Media Release by Senator the Hon Jan McLucas

Legislation for a National Disability Insurance Scheme

Joint Media Release with:

  • The Hon Jenny Macklin MP, Minister for Families, Community Services and Indigenous Affairs and, Minister for Disability Reform

The Australian Government today released the draft National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) Bill, ahead of its introduction into Parliament later this week.

The Bill has been shaped by what we have heard from people with disability, their families, carers and disability organisations across Australia.

State and Territory Ministers have also provided feedback on the Bill.

From the middle of next year, an NDIS will be real for more than 20,000 people with disability in five launch sites across the country – in the Barwon area in Victoria, the Hunter in New South Wales and across South Australia, Tasmania and the Australian Capital Territory.

An NDIS will ensure people with disability, wherever they live, receive care and support based on their needs, and have choice and control over this support.

The Bill creates the framework for a national scheme, including eligibility criteria, age requirements, and what constitutes reasonable and necessary support.

The framework set up by the legislation will be supported by detailed rules that keep it flexible and allow it to be adapted. Consultation on these detailed rules will occur with people with disability, their families, carers, service providers and advocates in the coming months.

The Bill also gives effect in part to Australia’s obligations under the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities.

The Bill will establish the NDIS Launch Transition Agency as an independent body (under the Commonwealth Authorities and Companies Act 1997) to deliver the scheme.

The board will be advised by an independent Advisory Council consisting of people with disability, carers and service providers to make sure that everyone has their voice heard.

The NDIS Agency will work with people with disability to develop a personal plan that identifies their goals and aspirations, recognises the support they receive from family and friends, and provides a statement of the support they will receive through the NDIS.

The legislation also supports people to manage their own funding where they choose to do so.

The legislation will be reviewed after two years to make sure that our work to build a national scheme is informed by the evidence of what works.

When the Bill is introduced to the Parliament later this week, the Government will ask the Parliament to refer the legislation to a Parliamentary Committee for consideration.

During this time, the Commonwealth will continue to work with states and territories and people with disabilities, their families and carers to ensure that they can continue to provide feedback about this important reform. People with disability, their families, carers and advocates will also have an opportunity to comment on the Bill on the Your Say forum on the NDIS website.

A Legislation Overview has been developed to explain the Bill and provide information on how you can have a say on the Bill. The overview and further information about the scheme is available at