There's a script step for this:
Show Hide Status Area [Lock ; Hide ]
You can set a script to do this when the file opens or as part of a script that runs when the user clicks a button to access that layout. (And you can hide a script in the script manager to show and unlock this area that you can use when you need access to the status area as a developer.)
Thanks Phil :) I didn't realize that this needed to be done via a script for IPW.