Monday, 31 August 2009
The interventions will build on previous research into effective reading and numeracy interventions with children who have Down syndrome. However, in this study, Kathy is seeking parents who would be interested in undertaking training in order to develop skills and understanding to enable them to implement early intervention with their children. The children need to be aged between two and a half and four years of age. If you choose to participate, you and your child will be randomly assigned to either the early numeracy or the early literacy intervention.
Parents will be provided with relevant materials, training and support throughout the intervention. The research will also involve assessments to find out the impact of the intervention on the children involved. The training and assessments will be conducted in English.
The intervention will involve four weekly training sessions, followed by four fortnightly training sessions at Macquarie University, as well as a brief parent interview and four reading, maths and language assessments of approximately 3 hours each for each child.
If you have a child with Down syndrome aged between two and a half and four years of age and you and your child might be interested in participating in this research, please contact Kathy on 9850 9864 or via email at Kathy.Cologon@mq.edu.au by early September.
The day is about preparation and planning for when a student with disability, who will need ongoing support, leaves school.
The focus of the day will be on the system of funding and support. It will cover information about Commonwealth and State Government responsibilities as well as those of non government service providers who are approved to support school leavers.
Topics covered will include: achieving a positive future for young people leaving school what other young people have achieved with their funding levels of funding and how it is allocated the different forms of support arrangements that are available how to make informed choices about the future government guidelines and how they affect school leavers.
- ORANGE—Tuesday 8 September
- DUBBO—Wednesday 9 September
- ALBURY—Tuesday 15 September
- WAGGA—Wednesday 16 September
This is an important workshop if a person with developmental disability in your family:
is leaving school (year 12) in 2009 or is in years 9, 10 or 11 and you are planning for life after year 12.
Cost to attend: $10.00 per person (GST inclusive and covers morning tea, lunch and materials)
Phone for more information, venue details and to register call Family Advocacy on 1800 620 588
The Liberal Party held a "major stakeholder forum" on the education of students with disabilities last week in Melbourne, and has issued these statements:
Leader of the Opposition Opening Remarks at the Major Stakeholder Forum - Equal Access to Education
Taking students with disabilities out of the too hard basket - Joint Release from the Hon Christopher Pyne MP Shadow Minister for Education, the Hon Malcolm Turnbull MP Leader of the Opposition and Senator Mitch Fifield Shadow Parliamentary Secretary for Disabilities, Carers and the Voluntary Sector
Sunday, 30 August 2009
A link to Sandy's blog is listed in our Blogroll - scroll down the right hand column of this page.
Her book "Living with max" is available for loan to DS NSW members from our library.
A decision by a public service tribunal that seems to put the rights of a worker above the needs and rights of people with intellectual disabilities and the reaction of the Director-General of DADHC's response featured on the front page of this morning's Sun-Herald:
The head of the Department of Ageing, Disability and Home Care, Jim Moore, said his duty of care to clients gave him no option but to defy an order from the little-known Government and Related Employees Tribunal last week directing him to reinstate the residential support worker within a fortnight. ''We are incredibly concerned about the tribunal's decision,'' Mr Moore said.
Click here to read the full news report.
Friday, 28 August 2009
Carers NSW fund these groups "to enable parents to meet and tell their story, give and gain support from other families and carers.The focus is on how to take better care of ourselves and not ‘burnout’. The groups deal with issues of family and relationships, the grief process and how to cope on bad days. They can help with the feelings of loss, isolation,exhaustion and the impossible role of parenting different children."
The groups run for 2 hours, 8 consecutive weeks and are run by a counsellor who is a mum of a child with Autism.
Venue: Lizard Centre (conference Rm1)
126 Greville Street
Chatswood NSW 2067
Commencing: Monday 19th October 2009
Fees for groups are based on need, not ability to pay. Phone to discuss your circumstances.
For further information and to secure your place contact Justine 0414 237 383
Thursday, 27 August 2009
My mind is still reeling from all that I heard and saw at the conference in Dublin this week. It was wonderful to be around so many different people in the Down syndrome community. There were parents, professionals, expert researchers, children and adults with Down syndrome. There were displays as well as talks and I met people from all over the world but always I felt a huge sense of community. I have a picked up some new resources for the library (some Dave Hingsburger publications, an Italian DVD, a children's book amongst a couple others) but also was able to hear talks by many of the authors of resources already in the library. I will write in more detail over the next few weeks about what I learned from the Congress, but the highlights from the talks have been for me:
Wednesday, 26 August 2009
• Professor Lyn Lee – Rehabilitation & Developmental Disability expert.
• Dr Meg Smith – Expert in Mental health Issues.
• Trish McClure – parent of a child with profound medical frailty & advocate.
• Jim Simpson – Senior Legal Advocate for NSW Council for Intellectual Disabilities.
• Professor Trevor Parmenter, prominent educator in Developmental Disability Services.
• Dr Irwin Pakula, Psychiatrist who has worked extensively with people with disabilities.
• Healthy Life Outcomes.
• Clinical Services in Accommodation.
• Carer Outcomes.
• Management of Hospitalisation of Non Verbal Patients.
• Workplace Health.
• Mental Health Patient Abuse in Forensic Hospitals.
Don’t miss out!!!!
Tuesday, 25 August 2009
Saturday, 10 October 2009 to Wednesday, 14 October 2009
Springwood, Blue Mountains
Campers will have fun with lots of activities, make friends and have a break. Register by 4 September 2009.Camp Bluegum is for young carers of 8-12 years of age caring for a family member with a long term illness, disability, mental illness, drug or alcohol dependency.
Camp Bluegum is FREE. Please apply by 4 September 2009.
Note: Volunteer Camp leaders and qualified nurses are also required.
For information or a registration form contact Young Carer Team, Carers NSW, on 1800 242 636 or email firstname.lastname@example.org. You can also download a registration form from the Young Carers website.
Monday, 24 August 2009
Major expansion for Teen Time program 16/08/2009)
A program that gives parents of teenagers with an intellectual disability more respite so they can pursue jobs and study is to be expanded across New South Wales. Minister for Disability Services Paul Lynch said the $2.578 million Teen Time – After School and Vacation Support for Working Parents was piloted in Sydney’s north in 2007-2008. Mr Lynch said the pilot program proved so successful that the Government was providing extra money to provide a total of 460 places through 27 services around the State. Click here for the full text of this media release.
Aboriginal Case Managers for people with a disability (14/08/2009)
The NSW Government has appointed several Aboriginal people as case managers to work with people with a disability in southern Sydney.
Minister for Disability Services Paul Lynch said at least six Aboriginal specific positions would enable the Department of Ageing, Disability and Home Care (DADHC) to develop stronger ties with the Aboriginal community in the region. Click here for the full text of this media release.
Challenge helps people with disabilities to live independently in Tamworth (20/08/2009)
Minister for Disability Services Paul Lynch today officially opened new units for 17 people with a disability in Tamworth.
The 15 units – operated by Challenge Disability Services – support ageing people with a disability and were designed to encourage them to live independently in the community. Click here for the full text of this media release.
- Consultation Presentation (MS PPT 27MB) - note the large file size which might make it difficult for some to download or open. (If you have difficulty with it and want the information in an alternative format, please contact us at email@example.com)
- Questions & Answers (Ms WORD 64kB) - a shorter, text-only summary of the major issues
Sunday, 23 August 2009
This report provides an update on the current status of the US company Sequenom's non-invasive prenatal test.
Patricia Bauer's Disability News commentary covered tributes to Eunice Kennedy Shriver
Jennifer Gronenberg continues to encourage parents of young children by writing about her young family.
Sandy Lewis writes about living with teenaged Max
Dave Hingsburger has submitted to having "proper"professional photograph taken, which he calls Portrait of the Activist as an Old Man
Saturday, 22 August 2009
Health Fact Sheets
On 11th August, the NSW Council on Intellectual Disability launched a comprehensive series of Fact Sheets on aspects of health and health care. The Fact Sheets are available in both standard English and Easy English. Both series are available online from the NSW CID website.
Friday, 21 August 2009
There are about 1000 items (mostly books) packed in these crates, with another 1000 out on loan - please don't rush with your library returns this week!
The library crates are numbered by shelf and bay number and will be unpacked and re-shelved to match photos of the shelf order and arrangements that Kathi had them in at Harold Street.
This is 40 packing crates - there are 100 at Harold St, and another 100 at O'Connell St being packed for our big move next Wednesday. Each one will be numbered and cross referenced to the person whose files it contains .....
...... so that it can be matched to the floor plan and office layout at Weston Street - it should go like clockwork, but you will understand we will not be able to answer any but urgent calls for a couple of days ....
Thursday, 20 August 2009
Wednesday, 19 August 2009
Our new address:
80 Weston Street,
Harris Park 2150
will remain the same for now, and will then be redirected. We will advise our new postal address as soon as it is confirmed.
All email and web addresses will remain the same.
The new premises will give us
• the capacity to hold some DS NSW functions onsite
The office will be closed for regular activities for two days (25th and 26th August) while we move, but urgent contacts can be made on 02 9683 4333 during that time.
Tuesday, 18 August 2009
If you had planned to register but have not yet done so, you can put your name on a waiting list for a possible cancellation, but we cannot guarantee one will become available. Please direct all enquiries to firstname.lastname@example.org
Professor Glyn Elwyn, who also leads Cardiff University’s Decision Laboratory research group, said: "With existing information and support provided to women who are offered an amniocentesis widely considered to be insufficient, amnioDex has been developed to facilitate decision making by providing decisional support and unbiased information. amnioDex has been carefully designed to offer women decisional support and unbiased information, and to assist them in a difficult decision made at a time of strong emotional upheaval. We are thrilled to receive these awards which recognise our commitment to developing and evaluating high-standard decision support interventions".
AmnioDex explains its aims on the website:
Our aim was to examine and address the information and decision needs of women when considering amniocentesis testing. In order to do so, we developed a website, amnioDex, which contains evidence based information about the potential harms and benefits associated with amniocentesis testing and video clips of women’s experience and professionals explanations. Explores every aspect of making a decision about amniocentesis.
A link to AmnioDex has been posted on the Down Syndrome NSW website, on the Prenatal Diagnosis page.
Monday, 17 August 2009
Joint Standing Committee on Migration
The Joint Standing Committee on Migration conducts inquiries into matters referred to it by the Parliament or a Minister of the Commonwealth Government.
The Minister for Immigration and Citizenship, Senator the Hon Chris Evans, and the Parliamentary Secretary for Disabilities and Children's Services, the Hon Bill Shorten, have asked the Committee to undertake an inquiry relating to the health requirement in the Migration Act.
Every year, millions of people apply to visit or migrate to Australia, and grant of a visa is conditional on a person satisfying the health requirement specified in the Migration Regulations. The health requirement is designed to protect Australia from public health risks, contain public expenditure on health and community services, and maintain access of Australian residents to those services.
Disability does not in itself mean that a person or a family will be refused a visa. However, as part of the health test, applicants with a ‘disease or condition’ are assessed on the potential cost and impact on Australian health and community services.
The Committee will investigate the assessment of the health and community costs associated with a disability as part of visa processing in Australia.
The Committee is now calling for submissions from interested individuals and organisations. The terms of reference for the inquiry and information about making a submission are available through the links below.
Following the submission period, the Committee may conduct visits to learn more or call for individuals or organisations to provide further evidence at public hearings or roundtables.
If you would like to keep informed of the progress of the inquiry, email email@example.com to request to be added to an electronic mailing list for all media releases associated with this inquiry.
The Department of Immigration and Citizenship’s fact sheet on the health requirement is available here.
Submitters may wish to refer to Schedule 4 of the Migration Regulations 1994, which outlines the public interest criteria relating to health.
Terms of reference
The Committee invites interested persons and organisations to make submissions addressing the terms of reference by Wednesday 28th October 2009
Sunday, 16 August 2009
Well worth a place on the favourites list. There is a link in the right hand column of this page, under "Our favourite websites"
Trois, MS, Capone, GT et al, Obstructive Sleep Apnea in Adults with Down Syndrome, Journal of Clinical Sleep Medicine, Vol 5, Issue 4, 15th August 2009
The abstract is currently online, and it appears that the full text will be freely available six months after publication under the journal's open access policy. In the meantime, our library will seek a print copy. Amongst the researcher's conclusions:
We speculate that the complications of untreated OSAS (cardiovascular disease, increased mortality, and neurobehavioral morbidities including daytime sleepiness and impaired cognitive function) commonly overlap with the manifestations of DS and therefore may not elicit a prompt investigation in these patients. We speculate that OSAS is an important, but potentially treatable, cause of morbidity in adults with DS.
Inscience has published an excellent summary of the study, with comments by one of the authors, Dr Carole Marcus.
The Spring 2009 issue of the Down Syndrome NSW Newsletter (to be published on 1st September 2009) includes an article about the experience of one young man with Down syndrome in dealing with severe obstructive sleep apnoea, and the benefits of his treatment.
If you are interested in further information about obstructive sleep apnoea in people with Down syndrome of any age, you are welcome to contact us via firstname.lastname@example.org
Parents and early childhood professionals will find this paper useful in providing strategies to support the child, eliminate or prevent behaviour that is often described as "challenging", and describing real cases where particular strategies have been applied in managing particular behaviours:
Kathleen Feeley and Emily Jones, Strategies to address challenging behaviour in young children with Down syndrome, Down Syndrome Research and Practice, Volume 12, Issue 2, October 2008
It is one of many excellent resources freely available online from Down Syndrome Education International's online library: www.down-syndrome.org
Saturday, 15 August 2009
The next morning on Channel 7's Sunrise the topic of choosing to have a baby with Down syndrome was commented on,
" .......it's a personal choice, whether to terminate" one compere said.
I felt they did not echo the balanced and positive view presented in the episode, so I sent an email, I was not alone. To quote Siobhan parent of Joel, "the personal choice, needs to be an informed choice." What surprised and pleased us is the number of people who saw the show and the dialogue it has encouraged.
Sarah now wears her sunglasses when we go to the shops!
Friday, 14 August 2009
The Australian Public Service Traineeship Program begins today and will see five people with intellectual disability working for 18 months on general administration tasks at the Department of Families, Housing, Community Services and Indigenous Affairs (FaHCSIA) in Canberra.
Full text of the joint media release from Bill Shorten and Jenny Macklin (Community Services Minister)
Eunice Kennedy Shriver 1921 - 2009 - tributes to the founder of Special Olympics
Prenatal testing has featured in the British press this week, as clinical trials of new, non-invasive tests for Down syndrome are announced:
Prenatal tests - health care or eugenics? - a letter from Frank Buckley, CEO of Down Syndrome Education International, to The Guardian
Blood test for mothers could save lives of hundreds of unborn babies - the Guardian article that stimulated Frank Buckley's response
Why the mother that struggled to love her Down's syndrome baby would never use the new test that detects the condition - one UK family's experience shapes their views
A major report on the needs of people with disabilities and their families was released and commented upon:
No longer shut away, people with a disability are still shut out - Rhonda Galbally's commentary on the report, Shut Out
Disabilities report exposes exclusion, neglect - one family's response to the report Shut Out
Good and not so good news on employment:
Burnt fingers, dashed hopes for disabled - Michael Duffy's report on the difficulties being experienced by Cumberland Industries
New push to find work for disabled - a jobs compact for people with disabilities is being prepared by the Federal Government
Thursday, 13 August 2009
Wednesday, 12 August 2009
The trouble with disabilities is that most Australians think they happen to someone else. Recently I was talking to a man whose partner was disabled by a recent accident and he told me: "I just didn't realise how bad things were for people with a disability - until it happened to us."
He is not alone. Without first-hand experience of disability, most people assume things are better than they used to be - or at least that they are getting better.
Click here for the full text published in The Age
International champion for people with developmental disabilities and Special Olympics founder Eunice Kennedy Shriver, 88, died this morning at a hospital in Hyannis, Mass. Shriver was the fifth of nine children in the Kennedy clan which included President John F. Kennedy and Sens. Robert F. Kennedy and Edward M. Kennedy.
Mrs. Shriver was credited with changing the public’s perception of people with intellectual disabilities by publicly acknowledging her sister with developmental disabilities, Rosemary, and founding the Special Olympics in 1968.
Special Olympics Australia has posted news and tributes.
One Woman's Vision
You and/or someone close to you can easily become a Buddy Walk Hero by setting up your own Buddy Walk Hero webpage for yourself, a family member or friend in just a few minutes.
You can then email your Buddy Walk Hero Page to friends, colleagues, family, schoolmates around Australia and the world to give them the chance to sponsor you for this year's Buddy Walk.
To set up your own Buddy Walk Hero Page please click here then click the big button that says Register Here.
And we have our first Buddy Walk 2009 Hero ..... Addison Quinn
It only takes a few minutes to create your Hero Page – you can upload a photo and some info about your Hero and team. If you have any trouble or are completely computer-phobic please just let us know, and we can help you through it, or set up a Hero page for you. Contact us on email@example.com
This year, as an extra way of saying ‘thank you’, each Buddy Walk Hero will receive a gift of a special Buddy Walk backpack perfect for taking on Buddy Walk with you.
Each year, Buddy Walk has a new fundraising theme.
Previous themes have been:
2008 - AAA - ‘Access All Areas’
2007 - D.A.D.S - ‘Dads Appreciating Down Syndrome’
Funds raised by our previous Buddy Walk Heroes have gone to such activities as workshops for Dads, and better access to services in regional areas
And the theme for 2009 is ......
Buddy Walk 2009 – It’s a GAS! (Grandparents And Siblings)
This year, we celebrate the very important role grandparents, brothers and sisters play in the lives of many people with Down syndrome. The constitution of Down Syndrome NSW was amended to allow grandparents and siblings to become full members for the first time – until then only people with Down syndrome and their parents could become full voting members. We will be holding our first workshop specifically for grandparents and also have some UP!Club and other special events planned for siblings. We will be working on further ways we can involve and support grandparents and siblings in the months ahead.
Of course, there are often many other important people in the lives of a person with Down syndrome – friends, aunties, uncles, employers, teachers – all are welcome and celebrated at Buddy Walk – Australia 2009!
Tuesday, 11 August 2009
Tamzyn was proud to finish and receive her medal:
Thank you so much for your words of encouragement. I used them when I woke up at 7am on Sunday morning to remind me that I wasn't just doing it for me. I'm so glad that I raised this money for such a worth wild charity, I even surprised myself with the amount.
Over the last 18 months I have been getting to know Tom [a young man with Down syndrome] and he is the main reason I choose this charity. We go to Trivia nights and football. We have an on-going Monday night spaghetti bolognaise and football game dinner at my house. He's a brilliant bundle of energy who make events exciting and refreshingly fun.
The whole city to surf experience was an amazing. I just did it all out of admiration for a bunch of people with great hearts.
Thanks again and hopefully I can raise more money next year!
Monday, 10 August 2009
Julian McAlpine is a happy eight-year-old boy living with Down syndrome. He goes to school, has plenty of friends and attends scouts with his brothers - but Julian's mother fears for his future.
''I want the same thing for Julian as my other sons. I want him to have somewhere to live, I want him to have someone to love, I want him to have a job, I want him to live an ordinary life,'' Catherine McAlpine says.
''But it's scary. You talk to other parents with adult offspring and it really is difficult to achieve all of those things.''
Click here for the full text of Julia Medew's report, and a beautiful photograph of Julian and Catherine McAlpine. Catherine is the CEO of Down Syndrome Victoria
Christian Pueschel Memorial Research Award
On August 1, 2009, The Down Syndrome Research and Treatment Foundation (DSRTF) was awarded the prestigious 2009 Christian Pueschel Memorial Research Award from the National Down Syndrome Congress (NDSC). The award was presented to DSRTF’s CEO, Dr. Michael Harpold, by Dr. Sigfried Pueschel at an awards banquet during the NDSC Convention in Sacramento.
We are honoring DSRTF for supporting research which contributes to a greater knowledge and understanding of Down syndrome,” said Brooks Robinson, national president of NDSC. “We salute them for their focus on funding essential research that will improve cognition and their commitment to seeing the results of this research translated into effective treatments.”
DSRTF is deeply honored and grateful to have been selected and recognized by NDSC to receive this prestigious award,” said Dr. Harpold. “It is especially meaningful for DSRTF, as a national organization only recently founded in 2004 with an exclusive mission and focus on Down syndrome biomedical research, to receive this significant recognition from our friends at NDSC. NDSC is one of the longest standing nonprofit organizations serving the Down syndrome community with a complementary focus on establishing a world with equal rights and opportunities for people with Down syndrome. Historically, Down syndrome biomedical research and the development of effective new therapeutics, particularly related to cognition, has remained a disproportionately under-addressed and severely under-funded key approach in creating meaningful new opportunities for children and adults with Down syndrome. We are extremely proud that this year’s Christian Pueschel Memorial Research Award recognizes the rapid and unprecedented progress that has been, and continues to be, accomplished through DSRTF-supported research and the unique and essential role DSRTF is serving in creating new opportunities for all people with Down syndrome.”
The Christian Pueschel Memorial Research Award is given in honor of the late Christian Pueschel, son of Sig Pueschel, M.D., Ph.D., J.D. Dr. Pueschel, who lives in Rhode Island, has devoted his career to improving the lives of people with Down syndrome. This award recognizes that the value of people with Down syndrome is intrinsically rooted in their humanity and uniqueness as human beings.
Two DSRTF-supported researchers have previously received NDSC research awards. Dr. William Mobley, currently Chair and Professor, Department of Neurosciences at the University of California, San Diego School of Medicine, received the Christian Pueschel Memorial Research Award in 2007, and Dr. Roger Reeves, Professor, Department of Physiology at Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, received the Theodore D. Tjossem Memorial Research Award in 2008.
The Down Syndrome Research and Treatment Foundation was founded in 2004 as a national organization and is dedicated to its mission: To stimulate biomedical research that will accelerate development of treatments to significantly improve cognition, including memory, learning and speech, for children and adults with Down syndrome. The goal is to create new opportunities for all individuals with Down syndrome to:Participate more successfully in school;Lead more active and independent lives; and Prevent early cognitive decline with aging."
Katy Wilson, a Special Olympics Georgia (SOGA) athlete, board member and spokeswoman, received the 2009 Christian Pueschel Memorial Citizen Award from the National Down Syndrome Congress (NDSC) at its annual convention in Sacramento, Ca.
The award recognizes an individual with Down Syndrome whose achievements, service, and contributions have enhanced the value and dignity of people with Down Syndrome and their families.
"Katy Wilson's work on behalf of her peers has been exceptional. She has made an impact, whether as a Special Olympics Global Messenger, a valued employee at Ryan's, as a regular speaker to aspiring teachers at Agnes Scott College, or in countless other ways," said National Down Syndrome Congress President F. Brooks Robinson.
Wilson, of Gainesville, Ga., is a Special Olympics gold medalist in gymnastics. In addition to being a mentor, Wilson is also the athlete representative on SOGA's board of directors where she is a policy maker and gives feedback to the board on decisions that affect the 22,769 children and adult athletes in Georgia. She also reviews the organization's quarterly budgets.
As a SOGA spokeswoman, Wilson is a poised individual who serves as a role model, said SOGA CEO Georgia Milton-Sheats. "As a successful and positive person, she is articulate in telling her story, and she has touched many lives," said Milton-Sheats.
Wilson recently helped train five athletes - including two with Down Syndrome - in public speaking, so they can also travel with other SOGA representatives to recruit volunteers and donations around the state. Last March, she traveled to Washington, D.C. with SOGA staff for Capitol Hill Day for Special Olympics Inc., where she talked with elected officials about how Special Olympics improves the lives of people with intellectual disabilities.
Wilson was nominated by her sister, Melinda Wilson Klinect, a teacher at Brookwood High School in Snellville. "My sister Katy is a well-rounded young person who is busy and happy and loving her life. Katy believes that anything is possible," she said.
SOURCE Special Olympics Georgia
Sunday, 9 August 2009
We know that many Cumberland employees are people with Down syndrome, who value their jobs and gain great satisfaction from them. Some have worked at their current jobs for several years. We understand that they and their families have been kept informed about possible changes, and reassured about their jobs.
Saturday, 8 August 2009
The big weekend is here already - the race is tomorrow, the training is done, the adrenaline is running high. It's not too late to pledge a donation - click on the name of your chosen runner to go to their Every Day Hero page, and leave your message of encouragement and financial support:
Good luck to each of the runners fundraising for Down Syndrome NSW - we really appreciate your efforts, and your help in raising awareness about people with Down syndrome in our lives, and in our community.
Friday, 7 August 2009
A jobs compact for people with disabilities is being prepared by the Federal Government.
Nearly 30 private companies are believed to have signed up to the compact, which, according to government sources, is likely to be announced this month.
It is based on a similar pledge made by the Government last year to pay for any training costs incurred by businesses that employ indigenous people.
The compact follows the release this week of a discussion paper calling for a new national strategy for people with disabilities. The Parliamentary Secretary for Disabilities, Bill Shorten, said he believed a new approach was necessary in order for people to have the same access to services and jobs as people without disabilities.
Click here to read the full story.
Thursday, 6 August 2009
Wednesday, 5 August 2009
Stephanie Peatling, Sydney Morning Herald, August 5, 2009 .
A national insurance scheme that would cover the costs of those with disabilities should be investigated, says the parliamentary secretary for disabilities and children’s services, Bill Shorten.
The scheme would provide someone born with a disability or who incurred one through accident or illness with consistent funds throughout their life. ‘‘Many Australians with disabilities remain in internal exile,’’ he said.
Mr Shorten will today make public a discussion paper calling for a national plan for those with disabilities. It argues that the existing system of providing services to those with disabilities is too flawed to be fixed and needs to be replaced.
Instead of a ‘‘welfare model’’ the paper calls for more individually tailored programs to help people participate fully in the community.
As well as improving care and support services, Mr Shorten wants a national system to focus on people being given enough help to to find and maintain work.
Better access to public buildings and transport was also essential, he said. ‘‘You go to some suburbs and the shops are inaccessible, not just to people with disabilities but young mums and older people. I don’t know how some buildings get approved.’’
The report was prepared by the National People with Disabilities and Carer Council. The Council's Deputy Chair, Kirsten Deane, is acknowledged and thanked "as the primary author of this report". Kirsten is the current President of Down Syndomre Victoria, and mother of a young daughter with Down syndrome.
- Joint media release from the Parliamentary Secretary and the Minister, 05/08/2009 - Shut Out: the experience of people with disabilities and their families in Australia
- Australian Department of Families, Housing, Community Services and Indigenous Affairs web page on the National Disabiity consultations and the report released today.
- The report, Shout Out: the experience of people with disabilities and their families in Australia is available to download here in a number of formats. An Easy English version is available upon request to FAHCSIA. Phone 1800 050 009, TTY 1800 555 677 and ask for 1800 050 009, email NDSMailbox@fahcsia.gov.au