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NSW Continues to Negotiate the First Stage Hunter - National Disability Insurance Scheme Launch Site

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Message from Minister Constance
NSW Continues to Negotiate the First Stage
Hunter - National Disability Insurance Scheme Launch Site

I am delighted that the NSW and Australian Governments have reached an agreement around a National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) first stage trial site in the Hunter.

Consistent with the Productivity Commissions recommendations, the NSW proposal to the Commonwealth is for a phased roll out of the NDIS, beginning in July 2013, to 10,000 people over three years across the Newcastle, Lake Macquarie and Maitland Local Government Areas of the Hunter.

Across the term of the trial the NSW Government will contribute $35 million in new funds, in addition to the $550 million already allocated to disability supports for the identified Hunter area.

The NSW Government has said all along that we're eager to work with the Commonwealth to ensure the NDIS gets off the ground and I am committed to implementing an NDIS in accordance with the recommendations of the Productivity Commission.

There is still much work to be done to build the design, governance and policy parameters prior to commencing a trial of the NDIS in the Hunter. We will not commence this trial site until we get these foundations right, to ensure that the implementation is effective and supports the delivery of outcomes for people with disability. NSW will continue to work with the Commonwealth to develop a concrete policy framework to ensure a successful first stage NDIS.

NSW is well on its way to being ‘NDIS ready’ as we continue our individualised funding reforms through Stronger Together 2 which will allow people with disability to choose the supports that work for them.

The time taken for NSW to negotiate an agreement was not about the short term trial sites but for the long term viability of this important reform. The Productivity Commission was clear in its recommendation that these costs should be met by the Commonwealth and we will continue to insist on confirmation for the long term sustainability of an NDIS from 2018 and beyond.

This is a time of change for people with disability their families and carers, and the sector that supports them. I encourage you all to remain engaged and continue to look at the range of supports you offer to people with a disability.

I am confident that the hard work occurring across Ageing Disability and Home Care will ensure people with a disability, their families and carers see the outcome of the NDIS to give them the choice and control for supports that they rightly deserve.

I am confident that we are on our way to making sure that people with a disability, their families and carers see the outcome of the NDIS to give them the choice and control for supports that they rightly deserve.

Andrew Constance

Minister for Disability Services


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