Victoria University is proudly progressive. How we care is measured by how we act as an institution.

We continue to progress towards improved inclusion and accessibility for people with disabilities in the VU community.

 Two people walking and smiling. One of them is using crutches.

Accessibility action plan

VU strives to be a leader in inclusivity and accessibility for students with disability.

We guide and support students to achieve their career aspirations through personalised, flexible and well-supported learning opportunities.

Our fourth accessibility action plan outlines our commitment to removing barriers to access and participation for students with a health condition or disability. It focuses on five action areas:

  • culture of inclusiveness
  • student support and engagement
  • learning and teaching
  • physical access
  • digital information and services.

Read VU's student accessibility action plan 2021-2023.

The Disability Employee Network (DEN)

Victoria University strives towards progressive inclusivity. We focus on establishing a sense of belonging for all staff and students within our community.

The Disability Employee Network (DEN) is a group of dedicated VU staff, both professional and academic, who are disability proud and are working towards better inclusion for people with a disability at VU.

DEN members identify as having lived experience of disability, are carers, or are allies of people with disabilities.

The purpose of the VU DEN is to share knowledge, best practice and resources and to advocate for disability inclusion for all.

DEN Executive Sponsor:

DEN Co-chairs:

If you are a staff member and are interested in joining a network, please email: [email protected].

Australian Network on Disability (AND)

VU holds a gold membership with the Australian Network on Disability (AND).

We are engaged in the Access & Inclusion Index for 2022, which will evaluate the University’s disability confidence and support our work towards advancing safety, belonging and accessibility at VU, in order to better welcome  staff, students and visitors with disability.

Hidden Disabilities Sunflower

Known as the ‘International Symbol of Access’ (ISA), the blue wheelchair icon is internationally recognised and used to indicate areas where access is available or has been improved.

‘Access’ in this context is environmental, such as:

  • installing ramps instead of steps
  • providing parking bays close to a point of entry or of a larger size, to enable wheelchair access.

While this symbol is important and relevant, it has come under criticism. This is because not all disabilities are visible (that is, another person can immediately see if someone has a disability).

The Hidden Disabilities Sunflower icon is intended to allow for inclusion of all types of disability. It encourages people to think about disability as a spectrum.

As with visible disabilities, invisible disabilities can impact people in a variety of ways. The disability creates challenges for the person who has it. Others may also not understand the cause of the problem, if they cannot see evidence of it in a ‘visible’ way.

Invisible (or hidden/non-visible) disabilities include:

  • mental health
  • intellectual
  • learning
  • acquired or traumatic brain injury
  • ADHD
  • Austim spectrum.

The ISA is important and immediately recognisable, but it doesn’t allow for the diversity of disabilities.

At VU, the Sunflower is used to encourage people to think about disability as a spectrum. It demonstrates to our students and staff that all are welcome here.

The DEN is raising awareness of invisible and visible disabilities and working to improve inclusion at VU.

Find out more & get involved

The Disability Employee Network is open to all staff with a visible or invisible disability and meets monthly via Zoom.

For staff seeking more information on the DEN, or to join:

Students looking for more information on accessibility at VU can:

Outside of the University, a number of organisations provide support and advocacy for people with hidden disabilities, such as Invisible Disabilities Australia.