Outcome 2: Inclusive communities

What success looks like

“I feel welcome, included and part of my community.”

“I participate, contribute and make choices about how I lead my life.”

– Consultation participants

Why this is important

Community attitudes have a big impact on the lives of people with disability.

Negative attitudes can impact the way people find meaningful employment, learn at school and build personal relationships.

Discrimination and low expectations cause people to feel bad about themselves and can damage mental health and wellbeing.11

In 2018, at least 1,600 people with disability in the Northern Territory (NT) reported experiencing discrimination.

These negative attitudes also often intersect with other negative attitudes, for example, around age, gender or race, resulting in ‘double disadvantage’.12

Positive community attitudes create an inclusive and safe society where people with disability feel welcomed to equally participate in the community.

Changing community attitudes is complicated and will take time.13

School is where many children are exposed naturally to (other) people with disability and develop attitudes they can carry through life.

People with disability say that increased awareness and visibility of the needs and lives of people with disability will play a big role in improving community attitudes.

It takes more than just positive attitudes to create a truly inclusive community.

Positive actions also need to be taken to make sure people are included.

Sports clubs, tourism facilities, arts and cultural institutions, entertainment venues and recreation organisations all have a role to play to change the way they operate to ensure anyone can participate.

There is also an important role for culturally appropriate advocacy and disability services which recognise the cultural identity of Aboriginal people with disability, given the important role they play in providing holistic and culturally safe supports to Aboriginal people with disability.14

Our priorities and the action plan

Each outcome has a set of priorities for the life of the strategy.

Under each priority is an action plan.

Read more about the action plan.

Social attitudes will welcome and include people with disability of all ages in community life and people with disability can access social, recreation, sporting, arts, cultural events and other activities with ease.

2.1.1 Audit of place base, play equipment and sports clubs

Develop a Playground and Play Space Strategy to help with future planning and development of playgrounds, play and active recreation spaces in Palmerston ensuring play spaces are accessible and inclusive for all, and audit the City of Palmerston’s place base and play equipment to ensure that it is inclusive and accessible.

Lead: City of Palmerston

Timing: From 2022

Review of the upgrade to Jingili Water Gardens, inclusive, all abilities playground.

Lead: City of Darwin

Timing: 2022

Support clubs to:

  • engage a local disability service provider or community group to conduct an access audit
  • include physical access improvements into the organisation’s asset management plan.

Lead: Department of Territory Families, Housing and Communities

Timing: From 2022

2.1.2 Identify barriers and solutions to participate in community life

Conduct a volunteer management survey to identify what the barriers are for people with disability to participate as a volunteer and share results with the Department of Territory Families, Housing and Communities.

Lead: Volunteering NT

Timing: From 2022

Develop a document which supports City of Palmerston to develop strategies and actions to achieve equity of access and inclusion within Palmerston.

Lead: City of Palmerston

Timing: From 2022

Conduct a Territory-wide survey to identify barriers and solutions for people with disability to participate in each area of community life.

Lead: Department of Territory Families, Housing and Communities

Timing: From 2022

2.1.3 Promote access and inclusion advisory committee

The DiversAbility Collective will continue to educate and improve community awareness of the needs and rights of people with disability and those with access and inclusion matters, through positive and proactive media, social marketing, community events, festivals, forums and other initiatives.

Lead: City of Darwin

Timing: Ongoing

2.1.4 Increase access to events that require a support person

Promote the NT Companion Card to increase card holder and affiliation participation, influence attitudes, raise awareness and understanding of the required accommodation for people with disability to attend community activities or events.

Lead: Integrated disAbility Action Inc.

Timing: Ongoing

2.1.5 Increase access and inclusion across arts and culture programs

Review the Arts and Culture Grants Program and implement findings to increase access and inclusion across all grant program opportunities.

Lead: Department of Territory Families, Housing and Communities

Timing: By 2023

Through Arts NT, continue to support Arts Access Australia’s NT membership bodies and prepare NT plans in line with the National Arts and Disability Associated Plan being developed.

Lead: Department of Territory Families, Housing and Communities

Timing: Ongoing

2.1.6 Increase access and inclusion across sports programs

Ensure sport and active recreation funded participation and development programs cater for all abilities.

This includes, for example:

  • working with sports and disability service groups to provide coaching and officiating opportunities for people with a disability
  • offering transport solutions to get to and from training venues.

Lead: Department of Territory Families, Housing and Communities

Timing: From July 2022

Work with disability service groups (including the Office for Disability, Disability Sports Australia / NT, Total Recreation, Clubhouse Territory, etc.) and peak sporting bodies to develop and deliver relevant and necessary community sport education programs across the Territory.

Lead: Department of Territory Families, Housing and Communities

Timing: From July 2022

Review and update grant programs to consider funding opportunities to improve sport and active recreation opportunities and outcomes for people with disability.

Lead: Department of Territory Families, Housing and Communities

Timing: From July 2022

Implement Sport Australia’s 7 Pillars of Inclusion to help sports, clubs, associations and organisations to identify the strengths and weaknesses with regards to the inclusion of individuals and communities.

Lead: Department of Territory Families, Housing and Communities

Timing: From July 2023

2.1.7 Investigate demand for a borrowing scheme for specialist equipment

Investigate the need for, and management of, a sport and active recreation equipment library / libraries that includes access for people with a disability to borrow equipment that is:

  • too expensive or
  • not used frequently enough to purchase themselves (e.g. beach wheelchairs).

Lead: Department of Territory Families, Housing and Communities

Timing: From July 2023

Sometimes people with disability miss out on services because those providing them don’t understand how to respond to needs.

Supporting organisations to understand how to adapt services to the varied need of people with disability will improve access to services.

2.2.1 Provide access to resources that will help community services be confident and inclusive

Develop and connect community services to useful resources to help them be disability confident and inclusive.

Lead: Department of Territory Families, Housing and Communities

Timing: 2023

Community attitudes will shift over time as disability is de-mystified and normalised.

Visibility of people with disability in positions of leadership, achievement and participation is an important contributor.

Schools will play an important role in forming inclusive attitudes.

2.3.1 Create an information hub where the public can access information and resources

Create an information hub (website) which connects the public to useful resources to learn more about the diverse needs, rights and ways to support people with disability.

Resources will be provided in a range of formats and languages.

Lead: Department of Territory Families, Housing and Communities

Timing: 2023

2.3.2 Raise awareness about people with disability across the Territory

Promote events such as ‘Say hi to the Dry’, All Abilities Expo, Carnival of Fun and supporting the celebration of International Day of People with Disability and develop a comprehensive plan to raise awareness about people with disability so that communities are more inclusive.

Lead: Department of Territory Families, Housing and Communities

Timing: Ongoing

2.3.3 Promote opportunities for people with disability to be in leadership roles

Promote the Youth Round Table as an opportunity for young people with disability to engage with decision makers and develop their leadership skills.

Lead: Department of Territory Families, Housing and Communities

Timing: 2022

Promote opportunities for people with disability to be on government boards and committees through disability networks and develop a quota for government.

Lead: Department of Chief Minister and Cabinet

Timing: By 2023

2.3.4 Support Darwin to be an inclusive city

Support Darwin to be an inclusive capital city through the DiversAbility Collective by:

  • educating
  • increasing visibility and active participation of people of all abilities within the community
  • and increasing the impact of an inclusive agenda on the broader Darwin community.

Lead: City of Darwin

Timing: Ongoing

2.3.5 Increase support under the MacCare program

Support community members with disability to live on their country and have access to sustainable, community-led, culturally appropriate MacCare program.

This may include domestic care, personal care, transport and/or meals.

Lead: MacDonnell Regional Council

Timing: Ongoing

Carers will have the tools, resources, and assistance they need to help them in supporting people with disability.

2.4.1 Support carers with information and resources

Establish information, networks and resources to support people with disability, carers or guardians in providing care and navigating services.

Lead: Department of Territory Families, Housing and Communities

Timing: By 2025

2.4.2 Support private guardians

Develop and provide educational material to support private guardians, including newsletters and information sessions.

Lead: Office of the Public Guardian

Timing: Ongoing

2.4.3 Review Kinship and Foster Carers’ handbook

Review the handbook to promote person with disability carers’ knowledge around NDIS and promote access to the NDIS.

Lead: Department of Territory Families, Housing and Communities

Timing: 2023

“I think there should be more services for kids who are school aged to socialise, undertake activities and practice their play skills in a supported environment.”

“There needs to be more support for sports clubs to become inclusive.”

“Talk in language.”

– Consultation participants

Read outcome 3.

References

11 Royal Commission into Violence, Abuse, Neglect and Exploitation of People with Disability, Issues Paper: Rights and Attitudes, page 3 (2020)

12 Royal Commission into Violence, Abuse, Neglect and Exploitation of People with Disability, Interim Report, page 369 (October 2020)

13 Royal Commission into Violence, Abuse, Neglect and Exploitation of People with Disability, Interim Report, page 368 (October 2020)

14 Royal Commission into Violence, Abuse, Neglect and Exploitation of People with Disability, Issues Paper: Rights and Attitudes, page 10-11 (2020)


Last updated: 29 September 2022

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