Inequity in service provision for Indigenous Australians with communication disability is an issue requiring urgent attention. In the lead article, Wylie, McAllister, Davidson, and Marshall (2013) note that, even in the relatively affluent Minority World, including Australia, equity in service provision for people with communication disability has not been achieved. In remote communities in the Northern Territory (NT) almost all residents speak a language other than English as their primary language. However, there are no speech-language pathologists (SLPs) in the NT who speak an Indigenous language or who share their cultural background. Specific data on the prevalence of communication disability in this population are unavailable due to a range of factors. The disability data that are available, for example, demonstrating the high level of conductive hearing loss, indicates that the risk of communication disability in this population is particularly high. Change is urgently needed to address current inequities in both availability of, and access to, culturally responsive services for Indigenous people with communication disability. Such change must engage Indigenous people in a collaborative process that recognizes their expertise in identifying both their needs and the most effective form of response to these needs.
|Number of pages||5|
|Journal||International Journal of Speech-Language Pathology|
|Publication status||Published - Feb 2013|