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The Guardian Australia
Disabled Australians are being left behind in three major states after governments failed to make minimum accessibility standards mandatory for new houses, disability advocates say.
New South Wales, Western Australia and South Australia say they will opt out of clauses in the forthcoming revised National Construction Code (NCC) that would require all new buildings to have basic accessibility features such as at least one step-free entrance, a toilet on the entry-level, and reinforced walls in the bathroom.
The NCC sets safety, accessibility and sustainability standards for buildings in Australia, but each state and territory government can vary, override, delete or add to the code within its own legislation.
The other states and territories around Australia have agreed to implement these new standards as part of their building legislation, but NSW, WA and SA have elected to opt out.
The Australian Building Codes Board has given states and territory governments until 17 December to confirm whether they are opting out of this part of the code before it comes into force next year.