20 Years of Ensuring Disabled Access

By Christian King, General Manager, Kee Systems

This month sees the 20th anniversary of the Disability Discrimination Act.  The legislation, which was replaced by the Equality Act in 2010, was brought in to promote civil rights for disabled people.  Under the Act it is unlawful to discriminate against people in respect of their disabilities in relation to employment, the provision of goods and services, education and transport.

While the Act has done a lot in the past 20 years to tackle discrimination, many report that they still encounter a wide range of physical barriers such as inaccessible workplaces, restaurants, shops, sports stadia and transport facilities.

20 years ago the Disability Discrimination Act was ground-breaking legislation, and is just as important today as it was when first introduced. Under the terms of thAct, reasonable adjustments need to be made to commercial and public buildings to overcome physical barriers which prevent disabled access. Building owners are legally required to provide non-discriminatory balustrading and handrailing systems on stairways and ramps as without suitable handrails, ramps and lifts, access can be extremely limited.”

Kee Systems has a vast knowledge of the industry and experience in installing solutions to meet the Equality Act (previously the Disability Discrimination Act) and can provide technical advice, supply and installation of compliant solutions. Our Kee Access® range of fittings for handrail construction complies fully with all relevant regulations, is cost effective, easy to assemble and provides an aesthetically attractive finish.

Kee Access® features a total of 19 special fittings and is supplied with versatility, ease and speed of installation in mind.  These fittings are ideal as a retrofit solution, and include an “Add-on” offset fitting which allows a new handrail to be added onto an existing structure of appropriate size.  The Kee Access® range can be easily combined with components from the Kee Klamp range to create a complete, cost-effective answer to the Equality Act requirements.  Each fitting comes with a choice of polyester coating in all available RAL colours to satisfy the “not cold to the touch” criteria set out in BS 8300. Kee Access® components are specifically designed to give a smooth handrail with size 7 tube (outside diameter 42.4mm) ensuring compatibility with the Building Regulations.

When you consider the ease of installation and the options available with Kee Access®, building owners really have no excuse when it comes to providing access for the disabled.  Hopefully over the next 20 years ALL building owners will realise that Kee Access® can help them to meet the requirements of the Disability Discrimination Act in a cost-effective way.

To find out more about principles of DDA and step by step guide on how to install a compliant handrail using KEE ACCESS fittings visit our Catalogues page and download Guide to DDA Complaint Handrail.

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The Disability Discrimination Act is 20 years old this November.  Kee Access fittings from Kee Systems can help ensure compliance with this legislation by providing safe access to buildings for the disabled.

Kee Systems providing disabled access

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