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Mike is an Architectural Building Designer, Project Manager and Access Consultant. His career spanning over 40 years, has specialised in “Accessible Living” and advocating against Disability Discrimination. He advises to all levels of government, in particular Local Government Australia wide. He lectures on Disability Discrimination and Disability Awareness to governments, in addition to community and commercial organisations.
He has lived with Multiple Sclerosis for 29 years, which has taken most of his sight in addition to causing him to have a range of physical and sensory impairments. This does not stop him from his passion of assisting people with disabilities wherever he can. He has also travelled throughout Europe, Malta, Egypt the USA, Canada and Malaysia to research new innovations in Accessible Living and equipment to aid people with disabilities and their careers.
Community service for youth and the disabled is also a passion of Mike’s, where he has held positions on the Boards of the Blind Society, the Multiple Sclerosis Society and is currently on the Board of one of South Australia’s largest regional disability support service organisations, being Community Living Australia. He holds the prestigious Rotary Accreditation, being the “Paul Harris Fellow”, and the prestigious service to youth – “Silver Koala” award from Scouting Australia.
Australia can benefit by a greater involvement with international Disability Access initiatives, programs, codes and standards, through an organisation like Global Alliance on Accessible Technologies and Environments (GAATES). Australia also seriously embraces equal opportunities, accessibility and disability discrimination in state and national legislation and can share their experiences at a global level.
Mike is currently working to liaise between GAATES and Australian Governments to promote the understanding and implementation of accessibility of the sustainable built, social and virtual environments, including architectural, infrastructural design, transportation systems, habitat, and electronic information and communication technologies so that everyone, including people with disabilities and older persons are able to fully participate and contribute to society.
In order to make an inclusive society a reality, it is necessary to identify and remove barriers to access.