A Call for Action – State Funded Advocacy at Risk

#AdvocacyMatters Campaign       

The future of advocacy is at risk. The Queensland Government’s deal with the Commonwealth Government to transition to the NDIS included the state handing over its disability budget to the Commonwealth Government from July 2019. There is no commitment from the Queensland Government to continue to fund independent advocacy after this date.

For the organisation this means it would lose 1/3 of its individual advocacy funding, which is one advocates position. This would significantly impact on how SUFY operates and would reduce the number of people with a disability who would be able to access our independent individual advocacy service.

SUFY is not the only advocacy organisation that will be affected. The majority of advocacy organisations around Queensland will lose part or all of their funding. With no commitment from the state government to continue funding advocacy after June 2019 those advocacy services who receive all their funding from the state government will close.

This will deny an important source of funding for some of the most vulnerable people in our state. Some who will not be eligible for support under the NDIS and who will require well resourced, strong and vigorous advocacy to ensure access to mainstream services and that their human rights are protected and defended.

This is not solely a Queensland issue. The majority of the states throughout Australia are planning to cease state funded advocacy once the NDIS is fully rolled out in their state.

All levels of government have a responsibility to support advocacy for people with disabilities to ensure they can exercise their rights and freedoms. State governments are responsible for essential services such as health, housing, education, justice and transport for all of their citizens. Too often people with disabilities experience or are vulnerable to barriers and discrimination when trying to access these services and require advocacy support.

#AdvocacyMatters is a statewide campaign to maintain the level of independent advocacy available to people with disability throughout Queensland. To raise awareness and to call people to action.

So what can you do

Send a letter of support to

Minister for Disability Services Ms Coralee O’Rourke

Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk

Your Local Member

 

We appreciate you sending these generic letters but we do know from experience the personal letters with personal stories have a much bigger impact so if you can send a personal letter to Minister O’Rourke or the Premier or your Local Member or all 3 and tell them why the future of advocacy matters to you, please do. If you need a hand writing this letter contact us at SUFY and we can give you a hand.

Show your support of the advocacy matters campaign by getting your photo taken with the #AdvocacyMatters sign and send it to SUFY via Facebook or by email.

Start following SUFY’s Facebook Page to keep up to date on what is happening with campaign or our Instagram Account  where all the #AdvocacyMatters photos will be.

The future of independent advocacy is uncertain and we are calling upon you all to get behind SUFY and other disability advocacy organisations.