Skip to main content

Olympic Games 2012: Disabled

Volume 480: debated on Monday 6 October 2008

To ask the Minister for the Olympics what standard of accessible facilities the London Olympic village will have for (a) spectators and (b) participants with profound and multiple learning disabilities; and whether those facilities will include (i) hoists, (ii) benches and (iii) sufficient space for a wheelchair and two carers. (219324)

The London 2012 Games will be the first to fully integrate the Olympic Games and Paralympic Games making no distinction between them in the approach to planning, delivery and standard of service to both participants and spectators.

As part of inclusive and accessible design, the Olympic Village will comply with all relevant legislation, including the Disability Discrimination Act 1995 and its supporting code of practice; and exceed the requirements of the UK's Building Regulations (Part M—Access and facilities for disabled people). Design will incorporate wheelchair space requirements and facilities and aids to ensure accommodation is flexible and appropriate to the comfort and varying requirements of Paralympic athletes.

The ODA's Access and Inclusion Forum has representation from a lead disability organisation within each of the five boroughs, as well as the borough Access Officers and key external stakeholders. It meets on a quarterly basis and advises on areas of inclusive design through the sharing of knowledge and experience.

In addition to the forum, ODA Access Panels provide specialist disability and inclusive design experts to review and advise on design—both at Games time and in legacy—and have final sign-off on ODA build commitments. In support of this, the ODA has appointed two Principal Access Officers—one specialising in the built environment and one specialising in transport accessibility—responsible for the development of inclusive design within the ODA's programme.