ANITA Gamba is looking forward to receiving a ‘key to the door’ to unlock the freedom to travel about in comfort.
Every outing for the Parkerville resident is organised around the availability of transport and public conveniences.
She was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis at the age of 28 and her health began to deteriorate two years ago after a lifetime of mobility.
Adjusting to life in a wheelchair is an ongoing challenge for the chartered accountant, who is no longer able to work or drive.
“It took me about 15 months or so to realise this is my life right now,” she said.
She welcomed the State Government’s announcement on Tuesday to fund free master locksmith access keys (MLAK) for people with disabilities to access the Changing Places toilet network.
Most of the 15 Changing Places around WA previously required a key to be obtained from the person in charge of the facility. Ms Gamba (58) described the support and services for people with disability in WA – about a third of the population – as world-class.
“It (the key) helps restore the dignity of people who live with disabilities by providing places where private can be kept as just that – private,’’ she said.
The MLAK key offer is available to all WA Companion Cardholders in conjunction with National Disability Services WA.
“The growing network of Changing Places helps to increase options for people with disability, their families, carers and friends when making plans to travel throughout WA and interstate,’’ Disability Services Minister Stephen Dawson said.