Media Release by The Hon Larry Anthony MP

Disability advocacy service for Olympics

Federal Minister for Community Services, Larry Anthony today announced $58,000 to operate an enhanced disability advocacy service in New South Wales during the Olympics.

Mr Anthony said the service would combine the experience and expertise of advocacy and legal services including People with a Disability NSW, Multicultural Disability Advocacy Service and the Disability Discrimination Legal Centre of NSW.

“People with disabilities living in, and visiting Sydney may experience additional pressures during the Olympic and Paralympic Games,” Mr Anthony said.

“The funding will let the service provide information, initial help, referral and where necessary, link them to appropriate services.

“This project will enhance the level of individual advocacy available to people with disabilities during a period of high change in social conditions.”

The service will also work in partnership with the Olympic Coordination Authority to provide an innovative support network to Sydney residents and visitors with disabilities during the Games.

Mr Anthony said that while the service would help Australians, it would also be important for visiting athletes with a disability, their families, friends and carers.

“It will provide individual advocacy, while catering for the needs of all disability groups.

“During the Olympic and Paralympic period, the sheer volume of people converging on Sydney may lead to problems for people with a disability accessing services or venues they would normally use.

“They may need help with things like simply getting access to a doctor or working out transport arrangements.

“That is where this and other services are so important. It will provide people with the support and help they need, when they need it,” Mr Anthony said.