Disability support services

We are hearing a lot of concern from members and other people with disability about access to their usual disability support services during the outbreak. We’re doing everything we can to seek clarity from government and advocate for people with disability collectively, and our individual advocates are also working with people to resolve their specific problems. If you need help, you can call our Wayfinder Hub on 1800 843 929 or email info@wayfinderhub.com.au. Wayfinder Hub’s phone line is currently operating on a call-back basis – please leave your name and number in a voicemail. We will call you back from a private number. You can also look for other advocacy services in your area using the Disability Advocacy Finder.

We will be updating this page with any new official information that comes out about disability support during the crisis.

You can find the latest NDIS advice on their website, including:

The NDIS Quality & Safeguards Commission has published advice for providers. Here’s their latest update (28 April). All correspondence and information once sent is made available on a COVID-19 information page on their website.

The Commission also has a factsheet for NDIS participants about:

  • changes for your NDIS providers
  • training for support workers
  • flu season
  • how to make a complaint about a provider
  • what resources are available from the NDIA
  • where to find more information and resources about COVID-19.

It’s available in Word and PDF formats, and there is an Easy Read version. An Auslan translation has also been promised.

You can also read their older factsheet from March, which is available in Easy Read and Auslan.

Every Australian Counts also has some information from the NDIS and the NDIS Quality and Safeguards Commission. They have written up a plain English summary of the March 25 NDIS changes.

National Disability Services has information for service providers.

Disability Services Consulting have put together a free 30-minute online training module for workers. It is designed to provide practical strategies to prevent and control infections. They also have a guide to provider obligations under the NDIS Code of Conduct and Practice Standards which it may help to refer to if you’re contacting a provider about making sure your supports continue to function.

We also want to highlight 1800RESPECT’s Disability Support Toolkit for front line workers supporting people with disability who have been impacted by violence and abuse.

The Department of Health have published a series of fact sheets for disability service providers, health professionals, support workers and carers:


We know that the response to the COVID-19 virus means that there are lots of changes for us all. And it can be difficult to easily locate the information you need. Here is some information on the rules for different states and territories:

NSW

Anyone who has visited Victoria in the last 14 days must not enter NSW except in special circumstances.

The rules say you can have up to 20 visitors in your home at any one time. There is no daily limit to how many people visit your home, so long as it does not exceed 20 at a time.

Carers and any support person do not count as visitors.

All businesses are open now, but they have to follow social distancing rules. This also applies to religious gatherings. Community sports and health programs can start again, with certain restrictions.

The NSW government have additional advice to lower the risk of coronavirus exposure if you are older, have a compromised immune system or chronic medical condition.

Read the NSW rules here. 

Victoria

Stay at home restrictions are back in order in Victoria. The only reasons you may leave your home are:

  • Shopping for food and supplies
  • Medical care and caregiving
  • Exercise and recreation
  • Study and work – if you can’t do it from home

Outdoor exercise is limited to a household, or with one person who is not from your household.

Many businesses will be required to close.

Read the VIC rules here.

Queensland

Businesses are now able to open, but must follow safety guidelines. Most recreational and sporting activities can continue.

There are border restrictions in place.

Read the QLD rules here.

Tasmania

Gatherings at households, businesses, and sporting venues can now exceed 250 people depending on the space.

Read the TAS rules here.

Western Australia

Western Australia is currently on “phase 4” restrictions, applying to public gatherings and recreational activities.

Read the WA rules here.

South Australia

South Australia is currently on “step 3” restrictions, applying to public gatherings and recreational activities.

Gatherings of more people are allowed, but the total number of people at a place must not exceed 1 person per 2 square metres.

Read the SA rules here.

Northern Territory

South Australia is currently on “step 3” restrictions, applying to public gatherings and recreational activities.

Read the NT rules here.

All states continue to recommend social distancing of 1.5 metres in pubic spaces.