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Endeavour Foundation Chief Executive Officer David Barbagallo has welcomed today’s commonwealth commitment to another key plank of the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) with the creation of an agency to design the scheme and lead its practical implementation.
“The injection of an additional $10 million towards NDIS preparation and the announcement of trial sites shows the federal government is serious about meeting the milestones which will see the scheme become a reality on time,” Mr Barbagallo said.
“The establishment of a National Disability Insurance Scheme promises equity for all Australians with disabilities, under one national system and the same assessments for all, regardless of where they live or how their disability was acquired,” he said.
Mr Barbagallo called on all Australian states and territories to demonstrate a similar level of tangible commitment to the national scheme.
“This is not the time for state and territory governments to pull back on funding and support for people with a disability,” Mr Barbagallo said.
“In fact all states must now redress historically shameful funding shortfalls and raise disability funding to the levels they should have always been,” he said.
“Every state and territory must also begin intensive work to prepare for the sweeping change from current state systems to a National Disability Insurance Scheme.
“There are currently 1.4 million people with disabilities in Australia – they and their carers have put up with a broken and inadequate system for too long and do not deserve a moment of delay in the NDIS introduction timelines.
“The current cost nationally is $10.5 billion a year, and that’s expected to skyrocket thanks to the shortage of early intervention, crisis management and the fact everyone is living longer.
“Governments around the nation can no longer ignore this issue and hope it goes away. The system badly needs fixing and the economic cost of doing nothing is just as much whilst the social cost is broken lives and unfulfilled dreams.
“States which fail to be ready for the NDIS on time, will be disadvantaging those Australians who least deserve it, and this would be a shameful indictment of their moral duty as elected representatives,” Mr Barbagallo.