The disability support system in NSW is currently undergoing change. Despite there being new policy reforms aimed at giving people with disability more flexibility and control, advocacy is just as important as ever. This is because power still resides largely with those groups implementing change – the government, the bureaucracy, and non-government service providers. Vigorous advocacy is needed so that the views and aspirations of those upon whom these changes will have the most effect, your family members with disability, are heard and taken action on. Otherwise, decisions will continue to be made on their behalf.
There will be a gradual transition of current systems of support in NSW to the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS).
Read Opportunities and Challenges arising from the National Reforms or view a presentation by Belinda Epstein-Frisch at our recent Harness the Possibilities Conference.
Explore more about how to direct supports on the Resourcing Inclusive Communities website.
Human services aim to assist people in different aspects of their life. These human services will continue to exist under an NDIS, and despite a changing policy environment to one that is more supportive of individual choice and control over how and where funding is utilised, vigilance is still required to ensure that this translates into the reality of people's everyday lives.
There is an assumption that once people with disability have access to services and supports there will be no need for advocacy.
Regardless of what happens with funding and supports we believe advocacy will always be needed and will be lifelong, because of the following reasons:
- The impact of disability
- Values of society
- Social impact of disability
- Impact of the human service system
As an advocacy organisation we are interested to hear about your experiences around the NDIS please contact us, you can also find out more by reading The NDIS and your family member: we need to hear your voice
2017 NDIS Update
Family Advocacy Launches NDIS Reviews and Appeals Service.
Family Advocacy are now providing a free and confidential service to support people with developmental disability and their families who have concerns about their access to the NDIS or the types of supports in their NDIS plan. Leanne Varga, has recently joined the team as the Systemic Advocacy and Leadership Facilitator, and is developing resources for families around the NDIS.
Our staff can provide phone advice on:
• how to advocate for your family member if you are not happy and wish to review their NDIS Plan
• how to understand the documentation that has been received from the NDIA
• whether proceeding to Appeal is the right option.
Keeping families informed with updates
View NDIS Information Updates for families
How to make a complaint and provide feedback under the NDIS
How to make a complaint through the NSW Ombudsman
The Ombudsman is the independent and impartial watchdog for community and disability services in NSW. Read this fact sheet on the Ombudsman and the NDIS.
Other useful links:
Rights under the NDIS: http://ndisrights.org.au/
Rights under Australian Consumer Law: www.accc.gov.au