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Budget delivers much-needed funding stability for NDIS

Date published: Tuesday 9 May 2017

Category(ies): Media release

The peak body for Baptist community service organisations, Baptist Care Australia, congratulates the government for taking on the challenge of ensuring ongoing funding stability for the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS).

“Funding for the NDIS will be secured through a 0.5% increase in the Medicare Levy. This revenue will be directly credited to the NDIS Savings Fund, currently being considered by parliament,” said Marcia Balzer, Executive Director of Baptist Care Australia.

“It’s a relief to see that this large funding gap has not been filled by budget savings from people who can least afford it

“The long term success of the NDIS relies on service providers being able to deliver services sustainably in the long term. This means that both pricing and funding need to be adequate.

“We need to ensure we don’t end up with a sub-standard NDIS due to insufficient funding or inadequate pricing for services. The ultimate result would be providers being unable to deliver the services that people with disability need,” Ms Balzer said.

There are also Budget allocations of $33 million for the Local Care Workforce Package to help disability and aged care providers to boost their local workforces, particularly in regional areas.

“A new NDIS Quality and Safeguards Commission comes with a pricetag of $209 million. It remains to be seen whether this investment will deliver on the promise of ensuring better safety and quality for NDIS participants,” Ms Balzer said.

“The Federal Budget allocation is a good start, but there is still a lot of work to be done to ensure that the NDIS delivers on its promise for better services, more opportunities and better choices for people with disability.

“The NDIS is a massive change, and there have been challenges at all levels in rolling it out. We encourage the government to engage effectively with the sector about how to address these challenges,” Ms Balzer said.

The Baptist Care Australia network offers people with disability self-directed support services such as life skills, activities and outings, early childhood intervention, case management and other supports. These services help people maintain their independence, fulfil their potential, connect with their communities and live the lives they choose.

ENDS

Contact: Marcia Balzer, Executive Director, Baptist Care Australia, marcia.balzer@baptistcareaustralia.org.au, 0430 175 310