The Official Launch!
On 1 April 2022, the Hon. Craig Crawford MP, Minister for Seniors and Disability Services and Minister for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Partnerships officially launched the newly funded state-wide information and referral service “Pathways” and the newly formed Queensland Independent Disability Advocacy Network (QIDAN).
The launch was attended by the Pathways staff, the 11 organisations who form QIDAN and representatives from organisations who regularly provide support to people with disability.
During his speech, Minister Crawford noted:
“Every single day, Queenslanders with disability, their families, their carers, reach out to advocacy services somehow to help them speak out, understand their rights, and overcome barriers. Our government is proud to support organisations, who help others. We’ve provided $5.9m to fund 11 organisations across the State to help deliver disability advocacy support services. I am very pleased to announce QAI as our inaugural principal advocate [of the Queensland Independent Disability Advocacy Network]. QAI will operate a central hub called Pathways. Pathways will operate state-wide centralised 1800 phone service. It will help Queenslanders with disability, it will help their families, it will help their friends and their carers to find the advocacy services that their particular needs and location.”
Matilda Alexander, the CEO of Queensland Advocacy for Inclusion, the organisation which is operating Pathways and chairing QIDAN noted during her speech:
“Disability advocates assist people with disability to protect their rights, including accessing mainstream services and working towards attitudinal, legal, and systemic changes. It is important to fund independent disability advocacy so it can remain independent of service providers and free from conflicts of interest. This separation and independence is critical to making Queensland more inclusive and to continuing to advance the rights of people with disability.”
People with disability, their family, friends and carers can call Pathways to receive information and referral support in relation to individual disability advocacy Monday to Friday 9.00am – 5.00pm.