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Disability funding reform ‘disappoints’ ethnic communities

People from non-English speaking backgrounds say the National Disability Insurance Scheme does not address their needs.

Article by By   Stefan Armbruster

Monte Lupo

Saki Yamaoka co-manager of Multicap’s Monte Lupo Cafe with barista Bob Lokas. (Stefan Armbruster SBS News)

A radical $22 billion reform of disability services across Australia has largely failed to engage people from non-English speaking backgrounds.

The roll-out for the full National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) begins on Friday.

The NDIS was launched in late 2012 with a promise of “equity of access” for all and a commitment to not repeat the mistakes of the past, especially involving people from non-English speaking backgrounds.

But the Federation of Ethnic Communities’ Councils of Australia (FECCA), the nation’s peak multicultural body, is disappointed with preparations for the NDIS so far.

“We find still lots of disabled people from non-English speaking backgrounds that don’t even know about NDIS,” Joe Caputo, chair of FECCA said.

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