DANA recently conducted an online survey to capture the demand, issues and experiences of advocacy organisations as they work within the challenging COVID-19 environment.

So far survey results have indicated that just over half of the responding organisations have experienced increased demand because of COVID-19, while a quarter of organisations indicate their capacity to take on new advocacy clients has decreased during the pandemic.

“The complexity of our current cases has increased due to COVID-19. Our waitlist was closed prior to COVID-19, so it is difficult to gauge increased demand as referring organisations were already aware that we could not accept new clients.”

Over 70% of organisations have had an increase in information calls. People are mostly needing information about maintaining supports, managing NDIS plans and accessing government payments:

“We are still seeing people who do not have access to technology or those that are difficult to engage with without face to face contact.”

The most common emerging systemic issues identified by respondents are isolation, followed by Income support/ DSP and Access to technology

Currently the most common advocacy issues are Government payments and NDIS Access/Planning. These are closely followed in the results by:

  • Abuse/Neglect/ Violence
  • NDIS – Internal Review
  • NDIS – Support implementing plan/ Accessing Services