Monday, 21 June 2021
Appropriation Bill (No. 1) 2021-2022; Consideration in Detail
Thank you, Mr Deputy Speaker. It is wonderful to see the member for Maribyrnong once again on the other side of the chamber. I thought I had lost you when I moved. It's good to see you back. The NDIS, as we all know, is a world first that all Australians justifiably should be proud of and was introduced with bipartisan support. The Morrison government is ensuring Australians can receive vital supports and services by investing a staggering $13.2 billion extra into the world-leading NDIS in the 2021-22 budget—$13.2 billion. The Morrison government has always said it is committed to funding the NDIS as a demand driven scheme, and this is reflected in more than $17 billion in additional funding in the last two budgets alone.
The 2021-22 budget also makes a significant investment in enhancements to the care and support workforce and improving the way government services are accessed and delivered, particularly for Australians living remotely. We are also delivering the NDIS and making sure it is equitable and affordable for Australians today and tomorrow. The government intends to introduce reforms based on creating a fairer, respectful and more consistent NDIS. The government is committed to improving the NDIS in line with the vision embodied in the 2011 Productivity Commission report and supported by the 2019 Tune review. The NDIS is fully funded and demand driven, with 450,000 Australians now accessing life-changing supports.
The budget provides hundreds of millions of dollars in funding to further improve the way Australians interact with the government online, over the phone or in person. The government has reaffirmed its commitment to quarantining essential services now and into the future by allocating $200 million to design and deliver an enhanced myGov over the next two years as a single front door into government for all citizens. Consequently, there are 18 remote service centres assisting people living in remote parts of Australia to access Medicare, Centrelink and child support payments and services. Last financial year Services Australia had 350 agents and 235 access points throughout regional, rural and remote Australia, and will continue to step up to the plate in supporting Australians now and into the future.