COUNTDOWN TO NEW ERA IN DISABILITY SERVICES IN NORTHERN TABLELANDS

Wednesday, 17 February 2016

A NEW era for people with disability and their families in Northern Tablelandsbegins in just five months, Member for Northern Tablelands Adam Marshall announced today.

 

From 1 July this year, people with a disability and their families in the region will be able to access the supports they want and live the life they choose as they join the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS).

 

Mr Marshall said 2016 would be historic year for people with disability and their families.

 

“Make no mistake, the NDIS is a game-changer,” Mr Marshall said.

 

“For the first time, people with disability and their families will have real choice and control over their lives and the supports they receive.

 

“Importantly, the NDIS will deliver many economic and social benefits to Northern Tablelands as new and existing providers will be looking to employ more staff to support people with disability, while more participants will be empowered to seek employment and access the community more.”

 

While the NDIS is one of Australia’s great social reforms, Mr Marshall warned that with any reform there was the potential for some early challenges.

 

“To help make the rollout as smooth as possible, I would encourage people to start getting ready now,” he said.

 

“People with disability, their families and carers should start thinking now about their goals and aspirations as well as what supports they will need to achieve those goals.

 

“Everybody in the community can participate in this life-changing scheme. The NSW Government has made TAFE courses free for those who want to be one of the 25,000 additional staff we need in the disability sector.”

 

Inverell Disability Services’ Brighter Access program manager Tanya Fox said work was well underway to ensure a smooth transition.

 

“This is an exciting time for everyone with the NDIS roll out so close,” Ms Fox said.

 

“We are working with people with disability, their families and the community to be ready for the changes and to start planning for how they want to live their lives and what support might assist them.

 

“The more prepared people are, the easier any changes will be.

 

“The philosophy behind the NDIS is great and it is up to us all to ensure that the transition is as smooth as possible.”

 

With some many people coming into the scheme in such a short period of time, there is a planned approach to how people will access the NDIS. The majority of people currently receiving specialist disability supports will be able to access the NDIS in the first six months of the scheme launching.

 

The NSW Government will build on the lessons learned from the overwhelming positive experiences of those in the Hunter trial site and from the early rollout of the NDIS for children and young people aged 0-17 in Penrith and the Blue Mountains.

 

Information to support people and providers get ready for the rollout on 1 July 2016 is available at www.ndis.nsw.gov.au

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