Monday, August 16, is the final day for submissions on the National Disability Insurance Scheme.

If you care about people with a disability and their carers, please take the time to make a submission to the Productivity Commission’s inquiry into a National Disability Insurance Scheme by the cut-off date, Monday, August 16.

As we have reported over past issues, the Productivity Commission is currently conducting an inquiry into disability care and support.

The inquiry is examining the costs, benefits and feasibility of a social insurance approach to supporting people with a disability, their families and carers.

The inquiry began in April this year and will report back to government in July 2011. More information about the inquiry can be found at

The Commission is currently conducting public consultations as part of its work and has released an issues paper to inform these consultations.

The National Disability and Carer Alliance is one of the many groups across Australia supporting the introduction of a National Disability Insurance Scheme.

The Alliance was formed last year by the Australian Federation of Disability Organisations, Carers Australia and National Disability Services to advocate for the structural and systemic changes necessary to improve the lives of people with a disability, their families and carers.

The Alliance is supporting people who wish to make submissions to the productivity Commission and has highlighted a number of ways people can participate in the consultations.

You can make a formal submission or make a presentation at one of the public hearings. The guidelines for making a formal submission are available on the website above.

You can also make what is called a personal response – which is different to a formal submission. In a personal response you can choose to answer any or all of the questions in the issues paper, based on your personal experience. The Commission will then compile all these responses into a single document. This is a shorter, more informal way to participate in the inquiry.

"It is vital that as many individuals and organisations as possible make a submission to the inquiry. It is essential that the Commission hear from people who have a lived experience of disability. The Commission must hear about people’s needs, experiences and concerns", an Alliance spokesperson said.

“The issues paper is long and complex, and includes many questions. In order to make it as simple as possible for individuals and organisations to participate and make a submission, the National Disability and Carer Alliance have prepared some summary material you may like to include in your submission,” the spokesperson said.

“The Alliance believes a strong united voice is essential if transformational change is ever to be achieved in this country. The first and most important priority of the Alliance is therefore to support and resource the campaign for a National Disability Insurance Scheme.

“We hope the material developed by the Alliance will give you a place to start. Your own personal experience as well as the issues of most concern to you should be added to the material to ensure the Commission takes account of those things which matter most to you. You might like for example to conclude your submission with any specific recommendations for change you may have.

“If you represent an organisation, you could supplement the material provided with the issues which are of most concern to your organisation or with any relevant data or research you may have.

“While everyone will have different concerns and issues, the Alliance strongly believes these principles must be at core of any new system and we are encouraging as many individuals and organisations as possible to include these principles in their submissions.

“The Alliance is concerned that the Commission will consider only operational details and not the foundations which should underpin any new scheme. Real transformational change will only be achieved when each of these principles is addressed.”

If you have any questions about the material provided on the National Disability Insurance Scheme, please contact Kirsten Deane at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

You can also sign the Mad as Hell pledge in support of the National Disability Insurance Scheme here (see story also in this issue):