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Office of the Public Advocate
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Policies and partnerships

Highlighting the economic, social, cultural and human rights of people with decision-making disabilities forms a crucial part of the Public Advocate’s role. In fulfilling this responsibility, the Public Advocate works at both individual and community levels.

The Public Advocate informs and advises government and community groups on the best interests of adults with decision-making disabilities and contributes to the development of government legislation, policies and services that affect adults with decision-making disabilities.

Policy development

Government policy affecting people with decision-making disabilities is of particular interest to the Public Advocate. The office regularly reviews legislative changes, makes submissions to legislative reviews and advocates for the inclusion of economic, social and cultural rights to safeguard the best interests of vulnerable adults with decision-making disabilities.

Creating partnerships

Developing partnerships with Government and community organisations to enable inter-agency responses to legal and social issues is a key function of the Office of the Public Advocate.

The Office of the Public Advocate has a number of key partnerships and memoranda of understanding with government agencies including WA Police, the Department for Child Protection and the State Administrative Tribunal. The Office of the Public Advocate is also a member of the WA Alliance for the Prevention of Elder Abuse (APEA). View the Public Advocate’s Preventing Elder Abuse webpage, or visit the APEA website for more information.

The Office of the Public Advocate contributes to both the Reconciliation Action Plan and the Disability Access and Inclusion Plan of the Department of the Attorney General.

Australian Guardianship and Administration Council (AGAC)

The Australian Guardianship and Administration Council (AGAC) is an Inter-jurisdictional group comprised of the Public Guardians, Adult Guardians and Public Advocates, the Boards and Tribunals who deliberate upon applications under guardianship and administration legislation and the State Trustees, Public Trustees or Protective Commissioners.

AGAC is a leadership group of the organisations that collectively provide legal authority for decisions on behalf of adults who experience disability to such a significant extent that they are incapable of making reasonable decisions. Those decisions often involve protection of adults with disabilities from violence, abuse, neglect and exploitation.

The 2012 World Congress on Adult Guardianship - Guardianship and the United Nations Disabilities Convention: Australian and International Perspectives - was held in Melbourne from 15 to 16 October, 2012. The conference papers are available at

Last updated: 6-Nov-2019

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