift & Change facilities.

The MLAK system gives facility owners the option to secure the facility after hours but still provide 24-hour access to facilities for people with disability.

It is the local council’s decision to implement the system into its facilities. MLAK is designed to improve access and not to restrict use for people with disability. Facilities fitted with MLAK should still remain open (unless they are housing adult changing facilities with hoists etc) as consistent with the following principles of access:

  • Accessible toilets should be unlocked during daylight hours to ensure maximum access.
  • Accessible toilets should be unlocked when co-located with unlocked general entry toilets.
  • The MLAK system should alleviate the difficulty faced by people with disability in finding an accessible toilet that is open after hours.
For further information, visit the MLAK website.

Healthy Built Environments

Councils are important in creating public places where people can live healthy active lives and participate in their communities. A number of useful resources have been developed to support councils in developing healthy environments, including: