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Joint media statement – Disability rights organisations call for an End to the Violence

A group of disability rights organisations from across Australia are launching an action plan to end the violence against people with disability

On September 29th the Disability Royal Commission will hand down its final report and recommendations, which the group is hopeful will provide a blueprint to end the systemic violence people with disability face every day.  The End the Violence plan outlines some of the urgent actions government can take to demonstrate their commitment to people with disability. 

Disability Advocacy Network Australia CEO, Jeff Smith said “We heard through the Royal Commission that people with disability are more likely to experience abuse and violence compared to other Australians. This violence is often perpetrated when using health and disability services, when dealing with government organisations and the justice system.”  

First Peoples Disability Network CEO, Damian Griffis said “First Nations people with disability are more likely to have their children taken from them, more likely to end up in the justice system and those living in regional and remote areas have greater barriers to accessing support services that are culturally safe.” 

Our joint plan for action includes: 

  1. Reform systems to ensure accessible, responsive and accountable protocols and procedures to investigate, respond to and act on instances of violence, harassment and abuse.
  2. Fund frontline support to make sure people with disability are aware of their rights and supported to take action and report violence, harassment and abuse when it happens to them.
  3. Establish programs to tackle the sources of violence and address the practices that allow this systematic violence to occur. 

Inclusion Australia CEO, Catherine McAlpine said “Through the Royal Commission, we told our stories, we made the case for change and now we need to see urgent action to ensure people with disability are safe when accessing the everyday services and supports we need to live free and equal lives.” 

President of People with Disability Australia, Nicole Lee said “We know that incidences of violence, harassment and abuse are significantly underreported by people with disability. This silence is often because we don’t feel safe enough to report what is happening to us, fear that we won’t be taken seriously or simply not knowing how to speak out. The response to the Royal Commission has to deal with this and make it easier for people to report and understand our rights.” 

Children and Young People with Disability CEO, Skye Kakoschke-Moore said “Today we have launched the End the Violence campaign and are calling on all members of our disability community to write to Prime Minister Anthony Albanese and Minister for Social Services Amanda Rishworth and ask them to work with us and to take urgent action to end the violence!”  

Organisations are: 

Inclusion Australia can be contacted for comment at: [email protected]