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What's New
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Changes to NEDA membership and Consitution

Changes that the board made to NEDA’s constitution/membership at our AGM in late 2016.

Membership is to include individuals, thus strengthening NEDA status as a disabled people’s organisation.

The NEDA council is still comprised of representatives from each state/territory member organisation, however, now allows both individual and organisational membership.

Moreover, one additional position on the council to be filled by an elected person: this new position is the community representative.  

Any person/organisation can now become a member of NEDA, however, to be eligible for election to the NEDA board as the ‘community representative ’ a person is to be CALD, or with disability.

The NEDA President and Vice-President nominees much be an individual with disability from a CALD background.

New members can inform NEDA about issues important to CALD people with disability, thus strengthening our advocacy, while at the same time stay up to date with what is happening in disability policy at a federal level.

In the next couple of months, NEDA will have a new website up and running allowing members to access our policy documents/research, subscribe to our mailing list and social media platforms, etc.  

Attached are the new membership form and current constitution

Please feel free to get in touch, to have a This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. .

Constitution  Membership Application

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 Word Version

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Word Version

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 PDF Version

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UPR Disability Coordination Group Statement

 

 

 

 

UPR Disability Coordination Group Statement

on Australia’s response to the second Universal Periodic Review 2015

 

We commend the Australian Government for its engagement with civil society in the Universal Periodic Review process.

We acknowledge and commend Australia’s voluntary commitment improving the way the criminal justice system treats people with cognitive disability. The implementation of this commitment must include establishing a Council of Australian Government working group to develop a nationally consistent legislative framework to facilitate due legal process to end indefinite detention of people with disability without conviction. The reform process must include meaningful engagement of key stakeholders.

We also welcome Australia giving consideration to how persons with disability can be better supported to make decisions. This should include the adoption of the National Decision-Making Principles and Guidelines recommended by the Australian Law Reform Commission. Australia should work with, and support, State and Territory Governments to review laws and legal frameworks. Australia’s interpretative declaration to article 12 of the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD) should be withdrawn so as not to limit reform in this area.

Violence against people with disability in institutional and residential settings is a national epidemic. Australia needs to commit to implement the recommendations from the report of the Senate Committee Inquiry, Violence, abuse and neglect against people with disability, in particular, the recommendation to conduct a Royal Commission.

Australia's response to violence must also recognise intersectional disadvantage to inform the implementation of the Third Action Plan of the National Plan to Reduce Violence Against Women and their Children. Violence against women in institutional and residential settings and forced or coercive sterilisation and intersex medical treatment must be included in this Third Action Plan.

Finally, we are deeply concerned that although Australia has noted the recommendations, it intends to take no further action on the prohibition of forced sterilisation. Since 2005, UN human rights treaty bodies and the Human Rights Council have made recommendations to Australia to enact national legislation to prohibit forced sterilisation. The UN Special Rapporteur on Torture has stated that forced sterilisation and ‘sex normalising’ procedures are a form of torture. Despite this, Australia continues these practices for people with disability, particularly women and girls with disability, and people with intersex variations where forced sterilisation and ‘sex normalising’ practices are regulated with a focus on authorisation and non-binding guidelines rather than prohibition of these practices.

 

 

More information: UPR Disability Coordination Group, c/- Therese Sands, People with Disability Australia, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

 

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Additional NDIS Resources from AMPRO

AMPARO has been working to increase the participation of people with disability and their families from culturally and linguistically diverse communities, in activities that aim to prepare them for the National Disability Insurance Scheme, in partnership with Community Resource Unit (CRU), Queenslanders with Disability Network (QDN), and Mamre Association.

As part of this work AMPARO Advocacy has produced two factsheets

Factsheet 1 Understanding Disability in Australia

Factsheet 2 What is the National Disability Insurance Scheme?

These factsheets have now been translated into a further nine languages-

1.            Nepali             

2.            Dinka                          

3.            Swahili

4.            Kirundi

5.            Bahasa Indonesian

6.            Croatian

7.            Serbian

8.            French

9.            Hmong

They are available on AMPARO Advocacy’s website- www.amparo.org.au/factsheets

The factsheets are also available in the following languages-

10.          Amharic

11.          Arabic

12.          Bosnian

13.          Burmese

14.          Dari

(English)

15.          Farsi

16.          Italian

17.          Karen

18.          Samoan

19.          Somali

20.          Spanish

21.          Tagalog

22.          Vietnamese

23.          Tamil

Further translations will soon be available in the following languages-

24.          Tongan

25.          Thai

26.          Hindi

27.          Korean 

28.          Chinese Simple

29.          Chinese Traditional

AMPARO Advocacy would like to acknowledge the contribution towards the cost of these translations made by the Department of Communities, Child Safety and Disability Services and the Multicultural Development Association (MDA).

 

 

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Marrakesh Treaty to Facilitate Access to Published Works for People who are Blind, Visually Impaired or otherwise Print Disabled

Australian Cross Disability Alliance

Alliance New

 

c/-Women With Disabilities Australia (WWDA)

 PO Box 407, Lenah Valley, Tasmania 7008

 Ph: 0438535123

 E: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

 2 July 2015

 Mr Wyatt Roy MP

 Chair, Joint Standing Committee on Treaties

 PO Box 6021

 Parliament House

 CANBERRA ACT 2600

 Via Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

 

 Dear Mr. Roy and Committee Members,

 Re: Consideration of the Marrakesh Treaty to Facilitate Access to Published Works for People who are Blind, Visually Impaired or otherwise Print Disabled

 (Marrakesh, 27 June 2013)

 The Australian Cross Disability Alliance (ACDA) is writing to the Joint Standing Committee on Treaties, to express our unequivocal support for the ratification by Australia of the Marrakesh Treaty to Facilitate Access to Published Works for People who are Blind, Visually Impaired or otherwise Print Disabled (Marrakesh, 27 June 2013) - which Australia signed at the Headquarters of the World Intellectual Property Organization ('WIPO') in Geneva on 23 June 2014.

The ACDA is an alliance of national disabled people’s organisations (DPO’s)[1] in Australia. The key purpose of the ACDA is to promote, protect and advance the human rights and freedoms of people with disability in Australia by working collaboratively on areas of shared interests, purposes and strategic priorities and opportunities. The ACDA works within and from, a human rights framework and approach, recognising and respecting that the international human rights normative framework, including the international human rights treaties and instruments to which Australia is a party, provide the human rights framework to advance the rights of people with disability. The ACDA represents the interests of all people with disability, from all backgrounds and circumstances, and is the recognised coordinating point between Government/s and other stakeholders, for consultation and engagement with people with disability in Australia.

 The ACDA is firmly of the view that ratification and implementation of the Marrakesh Treaty by Australia is critical in facilitating governments and other duty-bearers to meet our obligations and responsibilities under the human rights treaties to which Australia is a party, most notably the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD)[2] [particularly at Articles: 19, 2, 4, 9, 21, 24]. In addition, implementation of the Marrakesh Treaty would also provide a key mechanism in assisting all Australian governments to give effect to the vision, purpose, and six key outcome areas of the ten year agreed National Disability Strategy (NDS),[3] particularly the following priority objectives: 

  • Increase participation of people with disability, their families and carers in the social, cultural, religious, recreational and sporting life of the community.[4]
  • Remove societal barriers preventing people with disability from participating as equal citizens.[5]
  • Focus on reducing the disparity in educational outcomes for people with disability and others.[6]
  • Ensure that government reforms and initiatives for early childhood, education, training and skills development are responsive to the needs of people with disability.[7]

 Implementation of the Marrakesh Treaty would not only provide and facilitate equitable access to information for people who are print disabled, but would accelerate addressing the substantial barriers that many people with disability experience in accessing accessible print literature. Whilst there is no question that people who are blind and vision impaired will benefit greatly from implementation of the Marrakesh Treaty, the benefits to people with disability with other impairments which limit their access to accessible print literature, cannot be overstated.

The ACDA sees implementation of the Marrakesh Treaty as providing enormous benefit to infants, children and young people – particularly those with reading disability, or indeed, those with any impairment and/or barrier to them accessing accessible print literature. The benefits the Treaty would provide to developing meaningful inclusive education practices, and to ensuring that all children are able to realise their educational potential, are immense. As highlighted by the World Blind Union, this will be important for books in languages that cross national boundaries, languages like English, Spanish, French, Portuguese, Russian, Chinese, Bangla/Bengali, Indonesian, Swahili and so on. In a nation where cultural diversity is high and increasing, the production of accessible documents in formats with the capacity for translation into other languages is significant for the Australian Aboriginal and Culturally and Linguistically Diverse people who are blind, visually impaired or otherwise print disabled and Non English speaking.

For example, along with the CRPD (at Articles 24, 19 and 9), the current Draft Sustainable Development Goals (SDG’s)[8] clearly reflect the role of education, and equal access to information, as vital to achieving sustainable development, ending disability discrimination and gender inequality. Goal 4 (of the 17 suggested SDG’s), which focuses on ‘Education’ articulates the goal as: Ensure inclusive and equitable quality education and promote lifelong learning opportunities for all’. It is underscored by 10 key actions, including for example:

 

 Ensure that all girls and boys have access to quality early childhood development, care and pre-primary education so that they are ready for primary education.

 In addition, at SDG 16, which focuses on ‘Inclusive societies and effective, accountable and inclusive institutions’, one of the key action areas to achieve this goal is:

 

Ensure public access to information and protect fundamental freedoms, in accordance with national legislation and international agreements.

 Australia is a founding member of the United Nations (UN) and has been an active participant in UN institutions for more than 65 years. Successive Australian Governments, including the current Abbott Liberal Government, have articulated Australia’s ‘enduring commitment to human rights’,[9] including meeting its obligations under the human rights treaties to which Australia is a party, and ensuring that Australia remains a ‘leading proponent of the consistent and comprehensive implementation of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights’[10], which Australia helped to draft in the late 1940’s.[11] The Australian Government has also clearly articulated its commitment to the CRPD, including its commitment to ‘removing the barriers that are faced by people with disabilities and accommodating their diverse needs, to enable them to enjoy their rights on an equal basis with all other Australians.’[12]

The ACDA believes that Australia has a key role to play in demonstrating leadership on the international stage, in all efforts to advance the human rights of people with disability. In this context, and consistent with Australia’s obligations under the international human rights treaties to which we are a party, the ACDA urges the Joint Standing Committee on Treaties to recommend that the Australian Government ratify and implement the Marrakesh Treaty to Facilitate Access to Published Works for People who are Blind, Visually Impaired or otherwise Print Disabled (Marrakesh, 27 June 2013).

 

The ACDA thanks the Joint Standing Committee on Treaties for the opportunity to provide this Submission.

 

 Yours sincerely

 

 

 

Carolyn Frohmader

Executive Director

Women With Disabilities Australia (WWDA)

 

 

Co-Chief Executive Officer

People with Disability Australia (PWDA)

 

 

Dwayne Cranfield

Chief Executive Officer

National Ethnic Disability Alliance (NEDA)

 

Damian Griffis

Chief Executive Officer

First People’s Disability Network Australia (FPDN)

 

 

FOR AND ON BEHALF OF

 

Ms Rayna Lamb

President

Women With Disabilities Australia (WWDA)

 

[electronically signed]

 

 

Mr Craig Wallace Officer

President

People with Disability Australia (PWDA)

 

[electronically signed]

 

 

Mr Suresh Rajan

President

National Ethnic Disability Alliance (NEDA)

 

[electronically signed]

 

 

Ms Gayle Rankine

Chair

First People’s Disability Network Australia (FPDN)

 

[electronically signed]

 



[1]Disabled people’s organisations’ (DPOs) are organisations that are made up of people with disability and governed and led by people with disability.

[2] Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities ([2008] ATS 12)

[3] The National Disability Strategy (NDS) was formally endorsed by the Council of Australian Governments (COAG) in February 2011. It is the ‘foundation of Australia’s work to advance disability rights’ and sets out a national policy framework for guiding Australian governments to meet their obligations under the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD). The NDS sets out goals and objectives under six areas of mainstream and disability-specific public policy, and is supported by three Implementation Plans developed over its ten-year life span. For more information, see: http://www.dss.gov.au/our-responsibilities/disability-and-carers/program-services/government-international/national-disability-strategy  

[4] NDS Outcome Area 1: Inclusive and accessible communities; Objective 1.

[5] NDS Outcome Area 2: Rights protection, justice and legislation; Objective 2.

[6] NDS Outcome Area 5: Learning and skills; Objective 2.

[7] NDS Outcome Area 5: Learning and skills; Objective 3.

[9] Australian Government, Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade; Australia and the United Nations: Human rights and gender equality. Accessed on line April 2014 at: http://www.dfat.gov.au/un/

[10] Australian Government, Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade; Human Rights and Gender Equality; Accessed on line April 2014 at: http://www.dfat.gov.au/un/human-rights-and-gender-equality.html

[11] The Universal Declaration of Human Rights was adopted by the UN General Assembly on 10 December 1948. See: http://www.dfat.gov.au/un/ See also: Australian Government (2012) Draft 5th Report by Australia on the Convention against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment For the period 1 January 2008 to 30 June 2012; Attorney-General’s Department, Canberra.

[12] Woolcott, P. (2013) Australia's appearance before the Committee on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities: Australia’s Closing Statement, 4 September 2013. In: Frohmader, C. (2013) Report from the United Nations Committee on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD) 10th Session - Review of Australia. Available online at: http://wwda.org.au/papers/confpaps/confpaps2011/

 

 

 

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NDIA re employment of family members

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Mr Suresh Rajan President

National Ethnic Disability Alliance

Dear Mr Rajan

Thank you for your email of 10 November 2015 to Mr David Bowen, Chief Executive Officer of the National Disability Insurance Agency (NDIA), about whether family members can be employed as carers under the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS). Mr Bowen has asked me to reply to you on his behalf.

I regret that you have received inconsistent information from the NOIA regarding whether family members can be employed to provide supports to a NDIS participant. As you are aware, the NOIA has issued· an Operational Guideline that addresses when payment of family members as providers of support can be considered.

The NDIA's Operational Guideline Planning and Assessment - Supports in the Plan -

Personal Care Supports, states that the NDIS will not fund parents or family members of participants to provide personal care supports except in the most exceptional circumstances, such as where there is risk of harm or neglect to the participant or where a suitable provider is not available to provide the support, despite the NDIA's efforts to identify such a provider.

If a delegate considers there to be exceptional circumstances, parents or family members will only be paid to provide support if:

  • the support provided is critical to the well-being of the participant;
    • all efforts have been exhausted to engage a provider that could appropriately provide the support;
    • the paid family member does not reside at the same location as the participant; and
    • the assistance provided by the paid family member is a short term measure only and is reviewed regularly.

These measures are in place because the engagement of family members as paid providers of support can adversely affect the dynamics of relationships within a family and may reduce the independence of the person with disability. In recognition of this, even in the rare instance where the NDIS funds a family member to provide personal care support, the Operational Guideline requires frequent review of the situation, as these support arrangements are invariably viewed as short term.

Although the Operational Guidelines outline very limited circumstances where the NDIS expects to fund a family member to provide personal care support, the National Disability Insurance Scheme Act 2013 includes a consideration of the critical role played by families, carers and other significant persons in the lives of participants.

 

 

Sustaining informal support can be an integral component of meeting the participant's needs. In consideration of this, the Supports for Sustaining Informal Support Operational Guideline enables the NOIA to make decisions on what reasonable and necessary supports may be required to reinforce the critical role played by families. In effect, these reasonable and necessary supports ensure that families are supported to maintain usual family roles.

 

Thank you for bringing your concerns to the NDIA's attention.

 

 

 

Ian Maynard            

 

Deputy Chief Executive Officer Operations Group

 

National Disability Insurance Agency

 

 

 

Yours sincerely

 

I

 

1 December 2015