Rainbow Serpents by Eve Kitchener
NuunaRon, a small group of artist living with disability on the Sunshine Coast using their traditional art to tell their stories of strength and resilience, have the opportunity to take their art to the world stage and share their stories at the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (UNCRPD) this September . Click play below to view the 9 News Story on the NuunaRon Art Group preparing for their exhibition at
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Australia signed up to the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities(CRPD) in 2008. This means Australia has made a commitment to protect and promote the rights of people with disability.  The main way that Australian Governments are doing this, is through the National Disability Strategy. Every four years, the Australian government has to report to the United Nations (UN) and be reviewed on what it has achieved.  A committee of independent
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We are calling for Prime Minister the Hon. Scott Morrison MP, Attorney General the Hon. Christian Porter, MP, and Minister for Families and Social Services the Hon. Paul Fletcher, MP, to reconsider the appointment of the Hon. John Ryan AM and Ms Barbara Bennett PSM as Commissioners. We ask that Mr Ryan and Ms Bennett step down from the recently announced Royal Commission into Violence, Abuse, Neglect and Exploitation of People with Disability, and for strong provisions to
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Statistics show that the prevalence of disability within Indigenous communities is more than twice that of other Australians. And while the government spent much of the past week lauding the prospect of a return to budget surplus, advocacy groups have questioned an underspend within the disability and community service sectors. Co-Chair of ‘Change the Record’, Damian Griffis believes lower than expected expenditure on the NDIS of more than $3 billion is indicative of systemic problems.
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Today Indigenous people celebrate $4.5 m going to support Aboriginal Medical Services in the Kimberley, Pilbara and Goldfields in Northwestern W.A. Aboriginal people themselves are involved in the running of these programs in a new Connected paradigm. So why can’t we roll this model out for the rest of Australia? Source: The Wire Broadcast: Tuesday 9 April 2019  
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Media Release 5 April 2019 Disabled People’s Organisations Australia (DPO Australia) welcomes Prime Minister Scott Morrison’s announcement on the formation of our Royal Commission and its Letters Patent into violence, abuse, neglect and exploitation against people with disability today, following the Government’s commitment of $527 million in the Federal Budget. “People with disability have called for this Royal Commission for many years, due to the appalling rates of violence against us, and we look forward
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People with disability welcome the Federal Government’s commitment to fully funding our Royal Commission, as revealed in the 2019-20 Budget. “We very much welcome the $527m allocated to our Royal Commission into the epidemic of violence, abuse, neglect and exploitation against people with disability, in tonight’s Budget,” said Matthew Bowden, Co-CEO of People with Disability Australia (PWDA), and member of Disabled People’s Organisations Australia (DPO Australia). “We know that for people with disability to finally
News, Royal Commission
The FPDN Annual Report 2017-18 is an interactive document that can be downloaded here. Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander readers please note: FPDN’s Annual Report 2017_18 contains images and names of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander persons who have passed and may cause sadness or distress. The audited Financial Accounts are available here.
News, Publications
People with disability, and our organisations, today welcome the Federal Government’s release of the Terms of Reference for our Royal Commission into the epidemic of violence, abuse, neglect and exploitation  of people with disability. “We are pleased that the Government is commencing a consultation with people with disability on the Terms of Reference and has published detail on how the Royal Commission will be established and function,” said Carolyn Frohmader, Executive Director of Women With Disabilities Australia,
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FPDN were humbled to be featured in a social media post by Canadian MP the Hon. Kirsty Duncan, Minister of Science and Sport alongside her ‘Two Spirit Yarning’ artwork hanging in the Parliament of Canada. The artwork is by Wiradjuri artist and FPDN Resource and Training Development Manager Uncle Paul Constable Calcott. Minister Duncan posted “This breathtaking painting is by Australian Aboriginal artist Paul Constable Calcott, who has worked in the area of disabilities for decades.
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Aboriginal woman Jane Rosengrave was just six-years-old when she began suffering abuse while in an institution Jane Rosengrave is a survivor. Her uplifting spirit is in contrast to a life marked by abuse and neglect that began when she was just six years old. “It has not been easy speaking about my past and I had a lot of flashbacks and panic attacks at first,” she told NITV. Jane is a Yorta Yorta woman from
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People with disability, and our organisations, today welcome the vote in the Australian Parliament about a Royal Commission into the epidemic of violence, abuse, exploitation and neglect against people with disability. The next step is to make the Royal Commission real. “We welcome today’s vote on a Royal Commission into the violence, abuse and neglect that is a devastating reality in many of our lives,” said Therese Sands, Co-CEO of People with Disability Australia, a
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Prime Minster Scott Morrison handed down the 11th Closing the Gap report this morning in Canberra. Despite repeated advocacy from FPDN and reassurances from the Commonwealth Government, disability continues to be forgotten as a specific area of focus under Closing the Gap. For a policy that aspires to be evidence based, Closing the Gap has avoided engaging with any of the evidence that shows the acute disadvantage of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people with disability.
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VOTE FOR AUNTY JUNE In recognition of her incredible contribution to our communities, FPDN Deputy CEO and Dunghutti woman Aunty June Riemer has been nominated for a 2018 Impact 25 Award. ‘Throughout her career and in her personal life Aunty June has championed and fought selflessly for the rights of our peoples, vulnerable Australians who experience discrimination and disadvantage.’ Read Aunty June’s nomination statement here    Vote now! Click here to vote for Aunty June
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[embedyt] https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=w1rg2WJ48RI[/embedyt] FPDN CEO Damian Griffis along with Ruth Barson, Nyadol Nyuon & Hugh de Kretser weigh in on the status and progress of Human Rights today on The Wheeler Centre Panel ‘Only Human: 70 Years of the Universal Declaration of Human rights’ presented in partnership with Human Rights Law Centre. Learn more about ‘Only Human: 70 Years of the Universal Declaration of Human rights’ here
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NuunaRon Art group for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander artists living with Disability launched their Exhibition on the Sunshine Coast yesterday in celebration of International Day of People with Disability. FPDN’s National Training and Resource Development Manager Uncle Paul Calcott officially opened the Exhibition “The NuunaRon Art group addresses issues such as social isolation and provides a safe place for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander community members living with disability to come together and build
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Aunty Bonita Mabo was a true leader and a generous, much loved Elder. Aunty Bonita was known for her determination, commitment and generosity of spirit. She achieved so much and worked tirelessly throughout her life. Aunty Bonita and her late husband, Uncle Eddie Mabo paved the way for generations of leaders, advocates and activists. This is a better place because of them. The FPDN ELDA Council, FPDN Board and staff  wish to acknowledge Aunty Bonita
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FPDN is a member of the Change the Record coalition. Change the Record released the following statement regarding the Royal Commission into Aboriginal Deaths in Custody and its recommendations. Change the Record has questioned the report released by the Minister for Indigenous Affairs Nigel Scullion yesterday, which claims that the majority of recommendations from the Royal Commission into Aboriginal Deaths in Custody (RCIADIC) have been implemented. “In 2015, Clayton Utz and Amnesty International found that the
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FPDN’s Research and Policy Director Scott Avery writes for The Conversation. Read the article here
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Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people experience disability at almost twice the rate of other Australians, and it’s especially hard for them to access services from the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS). The scheme is meant to “mean peace of mind for every Australian – for anyone who has, or might acquire, a disability”, but at the moment it’s falling short of these aims. Scott Avery, FPDN Research and Policy Director, speaks to Tess at
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Next week FPDN CEO Damian Griffis, Deputy CEO June Riemer and National Project Manager Paul Calcott will travel to Utopia and Tenant Creek, NT with the Australian Human Rights Commission’s Disability Discrimination Commissioner Alastair McEwin and Ashurst’s Pro Bono Manager Garth Tinsley. The Disability Discrimination Commissioner is hosting community consultations and invites all community living with disability, their families and friends along with service providers to meet with us so we can hear what is
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FPDN hosted a Building the Aboriginal Disability Service Sector Gathering over two days, August 16 & 17 2018, in Tamworth NSW. The workshop, initially targeted to the local area, was widely attended by local, regional and remote Aboriginal disability service sector providers and health professionals from around Australia. The overwhelming response from our attendees was for FPDN to deliver more of these workshops across the country and we heard you! FPDN will be rolling out
National-Workshops, News
There are still some tickets available for FPDN’s Building the Aboriginal Disability Service Sector Gathering next week on August 16 & 17 in Tamworth. FPDN will cover a wide range of topics focused on challenges and opportunities in building the Aboriginal disability service sector and promoting job opportunities for our mob. Industry experts will run skill building workshops in the areas of governance, best practice, information technology & communications and marketing to give you the tools to grow
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CULTURE IS INCLUSION: Community-control the way forward for Aboriginal disability research Today, First Peoples Disability Network (FPDN) is releasing a landmark report following a two-year community-directed research project, across Australia, on the experiences of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people with disability. A launch event is taking place at The Australian Human rights Commission. Scott Avery is the Research and Policy Director at FPDN, and led the community-based research team. He said: “This research tells
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Pictured: Aunty Gayle Rankine, Chairperson, FPDN (image courtesy Belinda Mason) FPDN’s Jake Briggs was a participant in Belinda Mason’s Unfinished Business Exhibition which was first launched at the United Nations in Geneva in 2013. Since then the series of compelling images has been exhibited in New York, USA and around Australia. FPDN has been a long-term and proud supporter of the exhibition which features many of the leaders of the Aboriginal disability movement in Australia.
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Watch FPDN’s video to celebrate the NAIDOC 2018 theme, Because of her, we can. [embedyt] https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=w0iopqWt5TA[/embedyt]   On Screen text: We celebrate our Grandmothers, Mothers, Sisters, Aunties, Cousins, friends. To the strong women who came before us, we honour their legacy, their fight for justice, freedom and rights for our people . This NAIDOC week We celebrate the incredible contribution of the women of FPDN Their wisdom Their leadership The justice warriors The trailblazers Thank
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    The National Injury Insurance Scheme Queensland (NIISQ) and the First Peoples Disability Network (FPDN) kicked NAIDOC week off with the launch of a culturally safe planning resource for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander participants of NIISQ. FPDN and NIISQ collaborated to develop Getting Strong Again, a resource that aims to assist Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander NIISQ participants with planning and identifying the necessary and reasonable treatment, care and support they may need.
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People with Disability Australia hosted a side-event at the United Nations in New York as part of Disabled People’s Organisations Australia participation at the Conference of State Parties (COSP) this week. The event explored the intersection between disability and sexual orientation, gender identity and intersex status, the emerging response of the Committee on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities to this intersection, and the role of States Parties in ensuring that LGBTI people with disability
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The 11th Session of the Conference of States Parties (COSP) to the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD) will kick off overnight in New York and runs from 12th to 14th June 2018 at the United Nations Headquarters in New York. The annual conference brings together countries that have ratified the UN CRPD and representatives from DPOs and civil society organisations to discuss implementation of the CRPD. This year the Australian delegation is
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FPDN has been working with Social Ventures Australia to deliver the Aboriginal Disability Provider Grant (ADPG) Program in NSW. At least 50% of our people experience disability or a long-term health condition. It’s critical that Aboriginal community controlled organisations and disability service providers are equipped to provide culturally safe and disability accessible services to Aboriginal people as the NDIS rolls out across NSW. FPDN is committed to this goal. We’ve been working with Social Ventures
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Disabled People’s Organisations Australia (DPOA) is participating in the 11th Session of the Conference of States Parties (COSP) to the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD). FPDN is one of the four member organisations of DPOA. COSP runs from 12th to 14th June 2018 at the United Nations Headquarters in New York. The annual conference brings together countries that have ratified the UN CRPD and representatives from DPOs and civil society organisations to
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Building Aboriginal disability service sector and workforce development FPDN is hosting a conference in Tamworth, NSW in August. The purpose of the conference is to build the Aboriginal disability service sector and develop the workforce. It is vital that our people with disability have access to culturally appropriate services and supports in the areas they live in. Aboriginal people with disability experience disadvantage and discrimination at higher rates than the general population. FPDN is committed to
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VIDEO: Our CEO, Damian Griffis joined leaders from the Redfern Statement group and the disability sector to respond to Budget 2018, handed down last night. The press conference was held at Parliament House Canberra this morning. FPDN welcomes the certainty provided on funding of the NDIS however it is vital that pathways to the NDIS are created for First People with disability. We remain deeply concerned that this is not a focus and that some
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FPDN CEO Damian Griffis is the new Co-Chair of the national Change The Record campaign. He will be working alongside Antoinette Braybrook, CEO of Djirra (formerly the Aboriginal Family Violence Prevention and Legal Service Victoria) and Convenor of the National Family Violence Prevention Legal Services Forum. Damian said: “I’m looking forward to working with Antoinette, the Change the Record team and our partner organisations to halt the soaring imprisonment rates of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander
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  GETTING READY FOR THE NDIS: COMMUNITY YARNING CIRCLES IN NSW First Peoples Disability Network will be holding workshops across NSW for Aboriginal people with disability and their families to learn more about the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS).   Southern NSW | Aboriginal Disability Business with FPDN, IDEAS and Positive Partnerships First Peoples Disability Network Australia (FPDN) is holding Aboriginal disability business information sessions in partnership with IDEAS and Positive Partnerships. Come along and
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Our Deputy CEO, June Riemer visited Gunnedah this week as part of our involvement with Social Ventures Australia‘s Service Provider Grants for Aboriginal organisations to become NDIS service providers. June met with Wayne Griffiths, Centre Manager at Winanga-li Aboriginal Child and Family Centre, one of the grant recipients.    
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Our CEO Damian Griffis speaks out about advocacy funding cuts in NSW, the NDIS as well as detailing a new a national advisory group of Elders with disability. Listen here.  
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First Peoples Disability Network Mobcast FPDN has launched its first series of podcasts (mob casts) on iTunes this week. You can download and listen to them here. Full details of the FPDN Build Up project are here.  
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FPDN’s Research and Policy Director, Scott Avery visited Tennant Creek yesterday to report back to community on the research he is undertaking. Find out more about our community-driven research program here. FPDN hosted a community BBQ with the Men’s Group at Tennant Creek.
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Our CEO, Damian Griffis was a panellist on the Australian Human Rights Commission’s event to celebrate the 25th anniversary of the commencement of the operation of the Disability Discrimination Act 1992 (Cth) (DDA) occurred 1 March 2018. The Human Rights Commission has information about the DDA on its website here. From AHRC: The theme of the event was Equality before the Law, as outlined by Article 5 of the Convention on the Rights of Persons
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 Update provide by NBN : New trial to assist with the cost of updating unmonitored medical alarms when connecting to the nbn™ broadband access network Owners of unmonitored medical alarms (autodialling devices) are set to receive further assistance during their household’s migration to services over the nbn™ broadband access network, following enhancements to NBN Co’s support for medical alarm users. The company is planning to commence a new trial with participating providers to assist users of unmonitored
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The FPDN Annual Report 2016-17 is an interactive document that can be downloaded here. Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander readers please note: FPDN’s Annual Report 2016_17 contains images and names of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander persons who have passed and may cause sadness or distress. The audited Financial Accounts are available here.
News, Publications
The Disability Advocacy Alliance NSW joined the NSW Greens today at a rally in Redfern to urge the Government to reverse the funding cuts to disability advocacy. Melanie Marne, NSW Community Connector, FPDN spoke at the rally and said: ” Without us and other services like FPDN our  people with disability will be further marginalised and experience more disadvantage . Aboriginal people living with disability sit under the double disadvantage rule. Being born Aboriginal was considered
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Celebrate International Day of People with Disability with us – watch our new film, Horse Tales, about the wonderful Kelly’s Ranch inclusive riding program for kids in Tennant Creek, NT. It’s a great way to spend 4 mins of your day. If you’d like to support this program please email [email protected]
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INTERNATIONAL DAY OF PEOPLE WITH DISABLITY Launch of Aboriginal Our Way Planning Resource in Townsville First Peoples Disability Network recognised International Day of People with Disability with the launch of its new national planning resource for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people with disability – The Our Way Planning Book and Video. The resource will be used nationally and was launched at the NDIA offices in Townsville on Tuesday 5 December 2017 on the traditional
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