Western Australian Disability Services Minister Don Punch has welcomed the decision to axe the introduction of mandatory independent assessments and instead work with the disability sector to co-design a model to improve equity in the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS).
Federal, State and Territory Ministers met today at the Disability Reform Ministers' Meeting to discuss the Commonwealth's proposed reforms to the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS).
At the meeting, the States and Territories rejected the proposed legislation to introduce independent assessments and again requested the necessary data from the Commonwealth to consider the implications of, and basis for, any proposed changes.
WA did not support the Commonwealth's unpopular proposed changes to the legislation without viewing the whole package of reforms, and was strongly against the introduction of independent assessments as proposed by the Commonwealth.
The Commonwealth has listened to calls from State and Territory Governments and the disability sector across Australia, and abandoned the flawed proposal to introduce independent assessments.
The Commonwealth has agreed to share detailed data on the Scheme with other States and Territories to better inform the work needed at both levels of Government to ensure the future sustainability of the NDIS.
Comments attributed to Disability Services Minister Don Punch:
"This is an enormous win for NDIS participants, their families and their carers.
"I am delighted the Commonwealth Government has heeded to our calls to abandon the introduction of compulsory independent assessments, which were based upon unsubstantiated financial assumptions and wholly inadequate consultation.
"The WA Government welcomes the agreement by the Commonwealth to commence a co-design process with States, Territories and the disability sector to develop a model that improves equity in accessing the NDIS.
"We continue our commitment to working with the Commonwealth to deliver a financially sustainable scheme that provides reasonable and necessary support for people with disability, which puts people with disability at the centre and does not compromise the original intent of the NDIS.
"Any future proposals for changes to the Scheme must be co-designed in partnership with stakeholders across the disability sector, and I welcome the Commonwealth's commitment to such a process."
Minister's office - 6552 6900