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Happy Birthday NDIS!

The National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) celebrates its second birthday today! The NDIS is now changing lives for people with disability, their families and their communities across seven sites.

The NDIS came about because the government had heard from people with disability, their families and service providers that people with disability needed more support. They asked for some research about the disability system in Australia. This research was done by the Productivity Commission, who found that disability supports in Australia were ‘unfunded, unfair, fragmented and inefficient’.

In the meantime, people with disability and their families had been talking to their politicians about the need for change with the help of the Every Australian Counts campaign. Politicians on all sides listened, and the NDIS was started in July 2013. For the first time people with disability did not face waiting lists for their supports. For the first time, people with disability could ask for what they needed rather than trying to fit into what was available.

This is only the start of a long journey. Some people with disability and their families who use the NDIS take time to adjust to doing things differently. NDIS staff are still trying out new ideas to make the experience of using the NDIS the best one possible. Not everyone in the country is covered by the NDIS yet.

It’s easy to forget just how far we’ve come when we keep looking forward to the next steps. Today, let’s celebrate the people with disability, families, service providers, politicians and NDIS staff who have all made this journey possible.