Treasurer Joe Hockey warned on Tuesday of a "massive blowout" in the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) if the system wasn't made more efficient. This follows subtle re-positioning of the government's stance on the NDIS since the election.
Tony Abbott referred to the scheme as a “trial” rather than a “launch” after the recent COAG meetings. And back in November a key adviser to the government, the head of the Prime Minister’s Business Advisory Council Mr Maurice Newman, identified the NDIS as a “worthy cause”, but one which it was “reckless” to support in times of economic difficulty.
The “worthy cause” part of his speech is patronising, offensive and anachronistic; the “reckless” part is ill-informed and patently incorrect.
Aside from the fact that the NDIS is set up to provide only “reasonable and necessary” services, Hockey is missing the bigger picture: investment in disability support now will deliver savings later.