National Disability Insurance Scheme introduced into parliament
Fri 30 November 2012
The Prime Minister yesterday introduced legislation for the National Disability Insurance Scheme into the Commonwealth Parliament, as people with disability, their families and carers and NDIS campaigners watched from the public gallery of the House of Representatives.
AND's CEO Suzanne Colbert AM, was present at Parliament House for the historic tabling of this legislation, pictured below with Jenny Macklin, Minister for Disability Reform.
The bill sets out the framework for a national scheme, including structure and eligibility criteria, and will be voted on early next year. The scheme aims to cover 360,000 people with a profound or severe disability, with a separate National Injury Insurance scheme to cover people who suffer a catastrophic injury.
Ms Gillard says she believes the scheme will be the greatest change to Australian social policy in a generation.
"The scheme to be established by this bill will transform the lives of people with disability, their families and carers," she said.
"For the first time they will have their needs met in a way that truly supports them to live with choice and dignity."
The NDIS aims to shift funding for disability away from welfare to a system based on social insurance, with all taxpayers contributing.
Instead of funding of being allocated to service providers, individuals will instead be given direct access to funding, which they can then administer either directly or through brokers.
The focus of the scheme will be on early intervention, building on the concept that significant initial financial outlay can offset greater costs incurred if problems are left untreated.
The legislation has been referred to a Senate Committee for their consideration. During their inquiry, the Senate Committee will hear evidence from people with disability, their families and carers about the Bill, which means everyone will have another opportunity to consider the details, and to input into the drafting and design of this important legislation.
Following conversation with people with disability, their families and carers, with service providers and advocates through the Senate Committee, and ongoing work with the states and territories, the Parliament will vote on the Bill next year.
Watch Prime Minister Gillard’s speech online here
Watch and read the ABC news story online here
Read the FAHCSIA department media release.
You can also read the Bill and provide feedback through our online forum Your Say.