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Engaging people with intellectual disability: exploring lived experiences of personal safety in supported accommodation

Project Details

Funding partner

Australian Government Research Training Program (Domestic)




Publications will be posted here when available.



  • Natalie Parmenter



This qualitative research aims to engage people with intellectual disability who access supported accommodation exploring how they understand and realise their rights to be safe in their own home and how these experiences can influence the future design and delivery of accommodation support.


The research provides a foundation for firsthand accounts of the lived experience of living in group homes. The disability field has a unique opportunity to learn directly from individuals on what works well and importantly, what could be improved. Policymakers and managers within disability service organisations should consider the delicate balance between compliance with national practice standards and the principles of best practice.

The study casts a wider lens upon current barriers faced by individuals living in group homes including experiences of not being believed, lack of continuity of care, trust-building between individuals and care workers, and the myriad complications arising from miscommunication between specialist and mainstream services (Robinson, Frawley & Dyson, 2020). In its focus on safety at home, this study meets an important gap in research by building from the perspectives of people with intellectual disability to consider implications for improving disability services.

The outcomes of this research provides a platform for policymakers to construct frameworks and strategies which are directly informed by the lived experience of people with intellectual disability. Additionally, the findings provide a basis for the examination of existing gaps in balancing procedural compliance with the principles of best practice (Robinson & Chenoweth, 2011). It means both mainstream and specialist disability service providers are held accountable for breaking down barriers that restrict or reduce an individual’s ability to access rights and justice based services should their safety be at risk or compromised.


An easy-read resource for this project is not currently available.

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