Advocates perplexed over government’s independent assessments plan
Disability advocates say they are confused by the federal government’s messaging around independent assessments, after National Disability Insurance Scheme Minister Linda Reynolds confirmed the controversial reform will proceed in “some form” despite widespread opposition.
What’s the issue? Advocates say the government has been sending mixed messages about independent assessments (IAs) – a reform that would drastically change the process for determining NDIS eligibility. After swift backlash to the reform from disability groups, Minister Reynolds said two weeks ago that the government would pause its plan to introduce IAs. While this made disability groups hopeful the policy could be dumped, Reynolds told Senate Estimates on Monday that the introduction of IAs were still set to go ahead. Disability advocates are now in the dark about exactly when and how IAs will be rolled out. They are calling for the government to reset relations with the sector and ensure people with disability are put at the centre of NDIS decision-making.