New NDIA stance on swallowing support leaves people in danger

Council for Intellectual Disability is alarmed that the National Disability Insurance Agency will not fund speech pathologists to prepare mealtime management plans for people with swallowing problems. By Jim Simpson, Senior Advocate, Council for Intellectual Disability.

End Deadly Disability Discrimination in our health services now!

Council for Intellectual Disability (CID) is seeking a commitment from the NSW Government to establish a statewide network of specialist intellectual disability health teams. Can you help us on this important campaign?

What is Mainstream and Me and why is it important?

Have you heard about our Mainstream and Me project? We asked two new Council for Intellectual Disability (CID) recruits Alex and Ella to explain what Mainstream and Me is, what it aims to do, and why it's important.

Game On! Peer group celebrates strengths of people on the Autism Spectrum

Good attention to detail and sharp memories can make people on the autism spectrum competitive opponents at the gaming table.

A message from CID’s new Chairperson Shu Hua Chan

Hello everyone, my name is Shu Hua Chan. I’m the new Chair elected at the Council for Intellectual Disability for 2018.

People with disability left in hot cars take a back seat

The risks of leaving children and pets in cars on hot days is widely known. By contrast, the issue of people with disability - or other vulnerable adults - being left in hot cars receives very little attention.

Council for Intellectual Disability CEO Tracy Wright

How can we make workplaces more inclusive to people with intellectual disability?

Alanna Julian works at Council for Intellectual Disability. In this interview, Alanna talks about her experience of the workplace challenges faced – and overcome – by people with intellectual disability. And she shares her ideas on how employers and staff can support people with intellectual disability at work.

Customers have rights!

Are you shopping for equipment or services to use in your NDIS plan? Did you know you have rights as a customer?

Successful Team Up peer network grants announced!

A wave of excitement rippled across NSW this month as the successful Team Up peer Network grant applicants received some good very news. An impressive collection of peer group projects received grants of between $1000 and $10,000 to spend on setting up, growing, or linking peer groups with communities.

On the Don’t Silence Us campaign trail

Fiona McKenzie reports from the front line of a campaign to stop funding cuts for disability advocacy.

Update on transfer of accommodation services to the NGO sector

The NSW Ombudsman will scrutinise transfer of accommodation for people with complex support needs.

Nothing about us without us

Meet Melanie Schlaeger, a workshop facilitator with Council for Intellectual Disability’s My Choice Matters project.

My Choice Matters Hits the Road

We love being on the road. Here, My Choice Matter's Brandon Bear reports on recent trips to spread the word at community events in Dubbo and Lismore. Is there an event in your town you would like to see us at?

Stronger teachers, stronger students

We’re creating classroom resources that will improve how teachers and our education system support young people with disability.

How I found a voice with My Choice Matters

My Choice Matters has made me understand more and made me think about my skills for applying to the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS). It has really helped me find my voice.

A guest blog by Hannen Abdullah

Get More Skills Workshops are changing…

We’re refreshing our My Choice Matters workshops to make sure they continue to meet the needs of people with disability. Whether you are someone who attended one of our previous sessions or completely new to our workshops, we will work with you to further your journey and get the most out of the session.

Who looks outside, dreams; who looks inside, awakes

Our facilitator Linda Mitchell wants to help people with disability turn their dreams into reality. To do this, she challenges people at her workshops to look inside themselves as well as seek support from others.

Reimagining mental health and the NDIS - new online resource

Does the NDIS cover mental health treatment? Will people’s psychologists be covered by the NDIS? What services are available for people with mental health conditions? James Condren interviews Kat Fardian of Mental Health Coordinating Council about a new online resource that helps people with mental health conditions better understand the NDIS.

Please join us in welcoming facilitator Cathy

Cathy Fiden has worked in disability support her whole career. Her path to Council for Intellectual Disability (CID) has been varied and challenging. But at CID she really feels she has found her ‘perfect fit’.

New resources to improve health outcomes for people with disability

Did you know that people with an intellectual disability have a life expectancy 26 years less than the general population? The health system does not always work well for people with disability, so we’re developing resources to become part of the solution.

From information and inclusion to the advocacy engine room

David Briggs recently made a leap from Council for Intellectual Disability’s (CID) Information and Inclusion team, to its advocacy team. His experiences and the motivation behind his move give great insights into what CID is all about.

Sydney Advocacy Group refuses to take no for an answer

The Sydney Advocacy Group made CID social media history this month, launching a viral advocacy campaign video that was viewed by more than 40,000 people. It was by far the biggest audience Council for Intellectual Disability has ever reached with a Facebook post.

How to set your goals

A goal by definition is the effort, the commitment and work towards the achievement of a desired outcome.

A guest blog by Ben Brown.

At the end of July we were delighted to host the graduation for a brand new group of leaders from our Become a Leader course, which is part of our My Choice Matters program.

Simeon John

Simeon John taps into people’s natural creativity to help them understand how to get the most out of the National Disability Insurance Scheme and create a vision for their life.

Residents of Ageing Disability and Home Care (ADHC) group homes will be left vulnerable to eviction at short notice under the one-sided contracts they are being asked to sign with their new provider organisations. 

Tracy Wright

Choice, voice, control, yoga and bushwalking: Council for Intellectual Disability Chair Michael Sullivan interviews Tracy Wright to find out what makes the organisation’s new CEO tick.

“I want to be part of the community, not just walk through it!”

Michael Sullivan, Chairperson, CID

All too often, mainstream services – those available to the general population, like health, education and legal services – are not accessible or responsive to the needs of people with intellectual disability.

We see much talk, but little action.

Easy Read PhD. It sounds like a contradiction in terms, but disability focussed academic Bronwyn Newman sees a real need for research on what is a life changing, and potentially lifesaving, communications tool.

by Annamarie Reyes, CID Community Engagement Officer

“Can you imagine being called "crippled" ever in your life?”

That’s the question George Ayoub posed as he began telling his story at the Does Disability Have a Language? bilingual barbeque forum held in Marrickville, Sydney.

Hosted by My Choice Matters and Council for Intellectual Disability (CID), the forum aimed to help bilingual workers understand disability better and conversely, for workers in the disability sector to understand culture and its impact on disability.

Note to the National Disability Insurance Agency: The way to reassure people with intellectual disability that your communications are going to get simpler, clearer and more accessible is not to send them a complex, convoluted letter.

We always had a feeling #TeamRS - Robert Strike and Rachel Spencer – would make an impression on the United Nations.

And they’re off! 

NSW CID said farewell to Robert Strike and his travelling companion Rachel Spencer today as they prepared to jet off to New York to attend high level talks at the United Nations. 

“Enough is enough! It is our time to be heard. It is our time for justice - now!” – Michael Sullivan, NSW CID Chairperson.

CID Director of Advocacy Aine Healy and Board Chairperson Michael Sullivan today met with Opposition Leader Bill Shorten to discuss the need for a Royal Commission into abuse of people with disability.

“As a woman with an intellectual disability, I can say that abuse from people who were supposed to be caring for me has had a very bad long term impact on my life.” – Heather Forsyth

Inclusion Australia and its member organisations, including New South Wales Council for Intellectual Disability, are calling for a Royal Commission into the abuse of people with disability.

“I feel like we are on a crest of a wave, and whatever we do in this period of time creates what this is going to be.”

For our My Choice Matters workshop facilitator Tammy Burnstock the introduction of the National Disability Insurance Scheme represented a huge opportunity for change for people with disabilities, and she knew early on that she wanted to be a part of that change.

It was a cold 4 degrees early Saturday morning in Albury. 

Myself, a Community Engagement Officer for NSW CID and the My Choice Matters (MCM) project along with Eban Pollard MCM Projects Officer decided to brave the walk, setting out while it was still dark.

We were about to witness the outcome of Jan Gouma’s “dream” project – people with disability joining a throng of passengers to ride big hot air balloons, to fly to Rutherglen some 50 kilometres away, something they probably never thought was a possibility.

Ben Felten is one inspiring guy! He recently smashed the Australian Speed Week record for fastest speed for a motorcycle ridden blindfolded. 


People living in Ageing, Disability and Home Care group homes across the state and their families are dismayed at losing the small amount of influence they were promised in determining their new service provider.

Congratulations are in order! NSW Council for Intellectual Disability Board Member Robert Strike has been selected to attend high level talks on issues affecting people with disability at the United Nations in New York in June.

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