Advocacy for Inclusion is a not-for-profit non-government community organisation in the Australian Capital Territory. We provide individual, self and systemic advocacy to people with disabilities to promote their human rights and inclusion in the community. We work alongside people with disabilities to help them address a range of issues in disability support arrangements, including violence and abuse, inadequate or poor quality supports, discrimination, and NDIS planning.
A lack of control and choice is at the core of the issues experienced by people who come to Advocacy for Inclusion. This powerlessness poses the biggest risk to the wellbeing and safety of people with disabilities in their support arrangements, and their capacity to reach their potential and contribute to society. Maximising control and choice for people with disabilities is a key protective factor, which can be supported through:
1. Independent community based disability advocacy – all 6 forms of advocacy;
2. Independent statutory oversight body for all NDIS and disability services;
3. Mechanisms targeted at eliminating restrictive practices;
4. Genuine control and choice for people with disabilities at all levels, including the structural and policy levels.
Most importantly, control and choice cannot be achieved through regulating people with disabilities with paternalistic and controlling policies and structures. A quality and safeguarding framework should be focused on enhancing meaningful and tangible support for people with disabilities to exercise self-determination, coupled with robust accountability, transparency and monitoring systems for service providers.