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Government relations and policy resources


Our policy resources cover a range of topics relating to young people in aged care. These include NDIS outcomes, specialist disability accommodation (SDA) and our submissions to government.

There are 3 ways to search using the Filter Resources boxes below. You can type your key words in the first box or filter by tags or year of publication.

Please note that if a tag or year shows as (0) this means there are no resources in this particular library for that specified tag or year.

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Found 38 Results

October 2022

Culture and Capability of the National Disability Insurance Agency – Summer Foundation submission to the Joint Standing Committee on the National Disability Insurance Scheme

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Summer Foundation developed a submission to the Joint Standing Committee on the NDIS on the capability and culture of the NDIA and the impacts on the experiences of NDIS participants.

 

The current culture and capability of the NDIA does not meet the needs of participants, but it can be improved. Through the Summer Foundation’s NDIS survey, participants reported that they live in fear of funding being cut, experience a lack of communication, collaboration and relationship building with the NDIA, as well as poor timeliness and efficiency.

 

Trust and confidence in the NDIS and the NDIA can only be restored if participants are seen as experts in their own lives. People with disability should be at the centre of all policies and solutions and included in any reform process through meaningful co-design. It is crucial that the NDIA works to strengthen choice and control for participants and builds their capacity to live well in the community.


October 2022

Achieving the YPIRAC Strategy

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The Federal Government’s Younger People in Residential Aged Care (YPIRAC) Strategy aims to address the systemic issues and barriers that continue to allow younger people (under 65) to enter and remain in RAC. Although progress under the YPIRAC Strategy has been made, systems change is needed to ensure younger people with complex needs have access to the long-term housing and supports they need to live well in the community. Achieving the YPIRAC Strategy requires commitment at all levels of government and the implementation of policy and operational measures that improve the disability/health/housing interface.


October 2022

Preventing and better protecting younger people with complex needs from experiencing violence, abuse, neglect and exploitation

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Summer Foundation report to the Disability Royal Commission
There are many younger people with complex needs living in inappropriate settings such as residential aged care (RAC) and hospitals. Recent government inquiries have provided opportunities for defining and measuring progress towards essential reforms. However, more still needs to be done to improve the experiences and outcomes of younger people with complex needs. To help ensure the Disability Royal Commission (DRC) is best placed to drive policy reform that will meaningfully improve outcomes for this cohort, this report summarises the key areas in need of action.


October 2022

Home and Living decision-making – Policy Position Statement by the Summer Foundation

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Improving the experience and outcomes of NDIS participants, particularly around Home and Living supports, is a key focus of the NDIS. There have been a number of improvements and positive changes in the Home and Living space, including improved application processes and reports by the NDIA.  While there is still more to do to ensure straightforward and transparent processes to enable NDIS participants to access appropriate housing and supports, it is great to see the focus and positive traction from the NDIA. This position statement identifies a number of wins for the NDIA and participants.


August 2022

Value for money – Policy Position Statement by the Summer Foundation

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The National Disability Insurance Agency (NDIA) can point to value for money as a reason for not approving funding for any National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) supports, however it appears to be more frequently used in housing and support decisions. Participants, their supporters and the sector report that value for money is not clearly understood, applied inconsistently and lacks transparency on how it is applied to individual plans. In line with NDIS legislation, the NDIA must consider long-term costs and benefits of supports as well as invest in capacity building measures that will reduce support costs over time.


August 2022

Summer Foundation statement on the new Specialist Disability Accommodation Operational Guidelines

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NDIA has released new Specialist Disability Accommodation (SDA) Operational Guidelines (OG), which includes criteria for living alone with onsite shared support (OSS). These new guidelines are restrictive and will mean many people who are able to live alone and access shared onsite support will need to navigate additional hurdles to access a model of support which promotes independence and delivers value for money for participants and the NDIS. The OG should reflect the flexibility of living in a model of SDA with OSS, use evidence to establish average wait times, and expand the ways in which participants can call for assistance.


August 2022

NDIS impacts on South Australian participants with complex needs – Summer Foundation and Housing Hub submission to the Social Development Committee

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The Summer Foundation and the Housing Hub welcome the opportunity to make a joint submission to the Social Development Committee on National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) impacts on South Australian participants with complex needs. Many South Australians depend on the NDIS to live an ordinary life. It is crucial that the NDIS strengthens the rights and choices of South Australian participants and builds their capacity to live independently and well in the community.


July 2022

A more inclusive and just society for people with disability – Summer Foundation submission to the Disability Royal Commission

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The Summer Foundation welcomes the opportunity to make a submission to the Disability Royal Commission (DRC). It is crucial that outcomes of the DRC ensure a more inclusive and just society for all people with disability. Despite state, national and international mandates, many people with disability with high and complex needs are still not afforded their rights. They are often denied the opportunity to live where, how and with whom they want.

 

Significant reforms to the NDIS and health and housing interface systems are needed to uphold participants’ choice and control over their own lives and break the cycle of violence, abuse, neglect and exploitation when they are dependent on supports provided by others. Greater investment into person-centred decision-making is essential to ensure that participants can exercise their right to an ordinary life.


July 2022

ACT Disability Strategy 2022-2032 – Summer Foundation submission to the ACT Disability Reference Group

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The Summer Foundation welcomes the opportunity to make a submission to the ACT Disability Reference Group on the ACT Disability Strategy. It is crucial that the ACT Disability Strategy ensures an accessible community that improves the lives of more than 80,000 people with disability living in Canberra. To achieve this, it must strengthen the rights and choices of Canberrans with disability and build their capacity to live a good life.


July 2022

Housing as a barrier to hospital discharge – Policy Position Statement by the Summer Foundation

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People with disability who have high and complex needs often get stuck in hospital due to challenges accessing the housing and support needed to leave hospital. The transition from hospital to home requires a coordinated approach between the NDIS and health and housing sectors. Enabling access to appropriate housing and supports when participants are clinically fit for discharge prevents disruptions to patient flow and poor health outcomes stemming from extended hospital stays.


July 2022

 Improving housing accessibility in Australia

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Research supports incorporating accessible design features in the construction of all homes. The Summer Foundation urges State and Territory Governments to commit to improving housing accessibility so people with disability have more options for where they can live.

Only 5% of new home builds over the past decade have complied with current accessibility standards, meaning tens of thousands of Australians with disability are unable to access housing that meets their needs.


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May 2022

On-site shared support in Specialist Disability Accommodation – Discussion paper

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In 2021 the Summer Foundation held a series of workshops and interviews with on-site support providers, specialist disability accommodation (SDA) providers, and tenants living in SDA apartments. Preliminary findings from the workshops were published in May 2022, and the main findings were that there is scope for service redesign and innovation to improve the quality and efficiency of support.

We are seeking input from support providers for improving the preliminary report and recommendations. Please contact [email protected] by 30 June 2022.


April 2022

Supported Independent Living costs and impacts – Policy Position Statement by the Summer Foundation

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The Summer Foundation has released a position statement on the costs of Supported Independent Living (SIL) and its impact on the operation of the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS). The costs of SIL are an outsized contributor to NDIS budget growth, which is impacting home and living determinations made by the National Disability Insurance Agency (NDIA), particularly Specialist Disability Accommodation (SDA). The cost effectiveness of SIL can be improved by maximising NDIS participants’ independence through accessible design and collaborative care or shared support models, thereby reducing the dependence on paid support staff.


April 2022

New NDIS Legislation – Resources for NDIS participants and the disability sector

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On 30 March 2022, the National Disability Insurance Scheme Amendment (Participant Service Guarantee and Other Measures) Bill 2022 passed through Parliament. The amendments have been designed to provide participants with greater confidence and clarity around what they can expect from the NDIS. The explainer for the disability sector, and supplementary guide on changing timelines can be downloaded below:

Download the guide for NDIS participants below:


DOCUMENT

January 2022

Pre Budget Submission (2022)

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More than 50 young people continue to enter aged care each month. Most young people enter aged care via hospital -they fall through the gap between the hospital and the disability sectors.
 
Additionally over 1,100 long stay NDIS participants are stuck in Australian hospitals at a cost of $860m per annum. People with disability remain in hospital for months after they are clinically ready for discharge because it takes the NDIA an average of 60 days to determine eligibility and allocate funding for supports in an NDIS plan. Funding for SDA can take much longer.
 
Many NDIS participants have to go to the Administrative Appeals Tribunal (AAT) to get the right SDA determination. This can take up to another year, costing the Federal Government $17 million per annum (reported by the NDIA) and causing undue stress to NDIS participants and their families.
 
Lack of disability housing is not the main barrier to hospital discharge. According to the NDIA, there are 3,000 vacancies in disability housing across Australia, 800 of which are new build SDA.
 
In 2016, the NDIS committed to providing $700 million per year to housing payments called SDA. Last year the NDIA only allocated 31% of the committed $700 million for SDA (the partial allocation of committed funding also occurred in prior years).
The Federal Government will not achieve its 2022 or 2025 YPIRAC Targets unless:
 

  • The NDIA steps up and matches the efficiency of the aged care system in the timely allocation of funding for housing and support, post receipt of all required evidence to make an SDA determination.
  • There is investment in better hospital discharge for people with severe disability


October 2021

Consultation on Home and Living – Submission by the Summer Foundation

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October 2021

Consultation on Supports for Decision Making – Submission by the Summer Foundation

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The Summer Foundation welcomes the opportunity to contribute to the National Disability Insurance Agency’s (NDIA) consultation into Supports for Decision Making.Our submission responds to the key themes in the consultation paper and makes recommendations to uphold human rights and increase participant choice and control over their lives.The proposed Supports for Decision Making Policy is a significant step towards securing better outcomes for National Disability Insurance Scheme(NDIS) participants. A person-centred and supportive approach to participants and their decision supporters is essential to stop younger people with disability from being forced into Residential Aged Care (RAC) and to meet the outcomes outlined in the Younger People in Residential Aged Care Action Plan.

 

Our submission responds to the key themes in the consultation paper and makes recommendations to uphold human rights and increase participant choice and control over their lives.


October 2021

Closed setting SIL homes – Policy Position Statement by the Summer Foundation

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The Summer Foundation has released a position statement about the model of housing and support known as, closed setting supported independent living (SIL) homes. This is where the SIL provider owns or head leases a property and is responsible for tenancy management as well as SIL support delivery within the home. The closed setting SIL home model is outdated and does not resemble a contemporary approach to independent living but it is currently responding to demand for housing from NDIS participants who have been deemed ineligible for SDA or are facing SDA approval issues. The model brings risk to NDIS participant safety, compromises housing security and removes a participants right to exercise genuine choice and control.

 

The Summer Foundation believes that the NDIS Quality and Safeguards Commission must undertake a quality audit of existing closed-setting SIL homes and implement a regulatory framework as an interim measure, supporting SIL providers to conform to contemporary standards that uphold NDIS participants’ legal rights.

 

The NDIA must ensure SDA eligible participants do not live in, or are not reliant on, closed setting SIL homes.


July 2021

Hospital Discharge of NDIS Participants with High and Complex Needs – Policy Position Statement by the Summer Foundation

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Immediate action is needed to improve outcomes for people with complex disability. Significant reforms of the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) and health interface systems are needed to reduce unnecessary hospital stays and to prevent younger people with high and complex disabilities from being forced into unsuitable housing and support such as residential aged care (RAC).

 

Hospital discharge delays have compounding negative consequences for NDIS participants (hereafter referred to as ‘participant’ or ‘participants’) and families, NDIS and health systems, and the workers within these systems. Improvements in hospital discharge will reduce costs for both the NDIS and health systems and help fulfil the Younger People in Residential Aged Care Action Plan of no younger person (under the age of 65) living in RAC unless there are exceptional circumstances.

 

This report examines the various problems and solutions specific to the NDIS and health interface to minimise extended hospital stays and increase successful returns to community life for people with disabilities.


July 2021

Separation of Housing and Support – Policy Position Statement by the Summer Foundation

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The provision of housing and supports must be separated to avoid conflicts of interest. Many participants receive a mixture of Specialist Disability Accommodation (SDA), Supported Independent Living (SIL), support coordination and other supports from the same provider. This presents an inherent conflict of interest that brings risk to participant safety, compromises housing security and limits or removes a participant’s right to exercise genuine choice and control.

 

This can result in limitations of a participant’s rights to exercise choice and control, including the inability to raise concerns or change support providers without putting at risk other services and supports they receive.


June 2021

Specialist Disability Accommodation (SDA) in Thin Markets

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Specialist Disability Accommodation (SDA) in Thin Markets resource identifies challenges and barriers to delivering SDA in thin markets. It explains the role that housing providers, disability support providers and all members of the community play in shaping opportunities for people with disability. The resource focuses on rural and remote areas in Western Australia and Queensland, Robust SDA and the impact the lack of SDA has on other mainstream systems.


March 2021

Joint Standing Committee on the NDIS Inquiry into Independent Assessments – Submission

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The Summer Foundation has made a submission to the Joint Standing Committee on the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) inquiry into Independent Assessments.

 

We believe that the NDIS is an important and life changing government initiative that has the potential to solve the issue of younger people being forced into residential aged care and other inappropriate accommodation settings.

 

While we welcome the introduction of free and timely assessments for people stuck in hospital, we recommend postponing the proposed midyear rollout of independent assessments and implementing an evidence-based pilot, codesigned with people with disability, disability organisations and other experts in the field.


January 2021

How to Reform Support Coordination to Meet the Needs of NDIS Participants with High and Complex Needs

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National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) participants with high and complex needs can often experience difficulty in accessing high quality and effective support coordination. Without effective support coordination, it can be difficult to avoid or exit residential aged care (RAC). This position statement outlines the problems and what needs to change.

 

To discuss this further and to lend your support to our statement contact: [email protected] 


January 2021

Medium Term Accommodation Eligibility, Funding and Quality to Meet the Needs of NDIS Participants

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Funding for Medium-Term Accommodation (MTA) under the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) is not currently delivering the necessary outcomes for participants with high and complex needs. Changes are needed to ensure that this group receives the necessary support to avoid being stuck in hospital or forced into residential aged care (RAC).

 

This position statement outlines the problems and what needs to change. To discuss this further and to lend your support to our statement contact: [email protected] 


October 2020

Improving Outcomes for Participants who Require Supported Independent Living (SIL): Provider and Sector Consultation Paper

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The Summer Foundation has extensive experience working alongside people with high and complex support needs to understand how to ensure that housing and support solutions can be developed according to their needs and preferences. We have undertaken demonstration projects and extensive research. Based on the outcomes of the research our understanding of what it takes to effectively support people with complex needs to live in the community has evolved.

 

Drawing on this, the Summer Foundation has outlined key problems with the current dominant SIL practice and set out a vision for a reformed SIL market.


October 2020

Accessible Housing – The Way Forward: Supplementary Information Provided to the Australian Building Codes Board Consultation RIS

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The Melbourne Disability Institute (MDI) and the Summer Foundation are pleased to provide this supplementary information following our meeting with representatives from the Australian Building Codes Board (ABCB) and the Centre for International Economics (CIE) on 17 September. This supplementary information should be read in conjunction with our submission.

The time constraints during the online meeting of 17 September 2020 did not permit full discussion of important economic considerations associated with the Regulatory Impact Statement (RIS) or the qualitative study. Therefore, the following information is provided to assist CIE in their finalisation of their evaluation, and for the ABCB’s consideration of the results.


September 2020

Independent Assessments Brief and Summer Foundation Position Statement

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Functional capacity is one of the key factors in determining eligibility for the NDIS. Functional capacity is the ability to be involved in different areas of life like home, school, work and the community and to carry out tasks and actions. It considers other factors in a person’s environment that may impact day-to-day life.

 

We want to see the NDIA take action to enable fast, fair and equitable decisions and these decisions need to be made with a strong evidence base. This requires NDIA funded and well-trained assessors who have experience working with people with disability.

 

Read our full position statement by clicking on the Download now button.


September 2020

Response to the Support Coordination Discussion Paper

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This submission addresses the questions put forward in the Support Coordination Discussion Paper and highlights the need to improve the support coordination service model in a range of areas. These include ensuring access to adequate and timely support coordination; incorporating effective support coordination in the interface between the NDIS and mainstream health systems; support coordinators with specialist knowledge in housing for people with complex needs; easier access for participants to appropriately skilled and experienced support coordinators; encouraging innovation and the development of best practice approaches through training and development opportunities and Communities of Practice; and addressing conflicts of interests.


August 2020

Accessible Housing – The Way Forward: Response to the Australian Building Codes Board Consultation RIS

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The Melbourne Disability Institute (MDI) and the Summer Foundation are pleased to provide this submission in response to the Australian Building Codes Board (ABCB) Consultation Regulation Impact Statement (RIS). We have initiated three important pieces of research in response to the Consultation RIS, in order to further inform the ABCB and Ministers, viz: i) an independent review of the social cost benefit analysis; ii) a survey and interviews of people with disability that provide important new quantitative and qualitative data; and iii) an audit of accessible features in 20 new build, high volume house plans.


August 2020

Response to Consultation Regulatory Impact Statement

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The Summer Foundation is pleased to provide this submission in response to the Australian Building Codes Board (ABCB) Consultation Regulation Impact Statement (RIS).

 

The Summer Foundation endorses the stated objective of the RIS and proposes that it should include the word ‘all’: The objective of the regulatory proposal is to ensure that [all] new housing is designed to meet the needs of the community including older Australians and others with mobility limitations.

 

Summer Foundation maintains that accessible housing is for everyone, every time, every day.
It should not be regarded as ‘an optional extra’ or ‘for special people.’ The regulation of minimum standards of accessibility can bring significant benefits to the broader community and is in the public interest.


September 2019

True stories, Practical Solutions – Submission to the Royal Commission on Aged Care Quality and Safety

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The submission identifies the key policy and systemic changes needed to stop young people being forced into aged care. It covers what needs to change and how it can happen.


February 2019

Summary of Changes to SDA Framework

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On 8 February 2019, the government announced ‘immediate reforms’ to Specialist Disability Accommodation (SDA) to improve choice and control for National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) participants and boost market confidence. The changes arise from an Australian Government review in 2018 of the SDA Pricing and Payments Framework.

 

This summary provides background to the changes, what has changed now, and future changes to be brought in.


July 2018

Joint Submission Review of the NDIS SDA Pricing and Payments Framework

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The Specialist Disability Accommodation Pricing and Payments Framework is a new and innovative approach to encouraging high quality accessible housing in the market via incentive payments linked to individual participants.
 
This submission is made jointly by more than 20 organisations that are advocates for people with disability or providers of SDA housing and experienced with the way the SDA Framework is operating. The submission outlines key concerns about the SDA Framework that are hampering the potential to build a diverse, innovative and responsive SDA market meeting the housing needs and preferences of participants.


June 2018

Insight into Design Issues in the Health and NDIS Systems Interface

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The implementation of the NDIS requires significant changes to the way state-based health systems operate within the new national system.
 
This paper examines the capacity, process and structural barriers that prevent coordination between the two systems and the issues specific to the NDIS/health interface, and provides solutions and recommendations for improving outcomes for NDIS participants with high and complex needs.


SDA Brief

May 2018

Summary of the NDIA’s SDA Provider and Investor Brief

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The National Disability Insurance Agency (NDIA) published a Specialist Disability Accommodation Provider and Investor Brief on 24 April 2018. The purpose of the Brief is to clarify the SDA Pricing and Payments framework for market providers.

 

The NDIA’s Brief is quite long, so we’ve made this summary of key points. For each point, we’ve included the related page number from the Brief. We also provide our early view on what we think the Brief is saying about how SDA will operate.


November 2017

Support Coordination – A changing landscape

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Support Coordination plays a critical role in ensuring that NDIS participants are able to live a good life, especially those participants who are vulnerable and socially isolated. The result of an extensive review of literature and practice, this report provides practitioners with an overview of how the support coordination function is designed within the NDIS


August 2017

NDIS speciality disability accommodation: Pathway to a mature market

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This joint Summer Foundation–PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) paper provides a broad overview of a mature Specialist Disability Accommodation (SDA) market from different perspectives.

 
This report aims to provide the information necessary to see the SDA market grow. It shares our vision of what a mature SDA market will look like, highlights 5 different types of market players involved and shares lessons learnt from the growth of other markets. It also identifies 9 key enablers that can be used to monitor the maturity of the SDA market.


Citation:

Winkler, D., Bo’sher, L., Taleporos, G., Brown, A., Gay, B., Hall, S., Lorenzo, R., Rutherford, T., Teschendorf, S., Tse, A., Yeo, M. (2017). Summer Foundation and PricewaterhouseCoopers.


February 2015

Senate Inquiry Submission

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A Federal Government Senate Inquiry into the ‘Adequacy of existing residential care arrangements available for young people with severe physical, mental or intellectual disabilities in Australia was announced in December 2014. The Senate Committee for Community Affairs was interested in hearing from individuals and families about their experiences of RAC.


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