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Shrine of Remembrance
12 Oct 2022

Acknowledgement & Foreward

Acknowledgement and foreword, detailing the alignment of the Disability Action Plan with the Shrine's Strategic Plan.


The Shrine of Remembrance (Shrine) is a place where everyone is welcome.

We embrace the diversity of our community and acknowledge the Bunurong people of the Kulin Nation as Traditional Custodians of the land on which we honour Australian service people; and we pay our respects to Elders, past and present.

The Shrine acknowledges the importance of providing equitable access for our community and visitors to our city, including people with disability or neurodiversity, and the contribution made by people with disability or neurodiversity to our community.


In developing the 2019–24 Strategic Plan, the Shrine’s Board of Trustees (Board) determined the following vision:

That all Victorians remember, value and commemorate service and sacrifice.

In pursuit of this vision, the Shrine’s mission is:

To engage all Victorians in commemoration through reflection, ceremony, education and learning.

The Shrine adheres to and will be known for the values of:

  • Integrity—in our actions and relationships
  • Loyalty—to the Shrine and its purpose
  • Service—to veterans and the Victorian community
  • Respect—for our stakeholders and each other
  • Inclusion—provide a welcoming place for all

This Disability Action Plan (DAP) supports the Shrine’s Strategic Plan, and its purpose aligns with that plan:

  • Strategic Objective One: Care for the Shrine for future generations
    DAP Response: The Shrine monument and Reserve is accessible for all.
  • Strategic Objective Two: Engage more Victorians in commemoration
    DAP Response: Commemoration is inclusive and accessible.
  • Strategic Objective Three: Inform and inspire
    DAP Response: Our programs respond to and include our diverse community.
  • Strategic Objective Four: Build sustainability for the future
    DAP Response: We are an inclusive place of work.

The 2022–24 DAP will be implemented through the support of the Board and all Shrine personnel. The plan has been developed in consultation with personnel, informed by people with disability and aided by an external consultant specialising in the development of disability action plans.


An introduction to the Shrine's purpose and development over time in relation to the development of the Disability Action Plan.


The Shrine of Remembrance was founded in 1934 as the National War Memorial of Victoria. Our purpose, vision, mission and people are at the heart of everything we do. The Shrine’s enduring purpose is to be a memorial honouring the service and sacrifice of Victorians and Australians in war, peacemaking and peacekeeping; and as a site of State, national and cultural significance.

The Shrine monument is set in a prominent location on a 13-hectare reserve at the southern end of Melbourne’s cultural arts precinct. The Shrine Reserve includes major monuments to the Second World War and Post 1945 conflicts, and numerous smaller memorials. The Shrine is one of Melbourne’s most iconic landmarks.

The Shrine monument was augmented in 2003 by incorporation of a Visitor Centre on its northern side providing access to the monument for people with disabilities and space for education, retail, reception, and public amenities. In 2005, the Shrine’s education and learning facilities were extended through the construction of an Education Centre in the Undercroft to the monument.

This work was further enhanced in 2014 through development of the Galleries of Remembrance: 1,600m2 of exhibition space beneath the monument providing interpretation of Victorian service and sacrifice from pre-Federation to present times. The development also established a dedicated education centre inclusive of a 137-seat auditorium.

The Shrine generally engages more than one million people annually in its ceremonial, education and learning programs onsite and online, including tens of thousands of students participating in curriculum aligned education programs.

The 2019–24 Strategic Plan was developed to establish an overarching direction to the management of the Shrine. This Disability Action Plan aligns with the Strategic Plan and will integrate into future Strategic Plans.

The Shrine's Disability Action Plans

Outcomes of the previous Disability Action Plan and intent for the 2022-24 plan.

The Shine’s Disability Action Plans

Disability access and inclusion have been a key focus for the Shrine since introduction of the first DAP in 2011. The 2011 DAP guided—as practicable—the Shrine’s approach to identifying, addressing and reducing barriers to access and the likelihood of discrimination. The four foci of that DAP were: Activities, Policies, Buildings & Infrastructure and Employment & Volunteering.

Outcomes of the first DAP include:

  • creation of a virtual Shrine tour accessible online;
  • introduction of virtual education tours for regional Victorian schools;
  • development of a website that aligns with Victorian Government accessibility requirements;
  • securing Victorian Government funding to install accessible ramps between the lower forecourt and the Second World War Memorial Forecourt; and
  • a comprehensive accessibility audit of the Shrine Reserve.

This DAP demonstrates the Shrine’s continued commitment to support and enable access and inclusion for people with disability.

Disability in Context

Providing definitions and statistics that support and shape our Disability Action Plan.

Disability in Context

The DAP has been developed and implemented as the Shrine’s response to The Disability Discrimination Act 1992. Within the Act disability is defined as ‘any impairment, abnormality, or loss of function, of any part of the body or mind’.

The Act cover disability within the definitions of:

  • Physical
  • Intellectual
  • Psychiatric
  • Sensory
  • Neurological
  • Learning disability
  • Physical disfigurement
  • Immunological (the presence of organisms causing disease in the body)

Current statistics reported on disability in Australia indicate as follows.

  • Over 4.4 million people in Australia have some form of disability. That’s one in six people.
  • The likelihood of living with disability increases with age. Forty per cent of people with disability are 65 years or older.
  • Of all people with disability, 1.9 million are aged 65 and over: 44.5% of all people with disability. This reflects both an ageing population and increasing life expectancy of Australians.
  • 2.1 million Australians of working age (15–64 years) have a disability.
  • 35.9% of Australia’s 8.9 million households include a person with disability.

The types of disability that are included within the above statistics are:

  • Only 4.4% of people with a disability in Australia use a wheelchair.
  • One in six Australians are affected by hearing loss. There are approximately 30,000 Deaf Auslan users with total hearing loss.
  • Vision Australia estimates there are currently 357,000 people in Australia who are blind or have low vision. They project that the number of Australians who are blind or have low vision will grow to 564,000 by 2030.
  • 45% of Australians aged 16–85 years, experience a mental health condition during their lifetime.
  • 3 million Australians live with depression or anxiety.
  • Research shows job or financial loss can increase a person’s risk of health problems, such as depression and anxiety.
  • 76.8% of people with disability reported a physical disorder as their main condition. The most common physical disorder was musculoskeletal disorder (29.6%) including arthritis and related disorders (12.7%) and back problems (12.6%).


DAP Development

How we got here - how we developed the plan.

DAP Development

The purpose of this DAP is to proactively ensure, as practicable, the identification and elimination of barriers that limit, hinder and / or discriminate against people with disability. The Shrine is committed to this proactive approach, as demonstrated by an ongoing implementation, review, and redevelopment of a strategic approach to accessibility and inclusion.

The development methodology for this DAP has included documentation reviews, key stakeholder consultation and senior leadership staff interactions. A variety of methods, including a survey, meetings and telephone contact maximised the opportunity for input into the development of the DAP.

The Shrine engaged a consultant to aid in the development of this DAP. Consultations with key stakeholders informed the contents of the actions and targets within the action plan. The DAP has been aligned with the 2019–24 Strategic Plan so that it is not in isolation and focuses on what the 6 Shrine has already identified as priority areas. Actions and targets within this DAP are associated with directorates; budgetary factors are considered in DAP Response actions.

This DAP includes establishment of an Accessibility Action Group (AAG). The AAG will be comprised of designated Shrine personnel, with initial involvement of a Disability Access Consultant and/or person/s with disability.

The AAG will meet to monitor and evaluate the DAP’s progress and to actively promote commitment to accessibility and to identify future actions will be quarterly in association with the scheduled Business Plan review cycle.

The intention is that future DAPs will follow this same alignment and therefore be included as a key component that is reviewed and amended / updated during the process of updating the strategic plan.

Legislative requirements

Legislative requirements and considerations in developing our Disability Action Plan.

Legislative requirements

The Disability Discrimination Act 1992 (DDA)—At its core this DAP is intended to eliminate, as far as possible, discrimination against persons on the ground of disability in the areas of:

  • work, accommodation, education, access to premises, clubs and sport;
  • the provision of goods, facilities, services and land;
  • existing laws;
  • the administration of Commonwealth laws and programs;
  • to ensure, as far as practicable, that persons with disabilities have the same rights to equality before the law as the rest of the community; and
  • to promote recognition and acceptance within the community of the principle that persons with disabilities have the same fundamental rights as the rest of the community.

Section 3 of the DDA states that a disability action plan must include provisions relating to:

  • the devising of policies and programs to achieve the objects of this DDA;
  • the communication of these policies and programs to persons within the action plan; • the review of practices within the action plan with a view to the identification of any discriminatory practices;
  • the setting of goals and targets, where these may reasonably be determined against which the success of the plan in achieving the objects of the DDA may be assessed;
  • the means, other than those referred to in paragraph (d), of evaluating the policies and programs referred to in paragraph (a); and
  • the appointment of persons within the action plan to implement the provisions referred to in paragraphs (a) to (e) (inclusive).

It is important to note that most of the focus for disability access and inclusion has historically focused on the built environment. The DDA also covers the systematic processes and protocols that impact accessibility. Therefore, the Shrine will adopt an organisation wide approach to ensuring disability discrimination is mitigated and, ultimately, eliminated.

Further to the DDA there are other National Codes, Acts and Australian standards that prescribe minimum requirements for what is deemed to be an acceptable level of accessibility. Where this DAP aims to address access barriers and the like, these minimum requirements will guide and underpin the strategies and actions for the provision of equitable disability access.

Objectives and Strategies

Our four objectives and strategies for the plan.

Objectives and Strategies

This DAP is aligned with the Shrine’s 2019–2024 Strategic Plan and its key objectives by identifying a DAP goal under each of the objectives. The rationale for this alignment is to ensure disability access and inclusion remains at the forefront of the Shrine’s everyday operations and systemic processes. This incorporation is anticipated to not only assist the fulfillment of statutory requirements but to also assist to achieve the objectives within the strategic plan.

Objective One: Care for the Shrine for future generations

To position the Shrine as the home of commemoration in Victoria; protect and preserve the Shrine’s unique place and purpose; enhance and enrich the visitor experience; and, provide access, amenity, safety and security for all.

DAP Response: The Shrine monument and Reserve are accessible for all.
What we will do:

  • Continue to implement the recommendations of the Accessibility Audit.
  • Improve services and facilities for visitors with disability including the provision of appropriate seating.
  • Improve services and facilities for visitors with disability in the planned Visitor Centre redevelopment, i.e., accessible bathrooms.
  • Work collaboratively with key partners to increase equitable access to the Shrine Reserve and Shrine monument, leveraging the opening of new infrastructure (City of Melbourne, Yarra Trams, Metro).
  • Construct access ramps between the lower forecourt and the Second World War Memorial Forecourt.
  • Install tactiles in key areas of internal stairways.
  • Develop an Access Key which will be available via the Shrine website.
  • Investigate installation of a compliant elevator between the Galleries and the Sanctuary.

Objective Two: Engage more Victorians in commemoration

Collaborate with and support ESOs in the planning and delivery of commemorative services; honour and unify veterans of all generations in commemoration that reflects their diverse experiences of service; and promote the value of commemoration to reach new audiences.

DAP Response: Commemoration is inclusive and accessible.
What we will do:

  • Work collaboratively with key partners to enhance accessibility and inclusivity of events held within the Shrine monument or on the Shrine Reserve (RSL Victoria, PTV, COM, Yarra Trams and Travellers’ Aid).
  • Continue to offer live streaming of commemorative services to enable access for those who cannot attend site.
  • Continue to incorporate Auslan in key services.

Objective Three: Inform and Inspire

Create and deliver broad-reaching, innovative educational programs and exhibitions that respect and respond to the diverse nature of the Victorian community; introduce new ways to discover, share and experience the Shrine through technology and expertise that supports access and engagement; develop a deeper understanding of community perceptions and needs through consultation, data gathering and ongoing analysis.

8 DAP Response: Our programs respond to and include our diverse community.
What we will do:

  • Continue to provide virtual education programs for schools in regional Victoria.
  • Undertake an environmental audit, develop a social script and produce sensory map for education programs.
  • Consider disability in the development of programs and events to support accessibility and inclusivity—investigate sensory friendly experiences, tours or sessions.
  • Investigate development of accessible Shrine Tour options.
  • Utilise visitation data to inform planning that improves accessibility within the Shrine monument and on the Shrine Reserve.
  • Continue to develop and promote the virtual tour as an accessible experience.

Objective Four: Build sustainability for the future

Strengthen financial resilience, governance and operational capability, securing and optimising funding and support from government and the community. Ensure long-term sustainability by diversifying our funding and revenue sources through new philanthropic, corporate and commercial revenue streams. Attracting, developing and retaining a high calibre workforce that is diverse, innovative, responsive and inclusive. Investing in technologies and digital solutions that optimise operational efficiency, audience reach and engagement.

DAP Response: We are an inclusive place of work
What we will do:

  • Educate our people in inclusivity and continue to develop the Shrine as an inclusive workplace.
  • Offer visitor facing staff introductory Auslan training (voluntary).
  • Establish an Accessibility Action Group to monitor progress of the DAP and report on outcomes.
  • Establish a mechanism to seek input from our community including people with a disability in program and other planning.

Monitoring and review

How we will monitor and review the plan.

Monitoring and review

This DAP includes the formation of a specific Accessibility Action Group. The action group will monitor, plan and report on the implementation and progress of the DAP to the Shrine CEO through established reporting processes.

The nominated actions contained in this plan will be reviewed on a quarterly basis in concert with the quarterly Business Plan review cycle and progress against the DAP will be reported annually in the Shrine Annual Report.

Contacts and further information

Following approval, this DAP will be submitted to the Human Rights Commission pursuant to section 67 of the Disability Discrimination Act 1992 and can be accessed via the Human Rights website.

If parties require a copy of the DAP (hard or electronic), or have queries, they may contact:

Shrine of Remembrance
Birdwood Avenue
03 9661 8100