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Experiences of people with disability from CaLD communities the focus of next Royal Commission hearing

Starting on 24 October 2022 the Disability Royal Commission will hold its twenty-ninth public hearing in Melbourne to examine the experiences of violence against, abuse, neglect and exploitation of people with disability from culturally and linguistically diverse (CaLD) communities. This includes people from the d/Deaf, Deafblind and hard of hearing community who identify as CaLD.

Australia’s Race Discrimination Commissioner, Chin Tan, will be one of several witnesses to give evidence at the hearing, which will be held over five days.

Mr Tan will talk about initiatives to combat racism and strategies to promote inclusion of people with disability from multicultural communities.

The first two days will focus on the experiences of the Deaf community; d/Deaf, Deafblind and hard of hearing people will share their experiences.

We will hear about the importance of Auslan and Deaf identity. Deaf people will share their experiences of acquiring language and the impact of being deprived of language.

Over the following three days, we will hear evidence from people with disability from other CaLD backgrounds.

The hearing will explore:

  • different cultural attitudes and understanding of disability

  • intersectionality[1] and identity

  • barriers when accessing and interacting with systems and services in Australia.

Australian Government representatives will give evidence about participation in the National Disability Insurance Scheme and access to disability supports and services for migrants and people with disability from CaLD communities.

CaLD Senior Advisor to the Royal Commission Dr Dinesh Palipana OAM said staff have worked closely with Deaf and CaLD disability representative organisations to prepare for the hearing.

‘The hearing will take a person-centred approach and will help the wider public better understand the experiences of people with disability from different cultural backgrounds.

‘It’s an important opportunity to expose the systemic and social barriers that contribute to violence, abuse, neglect and exploitation of people with disability from CaLD communities – and to explore critical issues around identity and communication.’

The hearing will be held at the Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre, 1 Convention Centre Place, South Wharf from 24 to 28 October 2022, and is open to the public to attend.

Journalists wishing to cover the hearing should notify the Royal Commission media team to ensure access to the media room and/or relevant information including schedules and live transcripts.

Please direct all inquiries to the Royal Commission Media team on 0436 841 166 or


[1] The term ‘intersectionality’ refers to a way of understanding a person with disability’s unique experience of multi-layered and intersecting discrimination and disadvantage based on their personal characteristics. These characteristics can include age, sex, gender, gender identity, sexual orientation, intersex status, ethnic origin or race, including the particular situation of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people with disability and culturally and linguistically diverse people with disability.

Culturally and linguistically diverse item list