The following sections of the Australian Disability Discrimination Act are those that relate to premises.

Section 3: Objectives of the DDA

The DDA seeks to:

1. Eliminate discrimination against persons on the grounds of disability in:

  • work, accommodation, education, access to premises, clubs and sport; and
  • the provision of goods, facilities, services and land;

One of the most significant documents that has been introduced by the Commonwealth Government is the Disability Access to Premises Standards requiring in principle access to:

  • 1. Accessible paths of travel to the main door or doors
  • 2. Car Parks
  • 3. Accessible paths inside the building to all services and facilities
  • 4. Doorways
  • 5. Toilets
  • 6. Goods, services and facilities


This Federal Legislation can be reviewed at

From 1 May 2011, any new building open to the public, or existing buildings undergoing significant renovation, are required to comply with the Disability (Access to Premises - Buildings Standards 2010. The Standards clarify how to ensure buildings are accessible to people with disability and meet the requirements of discrimination law. 

Over time, the Premises Standards will ensure that buildings in Australia become more accessible, and more useful to an ageing population. More accessible buildings will assist in achieving equal participation for people with disability in employment, education, access to services, and other areas of participation in economic, social and cultural life.

The Transport Standards were formulated under the Disability Discrimination Act 1992 and came into operation on 23 October 2002. Part 34 of the Standards requires that a review of their effectiveness and efficiency be carried out within five years of commencement by the Minister for Transport and Regional Services, in consultation with the Attorney-General.

In April 2007, the Allen Consulting Group was appointed to carry out the review. A draft report was released in 2008 for public comment. A large number of comments were received in the period ending 31 March 2008. The report is currently being revised to take into account these comments and to assess the regulatory impact of the recommendations made. The second five-year legislated review commenced in 2012. This review is being undertaken by the Department of Infrastructure and Regional Development in consultation with the Attorney-General's Department, the Accessible Public Transport Jurisdictional Committee, the Accessible Public Transport National Advisory Committee and the Aviation Access Forum. The Department of Infrastructure and Regional Development provided a final written report for consideration by the Minister for Infrastructure and Regional Development in consultation with the Attorney-General.

More information is available on the Disability Standards for Accessible Public Transport. The draft report is available for downloading from this website.

Access to private residences (Class 1a buildings) and the accessibility of the internal parts of flats or apartments (Class 2 buildings) are generally not subject to the DDA and are therefore not addressed by the Premises Standards.

Those responsible for private residences, however, are encouraged to consider the design guidelines issued by Livable Housing Australia

Be warned that State Legislation is in place which, in NSW for instance, imposes obligations on developers to provide diversity including Adaptable Housing and Livable Housing.