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How Home Business Brings Freedom for Entrepreneurs with Disabilities

Running a business from home is popular with entrepreneurs, for reasons such as convenience, cost savings and flexibility. For those who are affected by health issues and disabilities, a home setting can also provide the freedom and flexibility they need to run a successful business. For some, it is their determination to overcome the challenges … Continued

Coalition Reveals Portfolio Responsibilities

The newly sworn-in Coalition Government has released its administrative arrangements showing the list of Not for Profit sector issues largely under the control of the Minister and Deputy Minister for Social Services. The new Minister for Social Services Kevin Andrews’ Department will be responsible for: Ageing research;• Income security and support policies and programs for … Continued

State ‘Must do More’ for Abused Children

The royal commission on child sex abuse is ”not enough” to compensate abused children, according to a group representing former victims. Care Leavers Australia Network is demanding the Victorian government, churches and charities acknowledge the full extent of abuse, neglect and slave labour forced on thousands of orphaned children. The group staged a protest outside … Continued

State Government Backs Down on Rent Increases

State Minister for Mental Health, Women’s Affairs and Community Services Mary Wooldridge tells Jon the state government has reversed its decision to increase rent to 75 percent of the disability pension for those in disability housing. “We never intended to create hardship…

Relief for Disabled as Napthine Drops Big Rent Hike

The Napthine government has backed down from plans to impose massive rent increases on people living in state-run disability care after thousands of Victorians with disabilities launched a class action legal challenge. Representing more than 2000 residents with disabilities at an initial hearing last week, Villamanta Disability Rights Legal Service was given the green light … Continued

The UN Looking at Australia’s Disability Human Rights Record

Disability Care Australia has been hailed as the biggest social reform in generations. But a report to be presented to the United Nations this week argues Australia still has a long way to go before it complies with its international obligations to people with a disability. It is the first time that Australia’s disability human … Continued

Budget for Disabled Home Care Underspent by $11m

The budget for home care services for people with disabilities has been underspent by $11 million last year, according to Treasury documents. The NSW Budget papers also show funding for home care has fallen by $23 million this financial year compared to last year. The NSW opposition spokeswoman for disability services, Barbara Perry, said the … Continued

Labor Playing Politics with NDIS

Kevin Rudd and Jenny Macklin are playing politics with the lives of people living with disability. The Victorian Coalition Government is disappointed by the announcements this week of Federal Labor’s ‘preferred’ locations for the next stage of the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) rollout in Queensland and New South Wales – reportedly with no consultation … Continued

ACNC Adding to Sector Red Tape – UnitingCare

UnitingCare Australia, the welfare arm of the Uniting Church, has released a report claiming the new charity regulator, the ACNC is adding another level of bureaucracy to an already burdened Not for Profit sector. The Australian Charities and Not for profits Commission (ACNC) was set up in December 2012 with one of its tasks to … Continued

Not for Profit, Not for Nothing: What Will Happen to Charities under a Coalition Government?

Australians have never been so dependent on the not-for-profit sector for social services, and governments – of whatever shade – have never been so dependent on the organisational capacity of NFPs to deliver their policies. Australia has a higher proportion of human services provided by NFPs than almost any other country, with the sector turning … Continued

Major Parties Lashed for having No Mental Health Policies

The head of the government’s Mental Health Commission has lashed the major parties for failing to outline a mental health policy in the election. Professor Allan Fels says half the population will have a mental difficulty in their lifetime and the problem costs the nation $20 billion a year in lost productivity. “I want to … Continued

Dyslexia Counted as Disability under Better Schools Plan

Students with dyslexia and other learning difficulties will be identified as having a disability under the federal funding reforms, paving the way for more support for children who struggle with reading and spelling. In Victoria, students with dyslexia rarely meet disability funding criteria or qualify for extra assistance. However Education Minister Bill Shorten said the … Continued

Easing Troubled Minds

This year, 4 million Australians will experience mental ill-health. In our lifetimes, as many as half of us will encounter it. There are more people in Australia today with depression than there are suffering a common cold. And even more – one in seven Australians – will have an anxiety disorder this year. The cost … Continued

Labor to Support New Laws to Help Disabled Access Digital Content

A re-elected Labor government would support new laws that ensure more disabled people can access websites and digital content, according to the Minister Assisting for the Digital Economy, Senator Kate Lundy. There’s about four million Australians with some form of disability – but many cannot access apps, websites or digital television content that the rest … Continued

Disabled get Help to Escape Home Violence

The mother-of-two decided to seek help when she found herself on the floor with hundreds of splinters in her back, unable to walk after being beaten with a mallet and with a raging ex-partner smashing every window in the house. Laura Williams* endured a decade of physical and emotional abuse from her former partner, who … Continued