Media Item

Kensington mental health worker awarded top Australia Day honour

Betty Kitchener has poured years of work into demystifying myths and misconceptions about mental health issues. Ms Kitchener’s creation of the world-first mental health first aid course has earned the Kensington resident an Australia Day honour by being named a Member of the Order of Australia (AM). “It really gets people to understand what is … Continued

Govts urged to give intellectually disabled people more say in decision-making in 2015

Samantha Donovan reported this story on Friday, January 16, 2015 08:16:00 The federal and state governments are being urged to give people with intellectual disabilities more say in the design of the National Disability Insurance Scheme. Advocates for the disabled say their call is supported by recent recommendations from the Australian Law Reform Commission.

The problem with ABC’s new disability series, ‘Attitudes’

“Attitude is everything.” Or so claims Attitude, a new series currently screening on the ABC. It’s a nice idea. Unfortunately, it’s patently false. When it comes to disability, attitude is not everything. To quote the late and great Stella Young, “No amount of smiling at a flight of stairs has ever made it turn into … Continued

Why we need an inquiry into violence against people with disabilities

  The ABC Four Corners program “In Our Care” has generated significant media and community response. Women with Disabilities Victoria takes the following position regarding violence against women with disabilities in disability services. Women with disabilities are strong Much of the conversation about abuse of women with disabilities has centred on our vulnerability.  This so … Continued

Order of Australia Medal for Lesley Hall, past CEO of AFDO

The Board and staff of the Australian Federation of Disability Organisations (AFDO) warmly welcome the recognition of Lesley Hall’s work with the award of a posthumous Order of Australia Medal today. “Lesley was a strong advocate with a life-long disability who worked to empower people on low incomes, indigenous Australians and people with disabilities in … Continued

We wouldn’t accept actors blacking up, so why applaud ‘cripping up’?

“If you do a film about the Holocaust, you’re guaranteed an Oscar,” goes the famous Kate Winslet joke in Extras. The same can be said for an actor doing a film about disability. Unless you’re a disabled actor, that is. Then you’re lucky to even get the part. This week, when Eddie Redmayne won a … Continued

Eastern suburbs families among hundreds making complaints about abuse of disabled relatives

Hundreds of instances of alleged physical and sexual abuse of people with disabilities were reported last year, as both authorities and local families say the system needs fixing. Several eastern region families have told Leader harrowing accounts of alleged abuse of their disabled family members, speaking with anger about authorities’ investigation processes which they believe … Continued

Were disability advocacy groups too successful? It may explain their funding cuts

In the final days of 2014, the meagre funding granted to disability advocacy groups was cut. It ended an annus horribilis for the sector When there’s cricket on the radio, the sun is shining, and boats and beaches beckon, it’s easy to forget how tough last year was for Australians with disabilities. The final blow … Continued

Funding cuts closes disability orgs

Peak disability support organisations have been forced to either close their doors or reduce services and retrench staff thanks to Federal Government funding cuts. CEO of the Australian Federation of Disability Organisations (AFDO), Matthew Wright, said 10 peak organisations run by people with disability will be left with no choice but to either close their … Continued

Narre Warren pair fronts national campaign for better public toilet facilities to cater to disabled

Travelling interstate or even to the beach is anything but a walk in the park for Narre Warren’s Debby Conlon and her son Michael. Ms Conlon’s 17-year-old son, Michael, suffers from spastic quadriplegic cerebral palsy and requires an adult-sized change table — and an extra pair of hands — to attend to his needs. “We … Continued

Fears specific disability expertise could be lost after funding cuts

A raft of disability advocacy organisations discovered just before Christmas that they would no longer receive government funding. Many of these organisations were peak bodies specific to a single disability, such as Deaf Australia and Blind Citizens Australia. There are now concerns that specific expertise about particular disabilities will be lost, as staff become retrenched … Continued

Acts of kindness aren’t enough: disabled people need acts of leadership

There’s something about the end of a year that inspires hope for change. As the final hours of 2014 fold themselves away, many of us will find ourselves daydreaming of social possibilities. We may muse on the kind of Australia we want to live in, and wonder what practical steps we can take to get … Continued

Disability advocates warn Government cuts to social services grants could affect NDIS rollout

A leading disability advocacy group is warning the Federal Government’s cuts to a range of social services grants could affect the rollout of the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS). The Disability Advocacy Network Australia (DANA) is a national body representing advocacy groups, but its funding of $165,000 per year ends in February. “We can see … Continued