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4704.0 - The Health and Welfare of Australia's Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples, Oct 2010  
Latest ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 17/02/2011  Final
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Contents >> Disability >> Disability and social inclusion


DISABILITY: DISABILITY AND SOCIAL INCLUSION
This article is part of a comprehensive series released as The Health and Welfare of Australia's Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples.


KEY MESSAGES
  • 36% of people with a disability had problems accessing services, such as doctors, hospitals or employment services, compared with 24% of those without a disability.
  • One in three (32%) Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander adults with a disability had experienced discrimination in the previous 12 months, compared with one in five adults without a disability (22%).

This topic presents results from the 2008 National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Social Survey (NATSISS), which provides the most recent data on disability and family and community characteristics for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people. This topic covers:


SOCIAL PARTICIPATION

Disability status was not associated with participation in selected social activities/events in 2008. Around two-thirds (62%) of those with a disability or long-term health condition had been involved in cultural events, ceremonies or organisations in the last 12 months, similar to the rate for those without a disability (64%). Likewise, there was no difference in the proportion who were able to have a frequent say on community issues (both 25%). Nearly all people, regardless of their disability status, had contact with friends or relatives at least once a week (93% with a disability and 95% without a disability) and could get support from someone outside their household in a time of crisis (87% and 91% respectively).


ACCESS TO SERVICES

In 2008, one-third (36%) of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people with a disability or long-term health condition had problems accessing services, such as doctors, hospitals or employment services, compared with 24% of those without a disability. Rates were particularly high in remote areas, where almost half (46%) of people with a disability had problems accessing services. The most common types of problems encountered by people with disabilities included long waiting times or services not available at the time required (18%) and insufficient services in the local area (14%) — both of which were higher than the corresponding rate for people without a disability (11% and 9% respectively). People with a disability were also more likely than those without a disability to experience problems with cost of services and with transport/distance to services (graph 5.1)

5.1 DISABILITY STATUS(a) BY TYPES OF PROBLEMS ACCESSING SERVICES, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people aged 15 years and over—2008
Graph: Disability status by types of problems accessing services, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people aged 15 years and over—2008
(a) As determined by the common (remote + non-remote) criteria.
(b) Difference between has a disability and no disability is not statistically significant.
Source: 2008 National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Social Survey. These estimates are also available for download in the Disability datacube.


DISCRIMINATION

In 2008, one-third (32%) of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander adults with a disability or long-term health condition had experienced discrimination in the previous 12 months (Endnote 1). This compared with around one in five adults without a disability (22%). Rates of discrimination were particularly high for those who had a psychological disability (44%) or an intellectual disability (38%). The most common places or situations in which people with disabilities experienced discrimination were from police, security or legal personnel (13%), members of the public (13%) or when at work or applying for work (9%). People with a disability were more likely than those without a disability to experience discrimination in these situations, as well as in government, health and educational settings (graph 5.2).

5.2 DISABILITY STATUS(a) BY SITUATIONS WHERE EXPERIENCED DISCRIMINATION, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people aged 15 years and over—2008
Graph: Disability status by situations where experienced discrimination, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people aged 15 years and over—2008
(a) As determined by the common (remote + non-remote) criteria.
Source: 2008 National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Social Survey. These estimates are also available for download in the Disability datacube.


HOUSING

There was little variation in the housing circumstances of people with and without a disability in 2008. However, those with a profound or severe core activity limitation were less likely than those without a disability to own their own home (23% compared with 31% ) and were more likely to be renting, particularly from a State or Territory housing authority (30% compared with 21%). They were also slightly more likely to live in dwellings with at least one faulty household facility (19% compared with 12% ).


ENDNOTES

1. In the 2008 NATSISS, the term 'discrimination' refers only to self-reported situations or places in which the respondent received unfair treatment as a result of being Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander.



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