On Thursday, 15 April, the Disability Reform Council met for the first time with new Minister for the NDIS, the Hon Senator Linda Reynolds CSC. In that meeting, according to the official communique, ministers discussed “the concerns raised by the sector in relation to independent assessments and the importance of further comprehensive consultation with states and territories, the disability sector and people with disability occurring”.
The rollout of independent assessments, which was due to begin in mid-2021, will therefore be postponed. At the next meeting in July, ministers will discuss the results of the second pilot of the assessment process, which is currently in progress, and finalise the upcoming reforms based on this further period of consultation.
At that meeting, ministers also discussed the 2nd National Disability Strategy, due to be finalised later this year. They agreed that some of the initial targeted action plans would focus on employment and community attitudes. These were both highlighted as ongoing issues for people with vision loss by Vision 2020 Australia in our submission regarding the development of the strategy last October.