Families who contact ACD share a common desire to see their children participate in all aspects of life.
On this page:
- How we can support you
- What type of Advocacy Support does ACD provide
- Your Privacy, Rights and Feedback
- How to contact ACD Support
- If you need a language interpreter
- For people who are deaf or have a hearing or speech impairment
- Useful links
How we can support you
Our Support Workers can listen, understand and provide you with important information about:
- Access to services
- Support to participate in the community
- Early childhood
- Disability supports
Support focuses on empowering you to take steps towards achieving positive outcomes for your child and family.
What type of Advocacy Support does ACD provide?
It is common for parents to act as advocates for their child with a disability in many situations even though they might not recognise it as advocacy.
An advocate can be someone who can support, assist or represent another person to achieve a positive outcome in a difficult situation or meeting.
Advocacy* is when you, or others, stand up for your rights or the rights of your child with a disability or, in some cases a group of people.
ACD Support enables you to better advocate for your child and family.
Sometimes families and carers just need information about processes or their rights and then they can advocate for themselves.
We provide a level of support and information so that families or carers are more able to stand up for their child and their rights.
We recognize that some families and carers might require additional support to fully participate in a meeting and represent their child’s needs. We can discuss how this might be achieved when you contact us.
How do we do this?
We will talk to you about your situation and your advocacy options. We do this to make sure that you have choices about the most appropriate advocacy service for your needs. We provide support by assisting you to understand about your right to make decisions about your child with a disability or to have input to decision making, to speak out for yourself or to have your opinion heard so that you are respected and treated fairly. This would include your right to have an advocate.
We would help you to develop an individual advocacy action plan where you identify the issue for your child with a disability or family, set goals, strategies and possible actions to take. We might work with you on some actions and an agreed individual advocacy action plan might include some of the shared actions below:
- Assist you to understand and resolve problems or complaints ;
- Assist you to advocate for yourself
- We might speak to others on your behalf;
- Support you with writing a letter of complaint;
- Sit beside you in meetings to support you in the decisions you want to make;
- Provide information about other services that may be of assistance to you;
- Provide referral support to other advocacy services.
Your Privacy, Rights and Feedback
ACD recognises that our staff and those that seek our support both hold rights and responsibilities which will ensure our joint interaction is beneficial.
We welcome your suggestions and feedback and we take complaints seriously. To provide any comments, feedback or suggestions regarding the service we provide, please visit our feedback/complaints page.
How to contact ACD Support
ACD Support Line
Phone 03 9880 7000 or 1800 654 013 (rural callers)
Monday to Friday 9.00am to 5.00pm
If you need a language interpreter
Phone TIS National on 13 14 50. Tell the operator your preferred language and that you want to speak to the Association for Children with a Disability (ACD) on 03 9880 7000.
For people who are deaf or have a hearing or speech impairment
People who are deaf or have a hearing or speech impairment can contact us via the National Relay Service (NRS).
24 hour relay call numbers
TTY/Voice 13 36 77
Speak & Listen (SSR) 1300 555 727
For more information go to the NRS web site www.relayservice.com.au
- Disability Advocacy Resources Unit – Where to find other disability advocacy organisations in Victoria
- The Office of Professional Practice – The Office works in partnership with professionals and organisations to maximise people’s quality of life, promote people’s development and safeguard their rights.
- The Office of the Disability Services Commissioner – an independent statutory body that works with people with a disability and disability services to resolve complaints.
- It’s OK to complain – brochure outlining the role of the Commissioner, who can complain and what a complaint to the Commissioner can be about.
- The Department of Health and Human Services -Victoria
- NDIS – The National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) is a new way of providing community linking and individualised support for people with permanent and significant disability, their families and carers.
- NDIS Access Checklist – For information on whether your child meets the NDIS access requirements.
- Victorian Charter of Human Rights – The Charter of Human Rights and Responsibilities Act 2006 (the Charter) is a Victorian law that sets out the basic rights, freedoms and responsibilities of all people in Victoria. It is about the relationship between government and the people it serves.
- The Victorian Ombudsman – When you make a complaint to the Ombudsman about a government action or decision, she can look into it, tell you what occurred, and whether it was reasonable or unreasonable.
- Department of Social Services: Models of disability advocacy – Information about other types of advocacy can be found here: