NEDA is engaged in work on many wide-ranging disability & multicultural policy issues, some of which are summarised below. NEDA strongly encourages community engagement and feedback, so if you (or someone you know) wants to get in contact with us on a policy matter- or any other issue- please click the above 'provide feedback here' button.
National Disability Strategy (NDS)
The National Disability Strategy (NDS) is Australia’s key national policy framework for protecting, promoting and fulfilling the human rights of people with disability. All Australian governments have agreed that the NDS is the mechanism to implement the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD) and to report to the United Nations against progress in achieving the CRPD. Much more work is needed to build a comprehensive framework that leverages reform across Commonwealth, state and territory Governments.
Once fully rolled out nationally, the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) will support hundreds of thousands of Australians with a disability. To ensure the scheme is effective for all NDIS participants, people with disability and their families need to be informed and empowered to make decisions regarding what types of supports they require to live their life. NEDA was instrumental in establishing the NDIA’s CALD Advisory Reference Group and will continue to play a lead role in this process to ensure the voices of CALD participants and their families are heard. NEDA works with Government and other key organisations across the disability sector to remove the barriers to access and equity, and to enable people with disability, particularly culturally and linguistically diverse (CALD) participants, to experience the full benefits of the NDIS.
People with disability and their families face significant discrimination when attempting to migrate to Australia. Typically, migrants with disability are denied permanent residency because they are unable to meet the health requirements in order to obtain a visa. These assessments are discriminatory, view disability through a medical lens, and fail to take into account the economic and social contribution of applicants.
Additionally, migrants with disability are required to wait over a decade before meeting residency requirements associated with eligibility for the Disability Support Pension (DSP). This exposes newly arrived migrants with disability, and their families, to a heightened risk of financial vulnerability and hardship.
We need to bring about more consistency, transparency and administration fairness for migrants and asylum seekers with disability applying for an Australian visa, and abolish the extensive waiting period for migrants with disability accessing the DSP.
Climate Change & Disability Rights
People with disability are disproportionately impacted by climate change. There is a critical need to develop comprehensive regional Disaster Risk Reduction (DRR) and other adaptation measures that focus on the experiences of people with disability, and their families, in preventing and responding to climate change effects. NEDA is working with international partners, such as the New Earth Disability (NED) Initiative, to raise awareness, build collective knowledge, and to ensure people with disability are no longer marginalised in climate change policies and frameworks.