Show Us Your Heart Gladys - Backflip to Protect NSW's Most Vulnerable and Keep Public Disability Services.
Show Us Your Heart Gladys – Backflip to Protect NSW’s Most Vulnerable and Keep Public Disability Services.
A sea of hearts will flock to Parliament House on Valentine’s Day pleading with the new Premier to show she has one.
Hundreds of hearts will be held high in Sydney and other regional areas by dedicated disability services workers – represented by the Public Service Association (PSA) – who are appealing to the Premier to continue to provide Government care for our most vulnerable.
“If the greyound industry and councils are worth saving – then the thousands of people with disabilities who depend on government care must be protected,” PSA General Secretary Stewart Little said.
The NSW Government is totally privatising the Department of Ageing, Disability and Home Care (ADHC) to make way for the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS).
“NSW will be the only state in Australia with no Government safety net, throwing the care of people with disability into free fall,” Mr Little said.
“Many will land heavily in the state’s hospitals, mental health facilities and even the criminal justice system, areas lacking expertise in specialist disability care.”
In regional NSW, where existing services are already stretched, the move will be even more sharply felt.
Looming funding shortfalls with the NDIS make it imperative the NSW Government continue to offer disability services to those with the highest needs.
“The NSW Government is washing its hands of all responsibility and walking away,” Mr Little said.
“The Government has attempted to deceive the community by building up the NDIS as an all things to everyone miracle service provider, knowing full well many high level care services will be scrapped because they are too expensive.
“The privatisation will mean the most vulnerable in our society and their families are going to be subjected to a social disaster, a repeat of what has been occurring in TAFE with private providers.
“The abolition of ADHC, the biggest disability provider in this state, could mean the loss of 14,000 dedicated workers and disaster for the families and people they care for.”
Parents like Sonia Facey are terrified, after receiving no information except the NSW Government will hand over care of her high-needs 15 year old son Nathan this July.
“He took a year to settle into the Dapto Respite Centre, which has provided a lifeline to our family for the past six years,” Ms Facey said.
“We’ve been told nothing about the NDIS, I don’t know who to speak to. My son has high needs autism which deteriorated after he was hit by a car so needs to be watched around the clock.
“He has built strong connections with his carers and any change would be catastrophic to our family.”
ADHC staff have been providing specialist disability services in group homes, big residential units, therapy services, case management and behaviourial services since 1986.