In September 2018 the Prime Minister Scott Morrison announced a Royal Commission into Aged Care.
The Summer Foundation made a submission to the Royal Commission as well as supporting more than 100 people to tell their stories to the commission.
On 25 November 2019, in response to the Royal Commission into Aged Care Quality and Safety interim report, Neglect, the Australian Government announced strengthened Younger People in Residential Aged Care (YPIRAC) Targets.
The Australian Government’s YPIRAC targets, apart from in exceptional circumstances, 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
- No people under the age of 65 living in residential aged care by 2025
Additionally, the YPIRAC Strategy (2020-2025) was released on 30 September 2020.
The Targets and the Strategy, which align with our mission, aim to stop younger people going into aged care by 2022 and to ensure all younger people leave aged care by 2025.
The Royal Commission’s Final Report, Care, Dignity and Respect, was tabled on 1 March 2021. The recommendations released in the report to ensure younger people do not enter or remain in residential aged care were:
- Referring for assessment by the agency most appropriate for the assessment of the person concerned, such as the National Disability Insurance Agency, and not an Aged Care Assessment Team or Aged Care Assessment Service, any younger person who is at risk of entering residential aged care
- Developing hospital discharge protocols with State and Territory Governments to prevent discharge into residential aged care of anyyounger person
- Developing, funding and implementing with State and Territory Governments programs for short-term and long-term accommodation and care options for any younger person who is:
- Living in or at risk of entering residential aged care, and
- Not eligible to be a participant in the National Disability Insurance Scheme
- Requiring the National Disability Insurance Agency to publish an annual Specialist Disability Accommodation National Plan
The Summer Foundation , Synapse and Young Care released the following statement in support of the Royal Commission into Aged Care’s Final Report.
Disability Royal Commission
The Disability Royal Commission into Violence, Abuse, Neglect and Exploitation of People with Disability was established in April 2019 in response to community concern about widespread reports of violence against, and the neglect, abuse and exploitation of, people with disability. These incidents might have happened recently or a long time ago.
The Disability Royal Commission will investigate:
- Preventing and better protecting people with disability from experiencing violence, abuse, neglect and exploitation
- Achieving best practice in reporting, investigating and responding to violence, abuse, neglect and exploitation of people with disability
- Promoting a more inclusive society that supports people with disability to be independent and live free from violence, abuse, neglect and exploitation.
Summer Foundation CEO Dr Di Winkler and Policy Manager Dr George Taleporos appeared at a Disability Royal Commission hearing in Melbourne in December 2019. The hearing focused on housing for people with disability, including the experiences of people in group homes.
Dr Taleporos said: “It’s about asking that person themselves – how do you want to live? Where, and who do you want to provide the support? And that way [we] will be a lot closer to being included in the community.
“We just want what everyone else wants. We want an education. We want jobs. We want friends. We want relationships. It’s not that special. But we can’t do that if we’re forced to live where we don’t want to live.”
The Disabilty Royal Commission Interim Report was published on 30 October 2020. It sets out what the Royal Commission did in its first 15 months.
The Disability Royal Commission also releases progress reports which provide an overview of their work as it progresses.
On 13 May 2021, the Australian Government announced an extension of the Disabilty Royal Commission into Violence, Abuse, Neglect and Exploitation of People with Disability. The extension acknowledges the breadth of the Royal Commission’s responsibilities under its Terms of Reference and the significant and prolonged disruptions to the Commission’s program as a result of COVID-19.
The commission’s final report is due by 29 September 2023.