The Australasian Society for Intellectual Disability today welcomed the long awaited draft report from the Australian Government’s Productivity Commission on Disability Care and Support.
The Commission has recommended the introduction of a National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) and has outlined a number of recommendations about the way it could operate and be funded.
The report is long and detailed, examining many of the complex issues that must be addressed before the NDIS can be introduced and implemented. ASID supports the Productivity Commission's National Disability Insurance Scheme recommendations. “Effective reform of the disability system is a human rights issue," said Richard O’Loughlin Australasian President of ASID.
The key points in the report into the introduction of the scheme are:
- The Commission has accepted that the disability system is "inequitable, underfunded, fragmented and inefficient and gives people with a disability little choice ... a real system for people with disabilities is required." The Commission has therefore accepted the need for reform and for an NDIS.
- The Commission has also accepted that the nation must better meet the needs of those people who currently do not receive any or only inadequate support and that their improved support packages would be portable across state and territory borders.
- The Commission recommends the introduction of a fully funded National Disability Insurance Scheme with individualised funding to ensure people with a disability and their families are able to exercise greater choice and control about the supports they need.
- The Commission has also suggested an entirely separate scheme for people requiring lifetime care and support for catastrophic injuries. To be known as the NIIS, a no-fault National Injury Insurance Scheme. It would draw on the best schemes operating around Australia.
- The draft report recommends that the new scheme would be managed at a national level and would be funded through a small tax increase with money directed into a 'National Disability Insurance Premium Fund'.
The report suggests that the new scheme could be introduced progressively from 2014, commencing with people with newly acquired disabilities and those who are currently disadvantaged under the current model, in agreed ‘pilot’ regions.
Bill Shorten, current Assistant Treasurer and Minister for Superannuation and Financial Services has long been an advocate for people with disabilities. In 2009, as Parliamentary Secretary for Disability in the Rudd Government, Bill Shorten raised the issue of the support needs of people with a disability, as reported in the 2009 June IDA.
ASID has long supported the introduction of a National ‘no fault’ insurance scheme for people with disability. ASID members and all those interested in supporting the basic human rights of all citizens are urged to read the draft report and consider making a submission to the Productivity Commission on the recommendations.
Information is available at http://www.pc.gov.au/projects/inquiry/disability-support
National Disability Insurance Scheme
ASID (The Australasian Society for Intellectual Disability) is a not for profit organization that provides services for membership including an annual conference, regional events, the publication of a research journal and a magazine and access to industry professionals and information. ASSID also plays a role in commenting on current issues surrounding the intellectual disability sector.
ASID’s membership consists of academics, government agencies, professionals, service providers, clients and their carers in the intellectual disability field as well as other interested stakeholders.
ASID’s vision is an inclusive society and it's mission is to improve the quality of life for people with intellectual disability.
ASID's goals are to:
Be an independent authority on intellectual disability issues across Australasia
Forge the interaction between intellectual disability research, policy and practice
Lead the development of strategic partnerships
Engage with and strengthen its membership
Ensure sound governance
For membership enquiries and information go to www.asid.asn.au
P: 08 277 8566