New Disability Strategy targets change over next decade

The Australian Government has released its Disability Strategy 2021-2031 to help drive change in the sector over the next decade.

The strategy was unveiled to mark International Day of People with Disability (IDPwD) celebrations on December 3 and aims to uphold the rights, inclusion and participation of people with disability in all areas of Australian life.

IDPwD aims to increase awareness, understanding and acceptance of people with disabilities and a day to celebrate the achievements and contributions of people with disabilities.

The government believes the nation can work together to see all abilities and create an inclusive Australia and the Strategy reflects that across areas such as safety and personal support to changing community attitudes.

The government says the Strategy builds on the significant work of the National Disability Strategy 2010–2020 to establish a national approach to improving the lives of people with disability.

The National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) “was the stellar achievement” of this process, the government stated.

This new Strategy is considered an “aspirational road map pointing the way ahead” by the government.

“It represents our national commitment to enabling every Australian to meet their potential, to achieve, to have a fair go and to have real choices,” the government said on its release of the document.

People with disabilities, their families, friends, carers, advocacy organisations, peak bodies and service providers were consulted as part of the formation of the Strategy and their voices were vital in shaping its direction, the government said.

The Strategy’s vision is for an “inclusive Australian society that ensures people with disability can fulfil their potential, as equal members of the community”.

In line with Australia’s commitments under the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (UN CRPD), this Strategy will play an important role in protecting, promoting and realising the human rights of people with disability

Its purpose is to:

  • Provide national leadership towards greater inclusion of people with disability
  • Guide activity across all areas of public policy to be inclusive and responsive to people with disability
  • Drive mainstream services and systems to improve outcomes for people with disability
  • Engage, inform and involve the whole community in achieving a more inclusive society.

The Outcome Areas in the Strategy set out where governments at all levels, working with the community and business, will focus on driving improvements for people with disability.

These areas are:

Employment and Financial Security Outcome: People with disabilities have economic security, enabling them to plan for the future and exercise choice and control over their lives.

Inclusive Homes and Communities Outcome: People with disability live in inclusive, accessible and well-designed homes and communities.

Safety, Rights and Justice Outcome: The rights of people with disability are promoted, upheld and protected, and people with disability feel safe and enjoy equality before the law.

Personal and Community Support Outcome: People with disability have access to a range of supports to assist them to live independently and engage in their communities.

Education and Learning Outcome: People with disability achieve their full potential through education and learning

Health and Wellbeing Outcome: People with disability attain the highest possible health and wellbeing outcomes throughout their lives.

Community Attitudes Outcome: Community attitudes support equality, inclusion and participation in society for people with disability.

Australian, state, territory and local governments, along with businesses, the community and non-government sector, all play a role in inclusion and support of people with disability.

All levels of government continue to play a role in providing mainstream and targeted services, supports and infrastructure systems to people with disability.

Listing key government roles and responsibilities helps everyone to understand which level of government is responsible for the systems that may be used by people with disabilities.

Australia’s Disability Strategy 2021-2031 and the Outcomes are now available on the Australian Government’s new Disability Gateway website, including in Easy Read and Auslan.

Read more about the Government’s research and strategies for social inclusion, community access and employment using the links under Resources.

Recent Posts

James’ Story – as told by his mum

A Cocoon House is a life transforming change