Australia’s Disability Strategy 2021–2031 (the Strategy) is a national framework that all governments in Australia have signed up to. It sets out a plan for continuing to improve the lives of people with disability in Australia over the next ten years. The Strategy replaces and builds on the first National Disability Strategy 2010–2020.

The Strategy supports Australia’s commitment under the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities which entered into force in Australia in 2008. It is based on the social model of disability, recognizing that attitudes, practices and structures can be disabling and act as barriers preventing people from full and effective participation in society on an equal basis with others.

The Strategy also recognises that all levels of government continue to play a role in providing mainstream and targeted services, supports and infrastructure systems to people with disability. Governments have obligations to provide services to all citizens and are responsible for making reasonable adjustments to accommodate people with disability so they can access and use those systems and services.

The Strategy was developed by Australian, state, territory and local governments, through more than two years of engagement with people with disability, their families and carers.

The outcomes and recommendations from several reviews and evaluations of the National Disability Strategy 2010–2020 has also informed the development of this Strategy.

The Royal Commission into Violence, Abuse, Neglect and Exploitation of People with Disability and the work of the Commission has also shaped the development of this Strategy and will shape future updates to the Strategy. Governments have committed to reviewing the Strategy upon the release of the Commission’s final report.

The Strategy has seven Outcome Areas. These are the areas people with disability said need to improve. The Outcome Areas are:

Each outcome area is supported by a targeted action plan which focusses on a period of one to three years to achieve specific deliverables which improve outcomes for people with disability. The action plans are a series of targeted and coordinated actions that have been agreed upon by governments.


The Strategy has a strong governance model to guide implementation and decision making.

The model helps governments work together, and work with people with disability in a coordinated way to achieve the goals of the strategy. It also identifies and prioritises areas of focus and reports on the progress made to improve the lives of people with a disability. \

Some of the Governance mechanisms include:

Outcomes Framework

The Strategy has an outcomes framework which measures, tracks and reports on outcomes for people with disability. This includes measuring the contribution key systems such as healthcare, housing, education and employment are making to achieve outcomes. It also tracks the changes in outcomes happening over time for people with disability.

The annual Outcomes Framework reports and dashboard (an interactive online reporting tool) show what progress is being made against each Policy Priority in the Strategy. Where data is available, information is disaggregated to provide detail on what progress is being made for specific cohorts of people with disability.

Improving the Data

Governments have committed to collecting and sharing relevant data to support effective monitoring and reporting of outcomes for people with disability in order to drive change. Australian state and territory data, for both disability-specific and mainstream service systems, will be essential for measuring outcomes and tracking the degree of change.

Improving data to track progress against the Outcomes Framework will also support evaluations and policy development, and will lead to improved outcomes for people with disability.

Reporting under the Strategy

All levels of government have committed to deliver better reporting about outcomes for people with disability. Reporting under the Strategy will be an important input to reports developed to meet Australia’s reporting obligations under the UN CRPD, and will support Australia in continuing to strengthen its response to ensure the equal rights of people with disability in line with the UN CRPD.

Reporting will capture available information from Australian Government agencies, state, territory and local governments, the Australian Human Rights Commission, state and territory human rights/anti-discrimination bodies and the National Disability Insurance Agency (NDIA). It will also capture information from people with disability, Disability Representative Organisations and the Strategy’s Advisory Council (the Advisory Council).

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