Chief Executive Officer update - October 2023


It’s been a big couple of weeks in the disability community, after the Disability Royal Commission (DRC) published their report and recommendations.

Yooralla acknowledges those that campaigned for the DRC, and the many thousands of witnesses who gave evidence throughout the DRC process. We owe it to them to take our time and work through the recommendations that have been published.

I am heartened that, overall, the recommendations have been developed with the aim to create an inclusive society, where people with disability are supported to live independently, free from violence, abuse, neglect and exploitation.

The recommendations in the report are very broad and go beyond disability support services. They cover many areas in the life of a person with disability, including human rights, decision making, health, schools, the criminal justice system and workplaces. They address the experiences of First Nations and culturally and linguistically diverse people as well as LGBTQA+.

It’s been well publicised in the media that there has been some disagreement among the Commissioners on recommendations in three specific areas – special schools, supported employment and group homes. We’ve heard concerns from clients and their families about some of these recommendations. However, we are confident that advocates and the Government will be able to work together to find common ground that will result in positive outcomes driven by, and for – people with disability.

Yooralla won’t be making any snap decisions based on what we know, so far. We will continue to consult with clients and their families, to ensure that lived experience and the voices of people with disability are leading this change.

We are also watching out for the outcomes of the NDIS review that will be released at the end of the month. The results of this review will have a more immediate impact on those receiving NDIS funding. We will certainly be engaging with our clients and their families and our broader network in disability, so do stay tuned for more on this.

Lastly, I want to recognise that the end of the DRC and the publication of these recommendations will be the culmination of a long and emotional process for many in the disability community. If you feel the need, you are welcome to reach out to us here at Yooralla or use the other sources of support listed below.

Terry Symonds
Chief Executive officer

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