Thursday 16 May 2013

The First People’s Disability Network Australia will receive $900,000 over three years to assist Indigenous Australians to understand and access support from the newly-created DisabilityCare Australia.

Social Justice Commissioner Mick Gooda said the funding would help close the gap on Indigenous disadvantage by ensuring the benefits of DisabilityCare Australia are realised for Indigenous people.

He said the prevalence of severe or profound disability among Indigenous people is around twice the rate for non-Indigenous Australians.

Disability Discrimination Commissioner Graeme Innes said Disability Care Australia provides a national system of support for Australians not seen in this country’s history.

“It is critical that Aboriginal Australians should benefit equally from this support,” Commissioner Innes said.

Funding to improve access to services for Indigenous people with disability follows this week’s Budget commitment of $1.6 billion to Indigenous health, education, welfare reform and other services.

The Budget package includes $777 million over three years to renew the National Partnership Agreement on Closing the Gap on Indigenous Health Outcomes.

Commissioners Gooda and Innes urged the Government and Federal Opposition to retain their bipartisan support for the Closing the Gap partnership.