After sustained pressure, the NSW Government has announced they will continue to fund advocacy services for people with disabilities.
The $13 million in funding delivered to advocacy organisations was due to be cut in July this year, as state and territory responsibility for funding of disability services was transferred to the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS).
The national scheme gives people with disability direct funding support to spend on services they require, on the downside advocacy services will fall through the NDIS funding cracks.
In the wake of this looming disaster many disability advocacy groups which have spent years standing up for people with disability were preparing to close their doors. But they weren’t going down without a fight.
The threat to these vital services fueled a fierce campaign, mobilising thousands of people to protest and petition the cuts. This time community concerns were heeded by the top office.
Before the eleventh hour, the Premier announced $26 million to fund advocacy until 2020.
Community advocates play a key role in helping individuals navigate complicated regulations as well as raising concerns about the abuse and exploitation of vulnerable people. As the NDIS roll-out nears completion, disability advocacy services remain more important than ever.