NDIS headquarters, Geelong.

Coker calls on Coalition to act on NDIS waiting times

August 15, 2019 BY

CORANGAMITE federal member Libby Coker has expressed concern that the Morrison Government’s review into the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) could duplicate work already undertaken by the Parliamentary Joint Standing Committee.

Ms Coker, who is a member of the Joint Standing Committee, said the review is sidestepping “obvious action” that could instead be used to improve wait times for NDIS services.

She said although the evaluation was separate to the current inquiries led by the committee, the risk of duplication remained.

“I understand this review is separate to the current Joint Standing Committee inquiries which include inquiries into care planning and supported living,” she said.

“Without appropriate consultation the independent review, to be conducted by Mr David Tune AO PSM, is at risk of duplicating work already instigated through Parliament.”

Ms Coker also said that a separate review was not necessarily the most effective approach and that the federal government’s staffing caps had been the primary cause of increased delays.

“The government-imposed cap on the number of people who can be employed at the NDIS is by far one of the biggest risks to service delivery,” she said.

“Holding another review is a piecemeal approach. The Coalition has been in Government for six years they should be doing more, not just holding another review. They need to act now.”

The Corangamite leader said residents in her corner had alerted her to the “huge” wait times at the NDIS, which has led many people to feel exasperated and distressed.

She also suggested that the wider Geelong region be part of any inquiry given the initial NDIS pilot, which was initiated under the Gillard Labor Government, was conducted in the area.

“Any inquiry should consult consumers and providers and hear from the wider Geelong region,” Ms Coker said.

“It is imperative that we continue to be part of work to improve the service and I will work to ensure my community has a voice.”

Ms Coker encouraged residents and NDIS providers to make submissions to the current Parliamentary Joint Standing Committee on the NDIS inquiries here.