The Andrews Labor Government has released a five-year plan to provide autistic Victorians greater opportunities for choice and community participation.
Minister for Disability, Ageing and Carers Luke Donnellan today launched the Victorian Autism Plan with representatives of the Autism Plan Advisory Group who contributed to the plan’s development.
The Victorian Autism Plan sets out actions to improve the lives of autistic Victorians and their families and carers, backed by $7.1 million in funding.
This is in addition to Victoria’s contribution to the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) which recently supported the delivery of more than $9 million for Victorian Autism peak body Amaze to create a national information helpline.
This also builds on the Government’s $217 million investment in the Victorian Budget 2019-20 to make our schools more inclusive, with more funding to support children with disability and additional needs.
The plan’s key commitments include improving community attitudes towards autistic people, and increasing opportunities for education, economic participation and access to assessment, diagnosis and early intervention.
The plan will support a media campaign to encourage positive behaviour towards people with autism and an expansion of the Access All Abilities sports and recreation program.
The Labor Government is providing grants to autism organisations to help meet the diverse needs of the autism community and will expand its work to increase employment opportunities for people with autism.
The Royal Children’s Hospital is also receiving funding for a pilot project to reduce the avoidable presentations and length of stay for children with autism.
The plan has been developed in response to the findings of the Parliamentary inquiry into services for people with autism spectrum disorder which gave insight into the experiences of exclusion faced by people with autism.
The Government consulted with a diverse range of autistic people, their families and supporters, autism organisations to develop the plan.
To read the plan and find out more visit www.statedisabilityplan.vic.gov.au
Quotes attributable to Minister for Disability, Ageing and Carers Luke Donnellan
“Many Victorians with autism have been missing out on real opportunities to participate and contribute to their community – we’re working to change this in Victoria with our new action plan.”
“The autism plan will guide our work to be more inclusive and address some of the specific challenges people with autism face in the community.”
“We are making sure Victoria is a place for everyone; where people with disability can get the support they need to make choices and live life their way.”