The Every Australian Counts campaign for the National Disability Insurance Scheme has welcomed strong expressions of interest for the launch of the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) Campaign director John Della Bosca said today.
Mr Della Bosca’s comments followed yesterday’s meeting of the Commonwealth State and Territory Disability Ministers at COAG Select Council, the group charged with advancing the NDIS.
“The NDIS is at a critical juncture. We now have strong bids from most of the States and Territories – we now need to see action to lock in the NDIS. This must be the highest priority of COAG when they meet next week,” Mr Della Bosca said.
“Any failure by our political leaders to strike a deal on the NDIS will not only be of grave concern to hundreds of thousands of Australians with a disability, their families and carers but will disappoint the whole nation,” Mr Della Bosca said.
“We are urging our political leaders to work together and lock in the NDIS when COAG meets in Canberra next Wednesday.”
Mr Della Bosca said most States and Territories have clearly indicated their desire to play a key role in the launch and design of the NDIS:
- New South Wales and Victoria have submitted their proposal for a joint NDIS launch site covering 10,000 people in the Hunter region and 5,000 in the Geelong region.
- South Australia wants a launch site and budgeted $20 million for this early stage
- Tasmania has lodged a bid to a launch site and has a NDIS working party
- The ACT has lodged a bid to be a launch site
- Western Australia wants to be a launch site and has established an NDIS reference group
- Queensland supports the NDIS but has indicated it won’t be contributing any State funds to the scheme.
“The creation of the NDIS is a national reform, comparable to the creation of Medicare and it requires strong co-operation between the Commonwealth and the States,” Campaign Director John Della Bosca said.
“Progress has been made, most notably the $1 billion from the Commonwealth for the first stage of the NDIS. This is a great down payment on the NDIS but much more needs to be done.”
“The new funding required for the full implementation of the NDIS is approximately $7 billion by 2018, effectively doubling the current expenditure on disability services nationally.”
Mr Della Bosca said the Every Australian Counts campaign has received more than 6000 messages from Australians telling you why they want the NDIS and calling on COAG to lock in the NDIS when they meet next week.
“These messages are a snapshot of a system in crisis. Stories of eternal waiting, the ‘confusopoly’ of red tape, our older carers anguished about what happens to their loved ones when they can no longer look after them, our children waiting years for basic equipment, young people with disabilities consigned to live in nursing homes and people with disabilities stripped of their basic human rights on a daily basis.”
“Next week, the Prime Minister, the Premiers and Chief Ministers will meet at COAG to discuss the future of the NDIS. Hundreds of thousands of Australians with serious disabilities, their families and carers are counting on them to lock in the NDIS for the future.”
To view these messages go to: http://everyaustraliancounts.com.au/category/message_book/
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