Almost 1 in 5 (4.3 million) Australian citizens and permanent residents are disabled (ABS 2015). Of this number, around 460 000 are under 65 and have a ‘permanent and significant’ impairment, making them eligible for the NDIS (NDIA 2018: 10). Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people are nearly twice as likely to be disabled as non-indigenous people (ABS 2015). Around 1 in 5 disabled people have a mental or behavioural impairment compared to 4 in 5 with a physical impairment (ABS 2015). Almost 2 in 3 disabled people require assistance with daily activities (ABS 2015). Disabled people are around 30 percent less likely to be employed than non-disabled people, and 1 in 12 disabled people reported discrimination or unfair treatment over 12 months (ABS 2015). While 37 percent of those employed are managers and professionals, 45 percent of disabled people are living near or below Australia’s poverty line (ABS 2015, PWC 2011: 3). Outside of the state, disabled people are represented independently, by their families, disability workers, and diverse government-funded Disabled People’s Organisations (DPO) (see DPOA 2019).
SOURCE: Tom Edwards. “A Disabling Ideology: Challenging the Neoliberal Co-optation of Independent Living Under the NDIS” JAPE, Winter 2019.
Produced by the librarians at the Brotherhood of St Laurence in Melbourne, Australia