Ray White Agent You Tube Video
Institutional Investors or Managed Funds Common
NDISP gets contacted by funds and institutional investors often. There are many looking around. The largest we have dealt with had a $120m to spend, the one above is much bigger.
Money Doesn’t Mean Bad Outcomes or Great Outcomes
We have seen groups with lots of money that get it so right and have the best outcomes for tenants (which means best long term returns for investors) and then have seen those that area all about theoretical $$$ and won’t have tenants in a few years. Hopefully these guys are the former rather than the latter. We need great outcomes for tenant.
The DSC Team are not Happy
Sara Gingold outlines some of the issues with Independent Assessment Process – Legislation not even passed yet.
NDISP’s First Specialist Disability Accommodation (SDA) in Tasmania is Starting Construction
We are really excited to have construction start next month in Hobart’s CBD. We have massive 2 Bedroom High Physical Support Units and 2 Bedroom Improved Liveability Units about to start construction.
Hobart’s Premier Specialist Disability Accommodation
The 10 units plus OOA are part of a 60 plus unit complex a block from the Royal Hobart Hospital right in the heart of the CBD. Massive luxury units in an awesome location.
2 Bedrooms – Available for People Approved for 1 Bedroom
All of NDISP’s SDA Units throughout the Country are 2 Bedroom and are able to be leased by people who only have one bedroom approval in their SDA plan. We know extra space helps and we don’t limit it to only those approved for 2 Bed 1 Res.
Tasmania’s First Real High Physical Support SDA Units – Touchless Entry to Building, Lift and Your Unit
Our 5 Real HPS SDA 2bedroom Units allow you to come and go without needing someone to help press a button. Our touchless entry involves a tag on your chair that opens gates, foyer doors, calls lifts and opens the door to your unit as well.
Over 105m2 of internal space with our biggest bedroom ever. 2 bedroom 2 bathroom units.
Ceiling rail across bed and through ensuite.
Of course you can also control your lights, fans, blinds, Air conditioning and doors with your voice, phone, tablet, buttons or any other AT we can integrate with our system.
Improved Liveability SDA Units in Heart of Hobart CBD
Our 5 x 2bedroom 1 Bathroom Improved Liveability Units are over 70m2 internally.
OOA Unit Onsite – Use it or Don’t – 2nd Bedroom in Every Unit can be Used by Your Support Workers
We have a great 1 bedroom Onsite Overnight Assistance Unit that is connected to every unit should you want to use it.
True Choice and Control
All of our Tasmanian SDA Units are 2 bedrooms. This means you can use your 2nd Bedroom for your support workers for overnight assistance, or you can use it for your things, or your partner. However you want to work is up to you.
Non SDA Property – NDISP Separating Tenancy from Care in Supported Independent Living for People Not Eligible for SDA
NDISP’s N-SDA Property – Disability Housing for People Not Eligible for Specialist Disability Accommodation
This week marks the start of something the NDISP team have been working on for a long time, people moving into the first of many Non-SDA Properties. We have developed a model with multiple different support worker organisations where we can separate support work from tenancy management in Supported Independent Living (SIL) housing.
Although it is not yet separated funding wise, we believe that the NDIS will have to provide an accommodation support model out of the SIL funding provided.
Property Managed the Same as SDA Property
NDISP has long term (5 year minimum periods, usually 10 years) leases over the properties where we are responsible for all maintenance and repairs. This gets things fixed fast and efficiently by our Yellow Card Helpers teams.
Our properties have access control and security cameras the same as our SDA Properties.
Benefits for NDIS Participants
- New or near new properties
- Maintained and repaired quickly
- Fully airconditioned to each room
- Choice and Control – tenancy is completely separate from support
- Long Term leases – up to 10 years
- Your contribution to the rent is similar to the RRC in SDA (providers make a further contribution on your behalf)
- Electricity at discounted rates and paid proportionally and invoiced separately
- Cheap fast Internet – paid proportionally and invoiced separately
Benefits for SIL Providers
- Quality new or near new properties in great locations
- Separation of tenancy management from support work – giving participants true choice and control
- Removal of all the hassle, no need to look for properties, organise maintenance, enter into leases, enter into agreements with tenants, split up electricity and phone bills, organise maintenance etc.
- Do what you do best, provide great support to people while we provide great properties.
Contact us to find out more
Arana Hills 4 x 2 Bed True HPS Apartments – For 1 Resident (and spouse or friend etc) – Slab is Down
Quiet Street – 2 Minute Roll to Arana Hills Shopping Centre
4 x 2 Bed 2 Bath High Physical Support Apartments in Arana Hills.
Live Alone or Share – Your Choice
Both bedrooms have large accessible bathrooms big enough for shower beds or for 2 support workers to assist with showering
True High Physical Support Apartments
- Fully automated gate, doors, lift – come and go without needing a support worker – true independence
- 1200 doors
- 1500 hallways
- massive bedrooms and bathrooms
- automated doors, gates, lifts, blinds, fans, A/c, lights, tv’s etc – control with voice, phone, tablet, tags on chairs, or good old fashioned buttons.
Ground Floor Slab is Done – Move in before June 2021
The ground floor slab is completed, the blockies are on site from January 4 and the place will be finished in 4 months.
3 Bed plus OOA HPS House, 2 Auxillary Villas, Rec Room & Pool
When we met with 5 people who were living in a tiny little housing commission duplex in Bundaberg in June we were so amazed about what a happy house it was, considering the property was terrible. As the bulk of these people had lived together for 20 years and they wanted to stay that way we came up with an innovative design.
Amazing Support Workers Make this Work
NDISP never thought we would develop something like this as anytime we had been to a place with more than 3 residents in one property it had been run like an institution.
But, the team made the terrible old property such a happy home that we were really happy to do something like this.
It’s a real credit to April, Grant, Kahli and the crew that the old place was such a happy home, now they have the space and facilities to make it even better.
Amazing Builder and Trades Made it Possible Before Christmas
The team from DB Construct and Renner’s Electrical worked tirelessly to build this expansive place with full automation in just 4 months.
Jon, Darryl and the NDISP team are truly grateful to all involved who got this place done by Christmas and made us be able to deliver on our promise.
4 x 3 Bedroom 2 Resident SDA in Rosebud
Finally with the relaxation of the Covid-19 rules in Victoria we are able to move people into our SDA properties in the Beautiful Mornington Pennisula in Victoria.
This lovely building is in a great location and it’s been such a shame that the restrictive rules didn’t allow us to move people in sooner but at least we are free to do so.
It was a very busy few days have crews clean up a building that had been sitting empty for 6 months but it was well worth the effort.
Special thanks to our Victorian Relationship Manager Samm
Ms Samm has had a stressful time having worked hard on making the mix of future residents work but then having to wait for restrictions to lift to allow them to move in. Samm is amazing with great connections to various health services and provider groups, but most of all she is just a lovely lady who really cares about the people she helps, we are so lucky to have her.
The NDIS have released new information regarding the introduction of compulsory assessments. Within this, many items where discussed, so let’s break it down.
The introduction of this assessment has been delayed by six months. This process will now start mid next year for people newly accessing the scheme; existing participants at the end of the year. Due to this delay, the NDIS has released four papers asking for feedback and the Department of Social Services has released one.
- Assessments and access
- Assessments and planning
- Proposed changes to how the NDIS supports children and young people
- Project report on the Early Childhood Early Intervention (ECEI) Reset project
Department of Social Services
- Improving the National Disability Insurance Scheme: Better Participant Experience and Improved Access and Planning
Keep in mind that these forms are not regarding the commencement of the assessment, but instead how to go about it.
If you want to make a comment about the assessment going ahead, rather than about how it will work. Focus on the last sentence on the back page; “We value your feedback on the following questions. You can respond to all of them or just a few. We welcome any feedback on the policy as it is outlined in this paper”. This is your chance to be heard.
So the Good and the Bad News
- Funding more flexible
- Only two types of funds – flexible and fixed
- Fixed funds – SDA, assistive technology, home modification etc.
- Flexible funds – any other funding required
- You determine how to use your flexible funding
- Current system is being completely overridden with the new assessment process
- The assessment will be the only factor taken into consideration when determining your funding
- Goals will no longer be considered when determining your funding
- Plan meetings will continue, but they won’t be about what you need rather how to use your funding
More information and links can be found via the following, https://everyaustraliancounts.com.au/is-this-the-end-of-planning-in-the-ndis/.
Celebrate International Day of People with Disability (IDPwD) on the 3rd December.
IDPwD aims to increase awareness, understanding and acceptance of people with disability. This year’s theme is, ‘Seeing the ability in disability’. It challenges perceptions and common stereotypes, and celebrates the achievements of Australians living with disability. We can work together to see all abilities and create an inclusive Australia.
Have a look at ways to get involved and spread the word. More information can be found via the following link: https://www.idpwd.com.au/
NDIS released a good news story on the 6th November that is both inspirational and feel good; so we thought we’d share it.
Jackie is an Indigenous contemporary artist who describes herself as ‘strong, proud Aboriginal woman’. This year she has won the 2020 Dawn Slade-Faull Award and has continued on to present her works in her very first exhibition. This award is given to South Australian emerging artists with disability to empower them and provide financial support to reach their goals.
“I was really shocked and happy and excited, I felt really proud and really good,” said Jackie age 31, who lives with Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder.
Her works are centered around her community, life and family. She said that life has been hard for her especially with her disability as it effects her memory, learning abilities, communication skills and moods. But that has not stopped her. “It’s not only the disability that’s been tough. I’ve had to deal with a lot of grief and a lot of loss in my life. Also, I got brought up in foster care. Life hasn’t been easy for me. Being an Aboriginal has also been tough. In this big world there’s a lot of people who don’t give Aboriginals respect so I’ve had to deal with that too.”
Through it all she has prevailed and continued to empower and achieve her dreams throughout COVID. We hope this story can inspire and brighten your day.
To read through the full NDIS Story, click on the following link: https://www.ndis.gov.au/stories/5575-jackie-paints-new-path-during-covid-achieve-her-dreams
Guess what, you can now match your requirements to SDA vacancies!
The NDIS have announced that SDA vacancy matching lists are now available when searching for your new home.
The platforms available with this feature are the Housing Hub and Nest; all of which you can use to find NDISP properties. You can search via their websites or download the apps.
What does this mean?
This means that you can filter and search for SDA specific properties when looking for vacancies. You can also search ‘NDISP’ for our SDA or MTA properties.
If you have any questions or want more information about a property, please call us (07)37240020.
The NDIA CEO has released a letter addressed to all participants, families and carers regarding NDIA’s commitment to improve the NDIS. The letter addresses some of the more recent changes including the ‘NDIS Participant Service Charter‘ and the ‘Service Improvement Plan‘. The letter also states ‘Facts about introducing independent assessments’ and ‘Sharing information about how independent assessments will work’.
The basis of the letter, is that independent assessment conducted by a panel, rather than your usual health professional, will result in fairer and simpler decisions about your access to the NDIS and plans. This new method will allow you to have flexibility with your assessments and allow you to request a review if you do not agree with the outcome.
More information and the full letter can be reviewed via the following: https://www.ndis.ov.au/news/5356-improving-national-disability-insurance-scheme
An easy read letter can read found at the bottom of the page via the link above.
The NDIS Minister, Stuart Robert, announced on the 30th September that new funding and support will become available to young people with disability living in aged care.
This new scheme will inject $10.6m in the 2020-21 budget so coordinators are able to assist younger people find appropriate accommodation. The aim is to help younger people gain independence within the community.
‘The Australian Government is committed to ensuring no younger person needs to live in residential aged care,’ Mr Robert said.
Senator Colbeck went on to advise, ‘As part of the 2020-21 Budget, the Government is establishing a national network of up to 40 system coordinators to directly help younger people living in, or at risk of entry to, residential aged care,’
‘People who want to live on their own terms and with independence in the community will be supported to navigate Commonwealth and state and territory systems.
‘System coordinators will work with younger people and their families to support younger people to access the disability services, health services, housing and social supports they need.
The full media release can be found via the following link: https://ministers.dss.gov.au/media-releases/6376
More information regarding younger people in aged care can be found: https://www.dss.gov.au/disability-and-carers/programmes-services/for-people-with-disability/younger-people-with-disability-in-residential-aged-care-initiative
The NDIS have released a new information pack called ‘Support for participants with coronavirus (COVID-19)’. It advises what to do if you are being tested or have tested positive to COVID-19. It also notes the supports that are available due to these circumstances. The information pack is available via the NDIS social media pages and their website, https://www.ndis.gov.au/coronavirus/information-packs#support-for-participants-with-coronavirus-covid-19.
NDISP has limited MTA available on the Mornington Pennisula
We have some accommodation for up to 90 days available.
People with a Disability in Residential Aged Care – MTA Funding Available
The NDIS provides Medium Term Funding for a range of reasons including if you are residing in Residential Aged Care.
SDA Eligible People – Permanent Home is Possible
If you are SDA eligible then we are looking for people who would love to live on the Peninsula for their forever home. 10 Year leases are available, though would have to reside under MTA funding until the Covid-19 situation resolves.
contact email@example.com or phone 03 9998 7427
The NDIS Minister, Stuart Roberts, has released a statement advising that participants in NSW & VIC are able to claim for PPE due to the continued spread of COVID-19. PPE can include items such as face masks.
The Minister said the following, ‘Unfortunately we’ve seen in recent weeks that our battle with COVID-19 is far from over.’
‘As a result, we have put in place additional temporary measures so participants living in Victoria and New South Wales, who have face-to-face assisted daily living supports can flexibly use their existing NDIS funds to cover the cost of the PPE they need to keep themselves safe, including face masks.
‘We know that participants who receive face-to-face supports may be at higher risk of transmission, with daily support from their workers regularly involving close physical contact.’
Full article located, https://www.ndis.gov.au/news/5048-delivering-ndis-during-covid-19-vic-nsw-participants-able-claim-ppe
Information about Purchasing Personal Protective Equipment, https://www.ndis.gov.au/coronavirus/latest-advice-ndis
The following story was released via the NDIS website and highlights what NDISP is trying to achieve; helping people into places they are happy to call home. Just like in the below story, NDISP are here to help participants into a variety of purpose built properties, whether it be SDA, MTA, SIL etc.
Don couldn’t be happier, using his NDIS funding to move from aged care into his own apartment where he can now be more independent.
The 52-year-old, who has Spina Bifida and Hydrocephalus, has moved to one of 18 high needs independent living apartments in Springfield as part of MS Queensland’s Best life Project, which gives people with disability a choice to move from aged care or avoid having to move to it.
“Physically, mentally and financially, I’m much better off than I was now I’m on the NDIS,” Don said. “It’s been a life-saver.”
“I’m back feeling much better and doing things I hadn’t been able to do before.
“I love music. I have ever since I was a child. I studied at the Queensland Conservatorium of Music and have my Diploma of Music,” Don said proudly.
“Now I’m back playing the French horn and dabbling in a bit of self-taught trumpet.
“I’ve got two goals – one to join a community band, and I’m writing my memoir so I can share my Spina Bifida and Hydrocephalus journey with others.”
Don’s Focal Support Coordinator, Patty, said she worked closely with Don, his NDIS planner, his support workers and therapists, to help him transition.
“The changes we’ve seen in Don since he moved here have been incredible,” she said.
“His physical and mental health has improved dramatically, and it’s great to see him back playing his French horn and trumpet. On ANZAC Day he even played the “Last Post” for all the residents!
“Don has also formed new friendships, and you can see he is really enjoying being able to socialise with people closer to his age.”
“Now I can live my life to the best of my ability, the way I choose,” Don said.
Link to story via the NDIS website https://www.ndis.gov.au/stories/5015-don-moves-aged-care-enjoy-more-independent-life
NDISP has many stories like this of our own participants, however we don’t tend to share them publicly so share the publicly available ones. We have such a wonderful opportunity to help so many people, it is very much rewarding for us.
Murray Anderson Place is Ready to Open the Doors
After some incredible efforts (see History below) from a great community Murray Anderson Place in Rosebud on the beautiful Mornington Pennisula is ready to open the doors.
4 x 2 Bed (plus Carer) SDA Units for 1 HPS and 1 IL Participant
The 4 units each have 3 bedrooms in them, 2 for participants, one for a carer or support worker. Due to historical funding grants there is a delivery requirement that each unit is occupied by one individual with High Physical Support SDA funding and one individual with Improved Liveability SDA funding.
Need an Awesome Place to Call Home in Rosebud?
If you are eligible for SDA (HPS or IL) then please call us on 03 9998 7427 or email firstname.lastname@example.org or our relationship manager email@example.com
The Southern Mornington Peninsula Uniting Church started the journey to deliver disability accommodation in 2012. This was before the NDIS and SDA was even a consideration for them.
The building has been project managed by Property Services Group of Uniting Church in Australia Synod of Victorian and Tasmania.
After completion of the building, in 2019 the SMPUC in conjunction with Uniting Church in Australia Synod of Victorian and Tasmania conducted a national tender process for the appointment of a Specialist Disability Accommodation provider. NDISP is very pleased to have won the tender and to have worked extensively with these groups through the interesting times of 2020 with the common goal of providing places people are happy to call home.
The NDIS have released an announcement that they are wanting nominations from participants, families and carers to help improve their policies, services, templates and more. It is a part of the Participant First Engagement Initiative which aims at shaping and improving the future of the NDIS.
They ask that there be a mix of people that:
- can work collaboratively
- reflect the range of people in the Australian disability community
- have an ability to represent people with varied disabilities
- have different levels of experience with the NDIS.
More information can be found on the NDIS website along with an ‘information form’ to express your interest.
NDIS have confirmed via their website that nominees and child representatives can now update their ‘How can the NDIA contact me’ and ‘My address details’ in the My Contact section of the myplace portal. NDIS advised in their article that you must have parental responsibility or be the legally appointed guardian to use this service. You must also have a mypalce portal account.
For more information, please click on the link: https://www.ndis.gov.au/news/4989-nominees-and-child-representatives-can-now-update-their-own-details
NDISP has an MTA Vacancy in PIMPAMA – Roll to Shopping Centre
We are finishing the fit out on an 3 bed plus carer place in Pimpama this weekend. A lovely gentleman in his 50’s is moving in tomorrow while we are building his SDA house in a different location closer to his family.
Just a couple of minutes walk to Pimpama City Shopping Centre. Nice Outlook.
This MTA Property has the Following Features
Note that this property was not an NDISP design and doesn’t have our usual automation, 1200 doors etc. It is quality construction with quality finishes and will be suitable for a wide range of participants. Certified LHA Platinum
step free entry
step free alfresco area
massive kitchen with accessible benchtops and stove etc
accessible ensuite to each bedroom (shower screen free and not small, but not large enough for shower beds)
Solar battery emergency power
OOA (carers room) with ensuite
fans and airconditioning
flat footpaths to shopping centre.
The National Disability Research Partnership launched 22nd June 2020, led by the Melbourne Disability Institute, aims to further disability research so that more opportunities and possibilities can be made available.
The Minister for Families and Social Services commented, ‘The (Australian) Government is committed to enabling people with disability to have equal opportunity and recognises the enormous role of disability research funding in fulfilling this commitment, that is why we have committed $2.5 million in seed funding to establish this research partnership.’
‘The National Disability Research Partnership will promote the use of evidence-informed policy and practice to ensure people with disability have equal opportunities and are included in all aspects of community life.’ The Minister then went on to say, ‘The Partnership will focus on disability and mainstream services including education, health, housing and justice, and facilitate research which recognises the diversity of experiences for people with disability.’
More information regarding this partnership can be found on the NDRP website via the following link, https://www.ndrp.org.au/
New legislation released 18th June establishing a nationwide consistent screening system for NDIS workers to improve the safety and care for participants.
The Minister for Disability Services Coralee O’Rourke released a new legislation advising that the Bill will replace previous screening methods under the Disability Services Act 2006 (DSA). O’Rourke advised, ‘This Bill will strengthen safeguards for people with disability following the roll out of the NDIS.’
‘The legislative amendments in this Bill will support the implementation of nationally-consistent worker screening for the first time ever.’
‘The new system for NDIS worker screening means clearances and exclusions will be recognised across all states and territories.’
‘The Bill will also enable ongoing monitoring of a screened worker’s criminal history at a national level. This means that if someone commits an offence in another state or territory, we will know about it and be able to take action to assess whether the person should be issued with an exclusion.’
Other changes will include:
- Strengthened identity requirements when completing online applications
- Ability to automatically disqualify people convicted of offences such as sexual and serious assault offences
- Strengthened decision-making framework that reflects a person’s history to assess whether they could bring potential harm to people with disabilities.
- The power to suspend a clearance if a card holder has had a change to their application/assessment information
- Clearances will remain valid for five years
The current screening process will continue and apply until a time subject to national agreement. O’Rourke finished her release with ‘Ensuring that Queenslanders with disability are protected is our highest priority.’ More information can be found via the following link, http://statements.qld.gov.au/Statement/2020/6/18/new-legislation-to-strengthen-disability-worker-checks?fbclid=IwAR1yijHDyfc5fonC02COQlM8kCKEgkVxW5fHUxT7lD1yoU9OUZtD6Ob676g
In a media release earlier today, the NDIS minister confirmed that further changes will be made to the delivery of NDIS plans so that participants have more choice and flexibility when accessing SDA assistance/funding.
The minister advised that the changes to the SDA rules will mean that couples can share a bedroom if they choose, and children will be able to share a room with their parents or siblings. The minister confirmed that these changes are important as they assist participants in reaching their goal of independence.
The following was announced during the release, ‘The NDIS enables people with disability to live more independently and one of the most fundamental aspects of all our lives is having choice and control over where we live, who we live with and the supports we need,’ Mr Robert said. ‘We are improving the range of options available to participants who have SDA in their NDIS plans, while also stimulating growth in the SDA housing market.’
The NDIS Minister advised via a media release, that as of the 1st July 2020 the following will apply:
- The removal of temporary 10% loading on core and capacity building supports
- Cancellation periods will be reduced to levels under the previous policy
- Medium Term Accommodation (MTA) periods will be reverted to the original policy of 90 days
He also confirmed that the government will continue to monitor the situation/conditions and make changes as required. The minister advised, ‘Since the announcement of these initiatives on 21 March, almost $600 million in one-month advance payments was paid to almost 5,000 providers to offer immediate cash flow relief and keep participant services going,’. It was also noted that, ‘At the height of the pandemic, close to $300 million was claimed in average weekly provider payments, indicating the majority of services have been continuing with participants accessing the disability supports they need.’
The full article can be found on the NDIS website via the following: https://www.ndis.gov.au/news/4844-update-ndis-coronavirus-response
The NDIS Commissioner has released a media announcement confirming that provider banning powers will be strengthened to ensure the safety and care for NDIS participants. The commissioner advised that the amendments to the Strengthening Banning Orders Bill 2020 will be introduced to Parliament in the coming sitting.
The enforcement of this Bill will mean that the Commissioner will be able to apply banning orders to people who are deemed not suitable as an NDIS provider. This includes any persons who pose a risk of harm to participants. It will also stop providers from entering or re-entering if deemed unsuitable. The Commissioner will be able to use information from outside sources such as looking into a person’s conduct in aged or child care.
More information can be found on the NDIS website via the following: https://www.ndis.gov.au/news/4841-new-banning-powers-strengthen-protections-ndis-participants
Check Out NDISP’s New Ready To Go Rental Properties
Have you had a look at our SDA Property Rentals lately. Three new properties are up on our website and available now. They all look amazing, so make sure to make your inquiries soon because they may not last for long.
Link to rental page: https://www.ndisp.com.au/rental/
Exclusive Accessible Design Without Compromise
NDISP is like no other with their Platinum Plus SDA Properties; smart designs, all inclusive standard features and premium locations. Platinum Plus includes non slip tiles, keyless security systems, home automation systems and so much more.
By using smart home automations, you can have all the freedom to control your environment. From your phone/tablet you can control the lights, fans, TV, blinds and doors with just a touch. Platinum Plus also gives you the independence to enter and leave your home without assistance.
All NDISP smart homes have doors with automatic openers that can be controlled using your voice, a pin code, a phone/tablet or key. Our homes also come with attractive concealed ceiling rails pre-installed to take you from bed to bathroom. All bedrooms are generously oversized to allow for the extra equipment you may need on a daily basis. Bathrooms typically exceed the standards set in the LHA Platinum certification. Emergency call via voice or button activation. And the best part of all, every bedroom has its own fully accessible bathroom! No sharing required!
Click the following link to express your interest in NDISP Homes: https://www.ndisp.com.au/formpage_eoi_rental/
What Does SDA Stand for and What is a SDA Property?
NDISP specializes in SDA properties, which stands for Specialist Disability Accommodation. This type of accommodation is purpose built for those who need a high level of support or who have functional impairments. A portion of NDIS participants are eligible for SDA funding, which covers the cost of their accommodation as specified in their plan which is managed by their plan manager. SDA properties can include houses, units, townhouses, group homes and so on. It is NDISP’s mission to make these accessible properties into desirable homes for our investors and participants.
If you have any questions, feel free to leave a comment.
IT News has a story explaining what is happening from a technology point of view.
Real Time Payments Make a Real World Difference
We have multiple SIL providers at the moment that are unable to accept the new clients who wish to use them as they are still awaiting payments for their last new clients, some for many weeks resulting in tens of thousands of dollars.
Bring it on.
NDIS Participants to Receive SMS or Email with Code Allowing Delivery
As part of the COVID- 19 response the NDIS has worked with major supermarkets to provide a priority grocery delivery service to more than 340,000 NDIS participants who have been identified as needing assistance to purchase groceries.
Where supermarkets like Woolworths have closed home delivery services they should be available for those with the code.
Summer Foundation & Social Ventures Australia March 2020 Report into SDA Supply in Australia
The latest report from the Summer Foundation and Social Ventures Australia continues to show a significant shortfall of SDA.
NDISP Accounts for Majority of QLD & WA Supply & Significant Contribution to NSW and VIC
NDISP was a contributor to this study. Our pipeline of dwellings under development was reported and makes us responsible for the majority of QLD and WA supply. Our QLD, NSW & WA supply has since increased.
Significant Shortfall of SDA Property
There remains 7,750 more places needed on top of the properties in the pipeline.
Plaster is Done & Painter Starts Tomorrow
Effective 10 February Automatic Rollover Applies to SDA
- Specialist Disability Accommodation (SDA) and Supported Independent Living (SIL) supports will have service bookings increased automatically where a 28 day extension has been applied to a plan.
- Unclaimed funds within a participant’s previous plan and service bookings will now be available for 90 days after a new plan has been approved. This gives participants and providers more time to make payment requests for services delivered during the previous plan period.
NDIS Minister Stuart Robert said on Monday that from 1 March, participants can use their plan’s core funding when travelling to and from NDIS-funded community activities.
This reverses a decision made by the National Disability Insurance Agency in July last year, which banned people from using money assigned for their core support for travel when their transport funding ran out.
Read More at Probono News
Check Out Studio 1 at NDISP House
Two massive walls have been built this weekend by Craig, Goodie and Kenny from Yellow Card Helpers. Massive days, lots of sweat and hard work.
The floor and paint goes in this week in time for first dance classes next weekend.
488 People in WA Approved for Specialist Disability Accommodation (SDA) (as at 30 September)
According to the COAG reports from the NDIS, as at 30 September there was 488 People Approved for SDA in Perth
8 Approved Properties, 1 of them New
At the same time there were a total of 8 approved properties, only one of them new. With the impending release of the next quarter’s results that will be interesting to see how many have been added. Not many more based on our research.
We are heading back over in the first week of February to have more meetings and get some moving.
The Minister for the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS), Stuart Robert, today announced the NDIS will fund a new type of transitional housing support designed to support participants as they prepare to move into their permanent home.
Available for 90 Days Maximum
The Medium Term Accommodation is available for 90 days maximum.
Can Be Used While Waiting for SDA
One of the interesting things about this new support is that it can be used while people approved for SDA are awaiting their SDA to be completed.
Daily Rate Needs to Be Higher to Stimulate Construction
The daily rate of $126.29 nationally, or $176.81 for Remote or $189.44 for very remote is ok if you can keep vacancy down or compared to Fully Accessible type accommodation, but is only slightly more that the rate for one bedroom in a 3 bedroom house for High Physical Support and is half that of a one bedroom.
NDISP Likely Only to Do on Small Scale
Our initial thoughts are that we will likely only do this on a very small scale in the form of some houses while people are waiting for their new SDA place to be completed.
Rate Far Too Low to Achieve Goal
We consider the rate is far too low to achieve any of the goals across the NDIS. It will however make a difference to the individual living in better accommodation and NDISP will provide in small numbers as a service.
Today the Government Accepted in Full the Aged Care Royal Commission Guidelines Regarding Young People in Aged Care
The new targets, apart from in exceptional circumstances, will seek to ensure there are;
- No people under the age of 65 entering residential aged care by 2022;
- No people under the age of 45 living in residential aged care by 2022; and
- No people under the age of 65 living in residential aged care by 2025.
A Further $4.7m to Help Remove Young People From Aged Care
- establishing a Joint Agency Taskforce (JATF) between the Department of Social Services, Department of Health and National Disability Insurance Agency (NDIA) to develop a new strategy that builds on the Action Plan and takes action to ensure these new targets are met;
- establishing a specialist team within the NDIA to prevent younger people with a disability who are eligible for the National Disability Insurance Scheme from entering aged care. The specialist team will grow to 80 complex support needs planners by end March 2020 to find suitable accommodation and match participants to vacancies;
- working with industry to identify all available Specialist Disability Accommodation and Supported Independent Living supports across the country to develop a database of existing and new housing options available now and in the future; and
- undertaking a detailed analysis of younger people currently living in aged care, as well as up to 2,000 young people at risk of entering aged care, to better inform new policies and pathways to find alternate accommodation.
We’ve had a massive few days at the Melbourne Disability Expo. It was extremely busy with so many people wanting to find out more about SDA. While it was hard work, Cherie and Agnes from NDSP in the stand directly opposite it helped with their lovely company, not to mention their muffins.
The early work done by the NDIA in Melbourne to educate people about SDA has worked in that there was a lot more knowledge of it, most of our time was spent finding out where people want to live and who they want to live with.
We’ve started laying the ground work for the development of properties all over Victoria, from the Latrobe Valley to Wodonga to Warrnambool.
So many people would move straight into properties if they were built now and while we cant help them in Victoria now, we are excited to start working on building lots of places that people are happy to call home.
Townsville – 4 Days of Hearings for Commission
The commissioners sat for 4 days of hearings in Townsville. With witnesses telling some harrowing stories.
A Line in the Sand
We are really hoping that the introduction of the NDIS Quality and Safeguards Commission and all of the increased regulation for providers should mean that there is pre-NDIS and post NDIS and the post is so far removed as to be a different world.
Initial Hearings on Education and Learning
The initial hearings focused on Education as the commission identifies education as a key enabler of rights.
Federal Government Action Plan on Younger People in Aged Care – Not Enough
The Royal Commission into Aged Care has said that the action plan is just not enough. We were fortunate to be at the much lauded plan launch at the Get Building SDA when the government announced that their action plan to get all young people living in aged care under 45 by 30 June 2022 and all people under 65 by 30 June 2025. But the fine print reads that it was those who were living in aged care in March 2019, there is only the plan to reduce the new entrance.
NDIA Plans to Stop 50% of People Entering Aged Care by 2025
The plan is actually only to stop half of all people entering age care by 2025, so 3,750 will still enter every year. We meet young people living in aged care constantly, it is no place for a young person, ever. It’s not enough.
Royal Commission Identifies Getting Young People Out of Aged Care 1 of 3 Immediate Actions
It says the action plan does not do enough, soon enough, it has significant gaps and should not be relied on as a solution.
Government Should Have Much Stronger Targets
The Commission says the government should stop all young people entering aged care by 30 June 2022 and have everyone out by June 2025.
We agree, its not enough, no young people should have to suffer that.
Freedom 2 SDA Property Brisbane – Everton Hills
Our renderer has been busy working away. Great to see the concepts come to life
This particular SDA Property Brisbane is going to start construction in Everton Hills in Brisbane.
A great story about a trainee doctor who had a man land on her after he jumped from 5 stories. The poignant part for mere was were she realised that this was not an illness, not something she would recover from. From many people we’ve met the turning point for them was when they realised that they were not their acquired disability, it was definitely a part of their life but rather then defining them they needed to look at tools and services that let them live their life as they wanted to.
While many often focus on the physical aspects that come with a disability acquired from access or illness, there are many great organisations that help with mentoring too.
This story that reminds me about the great team at Spinal Home Help . A significant part of what they do is put people who have been around a while with people who have more recent spinal injuries. The importance of the ability to talk to someone who has been there and done that, who live a great life now, albeit different to their preinjury one, can’t be understated.
It was a massive 2 days for NDISP at the Brisbane Disability Expo. At some stages there were people 3 deep lining up to chat to each of us.
So Many People Need SDA Property
We met so many people who need SDA property. A lot of them already have SDA in their plan and would move into a place if we had something available today.
We met with many care providers and plan managers with hundreds if not thousands of clients.
There are so many others who were clearly eligible.
So Many People Don’t Know
There were also so many people, including care providers and plan managers, who had heard about SDA property but who didn’t know how it works.
Its this sort of feedback that reinforced the importance of us continuing to do our community events and educate people.
Investors are Vital to Our Mission – Why Would We Sack One
It took us all of 2 mins to decide to stop working with an investor whose build was due to commence this month. They were all set to build a 3 bed plus ooa house so would have got 3 people out of inappropriate housing and into a place they were happy to call home. Yet we had to politely tell them to go away at the last minute.
We Need People to Join Us
The investor was about to sign the final build contract, land settled, build due to start in 2 weeks. Then the investor thought it was unfair that we require them to give the equivalent of 104 hours additional support to each participant. That is a little over $5000 a year per person or $16,000 per year for the house. Yes that’s a lot of money. BUT even after this they were set to receive over $120,000 a year gross income on a $590,000 Investment. That’s right, getting a 20% return on a residential investment where next door is getting 5% , is apparently not enough to help contribute more services to improve the lifestyle of the people living there.
We were told it was very unfair that we wanted them to be contractually bound to provide this extra support. This happened while we were hearing the people stuck in aged care talk about their life inside. Disgusted is an understatement.
NDISP is on an absolute mission to help as many people as possible get out of inappropriate housing and into place a they are happy to call home. And we need investors to get outstanding returns to help us on that mission, but we can still provide outstanding homes with awesome support.
Speaking to Young People in Aged Care is Heartbreaking
Having spent much of yesterday speaking to various people living in aged care, it is really hard to work out what is worse, the ones who are dying, or the ones who have given up and are just waiting to.
Speaking to a lovely lady in her 40s who had a stroke and has spent many years in aged care. It was so clear that she is not complaining, she has accepted that she is going to die there. She tried hard to find somewhere, anywhere, but she was deemed to be in a safe place.
She has SDA in her plan now but her stroke makes it hard for her to find information. Her parents have passed on and other friends and family have drifted away as the reality of visiting her in a such a depressing environment became too much.
It’s also clear that there is just a little spark left inside her giving a hint of the vibrant happy lady she used to be. The system has beaten that vibrancy out of her. I could have cried talking to her just seeing what it has done to her and how she has just accepted that this is her lot on life. But me getting upset would have made her feel bad for upsetting me.
She wasn’t really aware that she could have an independent support coordinator look after and help her find somewhere. The NDIA knows her situation is bad, but she is in a safe place with the right equipment etc so unfortunately there are people in more urgent need to take up the miniscule amount of SDA property coming on line. She is very scared of finding a possible place to only be told it’s already full. You can see she only has a limited amount of hope left and she can’t risk haven’t it crushed.
Imagine if Your Roommate/ Neighbours Die Every Few Weeks or Months
Young people with high care needs are in the high needs section in aged care. Who have the highest care needs there, those in the last few weeks of their lives.
Imagine getting to know the person next to you and then they die. And repeating that over and over again. You’d stop getting close just to protect yourself from the hurt. So then you just shut yourself of from those around you.
Aged Care is Number One Exit from Hospital
Young people are often placed in aged care to get them out of hospital. We know that some young people spend a year longer in hospital than they needed to just because they have no where to go. To then have to go into an aged care facility is just disgusting. It has to stop. But the numbers are so enormous that the scale of building required makes the SDA rollout the largest social housing program ever.
Not Pity or Admiration. Just a Solution
The young people we meet in aged care don’t want pity or you to think they brave or any emotional stuff. They just want a solution. They want to be able to live somewhere and have the support to live life like everyone else.
The government has finally put in place a solution but the numbers are so huge it’s Mind boggling.
7500 Admitted to Aged Care During Current SDA Push
While the government is pushing to have as many people build SDA property as possible by June 2022, 7500 new young people will be admitted to aged care alone.
NDISP has over $17m of property starting development this month. That’s just over 40 people housed. None of those 40 tenants are coming from aged care or at risk if going into it. We have nearly $200m due to start this financial year and that will get over 500 people into awesome places. We are aiming to at least double that in each of the following 2 years. And it’s just not enough. That’s $1b of development for 2500 people and there were at least 28,000 people who needed a place to live at 1 July this year and another 7,500 will be admitted into aged care alone. That’s without all the hidden people we’ve talked about previously.
Every Single Week We Meet More People Than We Can Help
Jon, myself and the rest of the team meet people everywhere who need help. More people than we can help. It’s heartbreaking that we have the solution and our capacity to help is growing all the time, but it needs more, we need your help.
So if you see us looking tired or you wondering why we are a bit hard to catch ( thank you to our lovely long suffering families for understanding), it’s because we are trying to help as many people as we can and every single place might not make a difference to the overall numbers, but it makes a massive difference to that person.
Help While Getting Great Returns on Investment
The government was really smart in the way they put the SDA system together. They knew there was no way the government or not for profits could deliver what was needed. So they put together a pricing regime that makes this such an attractive investment that it would stimulate lots of development.
Unfortunately the government also made the compliance and regulatory component so incredibly complex that it is just not possible to be an SDA provider in any small or medium scale.
That’s where NDISP comes in. We do all the hard work and compliance and do so at the lowest prices we can. Because although we need this to be a profitable business and to be profitable for investors, we need that profitability to be able to get as many people out of terrible places as possible. It is an absolute mission.
While the returns are amazing and far superior to any other property investment, they are lower than they could be. We maximise our inclusions in the builds and we provide extra support to participants. That is a completely non negotiable part of working with us. But if you’d love great returns, all the hard work taken care of and knowing your investment changes several people’s lives, we would love you to join us on our mission.
A Couple of Videos on Real People
Why6000 young people live in aged care. SBS.
Middy’s Smart Centre – Melbourne
Steve and Helen at Middy’s smart centre in Melbourne were really great.
Middy’s have been outstanding working with our electrician, Yellow Card Electrical and have spent hours helping design all our systems. Ray in the Brisbane automation office has been outstanding also.
The visit did make us consider putting solenoids in for water in the showers.
Summer Foundation Annual Public Forum – How Long is Too Long
It was such a privilege to spend time with people who are enjoying an SDA Property. A 25 year old lady was talking about just how life changing it is. Her mother has cared for her for 25 years and then 24/7 carers. She now has downtime, time by herself can go to the city and a park by herself. Her mother got her life back too, it really was life changing for her.
And there were the terrible stories from people stuck in aged care. One lady has been in for 6.5 years. She has to go to bed at 7:30pm each night. And it was clear she has given up, she worked hard for a year to find somewhere, but she has completely given up.
Construction Starting to Take Off in South East QLD
After more than 2 years of solid work and preparation our massive pipeline of SDA is underway en masse.
Electricity Poles Installed
Yellow Card Electrical (Australia’s only NDIS only Electrical business) has been busy installing power poles and new mains switchboards on sites that require overhead power. Energex are connecting the supply for Yellow Card Utilities (Australia’s only Electricity and Internet Retailer solely for NDIS Participants). You can see them hard at work up a ladder on one of our SDA Property construction cameras.
Soil Tests and Slab Design
Soil tests and slab design are now complete at large number of our sites from Ipswich to Nambour. Toowoomba and Southport are happening soon.
Demolition approvals are in and we are just awaiting Energex to move the power cables from the old house to the new property pole and demolition will start and be completed within 2 days.
Footings are imminent and we expect to have slabs going down on half a dozen sites during November.
Roof on By Christmas
Our builders in Nambour and Caloundra are DB Construct .
They tell us we will have slabs down frames up, roof on and be through brick and cladding by Christmas
Our Ipswich, Brisbane and Toowoomba builders aushomes.com.au are working hard at having the roof on many of our builds by Christmas also.
SDA Properties Filling Fast
Now that construction is underway our places are filling fast. We anticipate all of them will be filled prior to the roof going on. Check our rentals page for a sample. At this stage some of our properties are filled the moment the build contract goes unconditional.
The new SDA design guidelines are great news for NDIS participants.
While the LHA standards provide a benchmark to start the process, they really are a standard for all homes, not SDA. This is not the LHA fault, they are great advocate it’s just that they were never designed to be SDA design guidelines.
New SDA Design Standards should get rid of dodgy cheap housing
Unfortunately we often see some really poorly designed SDA properties being marketed. The new SDA design guidelines are such a massive leap from the LHA standard that many of this poorly designed places just wont even resemble other SDA property. SDA design standards should be high, the scheme is generous enough to allow it.
SDA Design Standards compulsory form 2021
Our only criticism is that the SDA design standards are not compulsory for several years yet, although the transition process hasn’t been announced yet. This is why were involved in establishing the SDA providers association, to try and promote outstanding design.
Hopefully ALL builders and SDA providers immediately switch to the SDA design standards.
NDISP Properties Exceed New SDA Design Guidelines
NDISP properties already meet and exceed the standard.
NDIS Releases the Specialist Disability Accommodation Design Standards
The SDA Design Standard Implementation Plan will be published in the near future, outlining how from 1 July 2021, all dwelling enrolment applications for SDA will:
- undertake pre-certification from a third party accredited SDA assessor at the design (pre-certification) and final as built stages
- nominate the design category the dwelling to be enrolled satisfies, based on the standard
The Implementation Plan will also describe the transition period up to 1 July 2021 and how particular exemptions will apply during that period.
NDISP Properties Have Far Exceeded LHA Standards & Exceed the SDA Design Standard
NDISP SDA Properties Meet & Exceed the Design Standard.
SDA Design Standards
We welcome the implementation of this higher design standard. Unfortunately there are a host of poorly designed properties out there. Our properties already exceeded the LHA Platinum standards and meed and exceed every one of the SDA Design Standards.
More “Hidden People” than Known
In the last quarterly report 6,772 people had their NDIS plan approved. Of these a massive 64% were new, that is they had not previously engaged with the State or Commonwealth disability services. This means an additional 4,707 participants in QLD that were not included in the statistics.
51,043 Active Participants in QLD
The total number of participants continues to increase.
25% of New Participants Have Low Level of Function
Of the new participants, 25% have low level of function. This is the group where most will be SDA eligible.
Despite the growth in enrolments and the “hidden” people, the underspend continues to occur. This will further intensify pressure on the agency to increase enrolment pace.
The Department of Social Security has released a discussion paper and opened consultation on the NDIS Act and the Participant Service Guarantee. the NDIS Review Discussion Paper has the following key points within:
Government Commitment to the NDIS
The National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS; the Scheme) is the most substantive social policy reform in Australia since the introduction of Medicare in the 1970s. The NDIS is transforming the lives of people with disability, their families and carers. The Government is committed to providing choice and control to NDIS participants, to create opportunity in the pursuit of their goals and the planning and delivery of their supports.
Design and Intent of NDIS Not Changing
The Review of the NDIS Act will not change the design and intent of the NDIS. Rather, the Review is focussed on removing red tape and making the participant experience with the NDIS better.
The Participant Service Guarantee
Government has committed to introduce a new NDIS Participant Service Guarantee (the Guarantee). The Guarantee is to be developed and legislated in close consultation with people with disability, their families, carers and supporters, as well as state and territory governments. It is intended that the Guarantee will take effect from 1 July 2020.
The Guarantee will set new standards for shorter, but realistic timeframes for people with disability to get their NDIS plan and have their plan reviewed. Cutting red tape through the Review, combined with specific service standards under the Guarantee, will assist people with disability to have positive and consistent experiences with the NDIS.
The Government is seeking feedback about people’s experiences with the NDIS and what should be included in the Guarantee. The Government also needs to know what else is important to consider in reviewing the NDIS Act. This will ensure the Guarantee, and any amendments to the NDIS Act recommended as part of Mr Tune’s review, captures what matters most to people with disability, their families and carers.
More information about the consultation process can be found at DSS Engage:
What Could Participant Service Guarantee Look Like?
Possible principles for NDIA service standards Principle Description
- Timely. The NDIS process will be easier to understand and use, enabling decisions about access, planning and review to happen promptly.
- Engaged The NDIA engages with people with disability, their family, carers and other support persons when developing operating procedures and processes.
- Expert NDIA staff have a high level of disability training and understand the impact particular disabilities have on people’s lives. They understand what supports are most effective for a person’s disability.
- Connected The NDIA works well with governments, mainstream services (such as health, education, justice services), disability representative groups and providers to ensure people with disability have coordinated and integrated services.
- Valued Participants, their families, carers and other support persons feel valued in their interaction with the NDIS, and know where to go if they need further assistance.
- Decisions are made on merit The NDIA acts in a transparent, informative and collaborative spirit so that participants understand why decisions are made.
- Accessible All people with disability can understand and use the NDIS, and the NDIS ensures its services are appropriate and sensitive for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people, people from Culturally and Linguistically Diverse (CALD) backgrounds, LGBTQIA+ and other individuals.
The whole paper can be found here
NDISP believes that choice and control as far as SIL provider goes has been handled well by us.
In our unit complexes, although we have a SIL resident in the OOA, all participants are completely free to not use them at all, use them only for overnight emergency contact or use them completely. As we build 2 bedroom units and offer them to individuals who are eligible for one bedroom, there is also often a bedroom free should their own carers need space.
In our shared houses there is a SIL provider who has an agreement with us to use the OOA and to provide support, however all residents are free to have their own carers. On top of this, all our contracts with SIL providers require the ability for our residents to vote and should 50% of the residents wish to change SIL’s they can.
However, the joint parliamentary committees established by the Morrison government will look into the SIL/ SDA relationship and may recommend changes.
NDIS Minister Stuart Robert said at today’s Access 2019 conference in Sydney
The government was committed to cutting red tape and ensuring timely advice is provided to the market about participant eligibility and housing type and location.
SDA is a life-changing support that empowers participants through greater control, independence, privacy and opportunities to maintain and grow personal relationships
This year, the Government has implemented a range of reforms to build confidence in the SDA market including the establishment of the SDA panel, SDA Reference Group, the announcement of the Younger Persons in Residential Aged Care action plan, and continuing updates to rules, policies and pricing and payment settings.
With more than 13,300 NDIS participants with SDA now in their plans the demands for SDA is continuing to grow.
But some individuals, advocacy groups and support organisations, including Kurt Fearnley are calling for 2 of the commissioner to resign due to conflicts of interests.
The 2 commissioners have previous government (elected and public service) experience in the sector.
With the full roll out of the NDIS there is massive demand for new workers and the government has been actively trying to promote the scheme.
There is also some considerable effort being made to attract people to rural and remote areas.
The NDIS has reclassified a swag of areas from regional to remote which many fee items are doubled.
More than 12,000 NDIS Participants had SDA approved in their Plan at 30 March 2019
With the NDIA data release in August 2019 showing statistics up the end of the March Quarter 2019 the massive growth in people with approval to have Specialist Disability Accommodation (SDA) in their plan is obvious. With only 2,896 dwellings around the country, 363 of them being new builds, the demand for new dwellings is obvious. A participant pays no more for a newly built dwelling than an existing dwelling.
Queensland NDIS Participants with SDA in their Plan
It only became possible to have SDA approved in a Participants Plan on 1 July 2018, and at that stage requiring a fully enrolled (eg completed) SDA property to be able to apply, it was a very slow start to SDA in Queensland. The March Quarters statistics show just how rapidly this has grown. There are now 1,182 approved participants with only 83 new builds.
|QLD – Other||10|
Northern Territory NDIS Participants with SDA in their Plan
Likewise, NT Participants could only get SDA in their plans from 1 July 2018 and although there are now 170 territorians with SDA in their plans, the unfortunate reality there is almost no one is building with only 8 New Builds.
|NT_ – Other||8|
Victorian NDIS Participants with SDA in their Plan
Victoria has 3,701 participants with SDA in their plan, with only 58 New Builds
|North East Melbourne||559|
|Inner East Melbourne||630|
|Outer East Melbourne||362|
|VIC – other||7|
New South Wales NDIS Participants with SDA in their Plan
New South Wales has the most established SDA market with 4,614 participants with SDA in their Plan and 196 New Builds
|Hunter Trial Site||441|
|Hunter New England (excl. Trial Site)||256|
|Mid North Coast||137|
|Nepean Blue Mountains||309|
|South Eastern Sydney||350|
|South Western Sydney||364|
|Nsw – Other||11|
South Australian NDIS Participants with SDA in their Plan
South Australia has 1,692 participants with SDA in their plan, with only 11 New Builds
|Barossa, Light and Lower North||26|
|Eyre and Western||28|
|Far North (SA)||19|
|Fleurieu and Kangaroo Island||36|
|Murray and Mallee||80|
|Yorke and Mid North||37|
Western Australian NDIS Participants with SDA in their Plan
Western Australia has 454 participants with SDA in their plan, with 0 New Builds
|North East Metro||329|
|Central South Metro||31|
|WA_ – Other||29|
NDIA Data Release August 2019 (Data as at 30 March 2019)
The NDIA has released updated data on the National Disability Insurance Scheme. All of the above data was taken directly from their site
Specialist Disability Accommodation is governed by legislation. One of the key parts of legislation is the
National Disability Insurance Scheme (Specialist Disability Accommodation) Rules 2016
One of the key parts of the rules is part 6, Division 1 – The General Requirements for SDA to be funded. One of the oft missed part of these rules is that if the disabled person is a member of a couple, 1 bedroom places are ineligible to be funded without a 2nd bedroom or similiar sized room. Here is 6.1(d) quoted directly from the rules:
at least one private bedroom has been made available for the participant or, if the participant is a member of a couple, at least one private bedroom and a second room that may be a bedroom or another similar sized private room has been made available to the couple;
Now if I was to put my lawyers hat on, where not defined in the legislation, the common definition of word is what is used by courts to interpret what it means. The key phrase here is, “a member of a couple”, not lives with, cohabitants with, is married, in a defacto relationship etc but merely a “member” of a couple.
So on the plain reading of the rules, if a person with disability is single and moves into a one bedroom apartment, but then starts dating to a point where they (or a reasonable person) would consider them to be a couple then they breach one of the general requirements of the SDA rules for SDA property to be funded. A government agency can’t just ignore the legislation.
We are not out to cause panic to anyone with a disability living in a one bedroom apartment, these rules are what they are. Indeed, we would rather that this provision was amended or removed from the rules.
The Queensland Housing Department has produced an excellent workbook. that includes NDIS SDA as an option for housing. It has questions people with disabilities and their families and carers can work through to help decide what is best for them.
With the decision by QLD housing to not become an SDA provider we are receiving a large number of people contacting us who currently live in a public house but are looking at renting one of NDISP’s properties.
With those eligible for SDA estimated to be 28,000 of the 400,00 plus people with disability (although this number already looks like doubling) there are still a lot more disabled people to house.
The NDIS will provide Individual Living Options (ILO) and NDISP have registered to find out about becoming an ILO provider when that time comes.
We don’t have any information on ILO’s as yet but of course people will still need to work with the Planning Operational Guideline to determine if ILO is reasonable and necessary.
Even with this there is research to suggest that up to 55,000 people with NDIS plans will have an unmet need for affordable housing. Without sufficient housing then the NDIS will struggle to meet its goal of promoting independent living.
The National Disability Insurance Scheme Amendment (Worker Screening Database) Bill 2019 passed the Australian Parliament earlier this week
Jane Wardlaw, a disability advocate, pictured welcomed the move.
While we have Yellow Cards in QLD and equivalents elsewhere, data sharing across states is problematic.
The national worker screening database will make it more difficult for people with poor records in one jurisdiction to move to another jurisdiction and continue to work with people with disability.
78,000 Parents Caring for Adult Children Not Included in Stats
Though we don’t know the number at present, in 2012 there were 78,000 parents caring for their children, mostly adult children with disabilities. We do know that we constantly meet lovely grey haired people who are exhausted, need help and are terrified of what happens to their children when they can no longer provide their care.
We are now in our seventies and early eighties and very concerned, anxious and worried about the crisis in accommodation in Australia for intellectually disabled adults.
We believe it is my son’s fundamental right to be safe, secure and cared for within the privileged society the rest of us enjoy.
Noela – Vic
My wife and I looked after our severely disabled daughter in our home for 25 years without complaint. But we can’t do it forever – we are in our late 60s. We also believe that people with a disability have a right to live independently. No-one should be forced to live with their parents solely because suitableaccommodation is unavailable.
Hidden People Joining NDIS & Changing Numbers
They are referred to as the hidden people because their parents took charge of their care and basically gave up on the government support. So the individual with disability is missing from the statistics.
With the NDIS making it worthwhile for them to now come our of “hiding” and gain support, their numbers are going to greatly swell the predicted NDIS participant number and spend.
The Majority of People With Disability Don’t Want to Share Housing with Other Disabled People
Although these stats area 4 years old they are straight from 650 people living with disability and their parents and carers. 53% don’t want to share at all, another 10% want to share with 1 or 2 people.
NDISP tenant EOI’s actually skew much further than this. The majority by multiples want a 2 bed unit that they don’t share.
NDISP Self Contained SDA Housing
NDISP has the majority of their SDA properties complying with this.
Our 2 to 4 units with no other units on one block of land like our Morningside place would meet this, the only common facilities being the pool and BBQ area.
NDISP units as part of a larger complex like the 10 units in 66 in Cannon Hill
NDISP Share Housing
We don’t offer SDA share houses for more than 4 people at all and the majority of our share housing is for 3 people with a spare bedroom, like in our Shailer Park houses .
The Hidden Disabled
This is a phrase that we are hearing more and more often. It refers to the people with disability who were living with their parents and were largely hidden from the statistics as they didn’t participate in the formal state based disability systems.
With the NDIS, these people are appearing. We see them constantly at our events and meetings with people. Ageing parents scared that they don’t know what will happen, 78,000 of them in 2012.
I am 61 and my husband is 70. We have been caring for our disabled daughter for 38 years and are finding it very hard to continue. We would like her to move into suitable supported accommodation but are always told there is nothing available. How much longer do we have to wait? We would like just a few years to enjoy our retirement time, is that too much to ask? – Judy Tasmania
Courtesy of Every Australian Counts Campaign
This was the group that originally fought for the NDIS. You can visit them here.
In a study examining the efficiencies and roll out of the NDIS as one of the largest ever personalised schemes, one of the interesting findings was that researchers could broadly identify 2 types of participants based on their frame of mind:
- Remedial Frame of Mind
- Quality of Life Frame of Mind
They were proposing a customer centric based scheme with personalisation based on aligning these types of participants.
Although the article reads very academically, the interesting take away from it is that:
- Quality of Life participants are willing to pay much more ($149.80)f or providers with higher star ratings;
- Remedial participants will pay very little more ($13.90) for higher star ratings but slightly more for immediate bookings vs waiting.
This sad story care of the ABC , highlights how young people with disabilities suffer such terrible consequences being stuck in aged care rather than appropriate housing.
Sarah Brady was a 39 year old with a degenerative disease but could walk, talk and eat solid food when she was admitted to aged care in 2016.
Being forced to share a room with a non communicative 90 year old lady and with no one else around to talk to, Miss Brady lost her speech.
She was also placed in incontinence diapers so that she didn’t need to be taken to the toilet and kept in a wheelchair for safety.
On top of this, she was faced with death as being a consistent occurrence. Young people with high care needs are often placed with the highest care elderly, that is those that are rapidly approaching the end of their life.
The Minister for the NDIS Stuart Robert has acknowledged there is a longstanding undersupply of suitable Specialist Disability Accommodation (SDA) in Australia. A new action plan, announced back in March, to ensure all those young people with disabilities under 45 living in aged care would be found suitable accommodation by 30 June 2022 (NDISP’s current deadline to supply thousands of places) and those young people with disabilities under 65 years of age by 30 June 2025 (NDISP believes that the current deadline to roll out SDA will be extended to this date to meet this goal, but won’t be announced till closer to the 2022 deadline to stimulate as much development as possible).
There has been no additional implementation strategy other than the SDA rollout to see how this action plan will be acheived. NDISP beleives the government is taking a wait and see approach to see how the rollout of SDA progresses up to 30 June 2020, and see if any additional resources are required.
Imagine living for 3 years, locked in a dementia ward. Angelina Giorgio , a young person with disability in aged care, lives like that. She initially moved into high care of the aged care but because of her vocal outbursts related to her disability she was moved to the secure dementia ward. The 3 years spent in bed has led to almost total immobility, so where she would have been able to live in Robust level SDA is likely to now need High Physical Support. Ms Gigorgio has now had SDA in her plan and is awaiting a new group home to be constructed in Canberra.
As from 1 July the Victorian RTA incorporates requirements for Specialist Disability Accommodation
Within 6 months providers must either:
- have a normal residential tenancy agreement in place for their tenants (giving the SDA resident the same rights as any renter in Victoria);
- an SDA residency agreement which provides for extra rights and protections
There will also be more clearly established guidelines for compliance and a requirement for SDA providers to notify Consumer Affairs Victoria within 14 days of entering into a SDA agreement.
Whilst NDISP welcomes the incorporation of SDA provisions into the RTA and the ability to have the same agreement, or a version thereof, as for the person renting next door, we would hope that the registration and other regulatory requirements do not become to onerous and a doubling of the requirements already in place as an SDA provider. We keep our compliance fee at 2% of the property income and would not like to see unnecessary regulation increase costs further.
We love working with carers and so we made our properties so Carers Love NDISP properties
Smart Home Automation
Every NDISP home has a full smart home automation system installed to make living in them easier
- Automatic Doors
- Automatic Lights & Fans
- Automatic Air Conditioning
- Automatic Blinds
All controlled by voice, phone, tablet, browser and good old fashioned buttons and switches
Space to Move
Every NDISP home has 1200mm doors, extra wide hallways, large turning circles and massive ensuites.
Queensland is now a full state wide member of the NDIS joining six other states and territories. This agreement locks in funding from 2020/21 financial on agreed amounts from the state and the Commonwealth, indexed until at least 30 June 2028.
Whilst QLD was due to commence the full scheme agreement on 1 July 2019, the transition period funding has been extended to 30 June 2020 as the departments have not yet managed to enrol the agreed 91,217 QLD people living with disability into the scheme. This has no effect on the provision of services, rather it just changes the amount each government contributes during the transition.
The QLD Premier said
“This agreement puts Queenslanders with disability first and ensures our state only pays its fair share of the funding, particularly while tens of thousands of our residents continue to transition into the Scheme.
Importantly, this agreement gives us more certainty around the funding contributions of each government going forward.”
NDIS Particpant Wins Appeal for Sex Therapy – How this AAT Case Helps Participants with SDA Funding – Guest Post by Certus Legal – NDIS & SDA Lawyers
“Participant wins appeal for Sex Therapist funding under the NDIS”
Whilst this decision includes a topic that is getting headlines (e.g. Sex Therapy), the core principles for decision-making set out by the AAT are useful in any claim for supports under the NDIS.
If a claim for funding for a support this controversial in nature can be approved, we anticipate that this decision will offer some peace of mind for Participants when applying for supports as crucial as Specialist Disability Accommodation.
The Applicant was successful here because her plan addresses, and the support meets, each legislative criterion set out in the Act that the NDIA is required to consider when determining whether a support is reasonable and necessary.
In these early stages of the NDIA, it is clear that many decision-makers within the NDIA appear to be relying on discretion when it comes to approving plans, as opposed to referring to the criteria laid out in the Act. A carefully drawn plan is essential for Participants when submitting applications for funding approval to the NDIA. The risk that plans will be rejected without proper grounds will be substantially reduced where:
- each of the criteria set out in the Act are addressed to some extent;
- the supports clearly fit within the principles of the Act;
- the plan adopts appropriate language making it clear that the claimed supports comply with the Act, Rules, and relevant NDIS materials; and
- the claim for the support, and benefits likely to be received from its provision, are clearly set out and substantiated.
This is a guest post from our lawyers at Certus Legal on a case that, regardless of the support being requested, has wide implications for participants in exploring what supports the NDIA must deem reasonable and necessary.
Short Form Case Review: WRMF and National Disability Insurance Agency  AATA 1771 (8 July 2019)
It may sound like a catchy title and it may seem out of the ordinary to many people (certainly those decision-makers in the National Disability Insurance Agency (the “NDIA”)), but this Administrative Appeals Tribunal (“AAT”) decision represents a keystone and sorely needed authority on the decision-making process utilised by the NDIA when it comes to funding for supports within Participants’ plans.
The Decision in (about) two hundred words or less:
- The Applicant suffers from cerebral palsy and multiple sclerosis. As a result of her disability, she does not have or expect ever to have a sexual partner;
- The Applicant applied, within her NDIS plan, for a support in the form of a Sex Therapist at a cost of $10,800 per year;
- The NDIA rejected her application on the basis that it did not satisfy the criteria of the National Disability Insurance Scheme Act 2013 (the “Act”) and was not a reasonable and necessary support;
- The Applicant exercised her rights of appeal, and made an application to the AAT;
- The AAT found:
- if a certain support is specifically excluded from NDIS funding, that exclusion of support must be unanimously be agreed upon by all States and the federal government (i.e. it is not up to the NDIA to make a policy decision as to universally excluded supports);
- the support satisfied the criteria set out in section 34; and
- as the support satisfied the criteria set out in section 34, it was deemed reasonable and necessary; and
- The AAT has referred the Applicant’s plan back to the NDIA for reconsideration with a direction to the NDIA that the support from a Sex Therapist is, in this case, a reasonable and necessary support.
The Applicant’s Circumstances
The Applicant’s disability prevents her from finding a sexual partner within the wider community and, were she to find a partner, it is highly unlikely that any partner within the community would be able to bring her to sexual release due to her disability. She has only been able to achieve sexual release with the assistance of a qualified Sex Therapist.
Beyond the Applicant’s physical disabilities, she is in all other respects an intellectually cognisant woman in her forties looking to lead a normal life. The Applicant continues to experience normal sexual desires.
The AAT accepted verbal evidence from the Applicant that the services of a qualified Sex Therapist are:
“[…] good for her mental wellbeing, her emotional wellbeing and her physical wellbeing […], she also said that her mood is less dull, it releases tension and anxiety, and improves her outlook on life.”
Effectively the AAT ruled that the NDIA cannot take into account factors unless they are provided for in the Act. A strict interpretation of the Act means that a reasonable and necessary can only be defined with reference to the principles of the Act.
The support in this case provided the Applicant with benefits that assisted her in participating in social life. The NDIA was held to be empowered to fund this support under the Act, where the required purpose of the funding (participating in social life) was read in context with the guiding principles of the Act.
As the NDIA was empowered to fund this support, the question then turned to whether the NDIA should fund this support (i.e. was it a reasonable and necessary support) as part of the Participant’s plan. The NDIA therefore was required to consider the following questions:
- Would the support assist the participant to pursue the goals, objectives and aspirations included in the Participant’s statement of goals and aspirations?
In determining whether it was a reasonable and necessary support, the services of a Sex Therapist supported the Applicants statement of goals and aspirations within her plan, specifically the following goal:
“I want to maintain my health and wellbeing.”
The services of the Sex Therapist (for the health and wellbeing benefits set out in Applicant’s verbal evidence, referred to above) assisted the Applicant in pursuing her longer term goals.
- Will the support assist the participant to undertake activities, so as to facilitate the participant’s social and economic participation?
For the health and wellbeing benefits set out above, the support of a Sex Therapist assisted the Applicant undertake social activities. In the words of the AAT:
“If one has a brighter mood, and a sense of wellbeing, then one is more ready to face the world. As I remarked above, the applicant has no loss of intellectual capacity and she desires to socialise as others do.”
- Does the support represent value for money in that the costs of the support are reasonable, relative to both the benefits achieved and the cost of alternative support?
The cost of the support claimed, at $10,800 per annum, was reasonable relative to market rates for qualified sexual therapy services. The numerous health and wellbeing benefits that the Applicant experienced as a result of these services validated this cost (and there were no other alternative supports available).
- Is the support, or is the support likely to be, effective and beneficial for the participant, having regard to current good practice?
The evidence provided by the Applicant substantiated the finding that the support has previously been effective and beneficial. The support was, and will be, provided by a qualified professional, thus it is consistent with good practice.
I note that the NDIA made submissions as to the potential for an alternative support being provided by either specific equipment or an occupational therapist. Based on confidential reasons (which one can assume was related to the Applicant’s disability), the submission that specific equipment could serve as an alternative was rejected. Based on the common sense of the AAT decision-maker, the submission related to an occupational therapist providing similar alternative services was also rejected.
- Does the funding or provision of the support take into account what is reasonable to expect families, carers, informal networks and the community to provide?
The claimed support was incapable of being provided by any other professional than a qualified Sex Therapist, it was agreed by the parties that these services could only be reasonably provided by this type of specialist.
Some submissions were made by the NDIA that the opportunity for sexual release was already available to the Applicant, by way of her opportunity to find a partner in the wider community. This submission was rejected by the AAT based on the fact that the Applicant’s disability effectively made it impossible for her to find a sexual partner that could provide the same benefits she receives from a qualified Sex Therapist.
- Is the Support most appropriately funded or provided through the National Disability Insurance Scheme, and is not more appropriately funded or provided through another general system of service delivery or support services offered by a person, agency or body, or systems of service delivery or support services offered:
- As part of a universal service obligation; or
- In accordance with reasonable adjustments required under a law dealing with discrimination on the basis of disability?
This question relates to whether the Applicant had a right under some other legislation to the support. For example, a claim that the NDIA should provide support in a Participant’s workplace to make it accessible to disabled persons would be rejected, as the workplace would be required to fund and make reasonable adjustments under the Disability Discrimination Act 1992.
The NDIA made submissions to this point that the support should be rejected as it should be funded out of her disability support pension. In response to this submission, the AAT decision-maker stated:
“The disability support pension is not paid in order to provide funding for the purposes for which the NDIS was established.”
Essentially, and flatly put; a Participant is not barred from claiming a support under the NDIS by the mere fact that they receive the disability support pension. This is a false notion often encountered by our firm. The disability support pension exists to supplement income, not to fund supports.
If the NDIA’s submission were correct, Participants would be unable to claim supports wherever they have received the disability pension. If this were the case, essentially the two schemes would become mutually exclusive, and I believe the AAT’s decision-maker puts this most succinctly:
“Arguments about whether the support is more appropriately funded by a pension seem to require an infinite regress of reasoning.”
If you encounter anyone who believes they are barred from claiming supports simply due to receiving the disability support pension, please immediately refer them to our firm as this is simply not the case.
- Is the support prescribed by the Rules as a support that will not be funded or provided under the National Disability Insurance Scheme?
The NDIA made submissions that the support should be excluded as it does not relate to the Applicant’s disability, as prescribed under rule 5.1(b) of the Rules. As the entire reason the Applicant is seeking the services of a Sex Therapist is due to her disability, the NDIA’s submission on this point was dismissed out of hand.
Further, the NDIA claimed that the support should be excluded as it related to income replacement (which is instead provided for the under the disability support pension), as prescribed under rule 5.3(b) of the Rules. Again, this submission was dismissed out of hand, as would it be accepted there would be grounds to deny every claim for (otherwise) reasonable and necessary supports.
- Does funding the support comply with any methods or criteria prescribed in the Rules for deciding a reasonable and necessary support to be funded under the NDIS?
I include this question for the sake of completeness, as it is the final hurdle to jump through when having a support approved by the NDIA. Submissions on this point overlap with those set out in the above Question 7.
As the NDIS has progressed, it is clear there is a space in this area for legal professionals to offer their services, specifically when it comes to drafting participants’ plans so that they comply with legislation, and appealing any erroneous decisions made by the NDIA.
Should you, or anyone you know, require assistance in drafting a plan for submission to the NDIA, we welcome you to contact our firm for further information on what services we can provide.
A long-form version of this article outlining the full legal process that the AAT decision-maker used to reach its conclusion will be posted on our firm’s website in the coming days: https://www.certuslegal.com.au/personal/ndislawyers/
- The NDIA has an opportunity to appeal the AAT’s decision, although the grounds of this appeal are unclear to the author. The Act makes clear, as stated in the AAT decision, that it is not within the scope of the NDIA to determine the types of supports that should be blanket banned. The NDIS minister, Stuart Robert, has stated that the services of a Sex Therapist “are not in line with community expectations of what are reasonable and necessary supports.”