Statement from the National President of the Australian Physiotherapy Association, Marcus Dripps - Support racial equality in Australia

31 July 2015

As an organisation that supports the health and wellbeing of Australians, the Australian Physiotherapy Association (APA) urges all Australians to show their support towards racial equality in the Australian community.

The Adam Goodes controversy has reignited the conversation around hate and racism within Australian sports, as well as in the wider society. In every aspect, the APA continues to reject acts of racism – and we believe in working towards an all-inclusive community with a zero tolerance for discrimination.

We represent over 18,000 physiotherapists and their patients across Australia– with our physiotherapists on the ground interacting with sports-people and Australians every day, so we value acceptance and inclusion within our community.

We are proud to support Reconciliation Australia’s ‘Racism. It Stops With Me’ campaign, and we have developed a Reconciliation Action Plan (RAP) to create meaningful relationships, respect and opportunities with physios and their patients. It is our vision for reconciliation that Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples have equitable access to physiotherapy, and to be able to close the gap in life expectancy of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders and other Australians.

Indigenous health outcomes are determined by historical, social, political, environmental, cultural and economic factors as well as access to effective primary health care services. Physiotherapy is an important part of comprehensive primary health care, and we need to work towards a framework to ensure Indigenous Australians receive the same public health attention as other Australians.

The Australian Physiotherapy Association are committed to taking a stance towards racial discrimination, in all shapes and forms. We aim to provide inclusive and equitable opportunities to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders to train as physiotherapists and receive physiotherapy treatment within our communities.

Adam Goodes is an exemplary leader in our community and an example to the entire community to celebrate Australia’s Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people. We celebrate the work of Adam Goodes as not only an athlete but an Australian that celebrates and defends Indigenous culture and history.

We must take a stance now against racism, and it’s imperative that we work together towards an all-inclusive and accepting community.

About the Australian Physiotherapy Association (APA)

The APA is the peak body representing the interests of Australian physiotherapists and their patients. It is a national organisation with state and territory branches and specialty subgroups. The APA represents more than 17,000 members who conduct more than 21 million consultations each year. To find a physiotherapist in your area, visit

For further information, or to speak with an expert physiotherapist, please contact:

Ruth Heenan, Australian Physiotherapy Association
T 03 9092 0813, 0416 565 332 E
Pammy Kokoras, Undertow Media
T 03 9421 1317 or 0421 105 710 E
Rachael Horan, Undertow Media
T 03 9421 1318 or 0426 631 316 E