Please share about yourself, your experience with the disability assistance benefit, and anything else you would like people to know.
I live in Sidney with my partner and two children. I’m a writer, a lover of coffee and skulls, and I’m a proud member of the LGBTQIA community. I have Ankylosing Spondylitis and Osteogenesis Imperfecta, which I manage mostly with dark humour and sarcasm. Sometimes the drugs help, too.
You know that saying “If I don’t laugh, I’ll cry”? That’s my life on the disability assistance benefit. Every month I’m sickened to see what my assistance amount doesn’t cover. I’m very fortunate to have a partner and family and friends around me for support because if I didn’t I wouldn’t be able to live on the assistance benefit. My monthly medication costs are more than I receive and without it I would be in constant pain and deterioration, both physically and mentally. As far as I can see, there is no quality of life on the benefit. It’s dehumanizing and shameful, and we’re expected to be thankful for it.
What do you dream support for people with disabilities could look like?
That people with disabilities are no longer ignored or only acknowledged when the government wants to pat itself on the back for doing less than the minimum for us. That we have access to grants and funds that would allow us to pursue our dreams of improving our lives without risking losing our benefits. People with disabilities can be artists, professionals, business owners, and so much more, but opportunities need to be provided. Increase social awareness and acceptance of people with disabilities and stop treating us like accommodation is asking too much or that we’re nothing beyond the disability you can see.
I love skulls, writing, the colour green, and poppies. I live on coffee and am an introvert. I’m fascinated by the macabre, but I’m quite a light-hearted person. My work logo is a skull in a gold crown, inside a teacup and it’s very on brand for me.
Check out Amber Dawn’s erotic storytelling business, Better Lighting Creations: www.betterlightingcreations.com