Procurement and Accessibility

Section 27 of the Disability Act 2005 requires the head of a public body to ensure that services provided and goods supplied to the public body are accessible to people with disabilities, unless that would not be practicable, would be too expensive, or would cause an unreasonable delay.

The National Disability Authority’s 2008 Monitoring Report on the implementation of our “Code of Practice on Accessibility of Public Services and Information provided by Public Bodies” show that many public bodies are seeking advice and support on how to implement these provisions. Here are some challenges in this area:

  • Complexity of procurement-related legislation
  • Lack of awareness of requirements around accessibility
  • Lack of skills necessary for assessing accessibility of services and goods.

This guidance document aims to:

  • Increase awareness of the legal requirement under the Disability Act 2005 for public bodies to ensure that services or goods supplied to them are accessible to people with disabilities; and
  • Guide public bodies on how they can build accessibility into their procurement policies, procedures and practice.

This guidance document is for information and is not a definitive legal interpretation of any legislation or regulation. It should be supplemented by legal and technical advice as required.

Procurement and Accessibility September 2012