Media Release: Enough is enough – a decade of NDIS stress must end

25 November 2021

The ACT Council of Social Service (ACTCOSS) has joined disability advocates and the Australian Council of Social Service in calling for an end to uncertainty about the future of the National Disability Insurance Scheme after comments by the Federal Minister were reported (paywall) in The Australian Newspaper today.

According to the report, Federal Minister Reynolds called on States and Territories to take more responsibility for funding the National Disability Insurance Scheme, stating that the NDIS was “not sustainable” and never intended to function as a ‘welfare scheme’

“Our city was the launch site for the NDIS in 2013. Since then, Canberrans with disability and carers have lived through a decade of inquiries, reviews, intergovernmental disputes, legislative changes and plan cuts” said Craig Wallace, the a/g Chief Executive Officer of ACTCOSS

“We’ve seen enough media drops from the Federal Government about ‘NDIS cost blow outs’ to wrap the landmass of the ACT in newsprint like an artwork by Christo and Jeanne-Claude.

“People have had enough. The Federal Government must stop frightening exhausted people with disabilities and carers over their lifeline to basic disability supports.

“On top of the experience of COVID, people with disability are being continuingly driven to distraction with threats to basic supports they need to stay at home, in school and in employment. We’re not talking luxury items but equipment, respite, personal care and transport.

“The Federal Government must work co-operatively with the States and Territories to ensure that we provide certainty and surety to people with disability so that supports are guaranteed across people’s lives and gaps between the NDIS and State/Territory programs are addressed

“It’s time to give power back to those who should be at the centre of the Scheme. On the one hand the Federal Government wants the States and Territories to take more responsibility for funding the scheme and on the other it wants to take away their powers on rule changes.

“The people always missing from that equation seem to be people with disabilities who need to be involved in genuine a co-design process to improve their experiences under the NDIS”

“We are writing to all the Parliamentarians in the ACT asking them to publicly commit to ending the stress and uncertainty for Canberrans with a disability which has now dragged on for a decade”, Mr Wallace concluded.

ACTCOSS advocates for social justice in the ACT and represents not-for-profit community organisations.

For more information or comment, please contact

Craig Wallace, A/g CEO, ACTCOSS, on 0477 200 755.

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