By definition advocacy is an activity by an individual or group that aims to influence decisions within political, economic, and social institutions. Advocacy includes activities and publications to influence public policy, laws and budgets by using facts, their relationships, the media, and messaging to educate government officials and the public.*
Useful advocacy organisations
Australian Government Aged Care Quality and Safety Commission
The role of the Aged Care Quality and Safety Commission (Commission) is to protect and enhance the safety, health, well-being, and quality of life of people receiving aged care, according to its web site.
If you have a loved one in an Aged Care Facility and have concerns about their care, you can lodge a complaint with ACQSC by calling 1800 951 822. Or visit its web site: agedcarequality.gov.au
Also, on the web site you can view a register of providers who have not complied with their responsibilities under the Aged Care Act.
Older Persons Advocacy Network (OPAN)
The Older Persons Advocacy Network (OPAN) is a national network comprised of nine state and territory organisations that deliver advocacy, information and education.
The state organisation with which OPAN is connected in NSW is Seniors Rights Service (SRS): Telephone 1800 424 079 or web site seniorsrightsservice.org.au.
It provides advocacy to assist older people who receive aged care support (either at home or in a facility) as well as their caregivers and family members, to ensure their rights are observed.
SRS delivers education sessions in aged care facilities to raise awareness about people’s rights. OPAN and the Seniors Rights Service have some informative videos on their resources web page that are very helpful – all related to your rights in financial matters, aged care, help at home, carers, elder abuse and more.