Update Eleven - 10 February 2012
This morning along with the Prime Minister we visited the Family
Resource and Network Support Inc (FRANS) in Sydney to speak to
young adults with disability, their families and carers about a
National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS).
Meeting with families who live with disability every day of
their lives is so important to our work to reform the system of
disability care and support.
Eva spoke to us today of the waiting list she's been on to find
supported accommodation for her 21 year old son. Hearing her
concern about the kind of accommodation that's available for him,
and the waiting lists to access care, helps us design the best kind
of accommodation options that will work for people with disability
and their families and carers.
When Sandra spoke to us of the support that's been available to
her son through the Helping Children with Autism program and her
experience of accessing this program, we gained an insight into how
we can better support families in the future to access the care and
support that is available.
Our visit to FRANS comes at an important time. Just yesterday,
we joined Deputy Prime Minister Wayne Swan, Minister Bill Shorten,
and Ministers from across the country at the second meeting of the
Select Council on Disability Reform. This is the group of ministers
from all governments who are working on the recommendations of the
Productivity Commission to progress an NDIS.
Yesterday we had a working meeting, where we talked through some
of the key design issues for an NDIS such as what an insurance
approach looks like for people with disability, and how we can
support people to access the care and support they need.
We said last year that 2012 would be the year of design for the
launch of an NDIS, and we are rolling up our sleeves in this work.
At the same time, we want to make sure we're continuing to deliver
better support for people with disability, their families and
carers - and that we are continuing to listen to their views and
concerns about reform.
Today's event was a great opportunity to listen and to
understand. And just last week, in Townsville, we announced an
investment of $4.9 million to assist children with hearing or
vision impairment living in regional and remote Australia by
accessing specialist services and therapies through the National
Broadband Network (NBN).
This uses video and the internet to put families and children
with disability who live in regional and remote communities in
touch with qualified allied health and education services. This
helps families of children with disability to access the services
that aren't always available outside the cities.
We are getting on with the job of designing an NDIS, and we're
continuing to boost investment in care and support for people with
disability, their families and carers.
Jenny Macklin and Jan McLucas