Vanessa Dockerill

As part of the Government’s National Strategy for Disabled People, Habinteg Housing Association Board member Vanessa Dockerill has been named as the Government’s Disability and Access Ambassador for private sector housing.

Vanessa is one of a group of ambassadors, all industry leaders, who will help to ensure businesses are doing all they can to support their disabled staff, customers and service users.

She has 30 years’ experience across the construction sector, private housing development and affordable housing sector and is currently Assistant Director of Development at Thrive Homes UK.

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Her previous roles include New Business & Commercial Director for Taylor Wimpey and Managing Director of Catalyst New Homes.

Vanessa has been a Habinteg Board member for over two years and is Chair of Habinteg’s Investment Committee. She offers detailed knowledge of the private housing sector and is passionate about driving social change for disabled people.

She said: “I am delighted to have been appointed as Disability and Access Ambassador for private sector housing.

“The provision of accessible homes is something I am very passionate about and I look forward to engaging with developers to discuss how we can provide more, much needed, accessible housing.”

Habinteg and its access and inclusive design experts, Centre for Accessible Environments, has stated that it is looking forward to supporting the new ambassador’s work in improving housing options for disabled and older people.

It has been confirmed that Vanessa, and 12 other new recruits, will join ambassadors already representing the financial sector, the transport sector, the arts, the built and natural environment, technology and web design, pubs and restaurants, universities, energy industries and other industries.

Justin Tomlinson, Minister for Disabled People, Health and Work, said: “I am very excited to welcome this incredible, impressive group of people as new Disability and Access Ambassadors.

“They will help support the existing team with our programme to increase access for disabled people across a wide range of private sector industries, and I am really looking forward to working with them.”

Habinteg recently stated that the Government’s National Disability Strategy published last week has missed a golden opportunity on implementing accessible housing.

It argued that ‘accessible and adaptable’ building standards should be established as the minimum requirement for all new homes as well as a national expectation for a proportion of all homes to be built to wheelchair accessible standards

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