More than 32,000 South Australians living with disability and their families will benefit when the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) is fully rolled out in 2019.
The Commonwealth and South Australian governments have reached agreement on the full roll out of the scheme.
Commonwealth Social Services Minister Christian Porter said the NDIS is receiving widespread community support.
“The NDIS is one of the largest social policy reforms in Australia’s history. South Australians living with disability, their families, their carers and their service providers will all benefit from it—and from the certainty today’s announcement provides,” Mr Porter said.
“This is a significant change for people with disability and the disability services sector, and that’s why we are introducing the scheme in stages to ensure that it is carefully managed.
“South Australia’s experience with the trial for children aged 0-14 offers a successful base to transition to the full roll-out.
“The Commonwealth and South Australian government have each provided an additional $50 million to the NDIS transition. This means children aged 0–14 in South Australia that have not yet accessed the NDIS will be able to do so from February 2016.”
South Australian Disabilities Minister Tony Piccolo said the staged roll-out would begin with an age-based roll out for young people, then a region-by-region roll-out for adults.
“From 1 January 2017, 15–17 year olds will transition, and from July 2017 South Australian adults aged 18-64 will transition by geographical area, based on the state’s Disability Regions.
“The first areas to transition will be the Barossa, Light and Lower North, and the Local Government Areas of Playford, Salisbury and Port Adelaide Enfield (East).
“We are continuing to work in partnership with the disability sector throughout the roll-out, and we can assure South Australians living with disability that existing support services will be retained during the transition to ensure they are not disadvantaged.
“For some of our most vulnerable people, this will mean they have the support they deserve to live fulfilling lives.”
Mr Porter said five of Australia’s states and territories have now reached agreement with the Commonwealth on the full roll-out of the NDIS: South Australia, Tasmania, New South Wales, Victoria and the Australian Capital Territory.
“Together, the agreements in place will cover more than two thirds of Australia, around 300,000 people with disability—more than 65 per cent of the estimated 460,000 people who will access the NDIS nation-wide,” Mr Porter said.
“Constructive discussions with other jurisdictions are continuing and the Commonwealth is committed to finalising agreements as soon as possible.”