The Commonwealth and Western Australian governments have finalised negotiations on a nationally consistent, WA-delivered NDIS, formalised in the signing of a bilateral agreement today.
West Australians with disability now have absolute certainty they will be able to access vital support through the National Disability Insurance Scheme from July 2017.
Commonwealth Minister for Social Services, Christian Porter, said the bilateral agreement demonstrated both governments are committed to the key NDIS principles of choice and control, giving people with disability access to the support they need no matter where they live.
"This agreement confirms that West Australians with severe and permanent disability will have access to the reasonable and necessary supports they need and now sees all of the Australian population covered by full bi-lateral agreements," Minister Porter said.
"There were 11 fixed conditions the Commonwealth required for a state-run NDIS in Western Australia to ensure consistency and integrity of the scheme is upheld across the country and I'm very pleased the agreement reflects all of these conditions.
"WA's agreement with the Commonwealth provides complete national consistency around key elements such as eligibility and access to supports provided through the NDIS. The Agreement also details that funding for the administration and operating costs will be the responsibility of the WA Government, and governance responsibilities will be shared."
State legislation will be introduced as soon as practicable, mirroring key elements of the National Disability Insurance Scheme Act 2013.
Western Australian Premier Colin Barnett said a locally delivered NDIS was something he had fought hard for.
"This is a great day for people with disability in WA," Mr Barnett said.
"They will be able to access the same level of funding and support as other people participating in the NDIS around Australia, with the advantage of it being delivered through an established service system run by people based here who know West Australian communities.
"People with disability, their families and carers now have certainty about their future, and can rest assured they will receive the vital support they deserve."
The scheme will be delivered by a new WA NDIS authority and will be governed by a seven-member independent WA Board. The WA Board and authority's responsibilities will be set out in state legislation which will mirror the national legislation.
The Commonwealth and WA Governments will consult on the appointment of the Chair of the WA Board. The WA Minister for Disability Services will appoint four board members and the three remaining members will be appointed by the WA Minister on the recommendation of the Commonwealth Minister.
WA Disability Services Minister Donna Faragher said about 39,000 people would be part of the WA NDIS by the end of the transition phase.
"People will enter the scheme between July 1, 2017 and June 30, 2020 based on a geographic roll out which is consistent with other parts of the nation," Mrs Faragher said.
"Western Australia has a long tradition of significant investment in disability services - this Government strongly believes people with disability deserve quality services no matter where they live.
"We are prepared to invest what it takes to ensure that the NDIS can be rolled out to every eligible person in WA no matter where they live. Importantly, this agreement provides the opportunity for West Australians with disability to continue to shape how the scheme can best meet their needs into the future."
People already receiving services through the two NDIS trial models in WA will see minimal disruption as a result of today's announcement.
Those in the WA NDIS trial sites will see no change, while people in the National Disability Insurance Agency trial sites of Perth Hills, Bayswater, Bassendean, Chittering, Toodyay, Northam and York local government areas will move into the WA-delivered NDIS from 1 July 2017.
The WA Government and NDIA would work together to ensure a smooth transition for people.
The Western Australian Government will, where possible, facilitate the transfer of NDIA staff to the WA authority.
As part of the bilateral agreement, the Commonwealth will fund about 40 per cent of average package costs for people aged up to 64 and WA will cover the remaining 60 per cent. All the operational costs of the WA NDIS authority will be met by WA.
Premier's office - 6552 5000
Disability Services Minister's office - 6552 5300
WESTERN AUSTRALIA (WA) ROLL OUT SCHEDULE
WA National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS)
The NDIS will roll out in WA geographically, with eligible people gaining access at different times based on the Western Australia Disability Services Region that they live in.
The transition will take place over three years (July 2017 to July 2020).
People in the existing WA NDIS trial sites will see no change:
- Lower South West;
- Cockburn-Kwinana; and
- Local government areas of Armadale, Serpentine-Jarrahdale and Murray
|Start of transition||Western Australia Service Region||Locations|
|1 July 2017||People in existing National Disability Insurance Agency (NDIA) trial sites will begin to transition to the WA-delivered NDIS||Perth Hills, Bayswater, Bassendean, Chittering, Toodyay, Northam and York.|
|1 July 2017||Remaining population of South Metro|
|1 July 2017||Kimberley-Pilbara|
|1 July 2018||Remaining populations of the Wheatbelt|
|1 July 2018||Remaining populations of South-West |
|1 July 2018||Remaining populations of Central South Metro|
|1 July 2018||Goldfields-Esperance|
|1 July 2018||North Metro |
|1 July 2019||Midwest-Gascoyne|
|1 July 2019||Great Southern|
|1 July 2019||Central North Metro|
|1 July 2019||South East Metro|