5 MARCH 2024

DANA’s recent submission to the NDIS participant experience inquiry focuses on the challenges faced by those in rural, regional, and remote areas. Our submission highlights the vital role of independent disability advocacy in addressing these challenges.

One major issue is the limited availability of support services, which creates barriers to community access and inclusion. DANA’s submission points out the financial disadvantages, evidentiary requirements, and inaccessible information that further compound the challenges faced by people with disabilities in these areas. DANA has put forward the following key recommendations:

Increase in advocacy funding:

$91.225 million increase in funding for independent disability advocacy, including $20 million to support advocates in rural, remote, and very remote areas, and $5.225 million for sector capacity building, disaster management, cultural safety training, and awareness of supported decision making.

Establishing a National Disability Advocacy Data Taskforce:

A National Disability Advocacy Data Taskforce can improve data systems for advocacy outcomes and demand, enabling monitoring and progress reporting at various levels.

Enhancing cultural safety for people with disability, particularly First Nations individuals:

Addressing the challenges faced by Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander participants and those from culturally and linguistically diverse (CALD) backgrounds in accessing the NDIS. The submission stresses the importance of including these communities in the co-design of solutions.

“Nothing about us without us”

Inclusion of people with disability and their advocacy organisations in the co-design of reforms addressing complex access processes, market failures, safeguarding gaps, and acute marginalisation, especially in regional, rural, and remote areas.

A Disability Reform Implementation Council

Proposing the urgent establishment of a Disability Reform Implementation Council to oversee changes following the Disability Royal Commission and NDIS Review, led by people with disability and their organisations.


DANA would like to thank our friends at Disability Advocacy Service (DAS), Rights In Action, VALID, and Spinal Cord Injuries Australia (SCIA) for their valuable contributions to this submission