In 1982, a special meeting was held and involved several deaf organisations such as John Pierce Centre, Deafness Foundation (Victoria), Bendigo Deaf Club, Better Hearing Australia, Victorian Deaf Society, Deaf Seniors Group and Deaf Sports Recreation Victoria. Victorian Council of the Deaf (now Deaf Victoria) was established as a result of the Deaf community wanting an organisation that is run by Deaf people representing the Deaf community.
Under the Cain Government, VCOD received funding for employment of a part-time administrator and still remains the first and only state organisation to employ staff.
Over many years, VCOD/Deaf Victoria has advocated for and increased the quality of life for Deaf and hard of hearing people in Victoria. Past campaigns included:
- Ethics of Fundraising – Telethon
- Free TTY (teletypewriter) access
- Subsidised TTY equipment
- Captioned television programs
- Interpreted theatre performances
- Emergency SMS
- Deaf Rights
- Deaf Awareness
- Auslan interpreting in Victorian public hospitals
The success of Deaf Victoria is due to dedication, commitment and hard work of Deaf Victorians. They were mostly volunteers who had given up countless hours of their time and energy in ensuring Deaf and hard of hearing people in Victoria are represented by an organisation who will advocate for the Deaf community.
Deaf Victoria is run by Deaf people for Deaf and hard of hearing people. In 2010, Deaf Victoria expanded its membership base to include Victorians who are hard of hearing. In 2011, VCOD changed its name to Deaf Victoria.