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A Message from WDV CEO Leah van Poppel
It's a pretty spooky time of year right now. Not because of Halloween ... it's AGM season! Don't worry, we haven't got any skeletons hidden away. We're really excited to invite you to our AGM this year, which will be wholly online. It's a great opportunity to come along and hear about what we've been up to over the past year and to celebrate the strength women with disabilities have when we work together. So please join us - check out the details below.

Of course AGM time also means you have the chance to join our Board. WDV is run by and for women with disabilities, and our Board is no exception. Your voice matters to us regardless of how you choose to express it. If you have an interest in shaping what we do and how we do it, please take a look at the Board nomination form and thinking about putting your name forward. We know this can sometimes seem like a daunting process, so please get in touch if you'd like to know more.

Speaking of knowing more, we're also running some exciting training over the next while. If you're working with other women with disabilities and you're keen to learn, book your place in soon - they go fast! And if that's not your thing, have a think about sharing your story and experiences - there are a couple of opportunities listed below.

But if you'd rather be outside catching up with someone in your 25km zone... we don't blame you! Enjoy the time with the people you love. 
WDV event: WDV Annual General Meeting

Our 2020 Annual General Meeting is approaching.

Date: Tuesday 17 November 2020

Time: 12noon–1:30pm

For more information: contact or (03) 9286 7800.

Due to Coronavirus, the meeting will be WDV’s first online only AGM.

We are working hard to make sure the event is as accessible as possible, and you will be invited to give us your feedback after the event.

View the Save The Date Notice (Microsoft Word version)
Nominations for the WDV Board are now open
If you are a Full Member of WDV (a Victorian woman with disability)  this week you would have an information package so that you can vote for new members of the WDV Board

As a WDV Board Member, you will help to 

  • Ensure the good governance of the organisation
  • Set the strategic direction and high level policies of the organisation
  • Take legal responsibility for the organisation
  • Provide accountability to the organisation and the CEO
You are required to:
  • Attend Board meetings every 2 months, and 1 or 2 subcommittee meetings every other month 
  • Read papers and contribute to discussions
View the Board Nomination Form (Microsoft Word version)

WDV training: A Right to Respect: Preventing Violence Against Women with Disabilities

Women and girls with disabilities are twice as likely to experience violence as those without disabilities.

This online workshop, aimed towards disability and social services workforces, will show how gender and disability inequality drives violence, and how you can prevent it.

The training will be delivered over three sessions:

· Session 1: Introduction to Prevention of Violence against Women with Disabilities

· Session 2: Drivers of Violence and Essential Actions

· Session 3: Managing Disclosures in a Prevention Context


Session 1: Thursday 29th October 2020

Session 2: Thursday 5th November 2020

Session 3: Thursday 12th November 2020

Time: 10:00am–1:00pm

Location: Online via Zoom (details will be provided upon registration)

Register: by Friday 30th October 2020

For more information: contact Olivia Franklin on or 0433 691 548

What you will learn

Session 1: Introduction to Prevention of Violence against Women with Disabilities

· How gender and disability inequality intersect to create disadvantage for women with disability

· Impacts of violence against women with disability

· Why gender inequity is a key driver of violence against women with disability

Session 2: Drivers of Violence and Essential Actions

· How our everyday actions and practice can contribute to violence against women with disability

· How gender and disability equitable practice can create change to end violence

· Strategies and tools to prevent violence against women with disability

Session 3: Managing Disclosures in a Prevention Context

· How primary prevention can inform the safe management of disclosures of violence against women with disability

· Referral services which can assist in responding to women with disability who experience violence.

The training is co-facilitated with an expert in violence prevention and a woman with a lived experience of disabilities. It is evidence-based, aligning with the latest research on disability, Our Watch’s Change the Story, and the Preventing Family Violence & Violence against Women Capability Framework.

Pricing (per participant, including GST)

Organisation (cost per person)

· $50 per session, or;

· 3 x session delivery $120

Individual/sole trader

· $25 per session, or;

· 3 x session delivery $65

View the Training Flyer (Microsoft Word version)

WDV training: AcceSex webinar

AcceSex (sexual and reproductive health & disability) is now going to be a live webinar for community and health workers across Victoria. In response to demand from around the state, we are thrilled to be able to open up this exciting and valuable training to more people.

Participants will learn how to create more inclusive, accessible reproductive and sexual healthcare services and community programs for women with disabilities.

More information and tickets via Eventbrite.

Day: Tuesday 27th October 2020

Time: 10:00 AM – 12 PM

Cost: $25

Register for AcceSex webinar
Participate in a focus group about disability service providers

The Australian Federation of Disability Organisations (AFDO) are seeking Expressions of Interest from people with disability who would like to be a part of a focus group.  The focus group aims to develop a broader understanding of what people with disabilities want when they are looking for a service provider – how they choose providers – or how they wish they could choose providers.

AFDO are currently supporting a research initiative by My Care Space, a national disability platform that connects people living with a disability, their families and carers with providers, services and vital information that enables them to live full and independent lives.

The selection criteria are as follows:

  • Person with disability 
  • Experience accessing or employing disability service providers 
  • Availability in late October and/or early November

Remuneration will be $60.00 per hour (inc GST) deposited onto a debit card (EFTPOS card), which will be posted after delivery of services. The sessions are anticipated to run for 90 minutes with a short break included.

Expressions of Interest close 26th October 2020.

Find out more about joining the AFDO focus group
DHHS release new Coronavirus resources

 With the latest easing of restrictions announced over the weekend, a few resources e.g. social bubble factsheets, will be updated.

Information for families with children with disability in accessible format
  Support for families with children with disability - Easy English (PDF)
  Support for families with children with disability - Plain English (Word)

Social bubbles and visitors to your home
 Single social bubbles – what people with disability should know - Plain English (Word)
 Social bubbles – information for carers - Plain English (Word) 

More information and resources for people with disability:

Coronavirus (COVID-19) resources for people with disability (Word)

  • Aboriginal people
  • LGBTIQA+ people
  • People from culturally and linguistically diverse communities
  • People in regional Victoria
  • Women.

Other resources in accessible format are being updated. These will be shared as soon as they become available.

Read the DHHS Coronavirus resources
Easing of Restrictions - Hydrotherapy and Allied Health

As of 11:59pm on October 18, hydrotherapy resumed between one health care professional and one client in indoor pools. No group sessions are permitted and there is a maximum of 10 people per pool at one time for hydrotherapy (five health care professionals and five clients). 

Allied health providers that are currently listed on the permitted work premises list are able to provide face to face routine care.

Read more on the DHHS website
Contribute to the WWDA blog

Are you a woman, girl or non-binary person with disability that lives in Australia and likes to write, make videos or podcasts? Women with Disabilities Australia (WWDA) want to hear from you! 

WWDA has previously published stories as part of Our Site, but know that disabled women, girls and non-binary people’s voices are often still missing from the mainstream media.

WWDA believes strongly in paying women and non-binary people for their work, and as such can offer $100+GST for blog posts. You must have an ABN to be able to invoice WWDA, otherwise, payment will be made in the form of a $100 gift card.

Blog Post Requirements

Blogs can be accepted in written form (approx. 750 words), audio or video format (approx. 3 mins). You are welcome to submit visual images with any written work, but this is not a requirement – WWDA can help support you if you would like accompanying images.

If your blog is in audio format, you will need to provide a transcript.

If your blog has visual elements, you will need to provide a written description.

If you need support to make a transcript or written description, please let us know.

How to Submit

If you want to provide commentary and have an idea for a blog post, you can email an expression of interest (EOI). Your EOI should be between 50-100 words outlining what you would like to write/talk about for the WWDA blog. There is no deadline and WWDA will accept submissions on a rolling basis.

WWDA strongly encourages submissions from Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people, other Black and Brown voices, people from refugee and migrant backgrounds, LGBTQIA people and people with intellectual disability. WWDA will be reserving space for these voices.

WWDA will only accept submissions from women, girls or non-binary people with disability who reside in Australia.

Email your blog idea
Free specialist LGBTQIA+ helpline

Switchboard Victoria have launched a free service for all Victorian LGBTIQA+ people, their friends and family during the COVID-19 crisis and beyond. Rainbow Door  is a specialist helpline which will provide people with information, advice and referral - supporting people of all ages and identities.

Some of the issue you may contact the helpline about may include suicidal thoughts, family and intimate partner violence (including elder abuse), issues with alcohol and other drugs, relationship issues, sexual assault, social isolation, mental health and wellbeing and access to relevant services including disability and support for older people.

Operating hours are 10am - 6pm every day

Phone: 1800 729 367 
SMS support: 0480 017 246 


Visit The Rainbow Door website
Thunderstorm Asthma Public Health Campaign
More than ever before, this year it is important to manage any hay fever or asthma symptoms, as these conditions can produce symptoms that are similar to COVID-19.

The epidemic thunderstorm asthma public health campaign aims to ensure that all Victorians, and in particular people with asthma and/or hay fever, are as prepared as they can be should another epidemic thunderstorm asthma event occur.

Here are some more useful links to help you get prepared.

Until 31 December, you can access the forecast via the VicEmergency websiteHealth.Vic website or the Melbourne Pollen website .

Visit the epidemic thunderstorm asthma public health campaign 

COVID Hardship Support Hotline

Good Shepherd Australia New Zealand was established to address the critical, contemporary issues facing women, girls and families. They are committed to tackling the significant issues of our time which adversely affect them. We aspire for all women, girls and families to be safe, well, strong and connected.

They're providing a free COVID Hardship Support Hotline to support those who have suffered the financial affects of COVID and help them navigate the often-complex service system.

If this applies to you, or someone you know, you can give them a call to chat about your options. In particular, they can give advice on deciding if a 'Household Relief Loan Without Interest' is right for you. 

The 'Household Relief Loan Without Interest' is a loan without interest of up to $3,000, where you only pay back what you borrow and repayments can be made for up to 24 months. It's designed to help cover costs such as rent and utility bills. 

Call the COVID Hardship Support hotline on 1300 121 130.
Find out more about Household Relief Loan Without Interest
Accessibility of Train Services Audit

Victorian State disability discrimination laws require all tram stops to comply with accessible public transport standards by December 2022, and all trams to be fully compliant by December 2032.
But a report handed down last week by Auditor General, Andrew Greaves says the Department of Transport (DoT) hasn’t met legislated targets for accessible tram infrastructure and there is “no realistic prospect” that it will be able to comply with the 2022 deadline.
The audit found that only 27% of Victoria’s tram stops are level access and only 38% of the tram fleet is low floor.
This means that 15 per cent of services have a low-floor tram that stops at at a level access stop, which is needed to make trams accessible for people with disability, including people who use a wheelchairs or are vision impaired.

You can  find out more about the "Transport For All" campaign that the Disability Resources Centre is running, to campaign for accessible public transport in Victoria at:

Read more about the Accessibility Audit
Australian Council for the Arts Discussion Series
The Australian Council for the Arts are hosting a series of targeted consultation sessions over the coming weeks. 

Each session will run for two hours and will be facilitated by an independent facilitator. Australia Council staff will join each session. You are invited to share your audio and video during the session to contribute to the discussion.

Each session will be limited to between 10-20 participants. There will be 38 sessions, including 18 general sessions and 20 sessions for participants who would like to be in groups with people who identify in a similar way, including:

  • First Nations
  • Culturally and/or linguistically diverse (CALD)
  • Disabled
  • d/Deaf
  • Gender diverse.

Some of the sessions indicated will include an Auslan interpreter and live captioning. Please contact if you have specific access needs.

Find out more about these consultation sessions

News and Comments

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