Ahead of World Autism Awareness Day on April 2, the Agency has today released a consultation paper, ‘Interventions for children on the autism spectrum’. The paper aims to stimulate conversation with participants, families, carers and the wider sector on what should be considered reasonable and necessary supports for children with autism.
During the pandemic, when the world shrank, many of us walked in the bush. For someone who can’t see, it isn’t necessarily something that I can do independently. But over the years, it is something that has become important to me.
The disability sector is demanding answers from the Federal Government over the independence of a report used to justify controversial reforms to the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS). Documents released to Labor appear to show the 2019 NDIS review was amended by public servants to include a section advocating for the rollout of permanent independent assessments – which disability advocates are opposed to.
Requesting workplace adjustments, flexible working arrangements, or modified equipment in the workplace is a tough gig. It is even more difficult for those who are the only disabled person on their team or in their workplace – that is, almost all disabled people.
The strongest rebuke has come from the Victorian government, whose disability minister, Luke Donnellan, said on Thursday the so-called “robo-planning” proposal “attacks the very principles on which the NDIS was built”.
State and territory disability ministers have been sidelined from plans to strip back the NDIS. The legislation will hand the federal minister ‘God powers’ over the scheme.
Emails and draft copies of the 2019 report, written by former senior public servant David Tune, show National Disability Insurance Agency officials inserted an entire chapter into the review of the scheme’s legislation, and made substantial changes to almost every part of the document.
The National Disability Insurance Agency (NDIA) is planning to launch an app for NDIS participants in the coming months, with the aim to give users a better experience than is provided via the web portal.
Like many parents, Jonathan Wenig was concerned about his daughter’s career path after she left school last year. Tali, 20, who has autism, faced more than the usual challenges in finding a job that would suit her.
To be honest, there are many things about this situation that confound me. Not least the fact that exclusion by condition seems to be an additional assault on the core principles of the NDIS. We’re told that functional capacity is the measure of need, not a diagnosis. Yet, in the next breath (or should I say draft) whole diagnoses are in the mix.
Queensland disability groups have welcomed the state government’s decision to extend advocacy funding, with $8.1 million committed over the next two years. The QLD Disability Advocacy Alliance thanked the government for the pledge, but noted it was more of a stop-gap measure to support the sector until an ongoing funding model for advocacy was developed.
The idea of a single national scheme to give the disabled more dignity and control has enjoyed bipartisan support for the past decade, but that consensus appears to be fraying over changes now under active contemplation by the federal government.
The Head of Policy at the ACT Council of Social Service, Craig Wallace, said “While we note that the Federal Minister has said this is one of a number of drafts being prepared, this appalling document gives a troubling insight into the direction and planning of the Government’s reforms.
NDIS Minister Stuart Robert has sought to downplay a report about leaked proposed changes to the scheme that sparked anger and distress from disability advocates. Mr Robert said he had not seen the draft legislation cited by the Nine papers, which he said he had been told was only “one of 78”. “The only draft legislation the government intends to introduce is the one I will release shortly,” he said.
People with Disability Australia President Samantha Connor said reports about the confidential 300 page draft: “To discover that there are significant changes proposed that will disadvantage people with disability, along with a proposal to cut out co-design with participants and disabled persons organisations, is deeply concerning.”