16 May 2013

Family carers of disabled adults get funding

5:37 pm on 16 May 2013

The Government will pay $92 million over the next four years for family members who look after their adult disabled children.

Legislation providing for the new policy was introduced in Parliament on Thursday, to take effect on 1 October.

It follows a decision by the Government last June to drop its legal fight against a court ruling that its policy of not paying family members who look after their adult disabled children amounts to discrimination.

The long-awaited new policy announced in the Budget will cost taxpayers $23 million a year.

Health Minister Tony Ryall says funding will be available to 1600 disabled people with high and very high needs to pay some family members to provide personal care and household management.

Disabled adults who meet the criteria will be able to choose whether they employ a family carer or choose to use a contracted provider.

Mr Ryall says the policy adds to an extra $100 million the Government is spending on disability support services over the next four years.

It will bring total spending on disability to $1.1 billion next year.