Better understanding the abuse and neglect of children and young people with disability
The Parliamentary Secretary for Disabilities and Carers, Senator Jan McLucas, today launched an Australian Government funded report examining the abuse and neglect of children and young people with disability.
Senator McLucas said the report provided important research on the abuse and neglect of children and young people with disability, which will help Governments and the community sector better understand the causes, experience and responses to their maltreatment.
The issues paper, Enabling and protecting: proactive approaches to addressing the abuse and neglect of children and young people with disability, was prepared by Children with Disability, the national peak body for children and young people with disability and their families.
“People with disability are more vulnerable to violence, exploitation and neglect – and children with disability even more so,” Senator McLucas said.
“Among this report’s findings is that inclusivity and accessibility are critical factors in making children with disability safe.
“This underscores just how important the Australian Government’s work is in removing barriers for people with disability.
“The Australian Government ratified the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities in 2008, and is implementing the National Disability Strategy, the 10-year national strategy to ensure the principles underpinning the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities are upheld.
“Since ratifying the Convention we have continued to progress significant reforms across our payment system, the most significant of which is the National Disability Insurance Scheme.
“The Australian Government is taking a national leadership role in improving the safety and wellbeing of Australia’s children through the National Framework for Protecting Australia’s Children 2009-2020.
“The National Framework recognises childhood disability as one of a number of risk factors for abuse and neglect.
“We are working with state and territory governments and the non-government sector to implement the National Framework through a series of three-year action plans.
“The Second Action Plan 2012-15 under the National Framework, released by the Standing Council on Community and Disability Services on 17 August 2012, identified children and families with disability as a particular focus for the next three years.
“The Australian Government has committed over $2.5 billion over the three years of the Second Action Plan to support children’s safety and wellbeing, including more than $100 million to support indigenous children, youth and community wellbeing and $14 million for new Family Mental Health Support Services.
“Our number one priority is the protection of children. It is the responsibility of all governments and the sector to do everything possible to make sure all children have the safe and healthy childhood they deserve.”
The report is available for download at http://ndoch.govspace.gov.au