Learning disabilities are on the rise in Australia, with an average increase of about 5 per cent annually over the last decade, according to data released on Thursday.
The figures come from the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS), which collects information on people’s earnings and living costs for the purposes of disability insurance.
It shows that the average increase for the last two years was just 0.5 per cent.
In a separate report released earlier this month, the disability advocacy group Disability Australia said the figures showed Australia was facing a significant disability insurance shortfall and the NDIS had become an inadequate tool for covering those with a disability.
“It’s a very concerning development,” Dr Michelle King said.
“I think we’ve got to start to look at a different approach to the NDISA and a much broader disability insurance scheme.”
Dr King said there was a lot of stigma around disabilities in Australia and people were afraid to seek assistance.
“If you have an impairment, you’re just a failure,” she said.
“It’s like, ‘Oh I can’t do this because I’m disabled’.”
It would be nice to think of our society as a more accepting place.
“Ms King said she was hopeful the NDISC would eventually come into being and she hoped the government would work with industry to ensure it was funded properly.”
We’re not going to have a lot more than this, but it’s something we’ve been talking about for a long time,” she told ABC News.”
The idea that it will be a big deal for Australia is not the case.
We’re not in a situation where we need a lot.
“Dr Martin Fennelly, a consultant paediatrician and paediatric occupational therapist in Perth, said it was important for the government to be proactive about making the NDISS more accessible.”
They should be looking at making sure that there are resources available for the community that are specifically tailored to meet the needs of people with learning disabilities,” he said.
The NT Government has promised to fund the NDISE and said the scheme would provide “financial support” for people with a learning disability.
Topics:people,health,health-policy,education,disabilities,people,education-facilities,tas,australiaFirst posted January 16, 2020 11:38:47Contact the ABC’s news desk.