People With Disability And Carers Comprise More Than 400,000 West Australians

People With Disability And Carers Comprise More Than 400,000 West Australians

Western Australia Minister for Disability Services Helen Morton

State Welcomes Report Into Long-Term Disability Care

Victor P Taffa

The State Government has welcomed the Productivity Commission’s draft report into a long-term disability care and support scheme.

Disability Services Minister Helen Morton said the issue was important for people with disability and their families and carers.

The Productivity Commission report followed a public inquiry into a potential national scheme that could better meet the long-term needs of people with disability.

Mrs. Morton said people with disability and their carers comprised more than 400,000 West Australians and long-term care and support was a complex issue.

“One in five people in Western Australia has a disability and nearly one-third of us are impacted by disability when you consider families and carers.” Mrs. Morton said.

“We need to focus on innovative approaches to services and funding that provide more options for people with disability and in WA some of this work is already under way.”

“In December 2009, the Premier launched the 15-year ‘Count Me In: Disability Future Directions’ strategy to plan future supports and services for people with disability.” Mrs. Morton said.

Count Me In’ identifies 80 different pathways to help ensure our community is welcoming, provides mutual support and a fair go for everyone.”

“The Disability Services Commission is leading the way in non-government funding and contracting.” Mrs. Morton said.

Work is under way in WA to determine ways to increase the level of self-directed services, to provide more autonomy for people with disability about service choices and funding arrangements.

The Minister said the Productivity Commission’s draft report would contribute to valuable community dialogue around long-term systems and processes.

Mrs. Morton urged people with disability, their families and carers to read the report and to put forward their responses to the Productivity Commission.  She also encouraged service providers and disability organisations to make submissions.

The State Government will consider the draft report before making a response.

The draft report is available on the Productivity Commission’s website at http://www.pc.gov.au/ and open for public submissions until April 30.

The Productivity Commission is holding public hearings in all capital cities and will be in Perth on Wednesday, April 20, 2011. Details are on the website.