Supporting people living with disability in AustraliaJune 4, 2019
Almost 20% of the Australian population (around 3.96 million people) live with a disability. Of all of those people who report having a disability, 86% of Australians report having a disability that limits their core activities in some way. A core activity is traditionally defined as self-care, communication or mobility. It’s essential that these Australians have the support they need to live their lives to the best of their ability, and this is where the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) comes in.
How the NDIS supports people living with disability in Australia
The NDIS is a government scheme to provide much-needed support to Australians with a disability or disabilities. The program has several overarching goals and aims, and they all work together to help people with disabilities live an independent life. Supports include:
- PROTECTING LEGAL RIGHTS
It’s essential that people with disabilities have legal representation throughout their lives. The NDIS strives to increase awareness of people with disabilities’ rights. Working to develop strategies to reduce the instances of violence, abuse and neglect of people with disabilities (through the introduction of the NDIS Quality & Safeguards Commission). This is essential because people with disabilities are much more likely to be victims of abuse or neglect.
- EDUCATIONAL OPPORTUNITIES
Only 41% of people with a disability complete Year 12 in Australia compared to the 63% of Australians without a disability. The NDIS works to break down barriers that can make educational opportunities obsolete, and they also strive to ensure that they simplify the access of educational opportunities to people with disabilities throughout Australia.
- GETTING A SUPPORT SYSTEM IN PLACE
Many people with disabilities don’t have the proper support systems in place to live independently and thrive. The NDIS is trying to get community support systems in place to help people with disabilities. This includes making sure that people in the community have access to a care network to help with everyday tasks, medications and more.
- FINANCIAL SUPPORT
Managing finances is a huge part of being able to live independently, and many people who have disabilities struggle with this. The NDIS is putting steps in place to ensure that people with disabilities have access to affordable housing, are able to successfully manage their money or have someone help them and help them plan for their financial future.
- HEALTH SERVICE AVAILABILITY
Around every one in six people with disabilities in Australia have experienced discrimination by healthcare staff like GPs, nurses or other hospital staff. Every one in eight people with a disability doesn’t have access to help with their healthcare. The NDIS strives to build communication between the community and people with disabilities, address specific issues like nutrition, dental or mental health and ensuring people with disabilities can make informed decisions.
- ACCESS TO COMMUNITIES & ACTIVITIES
It’s essential that people with disabilities have access to communities and activities that are specifically tailored for their skill levels. There also has to be processes in place that help the disabled population participate in every area of Australian life. It includes making sure that buildings are accessible, there are communication strategies in place, and there are sporting events and activities available to suit all skill levels.
People with disabilities are a huge part of Australia, and they deserve to be able to participate in daily life to the fullest. The NDIS is making huge strides to ensure that people with disabilities have everything they need to live a full and involved life, and there are dozens of organisations working to support it as well. The future is looking bright for people with disabilities throughout Australia, and it’s all due to people coming together and working toward a common goal.