The Uniting Church and agencies welcome the Disability Royal Commission and have released the Values Statement to demonstrate their commitment to cooperate fully and openly. The Church is committed to a society in which people with disability feel included, supported and have their human rights respected.
In 2018 the 15th Assembly of the Uniting Church in Australia affirmed that:
In seeking to be a community of reconciliation, the Uniting Church acknowledges that for many people with disability its life and faith has not always borne witness to this vision.
The Uniting Church seeks:
The Uniting Church welcomes the establishment of a Royal Commission to inquire into what governments, institutions and the community must do to build a society in which people with disability feel included, supported and have their human rights respected. We wholeheartedly endorse the focus as set out in the Letters Patent and pledge ourselves to cooperate fully and openly.
The Commission has been designed to maximise the participation and contribution of people with disabilities in this inquiry. The Uniting Church supports this approach, which will give voice to those who have suffered violence, abuse, neglect or exploitation and will call the rest of the community to listen.
The Uniting Church’s values are founded on Jesus’ witness to the love of God for all people and God’s desire for us to live abundant lives, where we are valued and respected for who we are. Where people are prevented from flourishing, and are denied a voice, the Uniting Church is committed to advocacy and contributing to a just and inclusive society.
We strive to be a Church that welcomes and includes people with disabilities in our congregations, schools, services and communities. As providers of disability services, we strive always to provide high quality, compassionate care in an environment of transparency, accountability and continuous improvement.
We regret those times when we have not shown the compassion and care of Christ and deeply apologise. Whatever challenges and issues arise, we are determined to meet them in order to better serve the needs of people and communities we serve.
We look forward to working alongside people with disability and their families and advocates in envisioning and realising a society where disability is no barrier to participation and in which the gifts, hopes and dreams of all people are valued and honoured.