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UpSkill December Update

As 2021 comes to a close, we want to thank you for your ongoing work to support people with disability to achieve good outcomes and to live well in the community. We are very proud to support the development of the sector and to work alongside people with disability as allies.

We will continue to do this in the New Year. We are looking to engage with people who have had lived experience of a long hospital stay, people in the middle of their SDA journey and people who have had a successful SDA outcome. If you are working with someone that would like to share their experience/story, contact Gina Fall at gina.fall@summerfoundation.org.au.

We have all navigated challenging disruptions over the past year and we hope you can pause during the holiday season to reflect on your achievements during that time. It was a busy year:

COVID – depending where you live…waves 2, 3, 4, 5 and/or 6 

We had hoped better for 2021, but COVID continues to be a significant concern. We eventually got there with the vaccine rollout for people with disability, but with the latest variant it is now time to get boosters as we continue doing what we can to reduce the risks of transmission. 

The Summer Foundation has a list of useful information and resources on COVID for people with disability and close others. 

Dr George Taleporos has produced a special video podcast series: Living with COVID which includes lots of great information for sharing.

UpSkill lead, Linda Hughes, writes about the importance of hospital passports and supporting people with disability to stay safe with the surge in COVID cases. 

And our friends at Ablelink and The Growing Space have contributed to the Coming Out of Lockdown: Resources for Support Coordinators. This is an essential resource for support coordinators and contains important checklists, contact lists and templates.

Read UpSkill’s quick wrap up of all things NDIS in 2021! And what a year it was

Independent assessments

The NDIA’s proposed independent assessments generated much controversy through the first half of the year.  Strong opposition from the disability community and peak allied health bodies resulted in the federal government not proceeding with its proposals.

George's podcast

For a trip down memory lane, check out Dr Taleporos’ Reasonable and Necessary podcast series which includes interviews with NDIS Minister Linda Reynolds; NDIA CEO Martin Hoffman; NDIS Shadow Minister Bill Shorten and Senator Jordon Steele-John.

NDIS consultations on Home and Living – An ordinary life at home and support for decision-making

Mid-year, the NDIA signalled a change in approach to both Home and Living and support for decision-making, releasing a consultation paper on each. Last week the NDIA published its response to the Home and Living consultation. Watch out for more in 2022. You can read the Summer Foundations’ contribution to both consultations here.

Operational guidelines on ILO, SIL and SDA

April saw the release of the Individualised Living Options (ILO) Operational Guidelines, and more recently there has been some tinkering with the Supported Independent Living and Specialist Disability Accommodation Operational Guidelines. We are already seeing the effect with more to come in 2022.

Proposed changes to legislation

There was yet another consultation with the proposed changes to the NDIS Act: The Amendment Bill. We are sure this will remain on the agenda for 2022. 

And finally the support coordination report 

Back in September 2020 the NDIA held a consultation on support coordination and last month the Agency released the ​​Improving Support Coordination for NDIS Participants paper. This paper outlines responses from the consultation and the next steps for improving support coordination. Importantly, training and professional development feature in the paper.

2022 UpSkill Workshops

This brings us to UpSkill’s training and events. You can continue to build your knowledge and skills by joining us at a workshop in 2022.

Bookings are now open for our February workshops, which you can read about below and you can keep in touch with us by joining our online UpSkill Community of Practice (CoP) on Slack.  

We hope you have a safe and happy festive season.

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