Increasing the voice of people with intellectual disability is central to who we are and what we do.
Together with our member organisations, we support people with intellectual disability to represent themselves and speak up about the big issues.
Here you will find information about how we support the leadership of people with intellectual disability – at work, in our advocacy and through our projects.
Our Voice is an official sub-committee of the Inclusion Australia Board.
Our Voice provides advice to the Board on issues that are important to people with intellectual disability.
All Our Voice members are people with an intellectual disability and self-advocates.
“Nothing about us without us”
Inclusion Australia is a systemic advocacy organisation.
This means we work to solve problems that impact large groups of people with an intellectual disability. These are often problems with systems like the law, public policy and services.
People with an intellectual disability help us to do this by sharing their lived experiences.
Inclusion Australia knows that people with an intellectual disability are the experts in their own lives.
We listen to the stories of people with intellectual disabilities and share these with government and other decision-makers to help make social change.
We support people with intellectual disabilities to represent their rights and interests.
We increase the voice and skills of people with an intellectual disability through our projects.
Our projects, Make Decisions Real, Your Service, Your Rights and Towards Inclusive Practice all aim to increase the voices of people with an intellectual disability across Australia.
Our staff with an intellectual disability are involved in project planning, governance, delivery and evaluation.
Making our workplace more inclusive also increases the voice of our staff with intellectual disability.
This means making our recruitment, orientation, supervision, meetings, policies and governance more inclusive.
Inclusion makes us a stronger organisation and we encourage others to make their workplaces inclusive too.
Inclusive workplaces make it easier for people to overcome the barriers to open employment and get real work for real pay.
To learn more about making your workplace more inclusive, check out
Towards Inclusive Practice
Most Government systems and processes are not accessible for people with an intellectual disability. People with an intellectual disability also have very few ways to tell Government what matters.
The Towards Inclusive Practice project will build the capacity of people with intellectual disability to talk about issues that are important to people with intellectual disability.
The project will also set up a national network of people with an intellectual disability and provide input into Inclusion Australia’s systemic advocacy.
Find out more at our Towards Inclusive Practice project page.
Supporting the voice of people with intellectual disability in the NDIS
The NDIA has several ways it listens to the voice of people with disability, including people with intellectual disability.
- The Independent Advisory Council (IAC) gives advice to the Board of the NDIA. Inclusion Australia and its members, including people with intellectual disability, help the IAC through the Intellectual Disability Reference Group and the Equity and Inclusion Reference Group.
- Inclusion Australia and our members can nominate people with intellectual disability to be part of the NDIS Participant Reference Group.
- People with disability can nominate themselves to be part of the NDIS Participant First Engagement Initiative. People can give input online, face-face, or with NDIA project teams.
- Inclusion Australia also supports the NDIA to hear directly from people with disability as part of the NDIS Participant Engagement Panel.
Advocacy is about human rights and positive change.
There are different types of advocacy.
Self-advocacy means speaking up for yourself.
Our member organisations run self-advocacy groups across Australia.
New South Wales
Council for Intellectual Disability runs 2 self-advocacy groups in Sydney. These are the CID Advocacy Group and Speak Out Reach Out. Speak Out Reach Out is an advisory group to the CID Board.
To find out more contact CID on 1800 424 065.
South Australian Council for Intellectual Disability (SACID) runs self-advocacy and peer support groups in South Australia, including the SACID Reference Group and Peer Action Crews. The SACID Reference Group is a sub-committee of the SACID Board.
To find out more contact SACID on 08 8352 4416 or email [email protected].
Victorian Advocacy League for Individuals with Disability (VALID) runs a broad range of self-advocacy programs across Victoria, including 4 self-advocacy networks in Melbourne, the VALID Self-Advocacy Forum and the Keys to Success self-advocacy training.
To find out more about VALID’s self-advocacy contact Rick at VALID on [email protected] or 03 9416 4003
More Self-Advocacy groups
Voices Together is a website for self-advocacy groups in Australia to connect, work together and to share information and knowledge. The Voices Together website includes a map of Self-Advocacy groups around Australia.
It also includes information about Self-Advocacy and resources for setting up and running self-advocacy groups.