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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2016 Week 2 Hansard (17 February) . .

Page.. 501..

2013, why is it that families who are relying on these services are only now being informed?

DR BOURKE: I thank Mr Wall for his question and his interest in disability matters. Of course, as Mr Wall knows, as a result of the NDIS, a process which has been going on for some time, Therapy ACT services are being transitioned into the NDIS. I would have presumed that parents would have received clear and concise instructions over the last period of time about that transition.

As you will appreciate, after a couple of weeks in, I have been doing a lot of reading, talking to a lot of people, including stakeholders, and receiving briefings from the directorate. If you would like to forward me that particular complaint from that constituent, which I do not believe has happened as yet, although I will check with my office that that is the case, I will be happy to provide a more detailed response to the constituent.

MADAM SPEAKER: A supplementary question, Mr Wall.

MR WALL: Minister, why does the information being provided to families fail to provide details on alternative services that will be available once Therapy ACT ceases?

DR BOURKE: Without further information about the case or further advice, I am not able to comment further on this particular matter. However, I would say that, of some 3,000 out of some 5,000 people who are eligible for the NDIS in the ACT who are being transitioned, most of them would have been, I would have thought, or should have been, properly informed of what services are available and where they would be available. This is an evolving space. As you will appreciate, Mr Wall, this is a trial site for the NDIS which is occurring right across the country.

MADAM SPEAKER: Supplementary question, Mr Doszpot.

MR DOSZPOT: Minister, what alternative services will be available after the closure of Therapy ACT for families who do not qualify for funding under NDIS?

DR BOURKE: There are a range of services available within the community regardless of whether you qualify for the NDIS or not but, of course, they would be something you would have to pay for. Within the NDIS program there is a—

Opposition members interjecting—

MADAM SPEAKER: Order, Mr Hanson and Mr Wall!

DR BOURKE: Thank you, Madam Speaker. But as you know, the child assessment service will be continuing, and that will provide assessment and advice for parents. That will be available to people who are seeking to qualify for the NDIS or to provide short-term advice for parents.

MADAM SPEAKER: A supplementary question, Mr Doszpot.

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