Deaf Australia NewsUpdates

CEO Update 28 May 2024


Hello, I’m Shirley and I’m the Acting CEO of Deaf Australia.

Here is another video update:

We, (Deaf Australia) are very thankful to the members of the Deaf community for all the questions you have raised, your concerns and comments. There has been lots of messages received and contact made with us which is amazing. This really shows how keen you are to support Deaf Australia and we appreciate this very much. It is very motivating for members of the Deaf Australia Board to know that you are all willing to support us and no matter what happens into the future, I’m sure we will work our way through the issues we are now facing.

We know you are keen to provide practical support and here are some ideas. You can write letters to the Government or offer to volunteer to support the services of Deaf Australia as an organisation. You can donate money or help in fundraising efforts - there are many ways that you can assist.

We have a few happenings this week. We will be meeting with different people including AFDO, the Department of Social Services (DSS) and with Minister Rishworth. There will be lots of discussion to work out the best plan going forward. We will then provide another update either at the end of this week or early next week. This will talk about various ways to collaborate. So, thank you.

I also want to acknowledge representatives of other community organisations who have sent funding applications to the Government and have also been unsuccessful in getting funding. I want to recognise the difficult times that you are also facing.

There are other issues that I want to let you know about and to clarify a few things:

You will remember that I announced that our funding applications to the Government were not successful however that does not mean that Deaf Australia will close. We will continue to work very hard but there will be limits to what we can do based on our resources. This may mean that we are slower to respond and not act as quickly as we have before. I really want to clarify that first of all.

I am also aware that some people in the Deaf community are confused about how Government funding systems work. People think that other organisations are to blame and have taken over the area and this has led to the less-than-ideal funding situation for Deaf Australia. This is NOT correct. This is not their responsibility or their fault. This situation relates to the Government. The Government is responsible for accepting funding submissions or representations from many organisations and community groups throughout Australia. There are hundreds of grant applications received by the Government, these are reviewed and then funding given out to organisations. Government representatives reviewing the applications may not fully understand the issues faced by disability or CALD (Culturally and Linguistically Diverse) groups, the gaps and barriers experienced. They may not fully understand the impacts. Once the funding applications are received, the Government may not see deaf people as important which has major effects.

Service providers do not control the area, that is a totally separate issue. It is about the Government system not being the best.

We will now work on resolving these issues, so we are well prepared for the next government funding round next year.

I really want to acknowledge the service providers who have done so much to support us with projects and events. Examples include deaf services such as Deaf Connect and Expression Australia, two of the main services nationally and I want to say again that in no way is it their fault that Deaf Australia is in this situation. I hope that makes everything clear.

We are giving this lots of thought and hopefully I will be able to provide more information to everyone about how we can better work with the system. We may organise a webinar or a Q and A session so that we can have more discussion with you all. We would be happy to do this so maybe let me know if you would be interested.

That is the summary of the current situation and I want to thank you again for your support. You can be sure that in the coming weeks, we will be rolling up our sleeves and working hard to make sure that Deaf Australia continues into the future. We will also continue to engage with the Deaf community and communicate the next actions going forward. Once we have updates on issues to share, we will let you know, both this week and in the coming week.

Again, thank you all for taking the time to watch this video. Please share this video with your friends, family, work colleagues and community members far and wide. We see it as very important that Deaf Australia represents all of you in the community well.

Thank you.

Visual description

Shirley has black hair, which is tied back, is wearing a maroon-coloured cable-knit jumper and is standing in front of a cream background. There is text on the image providing context to the scene, which reads "CEO Update 28 May 2024" on the top left, and "Hello I'm Shirley and I'm the Acting CEO of Deaf Australia" at the bottom of the image. The overall impression is of a warm and personable setting likely intended for an online audience.

Skip to content