More than $24m to fund disability advocacy
The Australian Government will provide $24.26 million for advocacy services to support people with disability receiving Commonwealth Government Services and accessing the NDIS.
This funding includes:
$18.06 million for the National Disability Advocacy Program (NDAP) to be extended until 2017-18, and
$6.2 million to extend NDIS Appeals advocacy services to 30 new NDIS locations across Australia, with funding lasting until 31 December 2017.
The Hon Jane Prentice MP, Assistant Minister for Social Services and Disability Services, said the NDAP and NDIS Appeals programs ensure people with disability continue to have access to effective and independent advocacy.
“Advocacy organisations play an important role in supporting people with disability in our community – they promote and protect equal enjoyment of all human rights,” she said.
“Extending the NDIS Appeals program ensures people who are transitioning to the NDIS can appeal a decision if they are unhappy with the outcome.
“The $6.2 million to extend the NDIS Appeals Program will provide funding for support persons and legal services to help NDIS applicants navigate the process of seeking a review of decisions through the Administrative Appeals Tribunal.”
The $18.06 million NDAP funding will allow providers to continue to deliver services under the current NDAP model until 30 June 2018, while a review of the program is completed.
“The NDAP has not changed since the 1980s,” Mrs Prentice said.
“We are working closely with the sector to review the program which has not changed for 30 years.
“We have received feedback from the sector that more time is needed to engage with them and fully consider the best approach to deliver disability advocacy in Australia.
“It is important to create a disability advocacy system that is innovative, well-administered, current, consistent, responsive and quality-assured.
“The outcome of the review will be finalised by August 2017.
“This additional funding enables current NDAP providers to continue to deliver high-quality advocacy services and will give providers time to adjust to the new arrangements from 1 July 2018.”
To find a NDAP provider near you, use the NDAP Provider search tool, here.