Disability Services Minister Tony McRae today challenged the Australian Government to treat Western Australians with disabilities fairly.
“Under the current Commonwealth State Territory Disability Agreement (CSTDA), Western Australians with disabilities are currently receiving far less funding than their Eastern States counterparts,” Mr McRae said.
“Frankly, this is just not good enough and they are missing out on some much-needed services.”
The Minister said the CSTDA had delivered some positive outcomes for people with disabilities in WA.
“However, these outcomes could have been better if there had been a more equitable approach to funding disability services across Australia,” he said.
“WA has 10.2 per cent of people with disabilities but receives only eight per cent of the national funding.
“This means that payments to Western Australians are 22 per cent lower ($679), compared with the per capita average to other jurisdictions ($870).”
Mr McRae said the Australian Government and other States and Territories had acknowledged this inequity but the funding shortfall issues had not been addressed over successive CSTDA agreements.
“The difference between the amount the State receives from the Commonwealth and what we should receive is substantial and will amount to a cumulative shortfall of $66million over the life of the agreement including more than $13million in the coming financial year,” he said.
The Minister has been in Brisbane meeting with Community and Disability Services Ministers from across Australia.
The current CSTDA expires on June 30 and all States and Territories are engaged in planning for the fourth agreement.
Minister's office: (08) 9213 7150