Indigenous Peoples with Disabilities in Remote Communities Facing Adversity
First Nations People with Disabilities

(Australia) The Royal Commission this week heard about the struggles of First Nations people with disability living in remote communities. Approximately 66,000 First Nations people live with severe disability. About 38,500 are NDIS (National Disability Insurance Scheme) participants and 10 per cent of those live in remote and very remote communities.  

Twenty-eight witnesses, including 13 with lived experience, gave evidence about their lives in West Arnhem Land, Thursday Island, Fitzroy Crossing, Tennant Creek and Alice Springs. One of the themes that emerged was the difficulty of being a wheelchair user or needing a mobility device in a remote community.

Scott McNaughton, the NDIA’s general manager of national delivery, agreed that elements of the scheme were “complex.” “There is a need to make the scheme easy to understand and the need to make the scheme community led,” Mr McNaughton said. “Some of the infrastructure that has been put in place needs to be reviewed to make it more culturally appropriate.” More on this story here.