Australians Fail Social Inclusion Test for People With Disability
21 February 2013 at 10:33 am
New research reveals that Australians living with a disability are still feeling excluded from society, with community attitude still one of the biggest problems they face.
Research conducted by disability service provider Scope in partnership with Deakin University found that 94% of the respondents to the ‘Scope 1 in 4 Poll’ said they do not have enough meaningful participation in their community.
As well 39% of respondents said that if community attitudes towards disability changed, it would make a big difference to their lives.
Almost 90% of people with a disability who completed the survey said their needs were not met for social contact with others, going to cafes, bars or pubs, being respected by other people and feeling valued.
According to Chief Executive Officer of Scope, Jennifer Fitzgerald, the research suggests that the lives of people with a disability would improve if the community was more inclusive.
“People with a disability are among the most marginalised of our population,” Fitzgerald said.
“And this social exclusion is a breach of their basic human rights as equal citizens.
“It is as simple as Seeing the Person, Not the Disability. Australia needs to see past someone’s wheelchair, communication difficulty or physical differences and focus on the individual. Each and every Australian has a role to play in creating an inclusive community for people with a disability.
“One in four Australians is directly touched by disability, either having a disability themselves or caring for someone with a disability.
“Disability knows no boundaries.”
Here’s a snapshot of the survey findings:
- 94% of surveyed respondents do not have their need for meaningful participation in their community met.
- 90% of respondents do not have their need for access to services met.
- 90% do not have their need to feel valued and to belong met.
- 91% of surveyed respondents do not have their need for social contact and support met.
- The single biggest improvement required to increase social inclusion of people with a disability is the attitudes of others in their community (39%). Other improvements include health (28%), physical access (26%), money (25%) and transport (21%).
The Scope 1 in 4 Poll was a national online survey that was completed by 761 Australians with a disability.
Respondents rated how well their social inclusion needs were met, in relation to social contact and support, community participation, feeling valued and belonging, and service inclusion.
Scope 1 in 4 Poll Information sheet – Social Inclusion (PDF 151 KB)