Dealing with disabilities

The NSW Department of Ageing, Disability and Home Care (DADHC) has launched new guidelines to help government agencies devise better strategies for people with a disability.

DADHC deputy director-general Carolyn Burlew said there were almost 500,000 people in NSW with a moderate or severe disability which affected their ability to move, communicate and care for themselves.

“The number of people in this situation will increase as Australia’s population ages.

“The Australian Institute of Health and Welfare forecasts an 11.6 per cent rise in the number of people over 65 with a severe disability aged in the period 2006 to 2010 and a nine per cent increase in the 45 to 64 years age group,” Ms Burlew said.

The guidelines detail requirements for agencies’ disability action plans as well as examples of good practice for developing planns such as collaboration with other organisations.

She said the disability policy assisted the government sector in providing services, facilities and jobs that were equally accessible to people with disabilities.

“Disability action plans ensure people with a disability are considered in all areas of an agency’s operations, from recruitment to service delivery,” she said.

DADHC will compile an annual whole-of-government progress report for the Minister for Disability Services outlining what had been achieved in implementing the plans.

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