Disability services in Australia are those provided by the government for the disabled members of the population. These facilities and programmes help those with disabilities participate in society and everyday life. They may be provided through technologies such as wheelchair access on public transport, or facilities to help visually impaired make their way around a city. Most disability services Australia are provided by funding from federal and state governments.
Disability services in Australia are used by over 4 million people, nearly one fifth of the whole population. This sits at 18% of the female population and just over 10% of the male population. As Australians age, their chance of developing disabilities grows, with 2 in 5 Australians claiming to be living with one over the age of 65 years old.
Disability services in Australia could be said to be failing the population. Those living with disabilities between the ages of 15 and 64 have a lower participation rate and higher unemployment than those living without one, while only 34% of those with disabilities in the workforce are managers. A worrying statistic for those in power is one that says those living with disabilities between the ages of 15 and 24 are ten times more likely to be discriminated against than those over the age of 65, with the source being the employer in half of these instances.
Below we’ll take a look at the different offerings available to this with disabilities:
Disability services in Australia are numerous for those that are hearing impaired. Over time, captioning has made its way into the media, whereby a person signing would appear on television. Deaf people are also provided with interpreters for their needs in the workplace, in school or to access leisure pursuits. Funding is regularly provided by the government to improve these services in the hope that the hearing impaired can continue to take part in development of the economic and social side of the country. It is a sector that the disability services in Australia should focus on as it’s predicted that by 2050, 1 in 4 Australians will suffer from hearing loss.
Disability services in Australia are also provided for those who are visually impaired. Trained guide dogs are now allowed into most buildings as well as on public transport where pets would not usually be permitted. Braille is also common in public places for example on traffic lights as well as on buttons in elevators. Funding is provided to the visually impaired, so they too can take part in the workforce and integrate socially in the community.
There are many disability services in Australia for those in need of them. The government and many other agencies regularly run initiatives to create a more inclusive society in which everyone feels like they can take part. The Australian Network on Disability is one such agency that aims to help those with disabilities feel welcomed in the workforce. They offer help and support to those aiming to get into the workforce, those looking to stay in the workforce and those who need advice on future job prospects. Mentoring programmes are also offered which allow participants to be matched with an experienced professional who can help guide them through the work environment helping them and giving them advice along the way.
Access to these facilities and programmes provides a much-needed service for those who are sometimes forgotten members of our society. They offer a way for those living with disabilities to interact in the community and the workplace and can give them a sense of confidence which they may have otherwise been lacking.