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Tuesday, December 25, 2018

County playgrounds could get more disabled friendly

* County Councillor Mabon ap Gwynfor at Llandrillo playground.
Playgrounds in Denbighshire could become more accessible for disabled children thanks to a drive to increase accessibility in the county.

County Councillor Mabon ap Gwynfor called for playgrounds to become more accessible earlier this year, and the authority agreed to take steps at last week’s Chairs and Vice Chairs Committee by making an audit of the current situation. 
Cllr ap Gwynfor, said: “There are children in our communities who are being excluded from an opportunity to play with their friends because many of our playgrounds have no suitable equipment. I have children in my ward who have mobility issues and can’t join with their friends in the playgrounds. This is true across the county. 
“The council has a programme of updating some of its playing parks at the moment, and we were asking that they consider the needs of disabled children.
"The authority carries out regular health and safety audits and have therefore agreed to carry out accessibility audits as well. This is excellent news.
"This information will allow playing ground planners to consider the needs of children with disabilities when they upgrade tour playgrounds, so that no child in the future will miss out on playing with their friends."
A statement from Disability Wales says: “In 2010 local authorities in Wales were given a duty to ensure children and young people in their areas had access to secure and sufficient play areas. Eight years on, the provision for inclusive play areas that disabled children can use remains poor.
"It is disappointing that despite the legislation disabled children are missing out on their right to play.
"It is great to hear of the campaign in Denbighshire to increase access to playgrounds for disabled children.
"Disability Wales welcomes the steps taken by Cllr Mabon ap Gwynfor to raise awareness of poor playground provision for disabled children in the county. Disabled children have the right to play in the same playgrounds as their non-disabled siblings and friends. 
"We hope that the playground refurbishment programme by Denbighshire Council will result in more inclusive playgrounds for disabled children.”

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