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Media Releases
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MEDIA Release Feb 15, 2016

Approval of VISA for Eliza Fonseka

NEDA is pleased to hear that the Minister for the Department of Immigration and Border Protection (DIBP), Mr. Peter Dutton MP, has approved a visa for young Eliza Fonseka thus allowing her to stay in Australia.

Read ABC’s story here:

http://www.abc.net.au/news/2016-02-12/sri-lankan-girl-with-down-syndrome-receives-australian-visa/7164114

 

For nearly a year now, NEDA has supported the Fonseka family’s cause, engaged in advocacy, calling for the DIPB to reconsider Eliza Fonseka’ s case to bring about a just outcome overturning the previous decision. Late last week, Minister Dutton intervened overturning the Government’s initial decision, granting Eliza temporary residency till the end of 2016.

Although this is a positive outcome for the Fonseka family, NEDA would like to keep the spotlight on this important issue as on a whole, people with disabilities (their families and carers) still experience immense policy and procedural discrimination when navigating the Australian migration system.

The Joint Standing Committee on Migration (2010) found that the exemption of Australia’s Migration Act from the Disability Discrimination Act unfairly discriminates against people with disability.

‘The way Australia treats migrants with disability is unfair’ stated Mr. Suresh Rajan (NEDA President). ‘It’s abhorrent that Australia’s immigration system assesses disability through a medical paradigm, where people are arbitrary costed,’ continued Mr. Rajan. ‘The system needs to meet its obligations as set out in the UNCRPD.'

Dwayne Cranfield (NEDA CEO) states that this outcome for the Fonseka family has highlighted the important of advocacy, arguing ‘access to advocacy support, in all its forms, is fundamental to ensuring people with disabilities are heard and their human rights maintained. Strong advocacy challenges systemic injustices and works to remove barriers to access and equity.’

For further information please contact NEDA CEO Mr Dwayne Cranfield on: 02 62626867 or NEDA President Mr. Suresh Rajan on 0413436001.

 

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MEDIA Release Feb 10, 2016

#letthemstay

 

NEDA endorses the position taken by the multicultural and community sectors and urges the Australian Government to allow the asylum seekers facing removal back to offshore detention centres to stay in Australia.

NEDA is of the strong opinion that the government has a duty to ensure the safety and wellbeing of these 267 vulnerable people, including 37 babies and 54 children.

NEDA President, Mr Suresh Rajan stated ‘allowing these asylum seekers, some of whom were born in Australia, to stay, is not only the moral thing to do: but it is also in line with our human rights obligations’.  

‘Australia has the capacity and responsibility to provide a safe haven and to immediately process asylum seeker applications. We are all well aware of the horrors these people are likely to experience if they are sent to an offshore detention facility. The impact of this has been well documented by a number of medical and mental health practitioners. Effectively, we are creating the mental health and psycho social issues for us as a society into the future’, said Mr Rajan.

NEDA is also disappointed with the national leadership on this issue and urges both major political parties to reconsider their stance on offshore processing and current asylum seeker policies.

NEDA calls upon individual members of parliament to take a personal stance that is more reflective of Australia’s human rights expectations.

For further information, please contact NEDA CEO Mr Dwayne Cranfield on 02 62626867 or NEDA President Mr Suresh Rajan on 0413436001.

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Australian Cross Disability Alliance calls for investment in Australians with disability for future prosperity

Alliance New

The Australian Cross Disability Alliance is calling on the Government to end speculation about the National Disability Insurance Scheme and to give certainty to all Australians with disability.
 
The NDIS is an essential part of our social infrastructure that will ensure that all Australians with disability finally have the support they need. This long overdue investment in people with disability and their families will enable more people to move into work, and also create jobs in the disability support sector. Reporting on just the costs of the NDIS misses the increase to GDP from the NDIS and the other economic benefits of having more Australians able to participate in the community.  
 
Delivery of the NDIS on time and in full was a key commitment by the Coalition to Australians going into the 2013 federal election and one that, so far, they have delivered under two Prime Ministers.  
 
"Over the last five years, the NDIS has gained the overwhelming support of State and Territory Governments, both sides of Federal politics and the Australian community in a way that few reforms have before. Australians have simply decided this is the right thing to do. It’s time to take the NDIS out of the annual pre-Budget and policy fights to provide peace of mind for people with disability, their families and carers. These are issues affecting millions of Australians. Time and again, we have seen that most people see the sense in having social insurance for disability in the same way as we carry insurance for other major financial and life events," said Craig Wallace, from the Australian Cross Disability Alliance.
 
"So far, the Government has delivered on their 2013 election mandate to deliver the NDIS in full. Any change to this commitment would be a major breach of trust with the Australian people. There would be a strong reaction from across the political divide, especially as we enter an election year."
 
"The existing disability support system is broken, failing and becoming increasingly expensive - the NDIS is a carefully designed response to this crisis that will cost less over time, while giving people access to the support they need."
 
“We have always welcomed a discussion about funding the scheme so it is sustainable and we believe in a rational and sensible approach to that conversation is in the context of the tax white paper and broader discussions about the revenue, tax and spending mix of our nation. A range of options should be on the table to ensure we deliver the NDIS."
 
Targeting people with disability, and the supports they need to get out of bed, have a shower and leave the house is no answer. Commentary on the NDIS rollout should also balance implementation with the downstream benefits as more people with disability return to work; carers are freed up to pursue employment and people are kept out of expensive high care options,” said Mr Wallace.
 

 

MEDIA CONTACTS
Craig Wallace, President
People with Disability Australia
0413 135 731

 El Gibbs, Communication and Media Officer
People with Disability Australia
0408 682 867

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

(02) 9370 3100

 

 

The Australian Cross Disability Alliance is an alliance of four national Disabled People’s Organisations (organisations made up of and led by people with disability):

People with Disability Australia (PWDA)

First Peoples Disability Network Australia (FPDN)

National Ethnic Disability Alliance (NEDA)

Women With Disabilities Australia (WWDA)