International Day of People with Disability


I move to amend the motion as follows:

After paragraph (b), insert:

(c) recognises the state's first Disability Inclusion Plan, Inclusive SA, as an important step in improving access and inclusion for people with disability.

This year, the theme for the 2019 International Day of People with Disability is 'The future is accessible', and nothing is more fitting to support that theme than the Marshall Liberal government's commitment to working toward an inclusive and accessible future for all South Australians living with a disability.

We are very proud, as a government, that this work has been undertaken. In fact part of the government's first 100 days in office was the commitment to advance the Disability Inclusion Bill 2018, which in fact became the first piece of legislation passed in parliament, with the act commencing 1 July 2018 under the new government. This signals our government's commitment, and we applaud the Premier for progressing this.

The legal framework supported the development of South Australia's first state disability inclusion plan, Inclusive SA, which was gazetted on 31 October this year. It is a commitment we made, provided for under the legislation, and it has been delivered. It guides and coordinates the consistent approach to disability inclusion by bringing state government agencies and local councils together to reduce the barriers faced by people living with disability. All disability access and inclusion plans will be required to outline strategies that improve outcomes for people with disability in areas such as access to built environments, information, communication, transport services, programs and employment. I reiterate 'transport', given the previous contribution.

Whilst Inclusive SA sets the focus for the next four years, it is a living document that will respond to shifting priorities and new information. The government will revise the plan in two years to reflect social, political and environmental changes and to accommodate any recommendations that are approved as made by the Royal Commission into Violence, Abuse, Neglect and Exploitation of People with Disability.

Can I say that the government is proud to recognise that employing people with a disability brings a range of skills, abilities and qualifications to the workplace and reflects the greater community. People living with a disability make strong connections with customers, boost team morale and enhance business image. In light of the commitment to giving opportunities in employment, the government includes several actions in the state disability inclusion plan.

These relate to item 12, which is to develop a communications strategy to promote BoardingCall, the South Australian government's recruitment register for boards and committees, to ensure it is promoted to people living with a disability; item 37, which is to support and promote the implementation of the Office of the Commissioner of Public Sector Employment; item 38, which is to increase employment opportunities across all levels in the South Australian public sector through targeting of job opportunities for people living with a disability under section 65 of the Public Sector Act; and item 39, which is to develop data measures to track the percentage of people living with a disability employed and retained in state authorities.

Many members will remember the life of Quentin Kenihan. His passing brought with it an announcement by the government of $1 million for the City of Adelaide to build an inclusive park commemorating his legacy as a disability advocate, actor and filmmaker and someone who really warmed the hearts of many South Australians. The regional play space, which has been integrated into Rymill Park, replacing the existing play space, will be of course most welcome, in addition to other inclusive playgrounds. Guidelines will be published on these later in the year.

The website accessibility across government initiative, which was established on Global Accessibility Awareness Day on 16 May this year, is in essence an online accessibility policy with a supporting online accessibility toolkit, which has been worked on in consultation with Vision Australia, the Royal Society for the Blind and people with lived experience with a disability and other key stakeholders. The announcement of the role of the Disability Advocate and the appointment this year of David Caudrey, who commenced as the Disability Advocate in January, have been important initiatives. We commend him already for the work that he is doing in this area.

Notwithstanding the member's previous contribution, South Australia committed $749 million to NDIS to support the delivery of quality services for South Australians, which has reached full scheme transition in June this year. There is also the National Disability Strategy, on which South Australia, along with other states and territories, is working with the national team to ensure that we develop the National Disability Strategy 2010-20.

Finally, there is the federal royal commission. As Attorney-General, I have responsibility in respect of the state's role in royal commissions. The state government has committed $5.5 million in our 2019-20 budget, dedicated specifically to a central response unit to address and coordinate the South Australian government's response to the commonwealth Royal Commission into Violence, Abuse, Neglect and Exploitation of People with Disability. This is in addition to a commitment made earlier this year to provide $3.2 million to set up a similar response unit in relation to the aged-care quality and safety unit that operates.

Our government is vitally committed to the advancement of those who are living in South Australia with a disability. As demonstrated by the work that has been undertaken in the first 18 months of this government, we are here to make a real life-changing difference to those in South Australia.

From my own perspective, can I say that every time I look at an announcement or a proposal or a strategy for a person with a disability, I think of my own cousin who was born with a lack of oxygen. He has never walked or talked. He is now a man in his 50s. He has been a joy to our family. He is now living semi-independently from his parents. His father recently passed away. Together with his mother, my aunt, now in mature years, they spent a lifetime in dedication to his care. He is now making other people's lives happy: those with whom he lives and others on Kangaroo Island. I always look at disability initiatives within his prism and say, 'How would this affect Phillip?' For me, this is Phillip's Law.