Closing the gap between rhetoric and reality

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Kurt Fearnley, former Paralympian & host of ABC's OnePlusOne will guide an expert panel on the events of the last 2 years, and what's ahead

About this event

About this event

A global pandemic, a delayed vaccine rollout, a Royal Commission, major changes to the National Disability Insurance Scheme - to say that the last couple of years have been challenging for people with disability and their families would be something of an understatement.

So now at the end of another difficult year, it’s a good time to look back and reflect about the challenges we have faced and what might be just around the corner. More importantly, what we think should come next.

Kurt Fearnley, former Paralympian and well known host of ABCTV's One Plus One, will guide us through a discussion with expert panellists who will look at the challenges of the last two years, and what they think lies ahead.

We'll talk about some of the lessons we can learn from the impact of the COVID19 pandemic on people with disability, including what needs to change so that people with disability are included in every stage of disaster and emergency planning and response. We will also look at the big changes ahead for the NDIS. While independent assessments may have been put on hold, there are many other areas where the NDIS is still failing to meet the needs of those it is supposed to support. What do we need to do to make sure the NDIS delivers on its promise to people with disability? How can we close the gap between rhetoric and reality? And with the new National Disability Strategy due to be released how can we get all levels of government to commit to change beyond the NDIS?

Our conversation will be kicked off by our fantastic panelists. But we also want to hear from you - so please join us as we ponder where we are, how on earth we got here - and where we want to be in the years ahead.


Kurt Fearnley, Host of ABCTV’s One Plus One


El Gibbs, disability advocate and author

Dougie Herd, disability advocate and CEO of Community Connections

Professor Anne Kavanagh, Chair, Disability and Health, Melbourne School of Population and Global Health

Damian Griffis, CEO of First Peoples Disability Network


AusLan and Live Captioning will be provided. If you have any additional accessibility requirements, please contact us at

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The Zoom link will be emailed to you the day before and the morning of the session.


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Organiser Melbourne Disability Institute

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