A disability advocate has detailed harrowing stories of abuse against some of Australia’s most vulnerable people – from physical assaults to being put in cages – by those paid by taxpayers to care for them.
Tuesday’s federal budget will see $10 million in funding set aside to transition younger people living in aged care to age-appropriate accommodation.
The initiative includes $10.6m in the 2020-21 Budget for a national network of system coordinators to help younger people find age-appropriate accommodation and supports to allow them to live independently in the community. The Australian Government is committed to ensuring no younger person (under the age of 65) lives in residential aged care unless there are exceptional circumstances.
Is the disability support sector due for a shake-up? Social entrepreneur and product designer Melanie Tran wants to disrupt traditional models of support. And she’s helping bring together young people from around the country to help make that happen.
The scandal-plagued disability sector will get $22 billion from the federal government this financial year, but an independent review found the system left vulnerable people open to harm and neglect. Mr Shorten said NDIS Minister Stuart Robert had presided over a “toothless and sleepy” watchdog that in reality is “more like a very expensive purse poodle”.
Australian Greens Disability Rights and Services spokesperson Senator Jordon Steele-John has labelled reports that the NDIS Quality and Safeguards Commission has fined just one provider, despite receiving more than 8000 complaints, as deeply concerning but not surprising.
The NDIS funding model provides a one size fits all approach, making it difficult for good quality group supports to survive and thrive, and for new ones to evolve. In recent months we have conducted cost analysis for a range of providers of group programs. The results painted a bleak picture.
The report found Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people living with a disability are 1.6 times more likely to report racism than those without a disability and are almost twice as likely to avoid certain situations because of past experiences of discrimination.
Nick Coatsworth, deputy chief medical officer, conceded he did not know how many people with disabilities had been affected by Covid-19 in Australia.
Residents of a Melbourne disability home have been allowed to wander the streets surrounding the facility despite many testing positive for COVID-19. Supported accommodation facility Hambleton House, in Albert Park, provides housing for people with mental health problems.
The evacuation of all the residents from a special accommodation facility at the centre of a COVID-19 cluster has prompted warnings that disability services will face more outbreaks without immediate intervention.
Minister, the state government wants a payment for the casualised and very transient disability workforce to minimise movement during this pandemic. Why won’t the Commonwealth create one?
At least two people linked to residential disability accommodation have died from coronavirus and there are dozens of active cases in that setting, as fears grow about vulnerable residents facing similar dangers to people in nursing homes.
More than 70 cases of coronavirus have been recorded in disability care in Victoria, and advocates fear the sector could be headed for a similar crisis to aged care without greater support. Women with Disabilities Victoria chief executive Leah Van Poppel said the disability community was worried about the spread of the virus in group homes that support people with disabilities.
With multiple cases of COVID-19 emerging in the disability sector in Victoria, the Health Service Union (HSU National) and its Victorian disability branch the Health and Community Services Union (HACSU) are urging the Federal and Victorian Governments to act quickly to prevent another aged care tragedy.