Last night, d4d held its first Board Meeting for the year. Our various sub-committees, which have been very active over the last six to seven weeks reported to the Board. We have met on a regular basis to begin realising our goals for 2011. The focus will be to further strengthen the party by increasing our membership base and raising funds through our long list of fundraising strategies and events. Your precious support is valuable and there will be more to come during the year about these activities.
Our primary focus is to support our MLC Kelly Vincent in the Parliament Office. This will be achieved by developing numerous policies around Kelly so that the d4d brand becomes stronger and stronger. Kelly, as the face of d4d, continues to represent our party in the media and the public with consistent flair and professionalism. The d4d Policy Development Sub-Committee has become very active as we strive to send Discussion Papers out to our members for comment on various policies. The Sub-Committee has considered our issue of being transparent through this process and so we’ve held strong debate over the proper protocol. We aim to develop policies immediately on supported accommodation and unmet need and as we proceed forward, the Sub-Committee will streamline the processes involved and begin forming other policies on education, employment and transport and so on. As I’ve said these Discussion Papers will be circulated around for input from our d4d members, so please join as member of d4d and have the opportunity to direct these evolving policies.
As always our message of human rights and dignity through choice will form the heart of our policies. People with Disabilities and the Carers within our communities are tired of the “welfare based” funding models offered to the Disability sector. It is time that the State Government and the Social Inclusion Board acknowledge that it is the right of people affected by disability to have the same opportunities as others.
Of course the hot topic at present is the recent release of the NDIS Report by the Productivity Commission. The feeling is buoyant in the Disability Community. It is an exciting time! After recent discussions with John Della Bosca, the NDIS Rally originally scheduled for March 23rd will be rescheduled at a later date, closer to the release of the Final Report and will be rebranded “Every Australian Counts”. The NDIS political campaign will support the new rally with its resources. In the meantime, I encourage everyone to attend community group meetings to further promote this scheme. Take time to speak to the unconverted, spread the word. Aim to tell 5 of your friends outside of the Disability Sector about the strong economic and social benefits of the NDIS. And it is important that all disability advocates and supporters work closely with NDIS to give a powerful and united voice under the “Every Australian Counts” theme.
We look forward to the ongoing support during 2011. It will be an exciting year, transformation is real and nearby!