Advocacy Sector Conversations forum series

Forum summaries

Alison McDonald Presenting on Family Violence with Interpreter

Family Violence and People with Disability-

Posted May 26, 2017

Alison McDonald from Domestic Violence Victoria discussed the family violence reforms and how they impact on people with disability experiencing family violence. She also covered protections available for people with disability, and other information that advocates working with people with disabilities in vulnerable situations need to know. Continue reading

Llewellyn Reynders Presenting on the Disability Advocacy By the Numbers Report with Interpreter

Disability Advocacy by the Numbers 2012-16 Report Launch

Posted May 26, 2017

Llewellyn Reynders, Policy Manager at VCOSS, showcased Disability Advocacy by the Numbers report that uses the data collected by the Victorian Office for Disability advocacy program through the Quarterly Data Collection (QDC) provided by organisations funded under the program. He stepped us through the advocacy issues and identified trends through graphic representation and analysis. Continue reading

Carl Thompson presenting on plan management options, with Interpreter

Self-managed vs Agency-managed supports in the NDIS

Posted May 23, 2017

Carl Thompson from Australian Federation of Disability Organisations (AFDO) provided an   in-depth overview, including pros and cons for the various support management options, that would assist advocates when working with people with disability through their NDIs plan implementation phase. This was followed by an update from Felix Neighbour from the Office for Disability. Continue reading

Barbara Carter presenting on Child Protection with an Interpreter, and Kate Fitt sitting in the background

Child Protection

Posted May 23, 2017

Barbara Carter and Kate Fitt discussed issues around child protection and provided some practical tips on how to support parents with disability in their dealings with child protection agencies. Continue reading

Catherine McAlpine presenting on NDIS Readiness with Intepreter

NDIS readiness for advocates

Posted March 21, 2017

The NDIS is rolling out across Victoria giving thousands the opportunity to start new plans for the first time while investigating local support options. Catherine McAlpine, Manager Disability Loop at AFDO introduced a new ‘Tip Sheet’ for the planning process and provided some perspectives on the Local Area Coordinators and the Service Coordination roles at the NDIS. Continue reading

Mark Feigan presenting on the Plan with Interpreter and Angela Healy sitting in the background

Absolutely Everyone: State disability plan 2017-2020

Posted March 20, 2017

Absolutely everyone: state disability plan 2017-2020 started on 1 January 2017. Mark Feigan, Senior Policy Officer and Angela Healy, Manager from the Office for Disability provided an overview of the new plan which was followed by Q&As and small group discussions to explore how the plan might be used as an advocacy tool. Continue reading

Vanessa Stevens-Downie presening on Zero Tolerance with an Interpreter

'Zero Tolerance’ of abuse: Response to the Parliamentary Inquiry into Abuse in Disability Services

Posted March 20, 2017

Zero Tolerance’ of abuse in disability services is the focus of the Victorian Government’s response to the Parliamentary Inquiry into Abuse in Disability Services. The response was tabled in Parliament on 26 November 2016. Anna Guglielmucci, Assistant Director and Vanessa Stevens-Downie, Principal Policy Officer, Safeguarding and Disability Supports, DHHS provided an update on implementation of the response and discussed opportunities for collaboration with the advocacy sector. Mary Mallet, CEO at Disability Advocacy Network Australia (DANA) was present in the audience and obligingly presented an overview of the recently released NDIS Quality and Safeguarding Framework. Continue reading

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Disability Support Pension changes and the appeals process

Posted December 16, 2016

Peter Norbury from Social Security Rights Victoria updated us on the changes Centrelink made to the impairment tables in 2012 highlighting the contradictions and identifying the hurdles that need to be overcome to pass the eligibility criteria. Len Jaffit, who has been working with the Centrelink Appeals Tribunal at Victoria Legal Aid for many years then stepped us through what you need to do if you are unhappy with a Centrelink decision. Continue reading

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Q&A with the Office for Disability

Posted December 15, 2016

Felix Neighbour, the Acting Manager Strategic Engagement at the Office for Disability brought Martin Turnbull, Assistant Director, Diversity and Disability along to this Q&A session to fill us in on the boost to advocacy funding announced as part of the 'Zero Tolerance' initiative. An update with the ongoing dialogue with NDAP and NDIS and the launch of the State Disability Plan to start in 2017 was also discussed. Continue reading

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Review of the Victorian Housing Register

Posted December 15, 2016

Tony Newman, the Assistant Director of the Implementation support department at the Victorian Housing Register outlined the changes to the Housing Register. This was followed by Steve Staikos from Community Housing Federation Victoria who spoke about the impacts of the changes. Continue reading

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Who's not eligible for the NDIS?

Posted December 5, 2016

The panelists represented people with disability who are either not eligible for the NDIS or who have complexities that make interaction with the agency difficult. A range of issues were raised, and information shared, however many more questions than answers were left in the air. Continue reading

photo of Pual Brady and Carol Okai at the Advocacy Sector Conversations forum

Becoming a NDIS Provider

Posted July 4, 2016

session at the Advocacy Sector Conversations forum held on 23 June 2016 at the Queen Victoria Women's Centre. Paul Brady, Coordinator at Colac and Otway Ranges Advocacy Service (CORAS), and Carole Okai, Executive Officer at Assert 4 All, will step us through the process in becoming an NDIS Service Provider. Both advocacy organisations have undergone this process and have been operating successfully in the NDIS Barwon trial site. Continue reading

Catherine McAlpine presenting at Advocacy Sector Conversations forum

NDIS Opportunities training series

Posted July 4, 2016

Catherine McAlpine, Senior Manager of NDIS Disability Loop, from Australian Federation of Disability Organisations (AFDO) introduced the NDIS Opportunities training series that have been developed to resource and assist small community organisations as they navigate the significant changes the new market environment brings. Particular emphasis was given to how advocacy might fit within the NDIS Price Guide and Support Clusters. Continue reading

image of a discussion group at the State Plan consultation

State Disability Plan 2017-2020 consultation

Posted June 29, 2016

This was the first session at the Advocacy Sector Conversations forum held on 23 June 2016 at the Queen Victoria Women's Centre. This session was dedicated to a consultation process to provide feedback for shaping the next State Disability Plan 2017-2020 The facilitators were Llewellyn Reynders, Policy Manager, and Carly Nowell, Policy Analyst from VCOSS. Continue reading

Catherine McAlpine presenting at Advocacy Sector Conversations forum

NDIS training workshop series

Posted March 10, 2016

This was the third session at the Advocacy Sector Conversations forum held on 1 March 2016 at the Jasper Hotel. In this session, Catherine McAlpine, Senior Manager, NDIS Disability Loop at Australian Federation of Disability Organisations (AFDO) told us about the NDIS workshop series for community organisations and train the trainer workshops for people with disability that have been developed. Continue reading

Toni Van Hammond presenting at Advocacy Sector Conversations forum

NDIS planning

Posted February 29, 2016

Toni Van Hammond, Assistant Director - Engagement & Community Strategy, NDIA Barwon office, explained the role of an NDIA planner and took us through what happens during the planning process. Continue reading

From left to right: Len Jaffit, Rosalinda Casamento, James Keith, Kylie McCutcheon

NDIS review and appeals process

Posted February 29, 2016

This panel provided different perspectives of the NDIS appeals process and included Kylie McCutcheon, NDIS participant and AAT complainant, James Keith , Geelong Area Advocate, Coordinator of SPSP, EMRS Support Officer, Rights Information & Advocacy Centre Inc (RIAC), Len Jaffit, Manager Commonwealth Entitlements Civil Justice, Victoria Legal Aid and Rosalinda Casamento, Senior Lawyer, Victoria Legal Aid, Civil Justice Program. Continue reading

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NDIS roll out in Victoria

Posted November 23, 2015

Michael Cromie, Manager Strategic Engagement, DHHS Office for Disability, introduced Noble Tabe, Acting Director, NDIS reform branch who provided an overview of the work of the Victorian Government to roll out the NDIS in Victoria. Continue reading

Helen Rushford from the Office of the Public Advocate

Powers of attorney application and resources

Posted November 23, 2015

On 1 September 2015, the new Powers of Attorney Act came into effect. . It includes a new supportive attorney appointment provision. Helen Rushford, Coordinator Advice and Education Service, at the Office of the Public Advocate talked about resources developed by OPA to assist people with disability and disability advocates to understand and use the new law. Continue reading

Deborah Glass portrait

Reporting allegations of abuse

Posted November 23, 2015

In June 2015, the Victorian Ombudsman, Deborah Glass, released Reporting and investigation of allegations of abuse in the disability sector: Phase 1 – the effectiveness of statutory oversight. The report has informed the current Victorian parliamentary inquiry into disability abuse. The Ombudsman spoke about recommendations arising out of the report and discussed the issues facing people with disability. Continue reading

photo of Mary Mallett

NDIS Information, Linkages and Capacity (ILC) Framework consultation process update

Posted November 10, 2015

The Department of Social Services (DSS) has provided funding to some disability support organisations to conduct consultations about activity areas which should be funded by the ILC Framework. Mary Mallett, CEO of Disability Advocacy Network Australia (DANA) gave a brief presentation about the consultation process and explain how DSS plans to develop a commissioning process to fund delivery of ILC. Submissions for the framework close on 30 October 2015. Continue reading

front cover of the Powers of Attorney Act 2014

New Powers of Attorney Act

Posted September 14, 2015

This forum was held on 30 July 2015 at the Queen Victoria Women’s Centre, 210 Lonsdale Street, Melbourne. On this page you will find transcripts, contact information and links to resources for the following sessions: 1.Setting the scene for housing services in Victoria 2.Advocacy and housing 3.New Powers of Attorney Act 4.Q&A with the Office for Disability Continue reading

photo of Pauline Williams

Setting the scene for housing services in Victoria

Posted September 14, 2015

Navigating appropriate housing options in victoria is complex. Public , community, private and supported housing tenures all operate under different acts with different application processes and eligibility criteria. Pauline Williams, Housing Rights Coordinator at Action for More Independence in Accommodation (AMIDA), facilitated a panel discussion to identify what support and information services are out there and how these can be utilised by advocates to get the best outcome for their clients. Continue reading

photo of Pauline Williams

Advocacy and housing

Posted September 14, 2015

More than 5,000 Victorians with disability live in state funded disability supported accommodation. In this year’s State Budget, the Victorian Government announced the provision of 830 more individual support plans. Whilst this will go some way towards addressing the unmet housing and accommodation needs of people with disability, there are many more Victorians with disability requiring housing. Pauline Williams, Housing Rights Coordinator at Action for More Independence in Accommodation (AMIDA), focussed the  discussion on supported accommodation with panel members. Continue reading

Michael Cromie head shot

Q&A with the Office for Disability

Posted September 14, 2015

Robyn Gaile, the DARU Coordinator, facilitated a conversation with Michael Cromie, Manager Strategic Engagement from the DHHS Office for DisabilityMichael updated the sector on staffing at the Office for Disability and assured everyone that Service Agreements are on their way for the 2016-19 period. Other topics covered included the Disability Awards, State Disability Plan consultations and VDAC. Continue reading

Photo of Mary Mallett

Influencing government: telling the disability advocacy story

Posted April 15, 2015

Mary Mallett, CEO of Disability Advocacy Network Australia (DANA) presented on the importance of advocates contributing their 'on the ground' experience in submissions to national inquiries to support systemic advocacy issues. This was followed by Robyn Gaile, DARU Coordinator introducing the 'PUSH' key messages tool kit. Continue reading

left to right: Giang Pham and Czenia Mangubat from Berry Street Child and Family Services, Elisa Whittaker, Women’s Legal Service Victoria, DianeJones, Barwon Centre Against Sexual Assault, Rodney Vlais , No To Violence and Men’s Beahvioural Change , Jax Brown, Advocate and Women with Disabilities Victoria Gender and Disability Workforce Development trainer

Violence against women response services

Posted April 2, 2015

This forum was held on 24 March 2015 at the Queen Victoria Women's Centre, 210 Lonsdale Street, Melbourne. On this page you will find session summaries, audio podcasts and transcripts for each session: ◾Violence against women response services ◾Influencing government: telling the disability advocacy story ◾Q&A with the Office for Disability Continue reading

Michael Cromie head shot

Q&A with the Office for Disability

Posted April 2, 2015

Michael Chromie, Manager Strategic Engagement, Office for Disability, provided an update on the activities of the Office and took questions from the floor relating to current service agreements for disability advocacy organisations. He announced that all Victorian Government funded disability advocacy organisations will shortly receive contracts for the rollover of funding for the next financial year. Continue reading

Photo: Advocavy Sector Conversation Forum at Victoria Room

Advocacy Sector Conversation Forum - September 2014

Posted September 3, 2014

This was the third Advocacy Sector Conversations forum held at the queen Victoria Women's Centre on 2 September 2014. Presentations included how Victorians can be involved with the Royal Commission into Institutional Response to Child Sexual Abuse, how to make a successful representative complaint with VEOHRC, issues facing deaf people accessing hospital services and the regular segment with the Office for Disability. Continue reading

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Advocacy Sector Conversation - June 2014

Posted September 1, 2014

This was the second in the advocacy Sector Conversations forum series held at the Queen Victoria Women's Centre on 5 June 2014. Presentations included an introduction on how the NDIS will safeguard the rights of people with disability, showcasing a successful self advocacy partnership between New Wave and ASSIST in Gippsland, the rules advocacy organisations need to know regarding incident reporting and the open forum with the Office for Disability. Continue reading

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Advocacy Sector Conversation - October 2013

Posted October 25, 2013

This is the first in the Advocacy Sector Conversations forum series that aims to support disability advocates to regularly get together and discuss matters which directly impact on their work, as well as to provide informal time to network. Continue reading

Upcoming forums

Advocacy Sector Conversations Forum

27Nov

Date: Tuesday 27 November

Time: 11:00am - 4:00pm

Venue: Queen Victoria Women's Centre Victoria Room Level 4 210 Lonsdale Street Melbourne

Advocacy Sector Conversations Forum

15Feb

Date: Thursday 15 February

Time: 11:00a - 4:00pm

Venue: Queen Victoria Women's Centre Victoria Room Level 4 210 Lonsdale Street Melbourne

Advocacy Sector Conversations Forum

28Jun

Date: Thursday 28 June

Time: 11:00am - 4:00pm

Venue: Queen victoria Women's Centre Victoria room Level 4 210 Lonsdale Street Melbourne

Advocacy Sector Conversations Forum

28Nov

Date: Tuesday 28 November

Time: 11:00am - 4:00pm

Venue: Queen Victoria Women's Centre Victoria Room Level 4/210 Lonsdale Street Melbourne