0

Jamie-Lee Dwyer: An Open Letter To The Prime Minister

Dear Mr Scott Morrison,

I’m writing to you as the 30th Prime Minister of Australia because I want to know how you’re planning on improving the lives of young Australians with high-needs disability.

As a 28-year-old with a rare neuro-degenerative condition, it has been my experience that in our inclusive country living with a progressive disability is not the end of the world. Disability isn’t something anyone chooses, but it’s amazing how adaptive and resilient the human body can be in the right environment.

I have learnt to live with my disability and to cope with it. The greatest obstacle I face every day comes not from my physical limitations but in the form of other people’s ignorance.

I have done and still regularly do a lot of things that surprise most people, because most people don’t expect a whole lot from anyone with a high-needs disability. One of the reasons it’s not so hard to live with a high-needs disability anymore is because of the new technology and equipment available to aide people who need it.

It’s definitely about time perceptions regarding disability started to reflect the times we’re living in.

One of the biggest issues facing young Australians with high-needs disability is age-appropriate housing that meets individual needs. Just because I have a condition that’s beyond my control I don’t think I should have to give up my independence, privacy, or relinquish my dignity.

Offering young Australian’s with high-needs disability a choice in how they want to live their life is what Youngcare offers their residents, and I believe it should be the standard of care for all high-needs disability housing nationwide.

I’ve spent some time in a share-house for high-needs disability which wasn’t run by Youngcare before I was lucky enough to be moved along with my sister into an apartment building run by them. It was without a doubt one of the best things that has ever happened to us.

To be treated like a real adult who isn’t defined by her disability is a feeling hard to describe when you’ve spent the last year being treated like a second-class citizen.

One of the most noticeable differences in Youngcares’ approach to care has been their open endorsement of integration not segregation. This is something that I feel is overlooked by a lot of care facilities. It is why I feel like I’m living in my own home now, whereas when I was at the other residence last year, I felt like I was staying in a workplace.

I was so relieved to be welcomed into Youngcare’s embrace seven months ago, but I cannot ignore the experience I had last year. The people I met who never had the support system like my sister and I did, the ones who never got the chance to be anything other than what society told them they could be.

My sister and I were recently given the opportunity to become Youngcare ambassadors, and we see it as a chance to speak on behalf of young Australians with high-needs disability.

No-one should be forced to live according to someone else’s rules because of their disability. In my experience it’s the little things like choice and privacy that make a real difference to the outlook of a person with a high-needs disability.

Once upon a time I let people tell me what I could or couldn’t achieve because of my condition, I wish I could tell you I never let it stop me from being me, but it did. During my darkest moments it was other people who encouraged me to believe in myself, and who ultimately made me the woman I am today. They are the reason why I know perceptions surrounding disability will change.

As the Prime Minister of Australia I ask you to lead this country to a better understanding of disability, because as a country we’re better than the ignorance I’ve encountered.

Please know that my sister and I are more than willing to talk with you on a national level, we would love to help you tackle improving lives of young Australians with high-needs disability.

Jamie-Lee

SHARE THIS!
News you might like:
2 August 2017 Youngcare explores options as NSW project ends Youngcare’s partnership with St. Vincent’s Australia to deliver high care housing ...
30 August 2016 National not-for-profit organisation Youngcare today announced the appointment of new Chief Executive Officer Anthony Ryan. Mr ...
24 July 2017 A message from our partners at Vincents At VINCENTS one of our core values is to actively build a company environment that contributes ...
8 March 2017 Sylvia Jeffreys joins the Youngcare crusade January not only marked the start to an exciting new year, but the announcement of ...
8 March 2017 Albany Creek update We are thrilled to announce that the Youngcare and MS Queensland Apartments at Albany Creek are on track to be a ...
1 February 2017 Familiar face adds voice to national issue This week, 700,000 young people with high care needs across the country have been given a ...
8 March 2017 CEO message Two months into my new role at Youngcare, it’s fantastic to be writing for my first Y News! There are exciting times ...
The National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) has changed the disability sector forever. For the first time in Australian history, young people with ...
24 July 2017 Out and about International Women’s Day was a great success celebrating women and raising funds for Youngcare. Hosted by the ...
18 July 2017 The Today Show aired Todd and Kat's story 'I never thought I’d find somebody like her': How gaining independence led a young man ...
Categories
Archives

Are you a young person seeking help?

What we do

GET INFO

Get Help

GET INFO

Contact Us

GET INFO

A huge thanks to our supporters 

Taylor Byrne
Sage
Bunnamagoo
Network First
Eureka Landscaping
AWIC - Awesome Women In Construction
Flight Centre Foundation
Vantage Performance
MMO Interiors
Vuly
Bruce Lynton
Servcorp
Collins Food
LAS logo
Vincents
Thrifty
Pilot
Women's Weekly
De Luca Corp
Audio Visual Elements
IOR Petroleum
Motorola Solutions
Nova
MS Queensland
The Co Group
ALS Global
Vertica Capital
Brisbane Airport
Merlo
Media Merchants
Aurora Adventures
EY
Channel Nine
Shine Lawyers
Style
CV Services
National Storage
Hand Heart Pocket
MTAQ
ANZ
Braggs Signs
Cakes & Sh!t
Savills
Knight Frank
Forte Catering
McCabe Curwood
Tatts Group
Birdsville Roadhouse
Birdsville Social Club
Morgans
ALS
Doug Hall Foundation
CUB
Hopgood Ganim
Canvas Art Factory
Cutting Edge
Select AV
Just Cause Bunch
Wolff Group
Tattersalls Club
Rivergum Homes
QIC
One Harvest - love beats
Care Tech
Queensland Rail
Batercard
Neals
HSF
Birdsville Hotel
J W Bell & Associates
Une Parkinson Foundation
Just Photography
Good2give
BDO
Spot Productinons
Brighton Homes
Betta Home Living
Ozdent
Story Bride Hotel
Tradelink
Triffid
Clark Real Estate
Broncos Charity Fund
Carbone
Sleepy's
FKG
Coates
MGD Private
Queensland Government
Keystone
DAE
Skip to content