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Message from the Acting Chair


Dear Members and Colleagues

Last week we bade a very fond farewell to our friend and colleague Sue Salthouse at a State Memorial Service held at the National Gallery of Australia. You can watch it at

The Royal Commission into Violence, Abuse, Neglect and Exploitation of People with Disability has resumed public hearings. This week, it is conducting a hearing into the experiences of people with disability during the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, which you can watch on the Royal Commission website. This is an important focus, but listening to difficult experiences can be upsetting. If  you need to talk to someone, you can call Blue Knot Foundation‘s national hotline on 1800 421 468 for free, specialist counselling, or call the National Relay Service on 133 677 and give 02 6146 1468 as the number you want to call.

Universal design benefits everyone. However, the Australian Building Codes Board has recently issued a Consultation Regulatory Impact Assessment that concludes standards for accessible housing should remain voluntary as the cost of regulating to set compulsory standards would exceed the benefits. To counter this view, and identify benefits to people with disability of compulsory minimum housing access standards, the Melbourne Disability Institute is conducting an urgent survey of adults with any mobility limitation. Until 26 August you can have your say here.

Stay safe.

Kerry Marshall

Acting Chair, WWDACT