Australia

NDIS Class Action: Hundreds Say They Were Barred Because of Age Discrimination | SBS News

Peter Freckleton has been disabled since he was 6 years old, but is not currently disabled.
He developed infantile paralysis in both legs during a polio epidemic in the 1950s.
He was already over the age of 65 when NDIS was rolled out and was therefore deemed ineligible to access the scheme.
He is now one of dozens of plaintiffs in a class action lawsuit claiming he has been discriminated against because of his age.
“They restricted the age at the time of application, not whether the person had a disability before age 65,” Freckleton said.

“I and others have had (our disability) since childhood, so I was really surprised to find out they had an age limit.

“And I thought this was really unfair. When I was there, a lot of people were in a much worse situation and the country’s system was already in place and they needed it when they were banned from doing it.” I didn’t get any help…I just… thought it was completely cruel and unfair and something needed to be done about it.”
Freckleton said the funds available through the My Aged Care program are not sufficient to fund the care and equipment that people with disabilities need, such as certain types of wheelchairs, leg braces, or home modifications. I said no.
“Disability is not the end of the world per se. If you get some of the support you need to move and participate in society, you can live a perfectly good life,” he said.

“There are various tools and things you need, but if you have them… you can live and contribute, but depriving people of them just because it’s their birthday is what I call a calendar.” Crime . “

Peter Freckleton developed infantile paralysis in both legs as a child during a polio epidemic in the 1950s. sauce: attached / Peter Freckleton

A class action lawsuit has been initiated against the federal government by Mitry Lawyers.

Exclusion of persons with disabilities aged 65 and over from the NDIS “hardship and inequality for thousands of individuals” who need disability assistance but are restricted to access funds through My Aged Care rather than the NDIS brought
The class action lawsuit aims to lift the exclusion so that NDIS can be accessed by all age groups.
Mitry Lawyers lead attorney Rick Mitry said more than 200 people have expressed interest in joining the class action since it went public over the weekend.

“There are too many people suffering needlessly…I find the helplessness of these people intolerable,” Maitley told SBS News.

“It doesn’t take long to get them out of the situation and back to some sort of normal life…that’s essentially why we[do it].”

“I think the only way to let the government know about this is for these poor people to insist.”

What are the class action allegations?

The lawsuit seeks compensation for those who were unable to take advantage of NDIS plans. On average, NDIS plans are valued at about $111,000 a year, according to Mitry.
Mitry Lawyers also considers the psychological or health effects of not having access to an NDIS, caregiver costs, travel costs, medical costs, and lost opportunities.

The lawsuit alleges that the government acted beyond its constitutional authority by enacting the “age requirement” in Section 22 of the National Disability Insurance Scheme Act 2013.

The overall objective of the legal process is to remove Section 22 from the NDIS Act.

“We just want equal treatment”

Article 22 requires a person applying for access to the NDIS to be under the age of 65 at the time of application in order to be eligible.
Freckleton believes this amounts to both age discrimination and disability discrimination.
He feels legal action is the only way forward.
“We have tried and spoken with both major parties, but … they are not going to give in to it,” he said.

“And if the government has lost its way, the only thing you can do is appeal to the courts… It’s not something you do lightly, but it seems like the only way forward in desperation.” is.”

“We’re not asking for special treatment, we’re just asking for equal treatment.”
A spokesperson for the Department of Social Services told SBS News that the NDIS, which operates in all states and territories, is part of a broader system of disability assistance in Australia.
A spokeswoman said: “People over the age of 65 can get support through the Elderly Care Scheme.

“People receiving assistance under the NDIS who turn 65 can choose to stay in the NDIS or transition to the Aged Care System.”

What is NDIS and how does it work?

NDIS is an Australian-wide government initiative designed to help cover the costs faced by people with disabilities.
The NDIS law was passed in 2013 and the scheme was rolled out in 2020.
Through NDIS, eligible people have access to funding for “reasonable and necessary” support needs related to disability.
To be eligible, an applicant must be between the ages of 7 and 65, hold an Australian citizenship, a permanent resident visa or a protected special category visa, reside in Australia, and be ‘due to a permanent disability’. must have a disability.

After you are approved for access to NDIS, an individual plan will be developed based on your needs.

NDIS Class Action: Hundreds Say They Were Barred Because of Age Discrimination | SBS News

Source link NDIS Class Action: Hundreds Say They Were Barred Because of Age Discrimination | SBS News

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