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ROYAL COMMISSION: Priority should be to get young people OUT of aged care, not build new facilities

Media Release
Jordon Steele-John 10 Oct 2018

Wednesday, 10 October 2018

The Australian Greens have branded an announcement the WA Government will spend $90 million on a new aged care precinct, which includes facilities for young disabled people, as a disgrace, particularly in light of the Morrison government’s Royal Commission into the aged care sector.

“The priority at all levels of government must be to urgently get young people out of aged care facilities, not build new ones,” Steele-John said.

“The decision is reminiscent of those made decades ago which led to the creation of the institutions that governments have now committed themselves to transitioning away from. It flies in the face of decade’s worth of research into the appropriate care settings of young disabled people and is a clear violation foo run commitments under the UN Convention on the Rights of Disabled People.

“This decision is yet another worrying sign that the Morrison Government simply does not understand the needs of disabled people or the challenges we face.

 “Yesterday the Federal Government announced the Terms of Reference for the Aged Care Royal Commission which will only look at the quality of care for young disabled people in aged care facilities, not how to get them out of those settings.

“Today, the Premier of Western Australia, Mark McGowan has turned the first sod on a new aged care precinct that is guaranteed to subject its young disabled residents to violence, abuse and neglect.

“Young disabled people have a right to live in the community with the supports they need to do so, not segregated and institutionalised. It is a fundamental abuse of their rights to do anything less and the government should be ashamed of themselves!

“What concerns me the most about this situation is that nobody is even questioning it. We are talking about young people living in aged care and nobody is even batting an eyelid.

“This is precisely why I am so concerned about the exclusion of the violence, abuse and neglect of disabled people in institutional and residential settings from Prime Minister Morrison’s Royal Commission. Institutionalisation and segregation must end and we must not miss this opportunity for justice!”

Media contact:

Tim Oliver (Senator Steele-John) – 0448 316 387

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