Kymberly Martin

Research paper highlights disability legislation

A research paper listing key elements of legislation affecting people with disability was recently issued by the Royal Commission.  Prepared by the Australian Government Solicitor [AGS], the report covers State, Territory and Commonwealth laws that apply specifically to people with disability, as well as laws which apply differentially to people with disability.


It includes legislation covering the National Disability Insurance Scheme, disability services such as housing, building accessibility and transport, Commonwealth Government payments, employment, health, civil justice, criminal justice and discrimination.

The section on discrimination deals with laws that make it unlawful to discriminate on the ground of ‘disability’ or, in some jurisdictions, ‘impairment’.

In its review of health laws, the AGS report focuses on key areas of law governing the medical treatment of people with disability, including the provision of medical treatment to those who are assessed as not having the capacity to consent to such treatment. It also looks at the provision of compulsory treatment under State and Territory mental health legislation, and the authorisation and use of restrictive practices in relation to people with disability.


The quality and safeguards laws section covers some key safeguards to ensure that quality is maintained in the provision of services to people with disability, and that rights of people with disability are maintained.

The report which is available of the DRC’s website, has been designed to assist the Royal Commission by providing a descriptive overview of the legislation and its framework.