WhatsUp in Disability July/August 2020 Magazine

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Disability Information Services by People with Disability Toowoomba and Southern Queensland

Volume 4, Issue 95

Subscription $20 PA

Proudly supported and printed by ToowoombaWhatsUp Region in Disability

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Highlights July /August 2020

03 06 10 17 21 28

Michael Burge Recognised

Have your say

NDIS Updates

COVID-19 Updates

Akadia is on the move

My Community

Cover Page Michael Burge OAM in front of the steps at Parliament House Canberra

Steven Paull JP (Qual) President Page 2

Michael Burge Recognised

By Steven Paull

I first met Michael (Mick) Burge in 2006 when we both attended a two day training course at Baillie Henderson. We shared a rather bizarre sense of humour and became good friends. My good friend and mental health advocate was previously awarded an OAM in 2014, and has now been recognised a second time for his service to community mental health, advocacy and education. In the Queen’s Birthday Awards. "I couldn't believe it at first, it's an incredible honour and very, very humbling," Mick said. "I see this as recognition for what volunteers do." Michael said he became interested in volunteering from a young age.

status, they volunteer because it's the right thing to do." Michael, who has been involved in many mental health advocacy groups over the years, said his appointment to the World Federation for Mental Health board in 2017 was a highlight. He has since been made vice president for Program Development in the Oceania region.

"I have heard that things are better now than when I was serving but I have also heard that stigma and discrimination towards people who open up about their mental health problems is still occurring," he said. "I want to encourage people with mental health issues to seek help and not suffer in silence."

"I grew up in a low-socio-economic area with my grandmother - that's where it all started," he said. "She was on the pension and we couldn't afford to buy clothes and food a lot. "There were volunteers that would come around with a food parcel once a month, and I don't think they'll ever know the difference they made - it felt like Christmas when they came." He later joined the military. "I have to thank the military for inspiring me to help other people too - because it was there I saw many people suffering from anxiety, depression and posttraumatic stress disorder," he said. "We all had to hide it, because the stigma and discrimination was terrible." His interest in mental health advocacy grew at the end of his military service as he started volunteering at the RSL and veteran affairs. "I wanted to help these people, I said this is what I want to do when I get out of the military," he said. "I saw a job advertised for a consumer advocate for the Toowoomba Mental Health Services and I was out of there - I have been doing it ever since. "I love working with volunteers as they don't do it for the money or to boost their

Mick featured on the cover of our November/ December 2018 edition with a feature on the Mental Health Week Breaking Free Concert which he has organised for the last 18 years.

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“More than ever Base Services needs your help to provide vital support to people doing it tough in our community.” According to Nat Spary, Coordinator of BASE Services. Over recent months BASE Services has worked hard to keep their doors open to ensure people experiencing homelessness or negatively impacted by COVID-19, have access to food, hygiene items and other essential resources and facilities. As many services stop operating, BASE Services has tried to fill in these gaps by extending our operating hours, changing to a take away and delivery service to the most vulnerable, supporting homeless people to access shower and laundry facilities and supporting people to obtain identification and phones in order to access housing, Centrelink payments and stay connected with support services.

"There is a well-known saying in the community industry that most people are only three payments away from homelessness. We are seeing the stark reality of this every day at the Basement, as so many people experience job lose or a significant reduction in work hours, making it hard to pay for everyday expenses like food and rent. “ “We are seeing more people than ever ask for help, many of whom never thought they would be in this situation and are at extreme risk of homelessness, some of them are ineligible for job seeker, job keeper and barely surviving because of the early release of their super and the easing of rent / mortgage payments due to the current health crisis.” “The BASE is sadly gearing up for homelessness to rapidly increase in September when many of these initiatives and the no evictions during COVID-19 eases.” According to Base Services Coordinator Nat Spary “the only reason the Basement Soup Page 4

Kitchen continues to operate is because of the generous support of the Toowoomba community, which continues to amaze us especially in these challenging times! As many local businesses were closing their doors, we were overwhelmed with their generosity, donating food products to use in the soup kitchen, which went a long way to helping those in need.” Now again the business community is stepping up with the Toowoomba Chamber of Commerce (pictured above Deb Robinson and Todd Rohl) being one of the first to sign up for Homeless for a Night on August the 3rd, 2020. This annual fundraising event funding the Basement Soup Kitchen for the year, according to Nat “without this fundraiser we would have to close our doors” To help ensure that the Basement can continue to operate register for the Homeless for a Night Sleepout, please visit www.homelessforaweek.com.au There is a minimum requirement for each participant to raise $200 to cover the cost of a backpack bed for the homeless. It is hoped that you will donate this to be redistributed after the event to someone experiencing homelessness and for breakfast the following day.

Every Australian Counts Liz and John Get a Gong Amongst all the sports stars and former Prime Ministers who got a gong for the Queen’s Birthday Awards there were a couple of names that you might have missed…

and has been the President of Physical Disability Australia (PDA) since 2012 and Chairperson of the Australian Federation of Disability Organisations (AFDO) since 2017. Liz has quietly and with a minimum of fuss spent her life advocating for those who have a limited or no voice and to ensure they have the same rights and freedoms as all Australians. Liz was awarded the Member of the Order of Australia (AM) Medal. John Della Bosca was the Campaign Director for Every Australian Counts for seven years from 2010 – 2017.

The wonderful Liz Reid got the nod for her service to people with disability, to youth and to social inclusion. Liz is the Executive Officer of YouthWorX NT

Every Australian Counts is the original grassroots campaign responsible for bringing the dream of the NDIS to life. They fought to get the scheme started and they are continuing the fight to get it working the way it was intended. www.everyaustraliancounts.com.au/

John was awarded the Member of the Order of Australia medal for his significant service to public health, particularly in the disability and drug support sectors, and to the Parliament of New South Wales. John joined Every Australian Counts when the NDIS was nothing but a dream. He helped to create a grassroots movement that turned that dream into a reality for hundreds of thousands of Australians. We know that there are a number of unsung heroes from across the Australian community who also got the nod yesterday for championing inclusion and the rights of people with disability. We congratulate Liz, John and all the other worthy recipients. WhatsUp in Disability

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WhatsUp Inquiry into the NDIS market in Queensland

The Queensland Government has asked the Commission to conduct an inquiry into the NDIS market in Queensland. The Commission’s Issues paper for this inquiry is now available. The paper covers:

• the scope of the inquiry • trends and issues during the transition of

Have your say First Nations People with Disability The Royal Commission wants to hear from you. The latest issues paper is seeking the experiences of First Nations people with disability. The Royal Commission is interested in examples of laws, policies and practices in different settings that are working well or not working. This can be in areas such as education, healthcare, workplaces, the justice system, home, online communities, and families. The issues paper is available in Easy Read, PDF and DOCX on the Royal Commission website where they also have an Auslan summary. Responses are preferred by 11th September 2020, although responses will also be accepted after that date. There is information about responding to the issues paper in the issues paper itself and on the Royal Commission Website. Responses can be in any language, including First Nations languages.

• key matters on which the Commission is

https://disability.royalcommission.gov.au/ publications/first-nations-people-disabilityissues-paper

• how to make a submission

Disability Information Helpline

The Commission has also published two complementary short form issues papers for individuals participating in the Scheme and service providers.

The Disability Information Helpline continues to be active to provide information and referrals for people with disability who need help because of COVID-19, as well as for families, carers, support workers and services.

the NDIS market in Queensland seeking information

Have your say It is important that they hear from NDIS participants and their advocates, service providers, industry peak bodies, experts and government agencies as they undertake this inquiry and develop recommendations. You are invited to make a submission on matters raised in the issues paper, the short form issues papers, or any other matters relevant to the terms of reference. Submissions are due by 11th August 2020. They will also provide other opportunities for consultation. Register to receive updates on opportunities for consultation, release of reports and other inquiry information. Following consultation, a draft report will be published in November 2020. Page 6

The Helpline, 1800 643 787, is available Monday to Friday 8:00am - 8:00pm (AEST) and Saturday and Sunday 9:00am - 7:00pm (ARST), excluding national public holidays.

Did you know... • 11% of people are left handed • Unless food is mixed with saliva you • •

can’t taste it The average person falls asleep in 7 minutes Lemons contain more sugar than strawberries

Disability Workers Cost Model NDIS Cost Model for Disability Support Workers The purpose of this document is to set out the Cost Model (CM) that the NDIA uses to inform its pricing decisions for those supports delivered by Disability Support Workers (DSWs) on which it imposes price limits.

Industrial Award The national award for DSWs is the Social, Community, Home Care and Disability Services Industry Award 2010. Shift Loadings These are in line with the SCHADS Award and are applied to all DSWs and supervisors in the CM. In line with SCHADS Award, the CM also provides a 17.5% loading for annual leave to compensate workers for the shifts they would have otherwise taken. Days Worked versus Days Paid The CM recognises that a permanent worker works on 220 days a year, but is also paid:

• 20 days of annual leave and 10 days of public holidays;

• Up to 10 days of personal leave – the CM assumes all workers utilise all of their personal leave entitlement each year;

• 4 1/2 days of long service leave (if they have qualifying service). Salary On-costs

The CM recognises that providers incur other costs related to the salaries, including:

• Superannuation at the statutory 9.5% of base salary, including leave; and

• Workers compensation insurance at 3% of base salary, including leave, which is higher than the national average for the Health and Community Services of 1.5%. The CM does not provide for payroll tax

Supervision Costs The CM recognises that DSWs require support and supervision and assumes that supervisors have the same shift loadings, leave entitlements and salary on-costs as the workers they manage, and that higher skilled workers require higher skilled supervisors. The CM also assumes a span of control (ratio of workers per supervisor) of 11 to 1. Permanent versus Casual Workers Casual loadings and the other costs detailed above increase the costs per billable hour of employing a Standard DSW on a weekday by 49.5% over the base salary rate. Overheads The CM assumes that corporate overheads are 10.5% of direct costs. Overhead costs together with the costs discussed above increase the costs of employing a permanent Standard DSW on a weekday by 79.6% over the base salary rate. Margins The CM currently assumes a 2% margin on other costs. This equates to a rate of return of 8% against working capital equivalent to three month’s wages and entitlements.

National Minimum Wage Australia’s national minimum wage has been increased by 1.75% to $19.84 an hour, or the equivalent of $753.80 a week for a fulltime worker. This is up from $740.80 a week or $19.49 an hour, the rate it has been since 1st July last year. The Fair Work Commission announced the decision Friday, which directly affects 2.2 million employees who rely on minimum wages. Last year’s increase was 3%. WhatsUp in Disability

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Real Time Claims • Lack of data collected on supports provided to participants All of these problems are likely to increase as the Scheme grows. In the six months leading up to December 2019, 17.6 million claims were processed. That is compared to 4.5 million in the 12 months leading up to 30th June 2017.

Sara Gingold DSC 4th June 2020 For months, there have been rumours that the NDIA has plans in the works to develop a real time claims and direct payments program. Up until now there has not been a lot of publicly available information about the program’s progress or function. But a tender recently released changes all that and included some confusing (and frankly concerning) comments about how the platform may impact the future of plan management. There is now some understanding about what the Agency envisions for the program, and what it might mean for the sector. The stated aim is to facilitate a “simple, consistent, automated claims and payments process” between the provider and NDIA, regardless of the person’s plan management type. Which, I think we can all agree, would not be a bad thing. It’s no secret that the current NDIS payments process is far from perfect. The tender identifies a number of existing problems, including:

• The amount of manual work for participants, providers and the NDIA

• The length of time between the support being delivered and the payment received

• Issues with payment correctness, payment integrity and payment fraud

The idea of an automated payments process is not without precedent. Medicare uses one, as do private health insurers and, more controversially, there is the Centrelink cashless card. An overarching question that goes unanswered is what this program will mean for the future of plan management and the tender really sends out mixed signals here. On one hand, plan managers are listed throughout the document as a possible actors in the payment process, as outlined in a few of the features above. However, one of the stated benefits of the program is that it will “eliminate the need for Plan managers and Participants to be financial intermediaries”. This is said will reduce the time between service provision and payment. Another important question is how the payments process will work with unregistered providers. There is not a lot of precedent here. Centrelink’s Cashless Debit Card can only be used at particular shops (indeed that is the whole point of it). Medicare Easyclaim is only available to doctors, specialists, dentists and allied health professionals. The success of this program is really dependent on what processes, training and equipment unregistered providers will need to receive payments. For some businesses, it will not be worth their while to put any processes in place because they only cater to a small number of NDIS Participants. WhatsUp in Disability

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WhatsUp NDIS Price Guide Recommendations from the Annual Price Review to determine 2020‒21 price controls and market settings are reflected in changes to the NDIS Price Guide 2020–21. Participant plan funds will be automatically indexed from 1st July 2020 to take into account the decision of the Fair Work Commission and movement in the Consumer Price Index. This requires a systems update which is expected to occur on 11th July. Indexation will still apply from 1st July. Cancellation Rules The NDIA will retain the cancellation rule regarding claiming 100% rather than 90%, introduced in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. This means providers can claim 100% of the agreed support price for a cancellation at short notice. This change has been made to cover the costs incurred by a provider if a participant has cancelled at short notice, or does not show up. Establishment Fees

NDIS Updates provider administrative burden. Providers will be able to accurately apportion time spent with a group and among the members of that group. Providers can claim for non-face-to-face supports rather than having an allowance for non-face-to-face supports built into the price limit.

Capital Centre-based Costs There is a new way to claim for centre-based group supports with the introduction a number of new line items to claim capital centre costs. This is for providers delivering group-based supports in a centre, so providers can claim a capital allowance for each participant, where appropriate, in addition to the cost of the support worker. This acknowledges capital costs such as asset maintenance and purpose built refurbishments to centres. A capital allowance was formerly within the price limit and will now be a separate line item. Hearing Supports Under the NDIS, hearing devices will be decoupled from hearing services at a support item level. Support items for the provision of audiology and audiometry will be separate to the support items of the hearing devices, including hearing aids.

More providers will be eligible to charge an establishment fee to assist with one-off costs such as assessing a participant's needs, creating a service agreement with the participant and setting up service bookings within the NDIA system.

There will also be three new hearing service line items with national price limits.

Before 1st July 2020 only providers registered for 0107 Daily Personal Activities could claim establishment fees and the fee was based on a flat fee structure.

Temporary Transformation Payment

Group-based Supports The pricing arrangements for group-based supports will be changed so providers will no longer have to claim for service delivery on a worker to participant ratio. Supports can be claimed against the appropriate 1:1 support item, reducing significant Page 10

The two line items for the Audiologist support items are aligned to the price limit for Other Therapy Supports. TTP will change from 7.5% to 6%. Providers need to inform the NDIA of their intent to claim TTP in 2020-2021 before 1st July 2020. The NDIA is publishing the results of the Benchmarking Survey of TTP providers. Plan managers will be required to inform the NDIA, when asked, which registered providers have made a claim for a TTP support item.

Psychosocial Recovery Coach

A new support item called the psychosocial recovery coach (recovery coach) will be available for NDIS participants. Psychosocial recovery coaches will provide support to people with psychological disability to live a full life. This is a new support item and may take some time for the support to be widely available. A recovery coach can build capacity and resilience through strong and respectful relationships. A psychosocial recovery coach must have tertiary qualifications in peer work or mental health (minimum of Certificate IV in Mental Health) or equivalent training; and/or a minimum of two years of experience in mental health-related work Six new line items for Support Category 7 (Support Coordination) are introduced to achieve outcomes in Outcome Domain 8 (social and community participation) Line items subject to price regulation, remote and very remote loadings and standard definition of time of day and day of week Psychosocial recovery coaches may need to travel to meet with participants as well as transport participants as part of delivery their supports. A new line item is introduced to support this, subject to standard rules for provider travel non labour costs. Supported Independent Living (SIL) The NDIA is clarifying the set price limits for SIL supports, in the NDIS Price Guide 2020– 21, replacing the current quoting and negotiation process.

First plans and changes of circumstances for the participant will still require a provider to submit a new ROC for consideration. Changes to the ROC will require detailed documentation to support the changes The rate limit used for SIL will be increased only when the relevant assistance with daily living price limits are increased Before a plan with SIL supports is approved, the NDIA will directly ask the participant (or their nominee) to confirm they have had an opportunity to see and provide input to the roster of care These changes will mean the SIL process is more efficient and will enable providers to get paid on time. A new SIL Provider Pack will be available on the NDIS website before 1 July 2020. Plan Managers Plan Management providers can claim for travel and non-face-to-face supports for some support items. Provider Travel While these items are not price-controlled, the NDIS Price Guide 2020–21 outlines the reasonable level of these non-labour costs that participants and providers can use to discuss and agree on charges. These include:

up to $0.85 a kilometre for a vehicle that is not modified for accessibility; and

other forms of transport or associated costs up to the full amount, such as road tolls or parking.

The NDIA is conducting a review of SIL price controls and endorsed recommendations will be included in a Price Guide released later this year, until this review is complete the price limits for assistance with daily living will apply to SIL supports. These price limits will be in effect from 1st July 2020 for SIL supports, and will also be applied to any open quotes awaiting approval. Existing plans containing agreed SIL quotes will continue until the end of their 12 month term, at which point the new SIL price limit will apply. Providers should develop a roster of care (ROC) using the assistance with daily living price limits to help the NDIA decide the type of supports to be included in a participant’s plan.

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Queensland Government convicted of very concerning offences, including sexual offences and serious assault offences committed against children and vulnerable people;

New legislation to strengthen disability worker checks Minister for Communities and Minister for Disability Services and Seniors The Honourable Coralee O'Rourke

a stronger decision-making framework that focuses on whether people with relevant history to assess pose an unacceptable risk of harm to people with disability;

greater powers to suspend a clearance if a card holder has a change in their assessable information;

the ability to consider a broader range of information as part of the NDIS check to assess if a person poses an unacceptable risk; and

clearances will remain valid for five years.

Thursday, 18th June 2020

New legislation has been introduced by the Queensland Government into the Parliament to establish a nationally consistent worker screening system for the NDIS to improve safeguards for people with disability. Minister for Disability Services Coralee O’Rourke said the Disability Services and Other Legislation (Worker Screening) Bill had been introduced to replace existing worker screening provisions under the Disability Services Act 2006 (DSA). “This Bill will strengthen safeguards for people with disability following the rollout of the NDIS,” Mrs O’Rourke said. “The legislative amendments in this Bill will support the implementation of nationallyconsistent worker screening for the first time ever. The new system for NDIS worker screening means clearances and exclusions will be recognised across all states and territories.” “The Bill will also enable ongoing monitoring of a screened worker’s criminal history at a national level. This means that if someone commits an offence in another state or territory, we will know about it and be able to take action to assess whether the person should be issued with an exclusion.” Other key changes include:

• •

an online application process with strengthened identity requirements; a strengthened framework to automatically disqualify people

The existing state screening system will continue to provide safeguards and apply until the new NDIS worker screening commences, at a time subject to national agreement. Mrs O’Rourke said the Bill also included provisions to enable Queensland to operate a state disability worker screening system for certain disability services it continues to fund, or deliver, which are not covered by the jurisdiction of the NDIS Quality and Safeguards Commission. “This is about making sure the highest levels of safeguards apply and that we are assessing the history of those seeking to work with people with disability as thoroughly as possible,” she said.

“Ensuring that Queenslanders with disability are protected is our highest priority.”

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WhatsUp Peaceful Humans WhatsUp sincerely thanks you… PEACE Inc. prides itself on the success of their groups, which provide the backbone for Community Engagement. PEACE Inc. runs a variety of free community groups such as: “Coffee and Conversation” which are gatherings at local cafés and homes; “Woolly Warriors” which is a group of volunteers who knit for the homeless, also providing woollen items for local hospitals and trauma teddies for children and “Cooking Together” where we all learn a multicultural dish and then serve it to the homeless. PEACE Inc. also runs the Language Therapy Group that aims to provide holistic English and therapy classes for women.

give back to our community, laugh, make new friends and learn new skills. We knit and crochet beanies, scarves, mittens, blankets and comforters to make up hampers for local Charities, Hospitals and Service Providers. Cooking Together PEACE, with the Base Services offer a unique Cooking Together experience. We learn how to cook an International dish which is then given to the homeless people who attend the Base Soup Kitchen in Neil Street, Toowoomba. PEACE Cooking Together is currently on hold as we search for a bigger cooking facility to cater for the increasing amount of volunteers that we've received for this group. Women’s Social Group

Woolly Warriors Members of the Toowoomba region who love to knit and crochet or would like to learn, are welcome to join our PEACE Inc. Woolly Warriors group on the first Tuesday of every month at the meeting rooms in the Toowoomba City Library from 11.00am to 1.00pm. Tea and Coffee is provided. A gold coin donation is requested to assist with room hire. The more warriors who join, the more we can give. PEACE Inc. Woolly Warriors is open for anyone who wants to

Many women in today’s society feel isolated once their children go back to school and their partners head off to work. Maybe you have just moved to our community and wish to meet new friends and experience everything our local region has to offer. Are you an empty-nester, retired, or just plain bored? Maybe you suffer anxiety or have recently left a relationship? To assist in minimising loneliness and enhance community engagement within the women of our area, PEACE Women’s Social Group helps you form friendships by being ‘social’, be it going to the movies, a reading group, having a cuppa, going shopping, going to the theatre, participating in a drawing or yoga class or helping a charity. This group is for all women across the Toowoomba Region. WhatsUp in Disability is currently working with PEACE to provide a space at the Paul Myatt Community Centre for them to meet and undertake their valuable community work. Editor Winton Queensland

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Why the past matters... So, it is fair to say that this world of ours is going through some turbulent times at the moment. Bad things have happened, and emotions are running high. And, as always, there are people sitting in the wings ready to exploit the situation to advance their own cause. People who treat disagreement and differing perspective as obstacles to be ruthlessly bulldozed rather than be the basis of a civilized conversation. Pair this with media companies who care only about turning a profit, willing to bend over backwards to compromise the silent majority in order to appease the vocal minority and you get, well, exactly what has been happening over the past weeks. The editing, censoring and outright removal of movies, books, and TV shows which although acceptable when they were made are now considered problematic because they don’t measure up to the high moral standards that we have set today. Clearly a movie made 81 years ago and set during the American Civil War should absolutely confirm to our present-day cultural norms. It just makes sense. Or a beloved TV show that uses controversial language in some of its jokes. Clearly that needs to go. Really, there is no limit to all the nips and tucks that you can do almost without anyone noticing. But here is the slight problem with all of this, slowly and surely it is diminishing who we are. Every single piece of entertainment that we consume, from the humblest amateur movie to the grandest blockbuster is a unique and special piece of art. It may not appeal to all sensibilities or represent the pinnacle of its genre, but it is art all the same. It exists because it can, not because it must. It exists because we chose to make it so. People exercise their imagination, their crea-

tivity, and their ingenuity to turn a simple idea into a reality, and that is something to be treasured. Art is what makes us who we are. From the first time that we learnt to use tools we have been driven to create things that will outlast our short lives. To tell stories that enthral and captivate. Our art is an expression not just of who we are but of who we were and who we might be. The good and the bad.

It allows us to explore our highest aspirations and our deepest fears, the power of our compassion and kindness, and the darkness of our cruelty and hatreds. It can enthral us with stories of courage and determination, adventure and excitement or vengeance and anger. It can impart wisdom and knowledge, stir our wonder and imagination, carry us to far off worlds and different cultures. It can show us the strength of love and friendship or the dangers of anger and conflict. It can give us daring heroes and terrifying villains. It can make us laugh and it can make us cry. It can show us the best and the worst of humanity or even challenge what it means to be human. “With the first link, the chain is forged. The first speech censured, the first thought forbidden, the first freedom denied, chains us all irrevocably. The first time any man’s freedom is trodden on we are all damaged.” Jean luc Picard Star Trek: The Next Generation

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Flexible Respite Options * Breakaway Guesthouse- Highfields. Offers short term respite to children and adults with a disability in a comfortable and relaxed environment which is fully staffed. * In-home and/or Community Access Support that is flexible and focused on meeting individual family needs. * Rural and Remote Offers respite support to people with disabilities and their families in rural and remote South West Queensland. * Vacation Care Respite support for children with disabilities and their families during school holidays.

27 Mort Street Toowoomba Telephone: (07) 4639 5100 Fax: (07) 4639 5079 Email: info@breakawaytmba.org



South & Greenwattle Toowoomba

10.00 am every Saturday $18 per session 3 games Sports Registration $50 (membership) Glenda (07) 4614 1136 Kathy (07) 4630 5221 Page 16

COVID-19 Updates

This planning guide helps people with disability to get the facts about Coronavirus (COVID019) and make a plan for how they will manage the impact of this situation. People with disability need a plan that is tailored to their unique support needs. This planning guide was developed by researchers at The University of Sydney who lead research on disability inclusive disaster risk reduction. It was developed in partnership with the Queenslanders with Disability Network with funding from the Queensland Government Department of Communities, Disability Services and Seniors. QDN works in partnership with people with disability to make sure they are included in all decisions about emergency management and disaster risk. This resource was co-designed with people with disability and their representatives. QDN collaborated with the Australian Government Department of Health to make this guide nationally relevant – so that all Australians with disability can make a COVID-19 plan that is tailored to their capabilities and support needs. The Australian Government Department of Health supported the translation of this planning guide into an Easy Read format. Please visit the Australian Government Department of Health's website for the most up-to-date advice for people with disability during the COVID-19 pandemic. Updated 20th June 2020 WhatsUp in Disability

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Inclusion Access By Josh Marshall

There’s nothing better than when collaboration creates positive change. This disability parking space is a new installation outside of Milk and Honey Espresso Bar Toowoomba. Congratulations to all stakeholders who made this happen. You may never know the true significance of this inclusion.

WhatsUp In Disability (the Magazine) First published in 1994 to give local people with disabilities and carers, information on a growing multitude of local disability services, local news and issues, with the purpose of not only supplying information to people with disabilities, but of giving choices to people and to give local services a specialist media outlet where they could give information on their services. To obtain a copy of WhatsUp in Disability magazine or to be an advertiser, please call in and see us at the WhatsUp in Disability office at the Paul Myatt Community Centre 11-15 Alexander Street Toowoomba or call us on 4632 6678.

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Down Syndrome Support Group Inc. (Toowoomba & District)

Offers people with Down Syndrome and their families an opportunity to make contact with, and to meet other people in a friendly and inviting environment. Contact: President Kara Wren Mobile: 0439 661 349

NFP Law Changes Welcomed law changes are here for incorporated associations and charities Great news - law changes are coming to reduce red tape and improve internal governance for the more than 22,900 incorporated associations in Queensland, including the 3,750 that have registered as charities. These law changes were introduced by Queensland Parliament on 16th June 2020 with the passing of the Associations Incorporation and Other Legislation Amendment Bill 2020. The legislation governing associations has not undergone substantial reform since the Associations Incorporation Act 1981 was last amended in 2007. Some of the law changes start now on assent, while others will take effect progressively over the next couple of years. Changes taking effect now include:

• your association being able to amend its

own rules, or replace them, to adopt the model rules after the association has become incorporated

• not having to include in your rules, the

provision of using technology in your general meetings such as video conferencing

• new provisions that allow your association

to voluntarily appoint an administrator if you experience financial difficulties, rather than having to apply to the Supreme Court for the appointment of a provisional liquidator

• the

introduction of a voluntary cancellation process where your association can apply to the OFT to be cancelled, provided you have no outstanding debts, instead of undergoing a formal winding up process.

annual financial reports to both the Office of Fair Trading (OFT) and the ACNC. Providing they have met their financial reporting obligations to the ACNC, they will not be required to report to the OFT. Another important change coming, anticipated to be by 30th June 2022, is the requirement for incorporated associations to have an internal grievance or dispute resolution process in place. If your association doesn’t have a grievance process in place by this date, you will be required to observe the grievance procedure contained in the Regulation’s model rules. Currently, the only avenue available to members who have a grievance and believe they have been deprived of rights given to them by the rules of the association is to apply at significant cost to the Supreme Court of Queensland to have the matter resolved. The new grievance process will enable members and associations to settle disputes in a more timely and cost-effective manner. These are only a few of the welcomed changes coming into effect over the next couple of years for incorporated associations and charities who represent and support many vital aspects of Queensland’s communities. You can refer to their website for full details on the law changes and how they will benefit you. You may also want to download a copy of the incorporated associations business guide. If you have any questions or require further information, please email Fair.Trading@justice.qld.gov.au

One of the changes coming into effect at a later date, anticipated to be by 30th June 2021, is the reduction in duplicated annual financial reporting for incorporated associations that have registered as charities with the Australian Charities and Not-forprofits Commission (ACNC). A charity will no longer be required to submit WhatsUp in Disability

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Warrina Services is a specialist support agency that has been providing individual support to people of the Darling Downs since 1986. We support people with a diverse range of needs and also provide mental health services to assist personal recovery.

(07) 4659 5662

We can help you to achieve positive outcomes in your life. These may be related to choice and independence, education or training, attending social activities, increasing skills, getting a job or contributing to your community. If you would like further information please visit our website

www.warrinaservices.org.au Or contact us Phone: 07-46 380 399 Email: warrinas@warrinas.com.au or visit our office at

172 Bridge Street Toowoomba Office hours Mon-Fri 9-5pm

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Akadia Training and Community Care WE ARE ON THE MOVE! Same Great Work, Exciting New Location We are pleased to announce that effective 6th July 2020 Akadia will be located at 18 Hanna Court, Kearney's Spring 4350. Our phone number and email addresses will remain unchanged.

We have outgrown our home in North Street and are very excited to be moving to a new location that will enable us to respond more effectively to the need for excellent education and specialised nursing support for the aged care and disability sectors. Our new facility will have a group training room, a simulated practice room and consulting room. We look forward to welcoming our valued clients, students and friends - old and new - to our new space.

While we aim for the move to be seamless, we do seek your understanding should minor disruptions occur as we relocate and settle into our new office.

Akadia Managing Directors, Ann Nitschke and Simon Jakins

WhatsUp in Disability

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8am to 1pm 3rd Sunday every month

Top Oval Lindsay Street Toowoomba Supporting WhatsUp in Disability

Employment Services Supporting people with a disability to gain and maintain employment that is valued by the client, the employer and the community. 3 Finchley Street PO Box 1715 Toowoomba QLD 4350 P: (07) 4688 3900 F: (07) 4688 3911 employment.toowoomba@uccommunity.org.au www.uccommunity.org.au/employmentservices

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Hannah’s Dream Hannah’s dream career comes true with a little HELP Staff at one of Toowoomba’s most popular hair salons are busy learning sign language to support a new apprentice who has been given the opportunity to pursue her dream career. Pure Hair on Hume has just taken on a new apprentice, that is deaf, Hannah Xavier, after she approached HELP Employment & Training for assistance to start a career in hairdressing. After only a 1-day trial, at Pure Hair, owner Taryn Hunter and her team discovered Hannah was “a natural” and offered her an apprenticeship on the spot, just 1 week after starting at the award-winning organic salon, she was cutting her first haircut.

Paul Wilson said Hannah came to the Toowoomba office in January as part of a new project with Yellow Bridge QLD and Butterfly Hands organisations to find meaningful work for deaf clients. “Our team approached several hair salons about the possibility of taking on an apprentice who is deaf before Pure Hair on Hume manager Michelle Riley jumped at the chance to give Hannah some work experience,” Mr Wilson said. “It wasn’t long before Hannah’s natural talent, enthusiasm and strong work ethic became obvious and the salon decided to offer her a full apprenticeship.” Mr Wilson said HELP was delighted with the outcome and paid tribute to everyone involved in helping Hannah’s dream come true. “This is a fantastic example of the community all working together to give someone with a disability the opportunity for a great start in the workforce,” he said. “HELP is proud to deliver meaningful employment outcomes for the Toowoomba region by assisting job seekers and employers to achieve career and business goals.“ Yellow Bridge QLD is a Toowoomba-based not-for-profit organisation that each year helps hundreds of people access housing, disability support, youth and home services to live independent and rewarding lives. Butterfly Hands is a new local organisation providing support and advocacy for people who are deaf or hard of hearing. HELP Employment and Training is a Queensland-based not-for-profit that provides tailored employment and training solutions to job seekers, employers and students. It has assisted 50,000 job seekers and specialises in getting people into work who have a disability, health condition or illness. HELP Enterprises

Communicating with Hannah is also becoming a breeze with salon staff all learning Auslan sign language, through David Wallis, to support her in the new role. HELP Employment and Training Zone Leader

To register for support to find work, training or staff at either of our local HELP offices, please call 07 3069 2690. Alternatively, you can submit an online enquiry or request a call back by visiting the website: www.helpemployment.com.au WhatsUp in Disability

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A Day in the Life During the COVID-19 restrictions Chris has learnt to adapt and develop new skills. After his work closed down Chris felt a little lost and so he decided on some different ways to spend his time and develop new interests and hobbies. Chris has become quite the gardener making his own pop up vegetable garden planting strawberries, Spinach, carrots and tomatoes. Chris has also enjoyed playing netball, and he has also learnt to cook up some delicious dishes in the kitchen. Chris has always mindful of the current situation and has been obeying the social distancing rules and ensuring he is hygienic. Chris cannot wait until the Gyms are open fully and the library is available so he can continue reading. Chris wants to do some study so has linked up with HELP employment to assist him in finding suitable courses and possible employment. Autism: What Next? Autism Awareness Australia are developing a digital tool kit called Autism: What Next? It will be a central hub to help individuals and families navigate the diagnostic process and support them in that first year. For decades, one of the most common issues in autism has been the lack of quality information and guidance available to parents and individuals seeking and receiving an autism diagnosis. By filling in this survey and telling them about your experiences, you will help inform this project which will make the process easier for families and individuals in the future. Tell them what you would have wanted the most during the diagnostic period. There are 3 survey types for you to choose from depending on your circumstances. This project is developed by Autism Awareness Australia, supported by Amaze and funded by the National Disability Insurance Agency as part of Autism Connect.

Join the Paul Myatt Community Centre 11-15 Alexander St Toowoomba Ph: 4632 9559

WhatsUp in Disability

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in July Postponed NAIDOC Week 2020 The National NAIDOC Committee has decided to postpone NAIDOC Week 2020 (5th 12th July) in the interest of safety for our communities. This decision was not taken lightly. We have taken on-board the advice from the Federal Government, health experts, our key partners and from leading national Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander health organisations. We all believe that an escalating COVID-19 (Coronavirus) crisis as we head into winter would have disastrous impacts on our mob especially for our elders and those in our communities with chronic health issues. Toowoomba Languages and Cultures Festival The Festival in August is being rescheduled and a new date will be announced later in the year. Winter Wonderland Toowoomba Regional Council (TRC) Environment and Community Committee Chair Cr James O’Shea said the decision to postpone the event for 12 months was a difficult but necessary one with community health at the forefront of all decision making. “Like most of the residents in our community, we were thoroughly looking forward to the ice-skating rink returning this winter but with the current health restrictions in place there was simply no feasible way we could host the event this year,” Cr O’Shea said. “While it’s disappointing the event won’t be proceeding in 2020, I’m pleased to announce the Winter Wonderland will return in 2021.”

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in August

Jeans for Genes Day Children’s Medical Research Sunday 2nd August Homelessness Prevention Week Homelessness Australia National EOS Awareness Week 4-10th August Red Nose Day Sunday 9th August Cupcake Day RSPCA Wednesday 19th August Daffodil Day Cancer Council Australia Sunday 23rd August

Support Local As businesses start to reopen, please understand they may have just survived one of the hardest professional and personal challenges they’ve ever faced. While they’re excited to open, the owners and employees are still stressed. They’re not through the woods yet.

3rd Sunday of the Month 8:00 am—1:00 pm Frog’s Hollow Queens Park

All proceeds support WhatsUp in Disability

Please don’t go to these businesses and complain about changes that were forced upon them due to lost revenue, lost employees, new policies and protocols. They don’t have the same business they had two months ago. They’re doing everything they can to adapt to the situation. But everything is different for them. Be kind. Be compassionate. Have patience. They’re still trying to recover from battle number one and their next battle of rebuilding has just begun.

To spread the word about your next event contact WhatsUp on (07) 4632 9559 or email admin@whatsupindisability.org WhatsUp in Disability

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mycommunity www.mycommunitydirectory.com.au

Disability Advisory Committee TRC is seeking nominations to fill 13 positions for the new term of the Regional Access and Disability Advisory Committee (RADAC). RADAC chair Cr Tim McMahon said Council welcomed expressions of interest from people across the region who wished to serve on the voluntary committee. Cr McMahon, TRC’s Environment and Community Services portfolio leader, said the advisory committee’s role was to represent the interests of people with a disability or access issues and inform Council about the extent of these issues and suggested solutions. “I encourage people who want the chance to articulate problems and solve issues to nominate for the vacant positions by the 10th of July” Cr McMahon said. “It is important for Council to listen to ideas and recommendations from people in the disability sector and from other community groups who often feel isolated or marginalised. “Apart from physical barriers, we need to be mindful of social and cultural issues that affect how people interact with others. “I also see the committee as a vehicle for promoting a better understanding of these issues to the wider community and upholding the human rights of everyone involved in the disability sector. “The committee provides support and advice to Council around the ongoing implementation of Council’s Access and Equity Plan 2016 -21.” Meetings are the first Monday of the month from 10:30 am to 12:30pm. Page 28

Regional Youth Advisory Committee TRC is also calling on residents with a passion for working with young people to nominate for positions on the Regional Youth Advisory Committee (RYAC). Council is seeking nominations to fill 14 positions for the new term of the RYAC. Applications close on Friday, 10th July. Applications from young people between 1825 with a passion for improving outcomes for their regional peers also are welcome. TRC Environment and Community Services committee chair and RYAC chair Cr James O’Shea said Council welcomed expressions of interest from applicants across a range of community and professional backgrounds, from community services to employment, education, health, disability, child protection, youth justice, police and emergency services backgrounds. Cr O’Shea said the advisory committee’s role was to represent the interests of young people by providing strategic advice for Council’s consideration. “I’m positive that the committee can add its collective knowledge and support to Council, especially around the future implementation of Council’s Youth Strategy 2019-2021,” Cr O’Shea said. “RYAC was instrumental in the Youth Strategy’s development. As a result of their efforts, the inew committee will have a blueprint that details how Council will recognise, engage and support our region’s young”.


New to Disability? First Points of Contact Centrelink Payments and Services

132 468


132 717

Disability Support Pension

132 717

Health Care Card

132 490

Family Assistance

136 150

Indigenous Call Centre

1800 136 380

Emergency Crisis Payment

132 850

NDIS General Enquiries

1800 800 110

NDIA Toowoomba Office

07 4592 4057

Local Area Coordinator

07 4646 2800

Medicare General Enquiries

132 011

Pharmaceutical Benefits

132 290


WhatsUp in Disability is printed by

Help Desk

132 307

Queensland Government

Toowoomba Disability Information Office Open Monday to Friday (9:00am to 3.00pm) A question on disability or a service you require? Try us, most of our volunteers have a disability themselves and will be glad to assist you. If we can’t help, we will refer you elsewhere. JP services are also available

Child Safety

07 4699 4255

Disability Services

07 4615 3900

Toowoomba Hospital

07 4616 6000

Department Housing

07 4699 4400

Community Groups Carer Advisory Service

1800 242 636

Carer Respite

1800 059 059

Lifeline Darling Downs

1300 991 443

Relationships Australia

1300 364 277

There are a number of support groups for most disabilities available in this region. Contact WhatsUp in Disability on: Phone: 07 4632 9559 Email: admin@whatsupindisability.org

11-15 Alexander Street Toowoomba (07) 4632 9559 A volunteer disability service organisation run by people with a disability

WhatsUp in Disability

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WhatsUp Executive Team

PUBLISHER: Disability Media Association Inc (Australia) (DMAA) TELEPHONE: (07) 4632 9559 OFFICE:

Paul Myatt Community Centre 11-15 Alexander Street Toowoomba (open Monday to Friday 9:00am-3:00 pm)

POSTAL ADDRESS: PO Box 3621 Toowoomba Qld 4350 E-MAIL: admin@whatsupindisability.org MANAGEMENT BOARD: Steven Paull (President) Liz Schneidewin (Editor) Tasha Grundon (Secretary) Ann Paull (Treasurer) ADMINISTRATION: Tasha Grundon, Alyssa Storm and Bec McDermott CONTRIBUTORS: Liz Schneidewin, Bronwyn Herbertson, Sharon Boyce, Aidan Wilcock , Steven Paull and many more. PUBLISHED January/March/May/July/September/November ABN: 72 821 350 911


PRINT POST APPROVED: PP 424022/ 1811 DISCLAIMER/INDEMNITY Articles and adverts reproduced on these pages are accepted and published in good faith. It is a condition of acceptance that advertisers and article writers accept full responsibility for their advertisements and articles, and will fully indemnify the producers in the event of any claims or legal proceedings against them. Articles published are not necessarily the view of the publishers. Advertisements are also accepted on the basis that they do not conflict with any discrimination laws or other laws currently in force. ADVERTISING


Although we are a volunteer and non profit organisation, we are not funded in any way, and have to cover costs of this publication by charging for advertising. WWhatsUp reserves the right to adjust, resize or move advertisements when necessary to allow for editing

WhatsUp IS AVAILABLE FROM: 1) SUBSCRIPTION (In advance) $18 per year (includes postage). 2) A single edition of WhatsUp can be bought at the office and selected outlets. You may also subscribe by using the form on the outside cover. 3) Reference copies are held in the Tourist Office and Toowoomba Library. COPYRIGHT


Copyright Protected. All pages are subject to copyright law and may be copied only with the permission of DMAA. Copies are not to be used commercially or for profit or for personal financial gain. Permission may be granted to copy only if the purpose is to give it away to others for their personal interest but not to any other organisation or service. DISCLAIMER

All articles are accepted in good faith and are not necessarily the view of the Editorial team or Management. Articles are accepted on the understanding that in the event of any claims against WhatsUp, the writer of the article will take full responsibility and indemnify WhatsUp in the event of legislation against it. Articles are also accepted on the understanding that the contents do not breach any Disability laws or other legislation currently in use. ENVIRONMENTAL FRIENDLY/ COPYING

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WhatsUp In Disability is provided as a Master Copy to individuals and organisations. We are environmental friendly, we do not print any more copies than is absolutely necessary. We prefer and encourage the practice of passing the magazine from person to person or copying the whole magazine to pass on to others. Permission is needed to copy (see Copyright above) When copying the magazine we require that the pages be marked ‘copy’.


WhatsUp Accommodation / Respite

Information Services


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Commonwealth Carer Respite

Annie’s House



Down Syndrome Support Group

Breakaway Toowoomba



(Toowoomba and District)



Epilepsy Queensland Inc.



Support Services Anne’s Angels



Every Australian Counts



Anuha Services (Gatton)



TASC National



BigDog Support Services



Toowoomba Disability Information



Breakaway Toowoomba




CPL (Choice Passion Life)



Slow Starters Ten Pin Bowling



David Wallis



Toowoomba Sunset Superbowl





Toowoomba Region



Quality Lifestyle Support



Wagtail Services



Warrina Services



Yellow Bridge QLD



BigDog Cleaning Services



BigDog Lawn Mowing Services





Ellipsis Media



IMPACT Career Counselling



Think Mobility



Queens Park Market



Reben Mobility



Tony Wigan Show 102.7 FM



Toowoomba Clubhouse



Employment Uniting Care Community

Mobility Equipment

Other Services Akadia Training

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