Famous Aussies with disabilities
Many people with disabilities have made major contributions to Australian society. But we do not seem to hear about them. There have been writers, media barons and politicians with disabilities. We even have had a saint with a disability. Although these people are well-known, their disabilities seem to have been forgotten. Highlighting their disabilities can help to dispel negative ideas about people with disabilities.
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Posted by: Graham Clements, on 16/05/13
Poodle to the rescue
It was a surprise to see a large poodle in a busy Ballarat wine shop with its owner. The handsome dog, Bobby, was wearing a fancy vest and was standing alert like a soldier. He and his handler are a team, but this standard poodle is not a pet. He's a highly trained assistance dog who cannot be separated from his handler, Margaret. That includes being together on an international flight. Her life depends on Bobby, he is there to ensure Margaret is safe.
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Posted by: Susan Frankel, on 14/05/13
It's ok to complain
A good relationship with your health provider is important. But sometimes problems can arise. They can be difficult to resolve. Dr Grant Davies is Victoria's Acting Health Services Commissioner. He suggests people approach their health providers directly. Sometimes providers don't realise there is a problem. People can also make more formal complaints. All Australian states and territories have organisations to deal with these complaints. There is also a national agency to investigate more serious matters. Complaints can help improve our healthcare system. It worthwhile remembering that it's ok to complain.
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Posted by: Caitilin Punshon, on 09/05/13
The benefits of the pen and the paintbrush
Art therapy is a visual language for communication. It is used in positive ways to explore and even eliminate the problems surrounding many mental illnesses. The place in which I live offers regular art therapy by workers with a strong artistic background. Living with people with different mental illnesses we can all gain from the art therapy by coming together to paint, draw or simply colour in pictures in a safe place. Art therapy has been proven to reduce the negative symptoms of schizophrenia, bipolar disorder and depression in particular.
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Posted by: Isabella Fels, on 06/05/13
Time's up for forced sterilisation
People with disabilities and females in particular will soon know the outcome of an inquiry into forced sterilisation in Australia. The report on submissions by disability advocates and people affected signals the urgent need for long-overdue changes to the law. Such changes would go a long way to protect and respect the rights of girls, women and people with disabilities. Views are both varied and complex.
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Posted by: Susan Frankel, on 29/04/13