Number 61 June 2010 - ISSN 2202-0705
Welcome to PWD’s E-Bulletin! This bulletin goes out regularly to our members and supporters and covers PWD news and events as well as other news from the disability sector. For people who do not have access to email, a printed version of the E-bulletin can be sent by post.
To be added to or removed from our mailing list, or to change your email address, please email email@example.com or contact PWD on one of the numbers listed at the end of this bulletin. If you would like to become a member of PWD or learn more about our membership options, contact PWD on firstname.lastname@example.org
Ageing, Disability and Home Care, Department of Human Services (ADHC), has prepared a Regulatory Impact Statement in relation to the proposed Youth and Community Services Regulation 2010. This proposed Regulation includes many of the requirements relating to residents accommodation, care, safety, welfare and well-being that were previously subject to some uncertainty as to the scope of the Minister for Ageing and Disability’s power to enforce. These proposed changes aim to clarify the conditions that licensed boarding house operators will be legally required to provide. The proposed Regulation will be made under the authority of the Youth and Community Services Act 1973 and will replace the Youth and Community Services Regulation 2005, which will expire on 1 September 2010.
The Regulatory Impact Statement outlines four options to making the 2010 Regulation and outlines the costs and benefits to each.
Comments and submissions on the proposed Regulation are invited from the public. This is a very important opportunity for the disability sector, others involved in supporting residents of licensed boarding houses and those interested in Boarding House Sector reform to have input into this process with the aim to improve standards and quality of life of people with disability living in licensed boarding houses.
Some of PWD’s key concerns regarding the proposed Regulation and the process are as follows:
· The proposed Regulation is based on minimum standards which were established some 30 years ago when the Youth and Community Services Act 1973 and subsequent licensing regime was introduced in 1979. What was considered a minimum standard in disability residential care practices then falls far short of minimum standards in disability best practice today;
· The proposed Regulation doesn’t in anyway reflect the NSW Government’s obligations for the implementation of the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD). This includes the NSW Government’s obligation to develop laws, policies and programs which promote, protect and fulfil all human rights and fundamental freedoms of people with disability and that these are recognised without any limitations or exceptions.
· Nor does it reflect best practice standards expected from other disability service providers. The absurd situation of people with disability living in licensed boarding houses being afforded one set of standards or benchmarks for their care, welfare, safety and wellbeing under the Regulation whilst receiving care and supervision from the licensed boarding house, and another when receiving support from ADHC provided or funded services has not been addressed or alleviated in any way;
· The proposed Regulation fails to introduce criminal record checks or probity checks on staff of licensed boarding houses or extend the existing requirement of one off criminal record checks which only occur for the Licensee when the licence is first issued or for the Licensed Manager when they are appointed.
Improving background checking and screening procedures for staff and caregivers coming into contact with vulnerable adults has been well documented. As has the relative ease with which perpetrators can move from one place of employment to another when they are discovered or dismissed. Movement of perpetrators from services for children (which do now have background police checks in a number of jurisdictions) to services for vulnerable adults, including those for persons with cognitive impairment is also well acknowledged. Concerns relating to criminal record check processes have been highlighted by the NSW Ombudsman in its June 2006 Special Report to Parliament on DADHC’s Monitoring Standards in Licensed Boarding Houses. PWD has been advocating for the introduction of a Working with Vulnerable Persons Check, similar to that in place for persons working with children, for some time.
· The proposed Regulation fails to provide any tenancy protections such as Licensee’s and Licensed Managers being prevented from evicting residents without notice and/or held to account for unfair evictions; scrutiny of fees and rent charges and how these link to the provision of goods and services, as well as the requirement for reasonable notices of rental increases; and access to the Consumer Trader and Tenancy Tribunal for disputes.
· The consultation process only allows for the minimum timeframe afforded under the provisions of the Subordinate Legislation Act 1989 which is 28 days. PWD believes this does not provide sufficient time for all stakeholders to express their views on the matters addressed in the RIS.
Of particular concern is how this consultation process will incorporate the views of residents of licensed boarding houses as one of the key stakeholder groups affected by the matters outlined in the RIS. Whilst copies of this statement have been forwarded to all licensees, organisations and government agencies involved in boarding houses, we do not believe copies have been provided to each resident. There is no version of the RIS available in plain English or alternative accessible formats which could be used by others to facilitate residents understanding or input into this process. Nor are we aware of any alternative or separate consultation processes being undertaken to ensure the people with disability living in licensed boarding houses have a say within this 28 day timeframe; and
· The RIS provides insufficient consideration to the human rights and best interests of people with disability. It mentions the proposed Regulation being essential as ‘many people with disability are vulnerable to abuse’ but the Regulation itself fails to go far enough to ensure the human rights of people with disability, as residents of boarding houses, are given paramount consideration and therefore respected, protected and fulfilled.
PWD will be making a submission and would be happy to discuss these issues as well as other detailed comments with anyone else interested in making a submission. If you have any questions or wish to share ideas for submissions, please contact Sonya Price-Kelly, Advocacy Projects Manager on email email@example.com
Submissions and comments should be delivered or posted no later than close of business on 13 July 2010 to:
The Boarding House Regulation Team
People with Disability
Australia (PWD) joined representatives from all sides of the disability
sector to welcome the launch of a new DVD “
The DVD, launched by the new Minister for Disability Services the Hon. Peter Primrose MLC, explores the issue of ‘devolution’ – the process of closing institutions to enable people with disability to enjoy lives in ordinary homes in the community. The DVD follows the story of the devolution of Greystanes Children’s Home in Leura, NSW, a large residential centre for children and young adults with disability and complex health care needs. Greystanes was devolved in 2006 following a PWD initiative which challenged the home’s compliance to the Disability Services Act 1993.
DVD features PWD President
For more information on the DVD or obtaining a copy, please contact Daphnee at firstname.lastname@example.org
PWD was disappointed to see the budget announcement by the NSW State Government offering very little to improve the way in which services are funded and delivered to people with disability. Real reform is urgently required to ensure they are afforded their human rights in the same way as everyone else in our community.
While PWD is satisfied that the NSW Government has met its commitment to increase funding in the sector in line with the Stronger Together plan, we were disappointed this opportunity for reforming the way the current, inadequate service system is delivered has been missed. Until the old model and old ideas, which direct the model of service delivery are changed, we will continue to see people with disability disempowered and sidelined – not ‘Stronger’, as the NSW Government would have us believe.
Of particular concern is the Government’s continued commitment to funding institutions and licensed boarding houses, rather than channelling this money into alternative supported accommodation options which are in line with the legal obligations set out in the Disability Services Act 1993 NSW (DSA).
A key initiative in the NSW Health Budget was the allocation of $0.5 million to improve health care for people with intellectual disability. This allocation is recurrent funding to pilot a small team to establish a Centre for Developmental Disability Medicine.
31 May 2010
The Hon Justine Elliot MP - Minister for Ageing
Peter Primrose - NSW Minister for Ageing and Disability Services
Minister for Ageing
Justine Elliot and New South Wales Minister for Ageing and Disability Services
Peter Primrose today announced more than $28 million for Home and Community
Care (HACC) services in
Disability Advocacy Resource Unit (DARU) has recently contracted PWD and the
Disability Studies and Research Centre of the University of NSW (DSRC) to
deliver an options appraisal paper about the development of an advocacy
course, and education pathways that may be available into higher
education. The aim is to eventually
develop a course that is available to advocacy workers across
The project is due to begin in late June 2010 and the first stage will involve conducting a critical review of existing curricula and training options for staff of disability advocacy agencies, both in Australia and internationally.
next stage will involve widespread consultation with the advocacy sector in
· best practice in skills training and development in advocacy;
· gaps in training and development, and barriers to access;
· modes of learning and assessment that will fit in with the work and other demands of advocacy workers;
· the values and key aspects of advocacy practice that need to be included in teaching and assessment;
· how people with disability can access this education.
If you are a peak body or an organisation that provides individual or systemic disability advocacy, we are interested to hear from you and would be happy to undertake an interview with you. The expression of interest form for participation in this project is located at the PWD website at www.pwd.org.au.
Michael Bleasdale is leading the project, and can be contacted at email@example.com, or by telephone on 02 9370 3100.
The WA Minister for Disability Services invites interested people to nominate for membership of the Ministerial Advisory Council on Disability. The 14 member Council provides independent advice directly to the Minister for Disability Services on a range of issues affecting Western Australians with disability, their families and carers.
The Council is made up of people with disability, family members / carers, advocates, service providers and others with knowledge and expertise of disability.
If you have skills, knowledge or experience of disability you are invited to
nominate for membership of the Council. For an application package and further information about Council please contact Gail Ambrose on:
Telephone: (08) 9426 9269 (voicemail 24 hour service)
Freecall: 1800 629 269 (for country callers)
TTY: (08) 9426 9321
The application package can be provided in alternative formats upon request.
Applications close 5pm on Monday 26 July 2010
SoundWaves is a new music project designed to create opportunities for people with disability. Events feature an integrated line-up of disability & mainstream performances and are a great opportunity to enjoy free live music, participate and find out more about the project.
They are held on the last Thursday of each month 11am – 2pm
Plenty of free, accessible parking, and low cost food & bar facilities. All workshops & events are FREE.
Additionally, two workshops a month provide opportunities for people with disability to develop skills in music performance, MC-ing, DJ-ing, production, event staging & promotion, by working with some of Adelaide’s top performers and musicians.
To book a workshop place or find out more contact
22 June 2010
Lara Giddings, MP
The Attorney-General, Lara Giddings, has today outlined a progressive law reform agenda for the coming year.
In her Budget Reply speech, Ms Giddings said her priorities included:
· progressing a Charter of Human Rights and Responsibilities;
· developing voluntary euthanasia laws;
· introducing surrogacy laws; and
“I am announcing my reform agenda early in order to be as open and transparent as possible with Tasmanians as to the issues I believe need further consideration and reform over the coming year.”
Ms Giddings said a Charter of Rights and Responsibilities was a key
reform which would protect human rights in
10 May 2010
On Friday 21 May PWD hosted a successful information evening at
A number of representatives from national and state-based peak disability organisations also attended the event.
Guests were encouraged to provide feedback and ask questions of Ms Deane, which they did with thought and enthusiasm. Members also had the chance to network and enjoy refreshments.
At the Members Event held on 21 May 2010, PWD expressed its intention to get behind the campaign for a National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) and to make a significant submission to the Productivity Commission’s (PC) Inquiry into disability care and support. Work is progressing slowly with this, and PWD members and associate members are invited to provide input to the Inquiry, either individually, or by way of contribution to PWD’s submission.
An issues paper was released by the PC on 17 May, and is available on the Commission’s website at: www.pc.gov.au/projects/inquiry/disability-support/issues.
PWD’s submission will address the points raised in the issues paper, and add to and amend some of the issues to ensure that key principles of user control of supports and governance of services by people with disability are emphasised in a new disability services system.
The key questions/issues raised by the PC through the issues paper are:
· who should be the key focus of a new scheme and how may they be practically and reliably identified
· which groups are most in need of additional support and help
· the kinds of services that particularly need to be increased or created
· ways of achieving early intervention
· how a new scheme could encourage the full participation by people with disability and their carers in the community and work
· how to give people with disabilities or their carers more power to make their own decisions (and how they could appeal against decisions by others that they think are wrong)
· how to improve service delivery – including coordination, costs, timeliness and innovation
· the factors that affect how much support people get and who decides this
· how to ensure that any good aspects of current approaches are preserved
· what to do in rural and remote areas where it is harder to get services
· reducing unfairness, so that people with similar levels of need get similar support
· getting rid of wasteful paper burdens, overlapping assessments (the ‘run around’) and reducing duplication in the system
· how to finance a new scheme so that there is enough money to deliver the services that are needed and provide greater certainty about adequate care in the future
· the practical aspects of a scheme that will make it work, such as how existing arrangements would fit into a new scheme, how to manage risks and costs, and ideas for attracting people to work in disability services
· how long would be needed to start a new scheme, and what should happen in the interim.
The deadline for submissions has been extended from 30 June to Monday 16 August 2010. Details on how to make your own submission can be found at: www.pc.gov.au/projects/inquiry/disability-support/make-submission
If you wish to make a contribution to PWD’s submission, please contact Michael Bleasdale, preferably by email on firstname.lastname@example.org. Otherwise, contact the PWD office on (02) 9370 3100. You may be able to contribute to any or all of the questions and issues raised above.
While submissions are usually the main way people tell the Productivity Commission their views, there are also a number of formal public hearings, in which people are encouraged to give the Commissioners their views in person.
encourages all members and people with disability to attend a hearing to express
their views and hear what others have to contribute. The hearings are taking
place all over
The hearings usually run from 9am to 5pm, but that may change. To make sure you are able to attend the most convenient hearing for you, please visit the PC website and complete the public hearing registration form.
If you go to a hearing you will make a real difference to the PC inquiry, so we hope you will get involved!
The Disability Service Standards were established in 1992 to ensure people with disability received the services they wanted and needed. The Standards state services should be accessible to those who need them on an equal basis and should be tailored to the needs of each individual. They require people receiving disability services to have a say in the way services are designed and demand service providers respect the privacy of their clients.
Importantly, the Standards call on service providers to ensure people with disability are supported to participate in the life of their communities by developing skills and taking part in ways that are valued by others. The Standards call on services to accept and act on any complaints made by their clients or associates and to manage services to maximise outcomes for people with disability.
Given that the Standards
are there to put into practice the principles of the Disability Services Act,
it's important these goals are not dropped just because they're hard to
achieve. At the moment, the Standards remain the basis for all funded disability
services provided across
Recently, the Australian Government and all the States and Territories told us they wanted to review the Standards. They said they wanted to change the Standards so:
· people with disability get better results from disability services
· the language used reflects up-to-date ideas of service quality and helps measure how each service meets the standards
· anything that should be in the Standards is added; and
· "red tape" is reduced for disability services – which should allow more effort to be applied to improving services instead of writing reports and complying with lots of different rules and regulations.
PWD Australia is writing a submission about the Standards review and is interested in your views about the Disability Service Standards.
We've attached a link to the discussion paper about the Standards to get you going: National Quality Framework Discussion paper
We're also interested in anything else you have to tell us about the Disability Service Standards that is not covered in the discussion paper. Damien Anderson is coordinating the PWD response to the review and can be contacted at 1800 880 052 or by email at email@example.com. Please contact Damien as soon as possible with any comments.
You can also write your own submission to the standards review or click here to fill out an online survey.
PWD recently made a submission to the Senate Community Affairs Reference Committee’s inquiry into planning options and services for people ageing with disability. This submission reflects the lived experience of people with disability. Using a range of case studies compiled from our individual advocacy work, we identified current systemic issues that inhibit the rights of people with disability to access planning and funding options and services, which ensure their continued quality of life as they age.
Our submission was provided from the
perspectives of people with disability and aims to reflect their unique
experiences of the disability services system. We provided this
Our key messages to this Inquiry included our view that people with disability must be afforded the opportunity to make choices about the services and supports they require and not limited to being prioritised once they reach a crisis point. Nor should these opportunities be limited to the one time a person with disability leaves their family home, but rather provided on an ongoing basis as their needs, circumstances and lives change over time.
As well, we stressed the importance of ongoing planning processes to ensure people with disability and their families are not left in a situation of being forced or obliged to accept a service simply on account of there being no other choice available. The continuing unmet need for appropriate housing and support and the lack of alternative options available can often be masked by the equally strong need of people with disability and their families to resolve a crisis situation. An effective planning and service system is one which is not crisis driven but respects, protects and fulfils the human rights of people with disability.
PWD is extremely disappointed in the Australian Government’s response to the report prepared from the Australian Human Rights Consultation, which was conducted in 2009.
The Australian Human
Rights Consultation provided an historic opportunity for people to have their
say about the protection and promotion of human rights in
Over 40,000 people put in a written submission or
came to one of the 66 community roundtables at 52 locations around
The Committee’s report was released on 8 October
2009 and contained 31 recommendations, including the introduction of a Human
Rights Act to improve the promotion and protection of human rights in
21 April 2010, the Australian Government released a new Human Rights
While disappointed in the Government’s response, PWD recognises there are many opportunities to achieve enhanced human rights outcomes through the National Human Rights Framework. The Framework commits the Government to a number of actions, including:
· Enhancing human rights education across the community;
· Establishing a new Parliamentary Joint Committee on Human Rights;
requirement that each new Bill and disallowable legislative instruments introduced
into Parliament is accompanied by a statement of compatibility with
· Consolidating federal anti-discrimination laws to remove unnecessary regulatory overlap;
· Developing a new National Action Plan on Human Rights; and
· Creating an annual NGO Human Rights Forum.
PWD is engaging in the implementation of the Framework to ensure that it is robust in protecting and promoting the rights of people with disability. We have participated in the inaugural NGO Human Rights Forum held on 23 June 2010 and raised a number of issues and concerns in relation to the Framework.
The Framework will be reviewed in 2014 and many in the human rights sector see this as the next opportunity to restate views in support of a Human Rights Act.
More information on the Human Rights Framework is available on the Attorney-General’s website here The Australian Human rights Framework
For more information about PWD’s work in this area, contact Therese Sands on email firstname.lastname@example.org or on one of the numbers listed at the end of this E-bulletin.
On 2 June 2010, the Attorney-General, Robert McClelland, introduced the Human Rights (Parliamentary Scrutiny) Bill 2010 and the Human Rights (Parliamentary Scrutiny) (Consequential Provisions) Bill 2010 into Parliament.
Bills give effect to key legislative commitments contained in
The Human Rights (Parliamentary Scrutiny) (Consequential Provisions) Bill 2010 amends the Administrative Appeals Tribunal Act 1975 to include the President of the Australian Human Rights Commission as an ex officio member of the Administrative Review Council (ARC). It also amends the Legislative Instruments Act 2003 to require explanatory statements for disallowable legislative instruments (guidelines which must underpin decision-making) to contain a statement of compatibility.
Both Bills are now the subject of Inquiry by the Senate Legal and Constitutional Committee. The Committee is accepting submissions and will report to Parliament on its findings by 17 August 2010.
PWD welcomes the introduction of these Bills and is currently assessing the Bills to provide our views to the Committee.
For more information about the Inquiry go the Committee website here www.aph.gov.au/senate/committee/legcon_ctte/human_rights_bills/info.htm
For more information about PWD’s views contact Therese Sands by email email@example.com or on one of the numbers listed at the end of this E-bulletin.
On 29 June, the Australian Government released its draft initial report under the CRPD, which is due to be submitted to the UN CRPD Committee by 16 August 2010. The draft report has been prepared by the Attorney-General’s Department in consultation with Commonwealth agencies, and State and Territory Governments.
The Australia Government is required to report regularly to the UN on its progress in implementing CRPD and achieving rights for people with disability. This first Government report, called a Baseline Report is required two years following ratification of CRPD. It provides an opportunity to identify actions taken to harmonise national law and policy with CRPD; to monitor progress regarding the rights of people with disability; to identify problems in implementing CRPD; and to plan and develop appropriate policies to achieve CRPD.
The Attorney‑General’s Department (AGD) is now seeking public comment on the draft report. To view the Report, or to find out about making comments go to the AGD website here www.ag.gov.au/humanrights
PWD will be working with other members of the CRPD Shadow Report Working Group in developing its response. The Working Group is preparing the draft NGO Shadow Report to be submitted to the UN CRPD Committee. The Shadow Report provides an NGO view of the Australian Government’s measures in achieving human rights for people with disability (more information on this project can be found in E-bulletin #57 September/October 2009 or on the Project website www.disabilityrightsnow.org.au
For more information contact Therese Sands by email firstname.lastname@example.org or on one of the numbers listed at the end of this E-bulletin.
On Monday 21 June 2010, the Joint Standing Committee on Migration tabled its report on the Inquiry into the Migration Treatment of Disability entitled Enabling Australia: Inquiry into the Migration Treatment of Disability.
PWD has advocated for many years to remove the discrimination inherent in the Migration Act 1958 and throughout the Inquiry process we have joined with a number of disability, ethnic and refugee organisations to coordinate views and responses. For more information go to the joint group website here www.disabilityrightsnow.org.au/node/13
The Committee Report, Migration treatment of disability: Enabling
These recommendations support changes so that:
· the theoretical cost of migration, known as ‘significant cost threshold’ is modernised to reflect likely actual costs associated with disability;
· a waiver can be applied where a person does not meet the new updated Health Requirement, to allow for the assessment of the social and economic contributions made by a prospective immigrant or their families;
· families including skilled immigrants are not unfairly disadvantaged under the Health Requirement as a result of a family member having a disability—the ‘one fails, all fail’ rule;
· offshore refugee applicants who have a disability or other health condition, can have visa waivers applied for compelling and compassionate considerations, including those applying on a family reunion basis;
· migration legislation distinguishes between conditions which may impose a public health risk versus those linked to disability.
PWD welcomes these recommendations, and the recognition made by the Committee that the Health Requirement discriminates against people with disability.
We have also joined with a number of organisations in preparing a joint statement in response to the Committee’s Report. Our response welcomes the recommendations but states our disappointment that the Report recommendations do not go beyond administrative reforms. We argue that the discriminatory nature of the current legislation and practices demand a full application of the Disability Discrimination Act 1992 to the Migration Act 1958.
We also commend and endorse Committee members Senators Sue Boyce and Sarah Hanson-Young on their additional recommendations to the Report, which argue for the application of the DDA to the Migration Act 1958. We also commend their views that the social model of disability should replace the outdated medical model that is inherent in the Health Requirement.
For more information contact Therese Sands by email, email@example.com or on one of the numbers listed below.
The National Abuse and
Neglect Hotline (the Hotline) has embarked upon a strategy to better
communicate awareness of abuse and neglect amongst people with disability in
Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities, as well as awareness of
the Hotline. There is chronic
under-reporting of abuse and neglect amongst people with disability across
On April 22, Parliamentary Secretary for Disabilities and Children’s Services Bill Shorten launched the Hotline’s new brochure at the second National Gathering of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people with disability in Redfern. The production and distribution of this Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander brochure is the first step in addressing the issue of abuse and neglect and to working out how people who experience abuse and neglect can recognise it, ideally prevent it, but also are able to report it and stop it from occurring again.
A committee of Aboriginal
and Torres Strait Islander people with disability has been established to
advise the Hotline on how best to consult with communities across
The contact person for information about this is Michael Bleasdale on firstname.lastname@example.org
PWD is proud to announce the launch of a brand new website to support the National Disability Abuse and Neglect Hotline. The site was created as a new way for people to contact the Hotline and report cases of abuse and neglect against people with disability. It aims to be an effective tool to empower people with disability, their families and carers to report abuse and neglect in the community as well as in specialist disability services.
It is designed to comply with Web Content Accessibility Guidelines to AA standard. You can visit the site at: www.disabilityhotline.org
The National Disability Abuse and Neglect Hotline is an Australia-wide telephone hotline for reporting abuse and neglect of people with disability using government funded services. Allegations are referred to the appropriate authority for investigation.
If you have any feedback
on the site or how it could be improved, please contact
PWD has released its new Training Calendar for July 2010-June 2011
Inside you’ll find information on the following courses taking in place in Sydney, Wollongong, Logan, Bowral, Dubbo, Fraser Coast, Lismore, Sunshine Coast, Queanbeyan, Newcastle, Bundaberg, Sutherland and Mount Isa:
Introduction to Disability Awareness / 1.5 hours
Disability Awareness / 1 day
Responding to Abuse and Neglect / 1 day
Responding to Sexual Assault / 2 days
In-house training sessions
If you would like further information please email email@example.com or call us on 02 9370 3100.
PWD is pleased to announce
that life member and former Vice President of PWD, Faye Druett, has received a Medal of
the Order of
We also congratulate PWD
Member Patricia Byrne who received
a Medal of the Order of
PWD also congratulates Executive Officer of Queensland Advocacy Incorporated, Kevin Cocks, who received an AM (Member in the General Division) for his service to people with disability, as an advocate for the promotion and protection of individual human rights and as a contributor to the reform and development of disability services.
We recognise the work of all recipients who have worked tirelessly for the rights of people with disability over many years and are well-deserved recipients of these Honours.
Nominations for the 2010 National Disability Awards are now open. The awards, coordinated by the Department of Families, Housing, Community Services and Indigenous Affairs (FaHCSIA) celebrate and acknowledge the achievements and contributions that individuals with a disability make to our community, as well as recognise individuals within our community who have contributed to the disability sector. The awards are announced each year on 3 December, International Day of People with Disability.
This year the organisers are calling for nominations in six Award categories:
· Minister's Lifelong Achievement Award for people over 25 years of age who have advanced the rights of people with disability.
· Young Disability Challenge Award for young people aged 12-25 years who have advanced the rights of people with disability.
· Local Government Award for local government authorities who have succeeded in implementing substantial changes to improve physical, social, economic and cultural access and inclusion for people with disability and their families.
Inclusion Award -
· Accessible Housing Award for property developers, builders and others in the building sector that have developed innovative and accessible private dwellings for people with disability.
If you have made or know someone who has made, a significant contribution to their community either at a local, regional, state or national level, let people know about it by nominating for the 2010 National Disability Awards
Nomination forms and
nomination guidelines are available at the International Day of People with
Disability (IDPwD) website www.idpwd.com.au
4 June 2010
Bill Shorten, Parliamentary Secretary for Disabilities and Children’s Services & Jenny Macklin, Minister for Families, Housing, Community Services and Indigenous Affairs
Disability Ministers today endorsed the eligibility criteria, concession provisions, and proposed timeline for the roll out of the Australian Disability Parking Scheme.
The Scheme has now been referred to the Australian Transport Council for its endorsement.
Scheme will unify the almost 100 individual schemes that exist across
This new national Scheme will operate more efficiently and give greater independence and dignity to many Australians with limited mobility who rely on existing disability parking schemes.
To read the full Media Release, click here
17 June 2010
Human Rights Commission
“I voted in secret for the first time in my life at the last election”, said Commissioner Innes who is blind. “I can now look forward to being able to exercise the same rights as other voters in elections to come.”
“A trial of electronic voting took place at the last Federal Election, but this amendment ensures an ongoing commitment to developing mechanisms to allow for secret ballots”, said Commissioner Innes.
To read the full Media Release, click here
From 18–22 June, PWD
participated in three regional events held in
All the documents from the three meetings, including the Bangkok Recommendation are available on the DPIAP website here www.dpiap.org
Judith Heumann, an international leader in the disability rights movement and a governmental representative to the USICD Board of Directors, will be joining the U.S. Department of State as their Special Advisor for International Disability Rights.
This position was
announced last summer, when President Obama and Secretary Clinton declared
"This is a significant
step forward to the
Read the Full Article here:
"As a staunch advocate for devolution, I was very honoured to be approached by John Le Breton, CEO of Disability Enterprises, to participate in the production of something as important as a Devolution information and awareness DVD.
My own experiences have made me very passionate about devolution for all people with disability, whether it be physical, intellectual or psychological. I believe in equality and have been advocating for equal rights for people with disability since I acquired my disability almost five decades ago.
While we in Australia have come a long way in disability reform we are still lagging well behind other countries such as the UK, Sweden, and Ireland when it comes to human rights, social acceptance and equality, I would like to see all governments, Federal, State and Local raise the bar when it comes to human rights and equality for people with disabilities of all persuasions.
I have hope that the introduction of a National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) will make a difference to peoples' quality of life by abolishing the Medical and Bio-physical models of disability once and for all, in favour of the more acceptable Social Model of disability. Devolution has a key role to play in this reform and it is up to all disability organisations and individuals with disability to make sure the voices of the people who require such a scheme be heard and taken seriously. Gone are the days when people with disabilities can be brushed off with token input and consideration in important reforms which affect their lives!
The Disability Standards and Acts have made some difference, but unfortunately there is still much work to be done. It is disheartening to see how the Occupational Health and Safety Act and it's subsequent regulations have eroded aspects of Disability Legislation and Human Rights, which we fought for before and since the International Year of Disabled Persons 1981 (IYDP).
Twelve years ago the then State government promised the disability sector all institutions would be devolved in twelve years, yet now we see it them dismantling large institutions to build mini institutions with exactly the same problems. While devolution can only do so much, it will go a long way towards the integration of people with disability into community living arrangements, which in turn should deliver many of the reforms we are lobbying for.
I urge all disability organisations, people with disability, their families, parents, guardians, advocates and carers to get behind our ongoing crusade for Disability Reform no matter what it takes".
Jan Daisley, President – PWD
PWD pays tribute to Franz Weber, who died suddenly on 14 June 2010. Franz was a loyal member of PWD since 1981, and contributed greatly to our organisational development.
Franz was a loving friend to many PWD members, and a celebration of his life was held on 21 June at Northern Suburbs Crematorium.
Members and friends can share their memories, and celebrate the life of Franz via an online Tribute page available at www.onlinetributes.com.au/Franz_Weber/
21 May 2010: Rights for Boarding House residents – Time to Act!
9 June 2010: NSW Budget is simply Old money for Old ideas
Australian Volunteers International & Thailand Disabled People’s International (DPI)
Position Description: Regional Network Advisor – Disability
Duration: 24 Months
Program: Volunteer Program
Organisation – Thailand Disabled People’s International (DPI)
Thailand Disabled People´s International (DPI) is a world cross-disability, self-help, human rights organisation of persons with disabilities established in 1981. DPI promotes full-participation and equalisation of opportunity of persons with disabilities by delivering "A voice of our own." Disabled People´s International Asia-Pacific Region has been playing an important role in the disability movement of Asia-Pacific Region.
For more information, and to apply, please visit the website;
If you are human rights education expert, practitioner or simply wish to learn more and establish networks, join the Equity and Diversity unit at UWS for the International Human Rights Education Conference "Educating for Human Rights, Peace and Intercultural Dialogue".
World class speakers and the conference program will focus on the contribution of human rights culture to the good functioning of the civil society; highlight key trends and achievements in human rights education and in particular, aim to secure greater commitment for future human rights education. It will have a strong development and Indigenous component. Check out the website for more information.
The Victorian Advocacy League for Individuals with Disability Inc (VALID) have announced the first notice for the Having a Say Conference, 9-11 Feb 2011, Deakin Uni, Geelong.
People with Disability Australia Incorporated (PWD) is a national disability rights and advocacy organisation. Our membership is people with disability and organisations made up of people with disability. Individuals and organisations committed to the disability rights movement can join PWD as associate members.
PWD was founded in 1981, the International Year of Disabled People, to provide people with disability with a voice of our own. We have a cross-disability focus and represent the interests of people with all kinds of disability.
As a non-profit, non-government organisation we increasingly depends on membership fees, public donations, bequests and fundraising activities to maintain our commitment to improving the lives of people with disability. PWD is a deductible gift recipient so donations of $2 or more are fully tax deductible.
Your tax deductible donation will mean we can continue to maintain our services. If you are interested and would like to support PWD please visit www.pwd.org.au/donations
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