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Changing Places

All ability facility

Change for the better

Wally Tew Reserve in Ferntree Gully is home to the first Changing Places toilet facility in Knox, purpose-built to support people with severe and profound disabilities.

Changing Places are toilet facilities with full-sized, height adjustable change tables and hoists, with design requirements that go beyond those for standard accessible toilets.

This new facility aims to support community members with severe disabilities who want to participate in events and activities at Wally Tew Reserve and the surrounding area including the Ferntree Gully Library, the Ferntree Gully Community Arts Centre, sporting reserves and the nearby accessible playground.

Mayor Jake Keogh said the facility was an important step towards ensuring the public spaces in Knox are as inclusive as possible for all members of the community.

‘Wally Tew Reserve was chosen as the site for the first Changing Places toilet, given it is the location of two major festivals – Carols by Candlelight and the Knox Festival, as well as a busy sporting, entertainment and cultural space for the Knox community,’ Mayor Keogh said.

Member for Eastern Metropolitan Region Shaun Leane said this facility is another step towards reducing accessibility barriers for all members of the community.

‘Changing Places plays an essential role in positive, social inclusion and encouraging the participation of people with a disability,’ Mr Leane said.

The Changing Places initiative began in the UK in 2006 and was introduced in Australia in 2014. There are currently 85 facilities at major public spaces across Australia, including the MCG, Melbourne Zoo and Hamer Hall.

Council plans to build more Changing Places toilets in Knox in the future.

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