Endeavour Foundation applauds National Disability reform

The federal government decision to endorse a National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) will deliver a generational change for people with disabilities and their carers throughout Australia, Endeavour Foundation CEO David Barbagallo said today.

Mr Barbagallo said the NDIS proposed by the Productivity Commission promised sweeping national reform to the badly broken disability support system, and the same high-quality care for all regardless of how or when people acquired a disability.

“This issue has been ignored for too long. Every Australian with a disability should have the right to adequate care and support, and that’s why I heartily welcome the government’s endorsement of the NDIS,” Mr Barbagallo said.

“The government has committed to state consultation and careful planning, and says the scheme will take years to be delivered. But people with disabilities know this reform can’t come soon enough.

“I implore the states to get behind the NDIS, for the sake of all Australians. People’s lives and families are at stake and this matter is too important to fall foul of state-federal rivalries. All our elected representatives need to stand up for this change,” he said.

The reality is that anyone can acquire a disability in a moment. That makes the NDIS of clear benefit to all Australians.

“Thousands of ageing carers will sleep better tonight knowing that this scheme will provide for the care needs of their loved ones in the years ahead,” Mr Barbagallo said.

“Families will no longer have to move interstate to get the care and support they need for a loved one with a disability,” he said.

“While it will take time to work out the nuts and bolts of the scheme, I hope the day will come soon when people with disabilities are given genuine choices and adequate funding to live with dignity and independence.

“Our nation will be a vastly different place when 1.4 million Australians with disabilities - and their carers - are released to participate in the workforce and society at large, thanks to this reform,” Mr Barbagallo said.

The Prime Minister has indicated today she will move to make the disability system “NDIS-ready” by making available $10 million for the foundation work to underpin the successful development and operation of the NDIS. The NDIS is expected to be fully rolled out by 2018.

The government will start work with state and territory governments at next week’s COAG meeting to begin the preliminary work towards the NDIS, including developing a common assessment tool.

A select disability reform council and advisory committee will be established to inform the process of working towards a NDIS.

Note to media: Endeavour Foundation CEO David Barbagallo is available for interview – call 0429 077 886

Additional Information

The Productivity Commissions report into Disability Care and Support can be found here.