United Nations’ International Day of People with Disability

Our public schools are an important cornerstone for the progressive realisation that enables people with disability to be active contributors to society.

3 December marked United Nations’ International Day of People with Disability.

Each year the UN announces a theme for the day, which gives focus to inclusion in society and direction to the work of eliminating barriers faced by people with disability.

“Transformation towards sustainable and resilient society for all” was the 2017 theme and further information can be found at www.idpwd.com.au.

The theme was drawn from the values articulated in The 2030 agenda: The Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities developed by the International Disability Alliance. It calls for people with disability to be active contributors to society.

In NSW, the Department’s Disability Inclusion Plan 2016-2020 outlines their role in commitments to improving the lives of people with disability, their families and carers. The plan responds to the Department’s legislated responsibilities under anti-discrimination law. Key areas for action include:

  • improving service delivery to students with disability in public schools in response to the recommendations of the NSW Audit Office in its performance audit Supporting Students with Disability in NSW Public Schools
  • a commitment to increasing the number of children with disability accessing a quality preschool education program in the year before full-time school
  • supporting inclusive practices in the early childhood education and care sector.

In celebrating and aiming to strengthen the resilience of people with disability, Federation, the Department and State Government have important collaborative work to achieve system improvements and supports for inclusive education, lifelong learning and sustainable economic growth through employment.

Council for Intellectual Disability

The advocacy work of the Council for Intellectual Disability (CID), a six-decade strong organisation that advocates for people with an intellectual disability in NSW, is facing closure as the State Government withdraws funding ahead of the transition to the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS).

The CID’s advocacy gives people with intellectual disability a voice, yet, from July 2018, the State Government will cease its funding with the process of transferring disability services spending to the NDIS. Under the NDIS, some people with a disability will receive direct funding support, but there will be no funding for groups that advocate on their behalf.

Currently, groups that advocate for people with disabilities in NSW receive $13 million a year from the State Government. They campaign on issues such as creating transport hubs and accessible buildings as well as working towards preventing the high rate of deaths for people with an intellectual disability.

To sign the online petition and get further information visit www.standbyme.org.au