Access, Inclusion and Disability
  • Last updated:
  • 15 Sep 2020

Council is committed to building inclusive communities. Community participation and access enable people to move about our region with dignity, pride and independence.

To promote civic participation, and a sense of belonging for diverse members of our community, council aims to improve access to:

  • programs
  • services
  • resources
  • information
  • facilities.

This leads to stronger, more cohesive and resilient communities. The following services are available to help make the coast more accessible to all our residents and visitors.

COVID-19 support and information for people with disabilities

The COVID-19 Pandemic has created a great number of challenges for most people and the information is constantly changing. It is important to check information sources on a regular basis to remain up to date. Assistance and information for people with a disability is available online or by telephone via the following links:

National Coronavirus Helpline – 1800 020 080 - Call this line if you are seeking information on coronavirus (COVID-19) or help with the COVIDSafe app. The line operates 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

Disability Information Helpline – 1800 643 787 - Call for information and referrals for people with disability who need help because of coronavirus (COVID-19). You can call Monday to Friday 8am to 8pm (AEST) and weekends 9am to 7pm (AEST), except on national public holidays. Family members, carers, support workers and services can also call.

Disability Sector Support

Accessible beaches - Beach wheelchair program

Council is working with local Surf Life Saving Clubs and the Compass Institute to make Sunshine Coast beaches more accessible and inclusive for people. Accessible matting, beach wheelchairs and life jackets are available to use at no charge. The beach equipment is suitable for both adults and children.

Accessible beach image showing beach wheelchair and matting
 

 Surf Life Saving Clubs

Beach equipment is available at the designated locations, during patrolled hours, on weekends, from September 2020 through until May 2021. Bookings to use the equipment can be made with club volunteer lifesavers.*

 

Location  Hours of operation*/**    Contact

Alexandra Headland Surf Lifesaving Club
167 Alexandra Parade
Alexandra Headland

7am-5pm  07 5443 6677
Coolum Beach Surf Life Saving Club
1775-1779 David Low Way
Coolum Beach 
 7am-5pm  07 5446 1148

Metropolitan Caloundra Surf Life Saving Club
1 Spender Lane
Kings Beach

 7am-5pm  07 5491 1081
Mooloolaba Surf Lifesaving Club
The Esplanade
Mooloolaba
 7am-5pm  07 5452 3711

Hours listed are for weekends and public holidays only - period September 2020 to May 2021. 

* When making bookings, please understand that the role of volunteer surf lifesaving clubs is to patrol the beaches on weekends and public holidays and these clubs may not have administrative staff available to take your booking call.  If you are unable to make contact ahead of your visit, please make talk with volunteers on shift, upon arrival at the beach. If available, for use, the beach wheelchair and the matting can be rolled out for you.

Compass Institute

A beach wheelchair is available from hire from the Compass Institute Inc facility in Caloundra. This service is available all year round with the exception of public holidays. This wheelchair can traverse the sand without the need for beach matting.  You will need to complete a Hire Agreement and pay a refundable deposit of $20 per day. Bookings can be made direct with Compass Mon to Fri 9:00am - 3:30pm. For more information contact on 5438 2627 

Important:  It is the responsibility of the carer/user to ensure they have read and understood the User Safety Guidelines and Conditions of Use available from the clubs listed and from Compass, prior to hire and use. Volunteer lifesavers may not have the capacity to assist people onto the beach and it is the responsibility of the user to ensure they have the necessary assistance to use the beach wheelchair and the beach matting.
 

 
 
 
 
 
 

Accessible parks

Location  All abilities playground Liberty swing  Wheelchair accessible More information

Ayliffe Park
The Esplanade
Golden Beach

  Liberty swing available 1-1.5 m concrete walkways to playground. General playground is wood chip floor.
Contact council to obtain the key to the liberty swing.
Buderim Forest Park, via Harry's Lane
Buderim
    The first 600 m of boardwalk is wheelchair accessible via timber boardwalk. Additional 300 m to the base of fall is not wheelchair accessible. BBQ and picnic table area are not wheelchair accessible (stairs to grassed area and tables are elevated on concrete block).
Bulcock Beach
The Esplanade
Caloundra
    Path is two metres wide.  Wheelchair accessible timber boardwalk.
Maroochy Bushland Botanic Gardens
Palm Creek Road
Tanawha 
    Yes The Bushland Sculpture Garden is mostly wheelchair accessible with only one small section having a steeper slope and another has stones in the path.
Cotton Tree Park
The Esplanade
Maroochydore 
             
Inclusive Playground. Includes inclusive play elements.
Grahame Stewart Park
Croydon Avenue
Currimundi
       Inclusive Playground. Includes inclusive play elements.
Kings Beach
Ormond Terrace
Kings Beach
    Boardwalk and water play/fountain area are wheelchair accessible.
Wheelchair accessible timber boardwalk. 
La Balsa Park
Harbour Parade
Buddina 

    Playground
• sand floor in playground
• fully fenced
• all abilities equipment
Leach Park
Short Street
Golden Beach
    Accessible pathway Inclusive Playground. Includes inclusive play elements.
Picnic Point Park
Picnic Point Esplanade
Maroochydore 

  Concrete pathway Wheelchair accessible picnic tables.
Pioneer Park
Corner of Caloundra Street and Steve Irwin Way
Landsborough 
All abilities interactive playground, tandem slide, sand and water play, sensory garden Harnessed, high backed seat flying fox 1.5 metre wide concrete paths.
Playground floor is a combination of rubber, sand and wood chips.
Fully fenced playground with braille signage.

Image

Person with a disability toilet (left and right hand accessible) adjacent to playground.
Person with a disability toilet (left and right hand accessible) adjacent to playground.
Person with a disability toilet (left and right hand accessible) adjacent to playground.

For more information on parks visit the beaches and parks directory.


Accessible Tourism 

Queensland Government resource Inclusive Tourism – Making your business more accessible and inclusive

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Council Link is a door-to-door pre-booked service provided by Sunshine Coast Council and operated by ComLink. To be eligible for the service, you must be over 60 or a person with a disability who travels independently or with a carer. The service runs to the nearest designated shopping centre once a week, on a specific day, for a $2 fare one-way per person. To book call 07 5390 1288 by noon the day before your trip.

Buses

Most buses on the Sunshine Coast allow easy access for the elderly and people with prams or mobility difficulties. For wheelchair accessible service enquiries contact Sunbus on 07 5450 7888.

Trains

If you require a portable ramp or assistance from guards when disembarking a train please wait at the assisted boarding point near the guard’s cabin when the train stops.
Queensland Rail has more information for passengers.

Disability parking permits

The Department of Transport and Main Roads can issue a disability parking permit to people if their ability to walk is severely restricted. A disability parking permit gives the holder access to parking concessions. More information is available regarding the Sunshine Coast disability parking permits.

Issues of access and inclusion can affect any member of the community including:

  • parents with prams and small children
  • culturally and linguistically diverse people
  • people with disabilities or older people.

Improving access and inclusion in the region benefits the whole community.

The Sunshine Coast Community Strategy 2019-2041 provides a long-term framework for how council and our community will work together to advance our shared goal of a strong community through to 2041.

Council's Access and Inclusion Policy captures the principles and aims for an accessible and inclusive community. The following principles underpin council's commitment to access and inclusion:

  • Access – the right of residents and visitors to have reasonable access to council facilities, open space, programs, services, resources and information;
  • Inclusion –working in partnership with the community, other levels of government, key agencies and the private sector to address the needs of residents and visitors to build an inclusive, cohesive and strong community;
  • Equity – equity and opportunities for all;
  • Respect – recognise and value the contribution of the region’s diverse population and respect the right of people to an inclusive community;
  • Dignity – the right of people to independent and dignified access;
  • Participation – the right of residents and visitors to actively participate in civic and community life; and
  • Safety – the right of residents and visitors to safe access and participation.

RECHARGE SchemeTM

The RECHARGE SchemeTM creates a more accessible, inclusive and welcoming environment to support people who use electric mobility scooters or wheelchair. This includes locations which have designated areas for people to safely recharge their electric mobility scooter or wheelchair battery, free of charge.

The Sunshine Coast Local Government Area currently have five locations:

  1. TAFE Queensland East Coast Region
    34 Lady Musgrave Drive Mountain Creek 4557

  2. Integrate Family and Youth Service
    108 Parker Street Maroochydore 4558

  3. Walk on Wheels Nambour
    26 Ann Street Nambour 4560

  4. Walk on Wheels Kawana
    11/10 Capital Place Birtinya 4575

  5. Kawana Shoppingworld
    119 Point Cartwright Drive, Buddina, 4575

For up-to-date information on locations of the RECHARGE SchemeTM on the Sunshine Coast, please go to the RECHARGE Scheme Australia website.

If your group or business would like to discuss how to get involved by offering a RECHARGE SchemeTM on the Sunshine Coast please contact council’s Development Officer on (07) 5441 8261 or email commdevelopment@sunshinecoast.qld.gov.au.

Helpful resources and information

Information on services that support people with disabilities, carers and their families:

What is the NDIS?

The National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) is the new way of providing support for people with disability, their families and carers in Australia. The NDIS will provide about 460,000 Australians under the age of 65 with a permanent and significant disability with the reasonable and necessary supports they need to live an ordinary life. It will help people with a disability achieve their goals. This may include greater independence, community involvement, employment and wellbeing.

Contacts

For more information, contact council’s Development Officer on (07) 5441 8401 or email commdevelopment@sunshinecoast.qld.gov.au.