7 December 2023

The Brotherhood of St. Laurence (BSL) welcomes the final report from the NDIS Review.

We commend the significant amount of work and collaboration undertaken by the Review Panel since it was established in October 2022.

In particular, we appreciate the deeply consultative approach adopted by co-chairs Professor Bruce Bonyhady AM and Ms Lisa Paul AO PSM, together with the efforts made by people with disability and their families, who shared their stories in order to achieve a better outcome for everyone.

As an NDIS Partner in the Community for Local Area Coordination and the early childhood approach in Victoria, we have seen first hand the importance of reforming the current Scheme to make it sustainable and to address existing challenges for people with disability, their family members and communities.

Our submission and input to the NDIS Review was informed by the knowledge and experience of people with disability, their families and carers, as well as our deep practice experience and research.

We welcome the recommendations that will expand the range of foundational supports in and outside of the Scheme and improve outcomes for all children with developmental concerns, delay, or disability and their families. We have consistently argued for greater inclusion of people with disability in mainstream social and economic activity and services.

We applaud the call by Minister Bill Shorten for Federal and State governments and the disability community to find a way forward together. As noted by many organisations, it is imperative people with disability continue to drive the conversation and next steps in implementing change.

We know people with disability are more likely to experience poverty and disadvantage. As outlined in the NDIS Review report, achieving a unified system of support is essential for people with disability to live the life they aspire to. We will continue to work with all levels of government and the disability community to ensure the Scheme achieves its original outcomes.