After many years of setbacks and government handballing, Victoria is finally relaunching the way it processes disabled parking permits to comply with national Australian standards.
From late 2019, the Disability Parking Permit Scheme is changing to the Accessibility Parking Permit Scheme. This new statewide scheme will centralise and digitise the system, making the application and renewal process easier to use, simpler to understand and fairer for all.
The Victorian Government has invested $6.8 million to improve, centralise and digitise the current Victorian scheme aligning it with the Australian Disability Parking Scheme and needs of the community.
The old Disability Parking Permit Scheme in Victoria was last updated in 1995 and does not align with the Council of Australian Government (COAG) 2010 Australian Disability Permit Scheme (ADPS). The purpose of the statewide Accessibility Parking Permit Scheme is to provide people who have significant mobility impairments with improved opportunity to access facilities and services throughout the state.
Why is the scheme being updated?
The scheme is administered by each of the 79 Victorian councils who have individual interpretations of the scheme and administration processes. That leads to confusion within the community as well as the potential for inequitable outcomes for applicants and an opportunity for the misuse of permits.
The updated scheme will continue to be administered by the 79 Victorian councils, but the process for applying for and renewing permits will be streamlined.
At a national level, the ADPS provides common high-level criteria as well as a standard, highly secure permit design. The new Victorian scheme has adopted the principles of the ADPS, which will align our scheme with the other states and territories, while still having a range of elements that are specific to Victoria.
For example, certain permit holders in Victoria can park for double the permissible time in an ordinary parking bay and permits are available to individuals with significant intellectual disabilities, which is not the case in other states and territories.
5 key changes
- Permit holders who have been medically assessed as having an agreed permanent disability will no longer have to return to their doctor for reassessment as part of the permit renewal process.
- The permit duration will be increased from 3 years to 5 years for individuals (with non-temporary permits).
- The permit application and renewal processes will be streamlined with applications to be submitted through a new statewide digitised system.
- Permits will adhere to a standard, highly secure permit design rather than the 79 variations which currently exist.
- The name of the scheme will be changed from ‘Disability Parking Permit Scheme’ to ‘Accessibility Parking Permit Scheme’.
2 key Victorian advantages that will be retained
- Green Permits/Category 2 Permits will continue to allow a permit holder to park for twice the permissible time in an ordinary parking bay.
- Those with significant intellectual disabilities are eligible for a permit.
The new Accessibility Parking Permit Scheme and online system will be progressively rolled out across Victorian councils commencing in late 2019. For more info, click here.