NDIS and Me banner. DSWA logo and text 'keeping you up to date with the NDIS in WA' on the left and head and shoulders photo of a smiling man with Down syndrome at an airfield wearing a cap with wording 'Skipper' on and a yellow, uninflated life jacket.

NDIS in WA Latest News

Still no announcement regarding the NDIS in WA

We are writing this newsletter with a strong sense of déjà vu. Seven months on from the state election, and we still have no sign of an imminent announcement regarding whether WA will join the national NDIS system or continue to go its own way.

There’s been no shortage of lobbying from various groups and organisations for an end to the uncertainty, targeting both the WA Minister, Stephen Dawson and the Federal Minister, Christian Porter. Both have said they are continuing to negotiate a new bilateral agreement but neither is saying what they are negotiating for, so people with disabilities and families are still largely in the dark.

DSWA has continued to advocate strongly to Minister Dawson, not only for certainty, but regarding specific aspects of the NDIS where Western Australians with Down syndrome and their families could be disadvantaged if we aren’t part of the national scheme. One of these is the differences between the federal and state Information, Linkages and Capacity Building program. While the state is using the same overall framework for this program, it is different operationally. Our key concern is that DSWA (and other organisations that are part of national networks and federations) will miss out on the benefits of the projects being run by our national bodies and those of sister organisations in other states and territories if we go it alone with a WA scheme.

Meanwhile the NDIS in WA is continuing to roll out according to the schedule, and including in areas that have previously been under the national scheme. People we have spoken with have expressed concern at the uncertainty, but also confusion, as the WA NDIS staff are introducing themselves as being ‘from the NDIS’. A number of people have told us they aren’t sure which scheme they are in. We advise you to ask them to clarify, as there are some differences that are important to be aware of, especially when you are preparing to plan. Feel free to contact us if you have any queries or concerns about this.

DSWA registration as an NDIS provider

Our application is proceeding to enable DSWA to offer some services that can be purchased using your NDIS / WA NDIS funding. It’s a long process; however, we’ve passed most of the requirements, and working on the last stretch now.

We will keep you posted regarding progress with registration and as we develop services. If you have a planning meeting or plan review coming up soon, and you’d like to include some DSWA supports, get in touch and we can let you know what kinds of things you could consider.

DSWA pre-planning and self-management project

Over the past few months, we’ve drafted two resource booklets and some fact sheets, and run six workshops in areas that are in NDIS in WA rollout areas. There are still four more workshops coming up before the end of 2017, and there will be more in 2018. These are part of a WA ILC grant funded by Department of Communities (Disability Services).

Location Topic Date
Rockingham Planning 21-Oct-17
Bayswater/Bassendean Self-management 28-Oct-17
Mandurah Planning 04-Nov-17
Wheatbelt area Self-management 11-Nov-17


The links below have more information about each session.

http://tinyurl.com/dsawa111117 – 11th Nov

http://tinyurl.com/dsawa041117 – 4th Nov

http://tinyurl.com/dsawa281017 – 28th Oct

http://tinyurl.com/dsawa211017 – 21st Oct

People in the Kimberley

Sadly, our funding doesn’t stretch to come and visit you, much as we’d love to! However, we can send you copies of the resources and run through the information on the phone 1800 623 544 or Skype with you.

If you’re in a roll out area, and can’t make it to any of the workshops, let us know, and we can make other arrangements, such as phone or Skype.

Other areas

As the rollout in WA continues we will be running sessions in the new areas.

We are now refining the resources, based on feedback from people at the workshops. The next stage will be producing the resources in Easy Read format, then making them widely available.

DSWA soon to be providing NDIS funded supports and services!

DSWA is currently registering to provide services that can be purchased using your NDIS or WA NDIS funding. We aren’t looking to become a provider of all kinds of services, but to offer and expand the supports where we have expertise. Until now, we’ve been limited by lack of resources, but the NDIS provides an opportunity for us to be a choice for people with NDIS funded plans.

The areas we are registering for are:

  • Daily Living – Support with daily life tasks to enable individuals to live as autonomously as possible.
  • Wellbeing – Person is engaged in valued roles through participation in community, vocational and/or educational activities, and/or employment.

We will be building our services and supports from a peer group perspective and seeing beyond the traditional limited pathways and opportunities currently available to people with Down syndrome. The Daily Living area also offers parents/carers the chance to access some training to help their family member.

We will keep you posted regarding progress with registration and as we develop services. If you have any queries about this, or ideas, let us know.

DSWA’s ILC Project

With our funding grant under the WA Information, Linkages and Capacity Building Program (ILC), work is now well under way at DSWA to develop both pre-planning and self-management resources. The main resources will be in Plain English and we are also producing Easy English versions.

The project also includes workshops on planning and self-management. Most people said they wanted the workshops on Saturday afternoons, so we’ve put together a schedule for the next few months in various areas. We will let you know details such as times and venues closer to the date, but do please RSVP and put the dates in your diary now.

Once we have done a couple of workshops, we will also offer some Skype sessions for people who can’t come to the face-to-face workshops.

Location Topic Date
Perth Hills area Planning 12-Aug-17
Bayswater/Bassendean Planning 19-Aug-17
Lower Southwest Self-management 26-Aug-17
Wheatbelt NDIS areas Planning 2-Sep-17
Cockburn/Kwinana Self-management 9-Sep-17
Perth Hills area Self-management 16-Sep-17
Rockingham Planning 21-Oct-17
Bayswater/Bassendean Self-management 28-Oct-17
Mandurah Planning 4-Nov-17
Wheatbelt NDIS area Self-management 11-Nov-17

We will also be glad to discuss other aspects and issues while we are in the LSW area.

DSWA Local Support Groups

If you are interested in linking up with a group near you, or setting up a local group then give us a call on 9368 4002 or email admin@dsawa.asn.au

Links to social media relating to the NDIS in WA

As well as DSWA’s public Facebook page and Twitter, the DSWA Support Network Facebook Group and Down Syndrome Australia’s Facebook page and Twitter, there are a number of Facebook forums more specifically focused on the NDIS. It’s a good idea to join or follow these if you want to keep a close eye on what is happening, ask questions about the NDIS and discuss issues with others. Here are some that we think you may find useful.

Image description: NDIS and Me Facebook Group banner. Logos of state and territory Down syndrome associations on the left and head and shoulders photo of a smiling man with Down syndrome at an airfield wearing a cap with wording 'Skipper' on and a yellow, uninflated life jacket.

NDIS and Me – a closed* Facebook group with over 500 members, for Australians with Down syndrome and their families. The group, which is run by DSWA, aims to help its members to get ready and get the best outcomes they can from the NDIS. There is discussion about what is happening in all states so this can be a useful way of sharing questions and experiences within the national and local Down syndrome community. We will post this eNews to NDIS and Me and to the DSWA Support Network group. http://www.facebook.com/groups/NDISandMe/

WA NDIS – this open Facebook page is run by DSC and states that it is “Your official source of information about the WA NDIS”. https://www.facebook.com/TheWANDIS/

NDIS in WA Peer Support – a closed* Facebook group, with over 1400 members, for people with disability and families living in WA in either NDIS or WA NDIS areas (but you can also join if you are in other areas in WA). A useful group for information and discussion. https://www.facebook.com/groups/ndisinwa/

*You need to request to join closed groups. The admins will check that you are eligible before allowing you in.

NoDisadvantage – an open Facebook page with over 700 followers, run by disabled people and family members that says: We want the WA State Government to guarantee that West Australians with disability will not be worse off than other Australians under a WA NDIS. This is useful for the latest information about what is happening, lively and critical discussion and analysis of events, policy, scheme design as well as information on advocacy and activist events for the #NoDisadvantage Campaign. https://www.facebook.com/nodisadvantage/

Image description: Profile picture of NoDisadvantage campaign. A purple filled square with white text saying 'A guarantee of no disadvantage for West Australians with a disability', followed by #nodisadvantage in mix of white and blue text.


Other useful social media
There are lots of Facebook groups and pages on the NDIS and WA NDIS. If there are any that you find useful, please let us know.
As with all online content, please be aware that information may not be correct, so please do check before making any decisions or taking any action based on the information.