Our free confidential advocacy service promotes and protects the rights of people with disability and those who identify as having a mental health issue in the Perth metro area. Your Say is funded through the National Disability Advocacy Program.
Uniting Your Say provided formal advocacy for 48 people with disability throughout the year. Informal advice and advocacy was provided to a further 69 people with disability, along with family, friends and allied health professionals.
We also provided advocacy services to 7 prisoners at various prisons around Perth as part of our Prison Advocacy Pilot in early 2020.
Alison has significant mental health challenges and was referred to Your Say by her support worker at a local community services organisation. She needed help with an appeal when her Disability Support Pension (DSP) claim was rejected.
Our advocate supported Alison to get legal advice through Legal Aid WA and helped facilitate the gathering of evidence from her GP, specialists and allied health professionals.
Managing the expectations of the person being assisted is crucial for an advocate. Despite legal advice that Alison’s appeal was unlikely to be successful, we continued to advocate for Alison as she felt it was important that she tell her story in the hope that it could help someone else in a similar position.
After multiple case conferences and hearings at the Administrative Appeals Tribunal, Alison asked our advocate to present the case on her behalf as she was finding the process difficult to deal with.
The appeal was successful, and Alison was granted the DSP backdated for 2 years. With her debts paid off and her mortgage under control, Alison could live her life with far less financial stress – something she says she couldn’t have done without Your Say.