The workshop was attended by representatives from the Ministry of Infrastructure Development, Ministry of Education, Sheikh Zayed Housing Program, Department of Municipalities and Transport in Abu Dhabi, Sharjah’s Advisory Council, Municipalities in Dubai, Ras Al Khaimah, Al Fujairah, Ajman, Um Al Qiwain, and Dibba Al Fujairah to ensure that the code is broadly disseminated. The workshop included theoretical and practical training about the new code while the completion of the training on the transport section will be announced in the forthcoming period.
The purpose of the UAE Universal Design Code is to define how the environment, transportation system and infrastructure all over the UAE shall be designed and managed to enable one to approach, enter, use, egress in an equitable and dignified manner for the people of determination to the greatest extent possible in line with the code concept. The code also aims for providing fully service environment and facilities in public places as well as inside or outside homes, medical facilities and workplaces
Furthermore, Excellency Abdullah Al Maeeni, Director General of Emirates Authority for Standardization and Metrology “ESMA” stated that the Authority participated in adopting the universal code as part of its efforts to implement the UAE national agenda 2021 and national policy for empowering the people of determination which aims for their empowerment, active participation and equal opportunities in an inclusive community through putting common standards for the buildings that accommodate the needs of the people of determination all over the UAE, and the launch of the friendly building award for the people of determination.
His Excellency elaborated that the “UAE Universal Design Code” is a result of the authority’s strategy in cooperation with the ministry and related government authorities through setting up laws, regulations, policies, standards and professional practices to ensure accessibility, apply the best international standards to implement theoretical and practical training for the competent authorities in both public and private sectors.
The Director General of the Authority explained that the “UAE Universal Design Code” is a unique achievement based on international best practices, and contains technical guidance for building designers to ensure smoothness and accessibility of services for the people of determination, noting that the UAE government is working in joint coordination to reach these goals, ensure absolute equality of those concerned in various life aspects. The “UAE Universal Design Code” for the people of determination comes in the context of the implementation of operational plans for the national policy for empowering people of determination.
The Director General also lauded the role of the Ministry of Community Development in empowering the people of determination in the UAE community through a number of policies, laws and legislations and issuing the people of determination cards as well as establishing a federal database for them in cooperation with the local authorities each year. These national legislations, laws and regulations enhance the role of all authorities towards preparing an adequate infrastructure for quality and standardization, such as the Emirates Authority for Standardization and Metrology “ESMA”.
On this occasion, Excellency Nasser Ismail, Assistant Undersecretary for Social Care at the Ministry of Community Development, emphasized that the “UAE Universal Design Code reflects the positive atmosphere for the people of determination and community members with better services and facilities; this supports the efforts of the Ministry to make all the buildings and facilities in the UAE friendly and accessible cities for all the members of the community especially the people of determination in order to ensure a better quality of life in all fields such as transportation, living, mobility, working environments and social interaction without borders. The people of determination have a distinguished rank and are considered on the top priorities of the UAE government; the efforts of their inclusion, empowerment and active participation in the community are the main objectives of the national policy for empowering people of determination.
Excellency Nasser Ismail elaborated that the “UAE Universal Design Code” is a new guideline for all competent authorities to unify their efforts for all the society members and assist the people of determination to move and live free in a fully accessible community. In this context, the local governments take the necessary procedures, technical measures and organization methods to succeed in the comprehensive application of the UAE Universal Design Code for an eligible environment, in a way that unifies the experiences of the people of determination in particular and the various members of the community in general, with accessible facilities and infrastructure in line with global best practices and as well as partnership and integration between all federal and government authorities.
“The UAE Universal Design Code” empowers the people of determination and the members of the community to live independently and fully participate in all life aspects through designing accessible buildings, facilities and services that convey the reality of a friendly city for everyone in implementation of the national policy and strategy of the UAE federal government. The code supports the usage and needs of the people of determination towards their empowerment, happiness and positive participation.
The Emirates Authority for Standardization and Metrology (ESMA) is the federal authority approved by the United Arab Emirates to exercise administrative responsibilities by unifying management, supervision and coordination of standards, regulations, and quality control. The Authority's policy is drawn up by a board of directors headed by a UAE minister and includes representatives of the relevant federal and local government entities.
The Emirates Authority for Standardization and Metrology (ESMA) was established as a financially and administratively independent federal body under Federal Law No. 28 of 2001. The Authority provides standards, metrology, conformity assessment and accreditation services in accordance with international requirements and practices.
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