Discussion and Submission Papers

These papers provide information about potential developments in the field of supporting people with disability to explore the sexual lifestyles of their choice and sex worker rights issues.

August 2023

Touching Base made a Submission to the NDIS Review which covered our three main problems or concerns with the NDIS:

1. Misinformation broadcast by prior Ministers and the NDIA is still being
relied upon by NDIS staff and planners.

2. Failure to recognise the importance of sex and sexuality.

3. A lack of transparency, policy and guidelines around sexuality and
relationship supports

We also provided information about how these three main problems affect us and/or others  and what we think are solutions to these problems

December 2022

Touching Base made a detailed submission to an inquiry into the Capability and Culture of the National Disability Insurance Agency (NDIA), conducting by the Federal Parliament’s  Joint Standing Committee on the National Disability Insurance Scheme.

We are pleased our straight-talking submission has been published under Parliamentary privilege on the Joint Standing Committee’s webpage for submissions to this inquiry. Please note that the Touching Base submission number is 123

June 2022

Touching Base made a submission on the Queensland Law Reform Commission’s Sex Work Industry review: A framework for a decriminalised sex work industry in Queensland. Queensland has some appalling laws relating to the sex industry and people with disability, so we were compelled to let them know our thoughts on how to improve the current legal framework.
Submission to QLRC - Sex Industry Decriminalisation 2022 (1)

February 2022

Touching Base made a brief submission on the Queensland Anti-Discrimination Act (ADA) Review. We asked that the Queensland Government add “being, or having been, a sex worker” as a grounds for anti-discrimination protection, along with other suggested amendments to improve their current anti-discrimination safeguards.
Touching Base Submission to QLD Anti-Discrimination Act Review 


Touching Base made a submission to the Royal Commission into Aged Care Quality and Safety.  Our detailed evidence based submission was delivered in three parts:

Royal Commission into Aged Care_TouchingBase2020_Part1

Royal Commission into Aged Care_TouchingBase2020_Part2_ReferralRequests

Royal Commission into Aged Care_TouchingBase2020_Part3_Case Study


Touching Base was pleased to be invited by the Northern Territory Attorney-General and Minister for Justice, the Hon Natasha Fyles, to comment on a discussion paper regarding reforming the Northern Territory regulation of the sex industry.

In our submission Touching Base makes it clear we seek an evidence-based approach that reflects best practice. We say No to the ‘Swedish Model’ of criminalising the clients of sex workers and identify positive benefits of decriminalisation for clients with disability. We outline a limited role for local government and request guiding principles of sex industry regulation  developed and approved by multiple stakeholders be followed when developing any regulations.


In 2016 Touching Base was invited to provide information to the South Australian Legislative Council (Upper House) proposal to decriminalise sex work.

Please see below our primary submission and appendices (which include research Touching Base conducted in conjunction with University of Technology Sydney (UTS) to get evidence of how local councils in New South Wales over-regulate their local sex industry and the low number of complaints they receive about sex services premises):


The Subversion of Progressive Intent – Stage I

The Subversion of Progressive Intent – Stage 2


Touching Base has been concerned to see many local councils taking an overly-restrictive attitude towards commercial sex services premises and home-based sex workers. These discriminatory attitudes often result in negative outcomes for sex workers and their clients with disability. Touching Base has resolved to take a stand by opposing the Marrickville Council’s draft Local Environment Plan (LEP) because it seeks to ban home-based sex workers right across the entire Marrickville area and restrict commercial sex services premises to industrial zones only. Our written submission to Marrickville Council on these matters are below in PDF or Word format.
» Submission in response to the Draft Marrickville Local Environmental Plan (MLEP) 2010 by Touching Base Inc (PDF 119kb)
» Submission in response to the Draft Marrickville Local Environmental Plan (MLEP) 2010 by Touching Base Inc (Word 424kb)

» Submission in response to the Draft Sydney Local Environmental Plan (SLEP) 2011 by Touching Base Inc and Urban Realists, Planning & Health Consultants (PDF 546kb)
» Submission in response to the Draft Sydney Local Environmental Plan (SLEP) 2011 by Touching Base Inc and Urban Realists, Planning & Health Consultants (Word 76kb)

2004 » Touching Base Workshop Handout ‘Choice v Access’ (PDF 124kb)
Dialogue paper containing various answers to question: How does the right of individual sex worker’s to decline a client, sit with the right of people with disability to access commercial sexual services without experiencing discrimination on the basis of their disability?

2003 » Legal Impediments to Sexual Expression: Fact or Furphy (PDF 263kb)
Discussion paper prepared by the Intellectual Disability Rights Services Inc (IDRS)

2002 » Submission regarding barriers to accessibility caused by local council policies by Private Worker Alliance (PWA) (PDF 167kb)

2001 » The Sex and Relationship Facilitation Project for people with disabilities (SARFP) (PDF 89kb)
The Sex and Relationship Facilitation Project aims to promote the development of self-esteem of people with disability including feelings about their body and enhancing body awareness and to help develop skills and confidence in forming sexual and emotional relationships if this is their goal.

Touching Base endorses The Uluru Statement from the Heart and acknowledges First Nations as the traditional custodians of country throughout Australia, their diversity, histories and knowledge, and their continuing connections to land and community. As Australians all, we respect our nation’s First Peoples, their cultures, and Elders of past, present and future generations.