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Update on the Disability Royal Commission

The Royal Commission into Violence, Abuse, Neglect and Exploitation of People with Disability (DRC) continues to have all its public events on hold due to COVID-19.


They still haven’t confirmed when these events will be rescheduled however, they have released three additional Issues Papers ‘Rights and Attitudes’, ‘Employment’ and ‘Restrictive Practices’.


In addition, the DRC has released a public statement regarding the death of Adelaide woman, Ann Marie Smith and a First Nations art piece depicting the Disability Royal Commission story – this art work is absolutely stunning, and can be found here, along with all other media documents.


If you have any queries, please contact your Coordinator or Chelsea Arnold on 8273 7100 (a return phone call will be arranged) or [email protected].



Disability Royal Commission Issues Papers In Focus – ‘Rights and Attitudes’


As referred to above, the Disability Royal Commission (DRC) has released a number of ‘Issues Papers’. The Commission is using Issues Papers to engage with the community (individuals and organisations), to obtain feedback on certain topics of interest.


Each Issues Paper provides a summary of the ‘issue’ and a series of questions, relating to the enquiry for the Commission. An individual or organisation wanting to respond to an Issues Paper doesn’t have to answer all, or even any of the questions, you can just provide information on the topic of the Issues Paper that will assist the Commission with their enquiry. There are deadlines for responding to Issues Papers; however, responses can be provided after this date, but the information provided won’t be able to be used in their initial analysis of information.


So far, the DRC has released 8 Issues Papers: Education and Learning, Group Homes, Health Care for People with Cognitive Disability, Criminal Justice System, Emergency Planning and Response, Rights and Attitudes, Employment and Restrictive Practices.


All Issues Papers can be found on the DRC website, click here


Most relevant to the work of Baptist Care SA, is the Rights and Attitudes Issue Paper, released on 28 April 2020, with a deadline of 31 July 2020.


In this Issues Paper, the DRC acknowledge that laws, policies, practices and supports are needed to reduce the overall risk to violence, abuse, neglect and exploitation of people with disability, and have identified that a lack of rights awareness among people, organisations and governments and negative attitudes can have a significant impact on this.


The Commission believe that attitudes shape laws, policies and practices that stigmatise and discriminate against people with disability. They are interested in learning about how aware people, organisations, and the broader community are aware of the rights of people with disability, as outlined in the Convention on the Rights of People with Disability.


The Commission also want to know how embedded these understandings are in recognising, promoting and safeguarding people with disability within organisations and the law in general.


If you, or someone you know, wants to respond to an Issues Paper, provided through the Australian Government. There are supports available, including free legal advisory services (National Legal Aid and the National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Legal Services), free emotional support services (Blue Knot Foundation) and free advocacy support services (National Disability Advocacy Program). Baptist Care SA is also available to support if you would like to make a submission. Please contact your Coordinator or Chelsea Arnold on 8273 7100 (a return phone call will be arranged) or [email protected].

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