A state wide advocacy service for young people with disabilities welcomed the Auditor-General’s report into Individualised funding for Disability Services tabled today in Parliament. The Youth Disability Advocacy Service (YDAS) informed the report, that while Individualised Funding offered more choice and control, too many young people with disabilities were waiting too long for essential services.
People with Individual Support Packages (ISP) can manage the funds themselves and choose the services and providers that best suit them. At least 7 800 Victorians have an ISP, accounting for 19 per cent of the Department of Human Services' (DHS) disability funds.
The audit released today found evidence of good outcomes for recipients and that all stakeholders are enthusiastic about the results of ISPs and their ongoing potential. However, benefits are not consistently delivered. Application processes are burdensome and allocation decisions can lack consistency and transparency.
Youth Disability Advocacy Service Manager, Dr George Taleporos, said “young people with disabilities have experienced significant benefits from the choice and control offered by Individual Support Packages and we commend DHS on the significant reforms that have been put in place. However, as the Auditor-General’s report shows, there is urgent need for a significant funding boost to support the 1,439 Victorians on the waiting list, many of whom are languishing in nursing homes or with ageing parents. While we commend both the State and Federal Governments commitment to a National Disability Insurance Scheme, the seven year timeframe for delivery is far too long and action is needed now.
YDAS strongly supports the following recommendations made by the Auditor-General’s Office in today’s report