Wednesday 28th September

Dear Members,

In case you missed it, earlier this week Minister Bill Shorten announced the new Chair, CEO, and Board Members of the National Disability Insurance Agency. We would like to congratulate BCA leaders Graeme Innes AM and Maryanne Diamond AO on their recent appointments to the NDIA Board, as well as Kurt Fearnley for his appointment as the Chairman of the Board. We would also like to acknowledge BCA leader and former CEO, Leah van Poppel, who will be continuing her tenure on the Board of the NDIA.

We’re thrilled to see more people with disability joining the ranks of the NDIA. We look forward to working with this new board to build a better NDIS for all.

CEO Update

Our CEO video updates are now published fortnightly. Check back in next week!

What’s Coming Up at BCA?

We have another jam-packed month ahead of us – you can plan ahead for this month’s events using our monthly calendar. The October events calendar is now available on our website.

If you have any questions, or would like more information, please feel free to contact us on or call on 1800 033 660.

We would also like to remind members that daylight savings begins on 2nd October. BCA events are advertised in Australian Eastern Daylight Savings Time (AEDT) accordingly. Please adjust the starting times for your location, if required.

BCA Conversations

Thursday 29th September 7:30pm AEST

Member Consultation – Accessible Elections

Come join us to discuss experiences of voting in the Federal Election earlier this year.

After every Federal Election, the Federal Parliament’s Joint Standing Committee on Electoral Matters (JSCEM) holds an inquiry into the conduct of the election, to learn if there are any areas that can be improved upon. The Terms of Reference for the inquiry into the 2022 Federal Election includes a focus on “encouraging increased electoral participation and supporting enfranchisement generally, and specifically in relation to accessibility of enrolment and voting for persons with a disability”, so we want to hear from you about your experiences, and how things could be improved for next time.

We will be discussing enrolling or updating the electoral roll, election information during the campaign, and the process of voting itself.

Jack Reynolds–Ryan, National Policy & Campaigns Officer and Erica Chiandotto. Project Officer – Member Consultation will be leading the discussion, so bring along your voting stories and ideas for the future!


Saturday 1st October 8:00pm AEST

Hosted by Michael Janes, this week’s trivia will feature an Australia theme. If you know Australian history, music, politics, geography, and movies, then this trivia night is for you!

To Join BCA Conversations or Trivia

Peer Connect Groups

For information on all the other peer groups happening, take a look at the page on our website.

Music Group – Wednesday 5th October 7:30pm AEDT:

BCA Inform

Tuesday 4th October 7:15pm AEDT

Are you interested in a leadership role with BCA, either as a director of BCA, state representative on the National Policy Council (NPC), or for members based in New South Wales, a position on the NSW/ACT State Division Committee? Maybe you are not quite ready to stand for election, but are interested in learning more about what it means to be on one of these committees? Then October’s BCA Inform is certainly for you!

During BCA Inform you will hear from Fiona Woods, President of BCA on what it means to take on one of these roles. You will also hear from Joanne Chua, BCA Director, Neale Huth, Queensland Representative to the NPC, and Kristy Fitzgerald, Deputy Chair of the NSW/ACT State Division. These three BCA members will share with you their experiences of joining these committees. There will also be plenty of time for you to ask any questions you may have in relation to BCA’s Committees, standing for election, and the upcoming Annual General Meeting.

All members should have received BCA’s Notice of Annual General Meeting which contains all the information you will need in relation to which positions are currently up for election, and the election or expression of interest process required. The information is also available on BCA’s website.

BCA Inform takes place over Zoom. Dial-in details will be sent to you shortly after registration. You can register online here.

If you require any further information or assistance, please email us at or call BCA on 1800 033 660.

BCA Updates

BCA Connect Feedback Survey

Did you attend BCA connect? There’s still time to share your feedback!

We want to make sure we continue to provide the best experience for our members. We invite you to submit a short feedback survey to tell us what you liked about the conference, and what we can improve.

If you would like assistance to complete the survey, please ring BCA at 1800 033 660.

The Entrepreneurial Mindset Project

The Entrepreneurial Mindset project has officially kicked off. You can learn more about the project on the ‘An Eye For Business’ page on the BCA An Eye to the Future website, or you can contact Christina at for further information.

Webinar Series

Thank you to everyone who attended our first webinar this past week. These webinars will continue to run monthly on Mondays from September to December. Sign up for the series to gain valuable insights from subject matter experts, including successful business owners who are blind or vision impaired.

Podcast Series Launch

This week, BCA is thrilled to be launching the An Eye for Business podcast series to inspire future business owners through the lived experience and success of business owners who are blind or vision impaired.

In the first episode, we feature Janelle Colquhoun, owner of Salubrious Productions, who has been an agent for artists with disability in Queensland for over 20 years.  Janelle has also produced concerts, worked on international festivals, and played a significant role in raising awareness of artists with disability all over Australia.

In this program, Janelle explains what it took for her to start her own business, pitfalls to watch out for, and some sound advice for anyone thinking of starting their own small business, particularly in the entertainment industry.

You can listen to the podcast here.

New Horizons

In this episode, we meet Erica Chiandotto who started with BCA fairly recently. Erica describes her background and her interesting new role with BCA. Also, a reminder about program themes for our usual end of year series. Please contact if you have any ideas.

Take a listen to the New Horizon’s podcast or find how to tune in live.

Do you have any ideas for stories, or feedback about the show? Contact us on

Around The Branches


Lunch for BCA Members

You are warmly invited to join other BCA members for a lunch in the city at the historic Young and Jacksons Hotel. This is a great opportunity to catch up in person in a relaxed social setting.

When: Sunday 23rd October at 12:00pm ADST.

Where: Chloe’s Lounge at the Young and Jacksons Hotel on the corner of Swanston and Flinders Streets. The venue is fully accessible by lift or stairs.

Cost: $35.00 per person (payable on the day). This includes a glass of wine, bread, a choice of five main dishes, a sweet treat, and a tea or coffee.

Please RSVP to BCA on 1800 033 660 by Friday 14th October with numbers and any dietary requirements. We would love to see you there!

Casino Richmond Valley

The next meeting of the Casino Richmond Valley BCA Branch will be held on Monday, 10th October in the Baptist Church Hall in Casino. We’ll be joined by a special guest speaker from the service centre who will be talking about the numerous benefits available to disabled and senior people.

The group is also celebrating international white cane day on Friday, 14th October with a walk through the town centre of Casino with white canes. The Mayor and other local government personnel as well as Guide Dog employees will join the group. The group will also enjoy lunch at the Hong Kong Chinese Restaurant after the walk.

News From Outside BCA


Survey for Women with Disability

Harmony Alliance, alongside Women with Disabilities Australia (WWDA) and National Ethnic Disability Alliance (NEDA), are conducting a survey to better understand the experiences of migrant and refugee women with disabilities with regard to access to healthcare services and disability support services.

This is an online and confidential survey that is available in the following languages:

If you have any questions, please contact Nuria on


Alter State Festival – Discounted Tickets for BCA Members

Alter State Festival is offering a limited number of discounted tickets (50% off) for BCA members to attend “Meremere”.

All performances and events are relaxed performances, ensuring an inclusive and safe space for everyone. This includes performances which offer audio description and tactile tour options.  Tactile tours are for ticket holders who are blind or vision impaired. During the tour – ticket holders are invited to explore the props and set of the productions with members of the company.

Meremere has been created in collaboration with a performance design company, Movement of the Human, and is a superbly crafted performance documentary of one man’s exceptional journey through international dance, through homelessness to his homecoming and reconnection with Whānau (Family) and Whenua (Land) in Aotearoa (New Zealand).

When: 29th September – 1st October

Where: Arts Centre Melbourne

You can book online using this discount link or call 1300 182 183 for assistance with your booking.

Tactile Tours for Meremere will take place 1 hour before the performance starts and must be prebooked. You can add this option to your online booking (on the ‘Add to your Experience’ page) or request it during phone booking.

There are also a range of free events available. Check out the full Alter State program here.

Have you got something to contribute?

If you’ve got something you’d like included in the Member Update, please send it to or call us on 1800 033 660. Items received by 12:00pm Monday will be published in the Wednesday update.