E-Blast: QDN Member Update – State Budget 2019 

QDN welcomes announcements in yesterday’s State budget around disability.  For the 2019-20 financial year, the disability services budget of $205.5 million of controlled expenditure was announced. QDN is providing a summary of key initiatives and priorities released in the 2019 State Budget handed down by Treasurer Jackie Trad yesterday. The information provided below is on budget announcements in each area related specifically to people with disability.  QDN will provide more detailed analysis. For Budget Papers go to https://budget.qld.gov.au/

Department of Communities, Disability Services and Seniors

Key Budget highlights include:

  • increased funding of $5.6 million in 2019-20 for peak bodies in the disability services sector;
  • funding of $8.7 million over two years to 2020-21 to support disability advocacy services;
  • additional funding of $5.3 million in 2019-20 for complaints and investigations, coordination of State disability planning, Ministerial Advisory Councils, continuity of support, and Guide Dogs;
  • additional funding of $19.5 million over four years for ongoing State disability functions, including authorising the use of restrictive practices, worker screening and NDIS performance monitoring;
  • funding of $4 million over two years from 2019-20 to supplement the Queensland Community Support Scheme in remote and discrete Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities and build the capability of service providers;
  • total capital purchases for the Department of Communities, Disability Services and Seniors are $20 million in 2019-20. Total capital grants for the portfolio are $2.7 million. These funds are said to provide for integrated community services and strengthen and protect the well-being of Queenslanders, particularly those who are vulnerable and most in need;
  • $800,000 to complete the Elderly Parent Carer Innovation Initiative project at Maroochydore which is aimed at assisting elderly parent carers to secure; and
  • The Government is providing increased funding of $34.3 million over four years and $2.7 million ongoing to continue to support people with disability accommodation for their adult son or daughter with a disability when they can no longer care for them.

NDIS and Mainstream Services interface issues – temporary and longer term investment

The Queensland Government has committed to the following investments in temporary and longer term measures to ensure Queenslanders with disability are able to access immediate and critical supports they need. This includes:

  • $7 million in 2019-20 to provide transitional support for community transport services;
  • increased funding of $9.6 million in 2019-20 to continue the provision of support for children with disability, both in the child protection system and in voluntary out of home care arrangements. Service providers will build their capacity for servicing people in remote and discrete Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities with increased funding of $4 million over two years;
  • increased funding of $10.6 million over four years and $2.8 million ongoing to the Office of the Public Guardian and the Queensland Civil and Administrative Tribunal;
  • increased funding of $35.2 million in 2019-20 for the community nursing program, the Community Managed Mental Health Program, the Medical Aids Subsidy Scheme and the Housing and Support Program;
  • The Government is providing increased funding of $6 million in 2019-20 to continue the provision of taxi subsidies for National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) eligible participants;
  • The Department of Education is working with the Department of Transport and Main Roads (DTMR), the Australian Government, the National Disability Insurance Agency and other jurisdictions to develop viable national models for the delivery of school transport for students with disability under the NDIS; and
  • Disability Services will finalise the transition of eligible specialist disability services clients to the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) and retain responsibility for worker screening, the authorisation of restrictive practices and the continuity of support for clients under 65 years of age who are ineligible for the NDIS.

National Redress Scheme for survivors of institutional child sexual abuse and the Royal Commission into violence, abuse, exploitation and neglect of people with disability

Key highlights include:

  • The Government is providing additional funding of $22 million over four years for the department to lead and coordinate Queensland’s participation in the National Redress Scheme for survivors of institutional child sexual abuse;
  • The Government is providing additional funding of $3 million over four years to the Department of Justice and Attorney-General, the Office of the Public Guardian and the Public Trustee to support participation in the National Redress Scheme for survivors of institutional child sexual abuse; and
  • The department will also work to maximise the benefits to vulnerable Queenslanders of the Royal Commissions into Violence, Abuse, Neglect and Exploitation of People with Disability and Aged Care Quality and Safety.

Housing       

Key highlights include:

  • $2.2 million to continue upgrading, improving and modifying accommodation facilities for people with an intellectual or cognitive disability who exhibit extremely challenging behaviours.

Transport

Key highlights include:

  • NGR: $213.3 million to complete delivery of 75 new six car sets and ongoing accessibility modifications to comply with disability standards.

Health

Key highlights include:

  • BreastScreen Queensland will conduct a state-wide survey to assess the needs of women, targeting under-screened women, including Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander women, women from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds, and women with a disability.

Women/ Domestic and Family Violence

Key highlights include:

  • The Government is providing additional funding of $1.5 million over two years to respond to the needs of women with disability, and their children, who are experiencing domestic and family violence.

Education

Key highlights include:

  • The Government is providing increased funding of $136.2 million over four years from 2019-20 to ensure that there is optimal student to teacher ratios to support students with a disability. This funding is being sourced from the increased Queensland Government funding for state schools.

Correctional Services

Key highlights include:

  • The Government is providing increased funding of $2.9 million in 2019-20 to continue providing improved service delivery for prisoners with disability or mental illness, with these responsibilities becoming embedded in Queensland Corrective Services’ ongoing service delivery from 2020-21 onwards.

             

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