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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2014 Week 10 Hansard (24 September) . .

Page.. 3125..

MADAM SPEAKER: I am. It is a nice try, Mr Hanson, but no cigar. Actually it was not even a nice try.

National Disability Insurance Scheme—transition

DR BOURKE: My question is to the Minister for Disability. Minister, could you update the Assembly on progress with the transition to the national disability insurance scheme in the ACT, in particular the early intervention expo held on 13 September 2014 and the my choice evaluation pilot?

MS BURCH: I thank Dr Bourke for his interest in the national disability scheme and it is, indeed, an absolute pleasure to provide an update. The NDIS is now in its third month of operation in the ACT. The agency reports that they have received access requests from 110 people, with the majority of those found to be eligible for the NDIS.

As you know, the ACT government made the decision in April of this year to transition the delivery of specialist disability services to the community sector. This transition will see early intervention services—a small group of education programs currently running in schools—as the first to transition to the community sector at the end of the year.

This decision was not taken lightly and the government engaged the services of KPMG to conduct a program of market soundings, focus groups and research activities to help the transition of early intervention education groups to the community sector. KPMG consulted widely across the sector, with families and carers, and the government have worked closely with the National Disability Insurance Agency to ensure that these soundings help to form the basis of decision making now and into the future. We have been working hard to ensure that services are up and running early next year.

The tender process which was being run by the National Disability Insurance Agency closed yesterday. The tender sought early intervention services to replace those currently delivered by the Education and Training Directorate. The tender process means we will be able to provide families with certainty of the new services and offer financial security to providers while allowing them time to adjust to the new models. As I have previously stated, I will be reporting back to the Assembly on the outcomes of this tender in October.

In addition to the tender, we held an early intervention and therapy services expo on 13 September to give families an opportunity to see the variety of organisations that are existing here already in Canberra or are interested in coming to provide services. The expo was a great success, with over 50 providers showcasing their programs and services to more than 1,000 people. Of those 50 providers, it was very heartening to see that 34 providers are already based in the ACT.

The government has also been helping to prepare people with disability through the my choice pilot program. We recently launched the my choice evaluation here in the

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