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About Companion Card

Background

History

The Victorian Network On Recreation and Disability (VICNORD) recommended the introduction of a Companion Card in 1997 in response to continued concern from people with a disability who found the pricing policies of many entertainment, leisure and recreation venues/events to be unfair.

In 1999, with a seeding grant from the City of Melbourne, VICNORD formally developed the idea for a Companion Card, and then, in April 2000, the Minister for Sport and Recreation approved subsequent funding to further refine the concept. During this time, they consulted, sought and gained support from industry to accept the program.

In August 2001, the Department of Human Services, with support from Sport and Recreation Victoria endorsed that Disability Services take a lead role in the further development and implementation of the Companion Card.

In 2002, the Department of Human Services obtained funding from the Community Support Fund, Strategic Initiatives Fund for the implementation and administration of the program over the first three years.

An Implementation Reference Group made up of people representing: the sport and entertainment industry, people with a disability, VICNORD and the Department of Human Services, and chaired by the Equal Opportunity Commission of Victoria, was established and first met in April of 2003. This group informed both policy and processes, and provided continued assistance to the Companion Card program.

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