the National Disability Insurance Scheme

In Australia, the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) was introduced in 2013, with the goal of making Australia’s disability services more efficient and accessible. The scheme began with $55 billion to spend over four years. However, in August 2015, the government announced the amount would be cut back from $54.0 billion to $50.0 billion, and that it would not be ready to fully operate until early 2017. The government said the reduction was needed to meet its budget deficit, which was expected to reach $30.0 billion.

A disability advocacy group, Living Differently, estimated that over one million Australians have a disability and that a third of them are currently NDIS excluded from mainstream employment. If the NDIS did not make its expected benefits available to people with disabilities, they argued, it would only increase unemployment among those with disabilities and force people to stay in a dependent situation. The group’s report stated that the NDIS would enable disabled people to get the support they need to improve their quality of life.

The NDIS aims to ensure that everyone who meets the eligibility requirements receives a disability support package. People who are eligible can apply for up to four packages. These include a home support package, a respite package, a specialist medical package, and a transition package.