Media Release by The Hon Jenny Macklin MP

Shut Out: The experience of people with disabilities and their families in Australia

Joint Media Release with:

  • The Hon Bill Shorten MP, Parliamentary Secretary for Disabilities and Children's Services

The Australian Government today welcomed the release of the National People with Disabilities and Carer Council’s report examining the barriers faced by people with disability.

Shut Out: The Experience of People with Disabilities and their Families in Australia is the culmination of thousands of views expressed through submissions, forums and focus groups across Australia, and was commissioned by the Australian Government to inform the National Disability Strategy.

The Minister for Families and Community Services Jenny Macklin said the report will open people’s eyes to what life is like when you are ‘shut out’ from the opportunities most people enjoy and expect in their lives.

‘The report provides a real and human experience of the barriers people with disability encounter every day of their lives,’ Ms Macklin said.

‘For many years, people with disability have found themselves shut out of buildings, homes, schools, businesses, sports and community groups. Today their voices will be heard.

‘The Government is determined to turn around the years of neglect to make sure people with disability have the opportunity to be involved in their communities, where possible have a job and a life that is meaningful and worthwhile.’

The Australian Government is providing more than $5 billion to the states and territories over the next five years through the National Disability Agreement to provide specialist disability services, including respite, supported accommodation and early intervention.

The Disability Support Pension will be increased for around 720,000 Australians. Carers on the Carer Payment will also receive the increases, as well as an annual carer supplement to give carers certainty and security.

Parliamentary Secretary for Disability Bill Shorten said that more than 2,500 people attended the public consultations and over 750 submissions were received.

‘The incredible input from the public highlights how far-reaching the impacts of disability are,’ Mr Shorten said.

‘The report details the key barriers and issues facing people with disability and highlights solutions and best practice examples to increase participation.

‘A strong theme from the report is the desire for people with disability to have the same opportunities as everyone else and to lead a productive life.’

To find out more information on the report or to obtain a copy, please visit: National Disability Strategy page