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Overview of the DDA (Disability Discrimination Act)

Disability Disability Rights
Wednesday 3 August, 2016

Overview of the Disability Discrimination Act 1992 (Cth)

The Disability Discrimination Act makes it unlawful to discriminate against someone with disability in the following areas of life:

Employment (Section 15)
For example, when someone is trying to obtain a position, equal pay or a promotion.

Education (Section 22)
For example, when enrolling in a school, TAFE, university or other colleges.

Access to premises used by the public (Section 23)
For example, using libraries, places of worship, government offices, hospitals, restaurants, shops, or other premises used by the public.

Provision of goods, services and facilities (Section 24)
For example, when a person requires goods or services from shops, pubs and places of entertainment, cafes, video shops, banks, lawyers, government departments, doctors, or hospitals.

Accommodation (Section 25)
For example, when renting or trying to rent a room in a boarding house, a flat, unit or house.

Buying land (Section 26)
For example, buying a house, a place for a group of people, or drop-in centre.

Activities of clubs and associations (Section 27)
For example, wanting to enter or join a registered club, (such as a sports club, RSL or fitness centre), or when a person is already a member.

Sport (Section 28)
For example, when wanting to play, or playing a sport.

Administration of Commonwealth Government laws and programs (Section 29)
For example, when seeking information.

Note: Disability is broadly defined within the Disability Discrimination Act to include physical, intellectual, sensory, neurological and psychiatric disabilities as well as including people who may have a disease and people with an imputed disability (i.e. being treated as if you have a disability). People like relatives, friends, and carers are also protected if they are discriminated against because of their association with a person with disability.[1]

[1] Australian Human Rights Commission, A brief guide to the D.D.A, ‘Who does the D.D.A protect?’ (2015) <>.


Updated May 2016