Disability Rights and Services

Disabled people, as well as their families, carers and nominees, should be able to actively participate in policy, service planning and delivery.


The Australian Greens believe that

1. Disabled people have a universal and immutable right to agency, safety, bodily autonomy, privacy, education, employment, housing, social support, and healthcare. These rights are inherent in all disabled people and must be promoted and recognised in all interpersonal, community, and structural settings.

2. Disabled people have a right to participate in decision-making and policy creation in their communities. This right should be supported in all decision-making spaces and recognised as essential to successful policy creation and implementation. Where an issue overwhelmingly affects disabled people, they should be supported to lead the creation of all policy responses. 

3. First Nations people suffer a range of social, cultural, emotional, mental, and physical disabilities from the effects of intergenerational trauma which must be recognised by governments, decision makers and service providers.

4. All policy related to disabled people and the removal of the social, cultural, economic and environmental barriers experienced by disabled people should be guided by an understanding of a Social Model of Disability. The removal of these barriers is essential to upholding the human rights of disabled people, as articulated in the United Nations Convention on the Rights of People with Disabilities. 

5. All forms of violence, abuse, neglect and exploitation perpetrated against and experienced by disabled people must be eliminated. 

6. In order to ensure equity and drive attitudinal change to disability, governments have the responsibility to provide the necessary funding in all areas including education, health, housing, mobility, employment, transport, sport, cultural and social engagement. 

7. The development of Disability Pride is vital to create empowered and supportive disabled communities. 

8. Disabled people must have access to comprehensive and high-quality services and support to provide for their life goals and meet their needs regardless of their age, culture, language, income, geographical location or the nature of their disability. 

9. Disabled people should have individualised choice and control over services and supports. 

10. Government has a responsibility to demonstrate leadership by ensuring that all government policies and initiatives align with, and wherever possible exceed, our obligations as signatories to the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities. 

11. The lived experience of disabled people is not homogenous, and there is diversity within the disability communities which must be recognised. These intersectional identities and experiences should be respected, celebrated, and reflected in the creation of policies which affect them and services to support them. 

12. Services and supports for disabled people are a core government responsibility. Government has a responsibility to ensure that suitable services and supports are delivered in all areas. 

13. Disabled people face both disproportionate barriers to securing paid work and disproportionately high costs of living. Disabled people should receive an equitable level of financial support that accounts for these burdens. 

14. All disaster and emergency planning must be fully inclusive of disabled people, including targeted guidance, support and funding to meet the particular needs and requirements of disabled people with continuity of service provision during these periods. 

15. Access to language is a right of all people. This specifically includes access to Auslan, Plain English, and other languages in educational, employment, and healthcare settings, as well as across all media and government publications. 

16. Disabled people have the right to sexuality as part of exploring their physical, social and emotional needs for consensual intimacy and sexual expression. The desexualisation of disabled people is a key factor in instances of violence and abuse and is an attitudinal barrier that must be removed. 

17. Carers play an important part in supporting people with differing abilities and have a vital role in helping them to achieve a higher quality of life. Carers must be well supported in their caring role to ensure their health and wellbeing. 


The Australian Greens want:

1. Removal of all environmental, social, cultural, attitudinal, and communication barriers to the full and equal participation of disabled people in all aspects of life and community. 

2. All federal, state, and local governments must eliminate all forms of violence, abuse, neglect and exploitation experienced by disabled people, and establish comprehensive and accessible complaints and redress processes. 

3.To ensure the National Disability Insurance Scheme is fully funded, transparent, consultative, whole of life and accountable so that disabled people accessing the scheme have the services and supports they need.

4. No age limits to access the National Disability Insurance Scheme. 

5. Regular reviews of services for disabled people including extensive consultation with the disabled community and timely implementation of recommendations. 

6. The introduction of a Participant Service Guarantee that sets out standards the National Disability Insurance Agency must meet including clear expectations for how long processes will take to complete and full transparency in how the National Disability Insurance Agency makes their decisions. 

7. The creation of an independent appeals process with enforcement authority over the National Disability Insurance Agency. 

8. To ensure that all spaces, including digital spaces, are accessible and inclusive for disabled people. 

9. To increase the amount and security of funding to ensure the independence of disability advocacy organisations to expand their services and support for disabled people. 

10. Sustained funding and support for the disability sector to transition towards inclusive, individualised, and peer driven support and representation services. People need to be empowered to make an informed choice, with choice of service providers and/or tailored support options which are affordable to disabled people. Disabled people should be able to afford the tailored support services they require, with government support as needed. 

11. Universal access to legal advice, advocacy and supports for disabled people so they have free and equitable access to the legal system. 

12. First Nations specific services to employ a majority First Nations workforce.

13. Well funded programs and initiatives with the goal of highlighting and eliminating the discrimination experienced by disabled people and promoting respect and understanding. 

14. A guaranteed liveable income for disabled people and their carers without means testing, free from mutual obligations tests and that is commensurate with the additional costs of living, medical, transport, equipment, accommodation and support services. 

15. To strengthen the Disability Discrimination Act and enhance the powers of the Australian Human Rights Commission, including granting greater powers in discrimination complaints, and the ability to initiate complaints to enable systemic change and reduce the burden on complainants. 

16. Sufficient staffing for the NDIA and the NDIS Quality and Safeguards Commission which allow these organisations to do their work competently. 

17. To retain the full-time Disability Discrimination Commissioner position and increase their capacity and resourcing so that they can expand their work. 

18. Recognition and funding of specialised services for First Nations disabled people in every jurisdiction. 

19. Anti-racism training for all workers and services in the disability sector, with specialised First Nations trainers and educators to assess competency.

20. To implement all articles of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities by 2030 and ensure the operationalisation of these articles within our domestic policies across federal, state and territory governments. 

21. To implement nationally consistent universal design standards for access and utility. 

22. Adequate funding for high quality disability care that is appropriately tailored to meet age, sex, gender, sexuality and cultural needs, for people with very high or complex care needs, including First Nations peoples, people from culturally diverse backgrounds, LGBTQIA+ people, and people in remote, rural, and regional areas. 

23. Sufficient respite care services and facilities, in-home and emergency support, crisis accommodation and a range of accommodation options suitable to the needs of a diversity of people including First Nations peoples, culturally diverse and LGBTQIA+ people, and people in remote and rural areas. 

24. Accessible and affordable housing that enables flexible and appropriate options that allow disabled people to live in, and as a part of, the community, either alone or with whomever they choose. 

25. The provision of appropriate alternative accommodation for young people who seek to leave residential aged care facilities. 

26. The removal of all social, financial and physical barriers to accessing healthcare, including mental healthcare, for disabled people. 

27. The implementation of comprehensive training and oversight, including disability awareness, to ensure disabled people receive fully inclusive healthcare. 

28. Pathways to support disabled people, particularly disabled school leavers to transition into meaningful and equal employment, education and vocational programs, or other community-based activities. 

29. Guaranteed properly paid meaningful employment for any disabled person who wants to work. 

30. The modification of support services and programs to support the right of disabled people to sexuality and consensual intimacy and sexual expression. 

31. Pay equity and support for disabled people, as well as career advancement pathways which fairly recognise their skills. 

32. In line with the Australian Greens Education policy, to provide schools with all the necessary funding and resources needed to ensure disabled students to be educated in an inclusive setting alongside their peers in accordance with their rights under Article 24, General Comment No. 4 of the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities. 

33. To provide all teachers and administrative staff with access to the ongoing training and supports they need to implement inclusive education practices. The implementation and provision pathways of this training will be developed in close consultation with academic experts, inclusive education peak bodies, and teaching unions. 

34. The elimination of segregated education in all schools and educational facilities, and the implementation of system-wide inclusive education by no later than 2030. This must be supported by a comprehensive rights-based transition plan developed in consultation with the community. This will ensure that disabled students’ needs and rights will be met and protected in all stages of the transition to an inclusive education system that benefits all students. 

35. Disability support workers to have improved workplace conditions including increased wages, leave entitlements, access to training and career development, qualifications where necessary, and fair pricing for support services. 

34. A strong national model or interstate recognition of assistance animal identification and certification; public advocacy of assistance animals; and provisions against discrimination on the basis of having an assistance animal. 

35. Regulation to eliminate the use of restrictive practices including seclusion, chemical restraint, mechanical restraint, physical restraint, and environmental restraint in all settings, including in education, service provision, the justice system and the family home. 

36. Government to lead by example in disability employment including apprenticeship-style pathways for skill development.

37. Disabled people to receive adequate support for electoral participation as candidates and voters. 

38. Services for First Nations people which ideally must be provided by community-controlled organisations (ACCOs) in local, regional and national jurisdictions.

39. Ensure there are permanently funded First Nations identified positions in both mainstream and First Nations community-controlled disability service providers.

40. 100% accessible public housing. 

41. The elimination and total prohibition of forced or coerced sterilisation and the involuntary use of contraception. 

42. The removal of systemic and structural barriers which prevent disabled people from equal participation in the justice system. 

43. To ensure the accessibility of prisons and detention centres. 

44. Increase government support for culture, arts, festivals, media, and events, for both access and participation for disabled people and their communities. 

45. Any assessment of the barriers faced by disabled people and their support needs to be independent, collaborative, and involve participants, carers and suitably qualified professionals. 

(Disability Rights and Services Policy as amended by Special National Conference February 2021.)