ABC News: Disability sector asks questions about ditching of Medicare Levy increase
The ABC has published a report on the news that the Australian Government will no longer fund the NDIS through an increase to the Medicare Levy. The report features NDS Chief Executive Ken Baker.
The Federal Government today announced it is scrapping the 0.5 per cent increase to the Medicare Levy, which was first proposed in the 2017-18 Federal Budget. It was abandoned due to low support in the Senate.
The increase would have raised $8B over a four-year period.
Treasurer Scott Morrison says that the increase is no longer necessary as the Government has found another way to source the money, which will be revealed in the upcoming Federal Budget.
NDS Chief Executive Ken Baker said in the ABC report that the Government’s abandonment of the levy increase creates uncertainty for the disability services sector and people with disability who are accessing the Scheme.
“I'd like the Government to spell out how it will be funded and to reiterate its guarantee that it will be funded and fully funded, to go as far as they possibly can to removing any uncertainty about the security of this funding for this very important reform,” Ken said.
Others in the sector, including former Disability Discrimination Commissioner Graeme Innes, agreed in the report that the news is unsettling.