Kayla Dickeson

National Disabilities Officer


The NUS Disabilities Department focuses on campaigning for the rights of students with disabilities. Disabilities is a broad term which encompasses people with physical, mental, psychological, neurological, learning disabilities or access and medical conditions. The Department also advocates for the rights of student carers.

“Join The Fight, Demand Disability Rights” campaign

In 2018 the NUS Disabilities Department in Semester One will launch its “Join The Fight, Demand Disability Rights” campaign, which will be launched during campus Orientation Weeks. The campaign has four main demands:

  1. A fully-funded National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS)

  2. Fully-resourced campus counselling and disability services

  3. Accessible campus facilities and academic curriculum

  4. Funding Mental Healthcare and removing the Medicare cap

The campaign will connect to the broader education campaign and promote National Days of Action as well as engaging with a number of modes of activism such as lobbying and letter-writing, photo or video campaigns, social media campaigns, petitioning, and art-based activism. The Department will be focused on engaging the national student movement with accessible and creative forms of student activism. The Disabilities Department will present a submission to the Federal Government based on the campaign. The Department will further coordinate a national response to the Federal Budget based on the issues relating to students with disabilities, and working with the other NUS Departments.


Disability Officers, Collectives and Spaces

Throughout Semester One the Disabilities Department will be building a relationship with Disability Officers and Collectives in order to support them. The Department will also be engaging with campuses who do not have Officers, Reps or Spaces to assist in the establishment of them.

NUS Disability and Accessibility Summit 2018

The NUS will be working with campus Disability Officers to establish an inaugural NUS conference for students with disabilities, office-bearers and collective members to come together and organise based on issues on their campus for the September break.

Spoons Week 2018

In Second Semester the Disabilities Department will coordinate Spoons Weeks during Mental Health Awareness Month.

Accessible Education

The Disabilities Department in 2018 will engage with the Tertiary Education Quality Standards Agency (TEQSA) and the National Tertiary Education Union to assess how we can ensure higher education, in particular curriculum and policy, is accessible for students with disabilities.

Accessible Activism

The NUS Disabilities Department will develop by the end of 2018 a handbook on accessible activism informed by student activists.

Disabilities-Related days and important NUS dates include:

  • February-May - NUS Disabilities “Join the Fight, Demand Disability Rights” campaign
  • 18th February - International Asperger’s Day
  • 1st March - International Wheelchair Day
  • 16-22 March - Brain Awareness Week
  • 21st March - World Down Syndrome Day
  • 21st March - NUS National Day of Action
  • 26th March - Purple Day for Epilepsy Awareness
  • 2nd April - World Autism Awareness Day
  • 11th April - World Parkinson’s Day
  • 28 April - World Guide Dog Day
  • May - Federal Budget released
  • 11-17 May - Schizophrenia Awareness Week
  • 28th May - World MS Day
  • June/July - NUS Disability and Accessibility Summit
  • 24th June - DeafBlind Awareness Week
  • July - NUS Education Conference
  • 23-19 August - Hearing Awareness Week
  • 1-7 September - Spina Bifida Week
  • 10th September - R U OK DAY
  • 10th September - World Suicide Prevention Day
  • October - Mental Health Awareness Month and NUS Spoons Weeks
  • 4th to the 10th of October - Mental Health Week
  • 7th October - World Cerebral Palsy Day
  • 12-18 October - National Carers Week
  • 19-25 October - National Week of Deaf People
  • 27th October - World Sight Day
  • 9-15 November - Spinal Cord Injury Awareness Week
  • 15th November - White Cane Day
  • December - NUS National Conference
  • 3rd December - International Day of People with a Disability
  • TBA - 65 Roses Day
  • TBA - Cerebral Palsy Awareness Week


If there’s anything you’d like the NUS Disabilities Department to do or focus on, feel free to get in touch through the contact details at the top of the page.