letter/email

Meeting request - Senator Fifield about the NDIS

A4 requested a meeting with Senator Fifield, Assistant Minister for Social Services (responsible for Disability Services), to discuss how to improve the NDIS for people with Autism Spectrum Disorder.

A4 shares some of the concerns raised in The Australian (see http://a4.org.au/a4/node/756) relating to people with Intellectual Disability; at least 30% of people with autism, often severe autism, also have an intellectual disability so we can expect to have some common concerns/issues. A4 and also has concerns that specifically relate to autism.

DisabilityCare (NDIS) start: with serious initial concerns relating to people with autism/ASD

DisabilityCare, the renamed and emerging NDIS, "launched" in a number of locations (states?). Now we start to see how it is being implemented. Our hope is that the scheme will be genuinely person-centred: that is, it will focus on identifying and meeting the needs of each person (individual) with a disability. Our particular concerns relate to people with autism spectrum disorder (ASD).

Attorney-General "file and ignore" on disability issues

Previously, Autism Aspergers Advocacy Australia (A4) wrote to Attorneys-General about the rights of people with a disability (see http://a4.org.au/a4/node/438). The letter was emailed twice (once each on 4/1/2012 and 5/1/2012) and there was no indication that it did not arrive at its destination.

There was absolutely no response to the letter, so we put in a request using the Freedom of Information process. The response says:

a message from Minister Macklin MP and Ms Collins MP

A4's Convenor received the following message from the Government on 25/9/2012 ...

Dear Friend

We believe that an independent and innovative Not-For-Profit sector is essential to building a fair community.

The past few weeks in Queensland have reminded us how Liberal governments treat community organisations.

Premier Newman has introduced gag clauses into community services contracts which prevent funded organisations from advocating for the most vulnerable in our community. The Howard Government gagged the community sector too.

Question about autism/ASD for candidates in the 2012 ACT election

The autism/ASD advocacy group, Speaking Out for Autism Spectrum Disorders in the Australian Capital Territory (SOfASD ACT) wrote to ACT political candidates asking about their policies and plans for people affected by autism. There is an election in the ACT in October and the group feels the ASD community in the ACT need to know what prospective governments plan to do to improve outcomes for people with ASD and their associates.

SOfASD asked specific questions about policy and plans for:

  • diagnosis
  • early intervention
  • school age: education and other needs

Letter to Government about labour force participation for people with autism

A4 wrote to The Hon. Mr. Shorten MP about the especially poor labour force participation (employment) of people with autism spectrum disorders. We referred to the report from the Australian Bureau of Statistics that shows outcomes for people with autism are significantly worse than the outcomes people with a disability generally and Australia's indigenous population experience.

We provided the Minister with a recent example of a person with severe autism trying to access a supported employment service.

Minister: gap, not just autism, for a whole range of disabilities?

The Hon. Ms Jenny Macklin MP
Minister for Disability Reform

Dear The Hon. Ms Macklin MP

I saw your short video on the episode of A Current Affair on 19/3/2012. Your message started “We do recognise that there is a real gap for not just children with autism but children with a whole range of disabilities … ”.

Pages

Subscribe to letter/email