Disability services should respect your rights. You have rights when you communicate with or use disability services. These rights are protected by law called the Disability Act, the Disability Discrimination Act, and other laws too.
The main thing to remember is that when you use disability services, you have the same rights as other people in the community. This means that you should be treated the same way other people are treated. This might include:
- People must be polite to you, and not be rude to you. They should show you the same respect that they show other people. This means they should not ignore you, laugh at you, or treat you like you’re not important.
- They must listen to you, even if they find it difficult to understand you. They should work with you to find a way to understand you. What you have to say is just as important as what other people have to say.
- They must respect your wishes. You can say no to things they want you to do, or things they want to do to you. You have these choices just like other people in the community.
- They must obey the law when they deal with you, just like everybody else. For example, they should not steal from you, hurt you, say things about you that aren’t true, or tell other people your private information.
These rights are a general guide for how disability services should treat you. You also have other rights that are more specific. We have created a list of these rights.
If you think a disability service is treating you badly or not respecting your rights, you have a right to complain. You can complain to the Disability Services Commissioner. An advocate can help you do this.