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May 8
5:00 pm - 6:30 pm
Event Category:


A Melbourne CBD Location

Leading With Lived Experience: Disability Inclusion and Decision Making

Fellowship Roundtable

Hosted by:
Tony Nippard
Dianne Jacobs

May 8 @ 5:00 pm - 6:30 pm

Melissa Hale has a passion for creating opportunities for Deaf and hard of hearing people, and other people with disabilities, to lead in spaces where decisions are made that affect them.

The strategic issue Melissa is raising at this Fellowship Roundtable is Leading With Lived Experience: Disability Inclusion and Decision Making.

The questions being asked and the solutions to explore are:

How do we co-design solutions to the very complex social issues of bridging the gaps between the deaf and hearing worlds?

What is really happening and what is causing the unconscious bias towards people with disability that prevents them from leading in spaces that affect them?

In which ways can we start to value the lived experience of people in the same way we value work experience?

How can we have more people with lived experience at decision-making tables – both in the boardroom and in senior executive positions?

What can be done to address the chronic disadvantage and unconscious bias that exists within education, the employment market and practices; and ongoing professional development?

How do we improve the training, funding, NDIS practicalities and availability of Auslan Interpreters or captioning services?

How do we counter that people ‘see the barriers before they see the ability’?

What is stopping us from going from talking about it, to walking the talk?

How do we begin to dismantle the current situation and allow people with disability to step into these decision-making spaces?

In a relaxed, intimate format, the conversation will draw on the diverse expertise of select members who can bring to the discussion their knowledge and experience of the strategic issue, supportively challenge or test assumptions, spark new ideas and point the way for potential actions.

Under Chatham House rule and with the intent to learn, a Fellowship Roundtable is a development journey for all in the room.

Melissa is an inaugural MF Fellowship recipient. She is the Manager of Disability Advocacy Resource Unit auspiced by the Victorian Council of Social Services (VCOSS) which resources and builds the capacity of the disability advocacy sector in Victoria. In addition to this, Melissa is an alumn of the 2021 Williamson Leadership Program with Leadership Victoria, a mentor for Paralympics Australia and the Head of Deaf Women’s Cricket with Deaf Cricket Australia and Cricket Australia.

She is also a member of the Accessible Transport Advisory Committee with the Victorian Government Department of Transport, disability advisory committee of Disability Sports Recreation Victoria and Board Director of Expression Australia.

Melissa is a proud Deaf woman. She and her husband have four young teenagers and an overgrown puppy. Sport is a huge part of Melissa’s world, with her whole family kicking goals in their own sports.

This MF Fellowship Roundtable is a by-invitation event.

Discover how you can support the Fellowships initiative.