Jesuit Social Services contributed to the consultation conducted by the Victorian Government on the next State Disability Plan 2021-25.

Our written feedback specifically addresses topics outlined in the Consultation Paper as well as additional areas of concern we believe warrant further attention.

The submission commends the Victorian Government’s proposed human-rights based approach as well as its commitment to developing a detailed vision for the interface between the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) and mainstream services.

Nevertheless, to ensure every person living in Victoria with a disability has access to the opportunities in life that will enable them to flourish, our submission advocates that the Victorian Government should:

  • Embed a strong focus on human rights by including clear indications of the relevant United Nations’ Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities and Charter of Human Rights and Responsibilities Act 2006 (Vic) articles and how the Plan will uphold them.
  • Strengthen the leadership of people with disability by developing effective mechanisms to ensure genuine engagement with them as well as their carers/families.
  • Advocate for improvements to the NDIS by continuing to use its role on the Disability Reform Council to ensure the NDIS is accessible to all people with disability.
  • Embed a place-based approach by supporting and developing place-based programs in areas of disadvantage.
  • Support people with disability involved in the justice system with community-led initiatives for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people with disability and supports for young people with disability, people with Acquired Brain Injury, and women with disability.
  • Recognise and respond to violence against people with disability by partnering with The Men’s Project – an initiative led by Jesuit Social Services – to engage with men and boys to decrease rigid adherence to stereotypical masculine norms.
  • Enhance access to safe, secure and stable housing by investing in a diversity of housing options for people with disability.
  • Ensure the availability of education and employment opportunities by supporting the development of new models that provide integrated learning and employment pathways for people with disability.