Page 2070 - Week 07 - Tuesday, 2 August 2016

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houses previously supported by Disability ACT: “I could not in my wildest and most optimistic dreams (and I am a great optimist) have imagined that in less than a year 14 houses would have transitioned to our service. This could not have happened without a genuinely cooperative approach being taken by Disability ACT. It also could not have happened without large numbers of suitable Disability ACT hands-on staff being willing and able to change employers, and again I thank and commend Disability ACT for your approach for enabling this to occur.”

We have been preparing the ACT government for service withdrawal due to the NDIS. The ACT government, through the work of the Disability ACT team, has transitioned specialist disability services to the community sector since 2014. This includes the early intervention services, which transitioned in late 2014; Therapy ACT, which will transition by the end of this year; and Disability ACT supported accommodation, which will transition by mid-2017. Another example of how we have successfully transitioned is that since April 2016, Therapy ACT referrals have continued to decline, with no new referrals being accepted after 17 June 2016, due to their wait list having been cleared.

I am pleased to update members on the ACT Child Development Service, which commenced in January 2016. The ACT Child Development Service provides supports for families who are ACT residents and have concerns about their child’s development. To date, over 390 families have accessed this service, with drop-in clinics located at the child and family centres in west Belconnen, Tuggeranong and Gungahlin and also at the child development centre in Holder. New referrals for allied health services totalled 260 for the period January to March 2016.

The number of providers also continues to grow. When the ACT entered the NDIS trial in 2014, 64 specialist providers were identified as affected by the NDIS. Today over 200 providers are registered with the NDIS to deliver disability services in the ACT.

Service providers will continue to be available to give people with disability the opportunities to make their own decisions. Providers are working with families and carers to support them to make the best decisions on behalf of their loved one, while staying as true as possible to the philosophy of the NDIS, that the person with disability is central.

Since 2014, the ACT government has had a shared responsibility between governments, directorates, disability service providers, people with disability, carers, guardians and mainstream providers to ensure that the ACT was ready to provide a transition to the NDIS that was as seamless as possible. You have heard me report on the role of government in regard to our transition. You have also heard powerful testimonials showcasing the success of our transition.

This government has remained committed to improving the outcomes of people with disability. The government, in partnership with the National Disability Insurance Agency and our community partners, will continue to ensure the delivery of a broad range of services and programs that support people with disability to have control in what supports they need and live the life they choose to.

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