International Day of Persons with Disabilities in Freo

Yesterday 3 December 2013 was International Day of Persons with Disabilities with the theme: “Break Barriers, Open Doors: for an inclusive society and development for all”. There were some good events in Freo to mark the day.

The new and very funky owners of Don Tapa container restaurant on Victoria Quay hosted (with Fremantle Ports) a great afternoon. The Outback Academy Red Dust Heelers Wheelchair Basketball Team  and members of the Australian Paralympics Basketball Teams taught me a little wheelchair basketball which was fun.

In the evening the Moores Building hosted Rocky Bay’s Smudgeries RecConnect Art Exhibiton with great art done by people with disability. Well worth a look.

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About Mayor of Fremantle Brad Pettitt's blog
City of Fremantle Mayor

5 Responses to International Day of Persons with Disabilities in Freo

  1. Norman Erickson says:

    How come I knew nothing about these events??? I DID read about this yesterday after the fact…didn’t know about the event at The Moore’s at all…until I just read this. 😦

  2. Indya Cullen says:

    Dear Mr Pettitt,

    We are in grade four at Fremantle primary school. We had to pick a Fremantle problem for a school project and we picked the Fremantle Dockers going to Cockburn. We were wondering if you could answer two questions for us please.

    1. Will you stop the Cockburn mayor from taking the Dockers?
    2. What’s going to happen to the Fremantle field?

    from
    Indya and Ceili

    • Indya and Ceili
      Thanks for your questions.
      I’d love the Freo Dockers to stay in Freo but that is their choice based not Fremantle Council’s. I don’t have the power to stop them but I think the grand final showed where the Docker’s heart is!

      If the Docker’s go then the field will be used by South Fremantle football club and other community organisations.

      Cheers. Brad.

  3. dianaryan says:

    Let me see if I’ve got this right, Brad – as relates to people with disabilities you are heralding two events (1) munchies and a quick basketball game/photo op of two politicians in wheelchairs for 5 seconds, and (2) an art exhibition later on in the day…. spending equally as much time flogging the locations/businesses where these events were held….

    Yet apart from this there is no sign how “Break[ing] Barriers, Open[ing] Doors: for an inclusive society and development for all” is going to happen, 1000 years on, it seems, since the first call went out for economic emancipation for the disabled.

    (Here’s the tip: nobody hold their breath expecting it from the much, much delayed NDIS)

    Putting aside for a minute that minimalist activities such as the above, offered up as some of kind of substitute for real change, is rolled out regularly enough to qualify for the Guinness Book of Records – what can YOU offer this last marginalised category of persons in our community?

    I heard that the City of Freo entered in to some sort of arrangement with an agency to employ people with disabilities. Is that true? How has this gone? Was this along the commonly taken route of employing persons with intellectual challenges to work with garden crews – or has the City chosen to elevate from that, taking Melissa Parke’s extraordinary lead as a sign much more is possible?

    This only ends when it ends, Brad. You made a promise, once, you would make sure things changed.

    • While we are doing our best I agree there is lots more to be done.
      While it is easy to mock the more symbolic parts of the day I really got the sense it mattered and was valued to those involved at both events.
      These events are of course not enough alone and, as you mention, employment and infrastructure are vital. I am proud of initiatives like the minimum quota we have for aboriginal employment and the new new disability access lanes at the revamped Freo pool as steps in the right direction.
      The steps in the right direction doesn’t means it “ends” as you put it but the journey towards equality is important nevertheless.

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