By Juliano Oliveira
Disability advocacy organisations acting in Queensland have until 2 August 2021 to apply for a $5.9 million state grants program.
Selected groups will have to spend the grants on support services for the community from 1 January 2022 to 30 June 2023.
Minister for Seniors and Disability Services and Minister for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Partnerships Craig Crawford praised the next round of funds by stating that people with disabilities will continue to have a platform to voice their concerns.
“Every day more Queenslanders with a disability, their family members and carers are reaching out to advocacy services to help them to speak out, defend their rights and interests and overcome barriers,” Mr Crawford said.
In March, Queensland Government had announced non-recurrent funding of $8.1 million to aid disability advocacy services for the next two years.
The state fully adopted the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS), a federal fund aimed at remedying costs with disability.
Although celebrated by entities in the sector, the announcement was seen as fragile by the state’s Public Advocate, Mary Burgess.
“The funding the government has announced today is $0.55M per year less than current funding for disability advocacy services, which are already overwhelmed by demand. It’s unclear why the funding has been reduced,” Ms Burgess said.
“While this is a positive development, there remains a level of uncertainty about the amount of funding being provided, the length of the funding, and which services will qualify for it.”
For more information about the Disability Advocacy grants program or to apply, please visit www.communities.qld.gov.au/funding.