Ableism: What it is and what we can do about it

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People with disability continue to experience significant barriers to social inclusion, equal opportunity in education and employment, discrimination in health and housing, and lack of financial security. This is despite reforms and legislation to protect against these unfair outcomes.

It’s the attitudinal and systemic discrimination that legislation can’t protect against. These are the barriers that people with disability fight against everyday. It’s called ableism.

In this course we’ll look at ableism in Australia, why it happens and what needs to change.

On completing this course, learners will have an understanding of:

  • Ableism in Australia;
  • Where disability prejudice comes from;
  • What ableism looks like in the community, and
  • How to take a stand against ableism.


Where does disability prejudice come from?

The root of prejudice is ignorance and this is true for disability. History tells a dark shameful story of institutionalised abuse and neglect that continues to be unacknowledged to this…

Impact of ableism

It’s time to meet Abbey, who has a disability, and Zoe, who doesn’t. Let’s see how their life journeys differ.’ve seen the effects of ableism throughout Abbey’s life. So how…

Meet the Ableism Hotline Team

The Ableism Hotline is a fictional workplace with a team of highly skilled operators with lived experience in everyday ableism. The scenarios cover a range of common settings that are…

Special needs – Ableism at school

Only three in five respondents agreed or strongly agreed that schools are accepting of people with disability when asked this question in the Centre of Research Excellence in Disability and…

Kindness fatigue: Everyday ableism

One of the most challenging issues surrounding ableism is the fact that, in most instances, it’s well meaning people who don’t think twice about asking awkward, tactless questions and comments…

From ableist to ally

Ableism is so deeply entrenched in society, that it takes time and effort to see if for what it is, and to appreciate the effects it has on the lives…


Congratulations you have reached the end of the course on Ableism. Here’s a recap on what you have learnt:Where ableism is rife in Australia;What ableism looks like in a variety…