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Disability Royal Commission publishes a report on supported decision-making

Royal Commission Update

5/04/2023

The Disability Royal Commission (DRC) has published a research report about supported decision-making for people with cognitive disability (pdf) entitled “Diversity, dignity, equity and best practice: a framework for supported decision-making". Following a review of relevant literature and consultation with people with disability, their families and support workers, the DRC has used a ‘principled approach’ to create a framework of nine key principles.    

The report notes that there is no shared understanding of supported decision-making. Nor is there an agreed approach, although a binary approach is common. In the binary approach, there is supported decision-making and there is substituted decision-making, but little in-between. In supported decision-making the person is supported to participate in making decisions. In substitute decision-making, the person is deemed incapable of participating in decision-making and, therefore, decisions are made ‘in their best interest”. This binary excludes some people from supported decision-making.        

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