Friday, 13 June 2014

Budget impacts for people with disabilities and their carers: emerging details

Bursaries for Young Carers
The Commonwealth Government plans to commence the Young Carer Bursary Program in January 2015. There will be 150 bursaries valued at up to $10,000 each to assist young carers (under 25 years) continue their education.

Currently little detail is available about the application process.  We will be keeping a watch on the websites of Carers Australia  and Young Carers for further information.

  • Currently in Australia it is estimated that 380,000 children and young people help care for relatives.

Opinion: People with disabilities need a champion that understands their lives
Ron McCallum, The Age, 30th May 2014
The decision by the Abbott government to stop funding a disability discrimination commissioner is a blow for people living with disabilities who still need someone to champion their cause. The move is also short-sighted and counter-productive given the government's own stated aim of improving employment for people with disabilities and Australia's internationally recognised role as a standard bearer for people with disabilities ...
  • Ron McCallum AO is an Emeritus Professor and former Dean, Faculty of Law, University of Sydney, and Senior Australian for the Year 2011.

Pensioners $1600 study aid to be axed
Patricia Karvelas, The Australian, 29th May 2014
More than 41,000 people will lose up to $1622 a year with the axing of a little-known pensioner education supplement. The supplement provides finan­cial help for full or part-time study in a secondary or tertiary course at an educational institution approved by the federal government. It is paid to people on support, including disability support pensioners, Parenting Payment single recipients, carers and widows ... According to data provided to the Senate last month, 41,000 people will lose payments of up to $62.40 a fortnight. Nine out of every 10 people impacted will be disability pensioners or single parents ...

Disabled people likely to face $7 GP payments despite Hockey's assurances
Lenore Taylor, The Guardian, 21st May 2014
The budget does exempt doctors’ visits listed as “chronic disease management items” from the co-payment, but these are likely to be only a very small proportion of the visits to the doctor by someone with chronic health problems ... AMA president Dr Steve Hambleton said “people with chronic disease are likely to pay the co-payment for most of their normal visits to the doctor, which would be considered standard consultations.” ... But he said doctors were worried about its impact on the most disadvantaged patients they saw - very low income earners especially those with chronic conditions ...

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