Labor vows review to improve NDIS, ‘crackdown on cowboys’
Posted On April 19, 2022
Greater support for disability advocates will be at the forefront of a new plan to improve the National Disability Insurance Scheme.
Shadow NDIS Minister Bill Shorten announced Labor’s proposal to invest $10 million over four years to support disability advocates and “keep people safe in the scheme”.
“Government can never know everything that’s happening,” Mr Shorten said.
“If there was a bit of software… to tell you whenever someone was in trouble or whenever someone wasn’t being looked after properly… no doubt government would go out and pay for it.
“But we don’t have to wait for that to be invented because if we listen to the workforce, if we listen to the advocates, if we listen to people with disabilities, we’ve already got our system.
“Advocates are a fundamental part of the safety and quality of the scheme.”
The funding was announced alongside a six-point plan to improve the NDIS.
Under the plan, Labor aims to crackdown on “cowboys out there taking advantage” of the scheme by reviewing “criminal activity and fraud”.
The party plans to look into the “excessive use” of external lawyers and review the “value for money” of consultancy contracts.
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For participants in the scheme, the party wants to address access to appropriate housing, ensure more flexible housing and boost employment opportunities.
Labor also plans to lift staffing caps, streamline the planning process for initial plans and introduce a review “that will guarantee plans will not be arbitrarily cut”.
Mr Shorten said Labor will also appoint a senior officer within the National Disability Insurance Agency to focus on the barriers to service delivery in regional Australia and commit to “co-designing changes to the scheme with people with disability”.