From March to July 2023, PWDA conducted consultations with people with disability on their experiences of the NDIS. This involved several focus groups and surveys on the experiences of people with disability with the NDIS (including one Easy Read version). Participants in these consultations primarily involved people with disability with a broad array of experiences. Some families, carers and support people of also participated in the surveys and focus groups, but represented a small percentage of participants and predominantly participated as representatives of people with disability.
Throughout all these consultations, a cross cutting theme emerged which suggested that, while the NDIS, since its implementation, has drastically changed the lives of many people with disability who have been able to access it, its roll out has left significant gaps for those whose needs are not considered reasonable and necessary.
In the NDIS Review consultation paper titled ‘What We Have Heard: Moving from defining problems to designing solutions to build a better NDIS’. released in June 2023, this phenomenon was referred to as the NDIS as an ‘oasis in the desert.’
Drawing on the experiences of people with disability gained through PWDA’s NDIS Review consultations, this submission discusses why the NDIS has become an ‘oasis’ and how actions can be taken to overcome this.