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Getting Victoria’s Disability Services Ready For The NDIS

The Andrews Labor Government is taking the next step in the roll out of the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) to ensure all people with a disability get the best support possible.

Under the NDIS, people with disability have more flexibility and choice in the services and support they can access. To achieve this, the disability sector needs to expand, with more organisations providing better and a more diverse range of disability services.

Expressions of interest (EOI) are being sought from non-government providers for the delivery of 3 areas of disability services to test whether the strict conditions the Government has set for the future of disability services can be met.

The areas of disability services subject to the EOI are:

  • Supporting Independent Living and Short Term Accommodation and Assistance
  • Early Childhood Intervention Services
  • Behavioural Intervention Services

There will be no transition of services currently provided by the Victorian Government to non-government providers if strict conditions are not met. These include the requirement that potential providers are able to:

  • deliver high quality and safe disability services
  • manage and develop a high quality workforce employed on fair terms

These conditions reflect the Government’s commitment that as the NDIS rolls out no one should be worse off.

The Government has said it expects to remain a service provider in some form. The EOI process work will help the Government understand the extent to which services may be able to be delivered by non-Government providers and where the Government may need to continue to provide services.

Since early 2016, the Government has engaged with people with disability and their families, and disability workers across the state. The information gathered during these discussions has shaped the strict conditions Government has placed on the future of service delivery and the EOI evaluation criteria.

Should services transfer to new providers in future, staff who transfer, would transfer on fair terms, including moving with their current enterprise agreement and recognition of prior service. We will also consult with staff and unions about reasonable incentives that could be offered to support staff to transfer to the non-government sector, including an employment guarantee period.

By 2019, Victoria will be investing $2.5 billion per year into the NDIS and has announced an additional $26 million to support Victoria’s disability workforce.

For more information about the NDIS roll out in Victoria and the transition of services, visitwww.vic.gov.au/ndis.

Quotes attributable to Minister for Housing, Disability and Ageing Martin Foley

“The NDIS is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to transform the lives of Victorians with disabilities, and the lives of their families and carers, and we need to get it right for them.”

 “We will continue to work with staff and our industrial partners to grow a skilled, diverse and responsive disability sector.”

“To deliver the NDIS as promised, we need to expand our disability services whilst ensuring we maintain quality safeguards and clear rights for all participants.”