Enable disabled people, family and whānau to thrive

Open letter

To: The Honourable Louise Upston, Minister for Disability Issues and Social Development and The Honourable Nicola Willis, Minister of Finance.

7th May 2024

Tēnā kōrua Minister Upston rāua ko Minister Willis.

We write as organisations representing disabled people, their families and whānau, disability support services, and the wider disability community.

We know that disabled people and those who love, support and care for us could be thriving right now. We could contribute to our communities in ways that work for us without fear of losing the income we need to support us.

But persistent underinvestment from successive Governments for disabled people and our wellbeing means many of us are spending precious energy just trying to keep our heads above water.

When others decide who is worthy of support and on what conditions, they often fail to recognise the extent to which health conditions, disabilities, cost of living pressures and employment-related barriers impact on our community.

When Government fails to resource our disability ministry enough to flexibly support our disabled community and whānau, we are funnelled towards poverty, stress, and isolation.

It doesn’t have to be this way.

We urge Government to:

There is a pressing need for Government to demonstrate that it values disabled people as key members of our community by ensuring that disabled people and their families and whānau have the resources they need to thrive.

With hope,

If your organisation would like to sign up to this open letter, fill in this form.

Disabled Persons Assembly NZ
Carers NZ
Continence NZ
End Ash Now
Child Poverty Action Group
Deaf Aotearoa
Public Housing Futures
NZ Disability Advisory Trust
My Life My Voice
People First NZ
Auckland Action Against Poverty
Blind Citizens NZ
Carers Alliance
Complex Care Group
Deaf Blind Association NZ
Disability Leadership Cantebury
Disabilty Connect
Disabled People Against Cuts
Foundation for Equity and Research New Zealand
Fragile X New Zealand
Inclusive Education Action Group
Individualised Funding NZ
Kanohi ki te Kanohi Consulting
National Disabled Students' Association
Project + Gender
Parents of Vision Impaired (NZ) Inc.
System Change Not Climate Change
VPIS Equity in Education
Young Carers New Zealand
Ara Hina
Donald Beasley
Enabling Good Lives Taranaki
Fairer Future Coalition
Adult Guardianship Services
New Zealand Council of Christian Social Services
Methodist Alliance