Good News for NDIS Disability Community
Controversial reform to the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) which would have required around 400,000 people with disabilities to undergo ‘independent assessments’ to access the funding scheme has been dropped.
The federal government’s plan drew great criticism from disability advocates who deemed it an unfair, cost-cutting exercise, but the Minister for the NDIS Linda Reynolds confirmed this week the government would not go ahead with the changes.
"We've agreed to work together in a way that hears more clearly the voices of those with lived experience of disability that is based on the principles of equity and fairness," she said to the ABC.
You may have heard the collective cheer from Pathways to Care offices in the region also.
“We are so happy to hear this news because every one of our participants has unique and individual needs that cannot be assessed by a standard box-ticking exercise,” says Ros Winzar, Executive Director at Pathways to Care. “We’re thrilled about this news on behalf of our participants.
“We look forward to seeing how the National Insurance Disability Agency (NDIA) works closely with the Disability community to ensure that those with lived experience are listened to, and future assessments are genuinely based on fair and equitable principles,” says Ros.
Rallying for disability rights
The Opposition's NDIS spokesperson, Bill Shorten, attended the Pathways to Care’s Conference earlier this year and spoke about the then newly-proposed legislative changes to the NDIS act, and how that may affect people living with disabilities in Australia. He said to the ABC, abandoning the independent assessments plan was "great news".
"Independent assessments are dead, at least dead for the time being, no laws are being put into Parliament, it's back to the drawing board," he said.
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