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Welcome to our eNews

This fortnightly email is to keep you updated on the work of Women with Disabilities Victoria, and updated on news related to our priority areas. Contributions to this eNews are welcome, email

In this Issue:  

WDV news - reviewing the year past and strategically planning into the future
WDV's annual report is now available online. It was released at our Annual General Meeting along with our Strategic Plan 2017-2020. The plan was developed through consultation with members and stakeholders. The plan confirms our commitment to our current priorities going into the future and changes that will come with implementation of the NDIS and Family Violence Royal Commission recommendations.

At the AGM full members, associate members, board members, staff and stakeholders joined together in acknowledging the year's achievements. Australia's Sex Discrimination Commissioner, Kate Jenkins, attended the AGM. She invited us to share what is important to us as women with disabilities to inform her work.

Colleen Furlanetto spoke candidly about her year as the 2015 Brenda Gabe Leadership Award winner. Our thanks to Helen Sykes and Future Leaders for the ongoing support of the award (stay tuned to the eNews for the announcement of 2017 nominations opening).

We would like to recognise the WDV board and Co-Chairs Ann-Marie Baker and Marija Groen for their work to make WDV a sustainable organisation lead by women with disabilities. We particularly would like to acknowledge the work of outgoing board member, Trudy Ryall, and welcome new board members, Hilary Fisher and Catherine Brooks. IMAGE BELOW: a photo montage of women at WDV's AGM.

New national council on disability and carers

The Australian Government has announced the new National Disability and Carers Advisory Council. The new Council brings together leaders from business and the disability and carer sectors to provide advice on policies and legislation.

Assistant Minister for Social Services and Disability Services, Jane Prentice said, “The Council will play an important role in helping to drive the implementation of the overarching National Disability Strategy 2010-20.

It will also look at reforms in disability employment and carer support, and the full roll-out of the NDIS, including the interfaces with mainstream services.

I will co-chair the Council with Ms Keran Howe, who is well respected as a strong advocate in the sector and who has lived experience,” she said.

The Council will meet formally at least twice a year and establish working groups and community consultations as needed.

Access to Justice for Women with Disabilities: Geelong event

The Barwon Hub Leadership Network of Women with Disabilities Victoria is pleased to invite you to a forum on access to justice. Speakers Include:

Victoria Legal Aid
Villamanta Disability Rights Legal Service
Rights Information and Advocacy Centre
Women with Disabilities Victoria
Powerful Parents Self Advocacy Group

Details: Friday November 25 2016 11am—2pm (includes networking lunch) at Deakin Cats Community Centre.

RSVP is essential for catering by 16/11/16 to

Lesley Hall Scholarship applications open

The Lesley Hall Arts and Disability Scholarship is an annual scholarship offered by Arts Access Victoria, recognising the power of the arts to influence social change.Applications close 18 November.

FREE Mock Job Interviews - ‘nail it’ with one-on-one interviews,  Mondays until Xmas  

Could you benefit from some real-life job interview practice? Is interview inexperience holding you back?  It’s sometimes hard to remember how challenging and intimidating job interviews can be. If you’ve had time out of the workforce, it can be a real barrier to getting back on track.

Sessions are available every Monday - Session 1: 1.30pm to 2.30pm or Session 2: 2.40pm to 3.40pm. Book now with WIRE.

Contact 9348 9416 (ext. 2) or email:

El Gibbs on the NDIS: change will only come when disability rights are front and centre

How can the NDIS get back on track? El Gibbs writes in part 1 and part 2 for Croakey.

Child protection review

Victoria Legal Aid's Child Protection Review Discussion and Options Paper was released for public comment up until 21 December 2016.

Celebrate human rights with a line up of great speakers

Maryanne Diamond and Greamme Innis join a the line up of distinguished speakers at a human rights oration in Melbourne on 7 December.

STAR Victoria Annual General Meeting, 30th November, 2016

STAR's AGM will be 12pm –2pm, 30th November, Hayden RaySmith Room, 4th Floor Ross House, 247 Flinders Lane Melbourne followed by a light lunch.

Guest Speakers are PROFESSOR RAJIV KHOSLA and DR. MEI-TAI(Debbie) CHU from the Research Centre for Computers, Communication and Social Innovation RECCSI- La Trobe University.

RSVP by Thursday 24th November is essential for catering purposes, Ph: 9650 2730, Email:
Dangerous Deeds advocacy exhibition in the West

The City of Maribyrnong invites you to attend the launch of Open Studios in the West and the Dangerous Deeds Exhibition. See the Facebook event

Dangerous Deeds is a screen based arts installation that presents a ‘snapshot’ of the Victorian disability movement. It presents unique perspectives on disability culture and insights into aspects of Victoria’s social and cultural history that are not well known. It is produced by SARU (Self Advocacy Resource Unit), DnD (Diversity and Disability) and stART Community Art Inc. The exhibition is fully accessible with all information captioned, audio described, text read and provided in Braille. Dangerous Deeds is a feature exhibition of Open Studios in the West.

Produced by the Maribyrnong City Council, Open Studios in the West offers a unique opportunity to explore the diverse range of artist's studios and galleries located in Melbourne's inner west. Now in its 9th year, the festival explores art behind the scenes and provides an unparalleled opportunity to visit the creative hubs of local artists, performers, collectives and designers, as well as a number of permanent gallery spaces.

Date: Thursday 24 November 2016
Time: 6.30 – 7:30pm
Location: VU at MetroWest - 138 Nicholson St, Footscray
Catering and refreshments will be provided.

RSVP by Monday 21 November.

The Women's Circus presents The Penelopiad by Margaret Atwood

This performance of The Peneopid is adapted and performed by Women’s Circus members as part of our landmark 25-year celebrations. This production of Atwood’s retelling of the myth of Penelope and her maids, hung by Odysseus upon his return from the Trojan War, will be presented at West Footscray’s historic Drill Hall – home to Women’s Circus from 22-27 November.

Let them know if there are any access requirements and note that our venue is fully wheelchair accessible. 

***Please note the production does contain content that may distress viewers. Themes of domestic and gendered violence and some staged violence against women. Recommended for ages 14+.****

Rally for paid leave for people experiencing domestic violence - Nov. 14 Melbourne

There’s an upcoming ACTU family and domestic violence leave test case before the Fair Work Commission, at which DV Vic is giving evidence. The case starts on 14 November and there’s a rally on the opening morning that you might be interested in attending to show your support for ten days of paid leave across all modern awards.
What: Rally to Support DFV Leave Test Case
When: Monday 14th November @8:45am-9:30am
Where: Fair Work Commission, 11 Exhibition St. Melbourne

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