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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2018 Week 05 Hansard (Tuesday, 8 May 2018) . . Page.. 1579 ..

lead by example and make sure that the two new organisations contribute very strongly to building a positive culture so that health services can continue to be delivered to our community.

Disability services—grants

MS CHEYNE: My question is to the Minister for Disability, Children and Youth. How do the disability inclusion grants enable community organisations, volunteer-run groups and small businesses to better include and engage Canberrans with disability?

MS STEPHEN-SMITH: I thank Ms Cheyne for the question. The disability inclusion grants deliver on Labor’s 2016 election commitment to provide $200,000 over four years to promote the inclusion of people with a disability through removing barriers to social participation. Disability inclusion grants provide funding for community groups, organisations and small businesses to undertake initiatives that enable greater inclusion of people with disability.

People with disability still face hurdles to participation in their local community. This can often be due to a lack of awareness about inclusion, physical barriers or communication issues. At the same time it is important to recognise the ongoing desire of the broader Canberra community to be more inclusive. We know that groups and clubs would like to be more inclusive of people with disability but are not always able to do so due to accessibility issues with their facilities, a lack of resources to purchase accessible equipment or because they simply do not know where to start.

Applications are now open for the second round of disability inclusion grants. Organisations can apply for a grant of up to $20,000 for projects to improve access for people with disability to their activities or services. Projects may include, for example, installing automatic doors, developing a disability action plan, disability awareness training for staff or members, purchasing assistive technology or upgrades to make a bathroom more accessible.

These grants will help to broaden the inclusion of people with disability. They will open up opportunities in employment, recreation, sporting pursuits and greater participation in community groups. The grants round will close on 2 July. More information can be found on the Community Services Directorate website. I strongly encourage all members to share this information with their community.

MS CHEYNE: Minister, what are some examples of successful projects funded under the previous round of the disability inclusion grants?

MS STEPHEN-SMITH: I thank Ms Cheyne for her supplementary. The first round of grants was held in 2017 and saw more than 40 high-calibre grant proposals submitted. It was great to see the breadth of the proposals from Canberra organisations large and small. The number of applications demonstrated the clear commitment of the Canberra community to engage in inclusion as a concept and as a practice.

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