Delivering essential services and support through unprecedented times

The Australian Government remains committed to achieving the best outcomes for all Australians and businesses by delivering essential services and support to those in need as part of our Economic Recovery Plan for Australia.

Minister for the National Disability Insurance Scheme and Government Services, Stuart Robert, said this commitment is reflected in the 2020-21 Budget, which supports the Government’s tireless work in sustaining and improving the services provided to Australians.

Funding for the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) is guaranteed. The Australian Government is providing a further $3.9 billion to the NDIS. This extra funding ensures Australians eligible for the NDIS have access to the supports they need now and into the future.

The Government is delivering on the promise of the NDIS, by providing people with disability true choice and control, and ensuring all decisions about a person’s eligibility for the scheme and their plans are made in an objective, consistent and transparent manner.

To achieve this, the Government is implementing the most substantial package of reforms to the NDIS since its establishment, whilst at the same time, continuing to deliver significant improvements to the Scheme. The announced reform package includes implementation of the Government’s Response to the 2019 Independent Review of the NDIS Act (Tune Review) and the new NDIS Participant Service

These reforms will help deliver on the promise of the NDIS — to provide people with a permanent and significant disability true choice and control over a flexible support package to achieve their goals. 

The Government is also providing the NDIS Quality and Safeguards Commission with an additional $92.9 million over the next four years, to ensure it has the resources required to carry out its vital role in regulating NDIS providers and improving the quality and safety of supports received by NDIS participants.

The additional measures will support work to improve flexibility, consistency and certainty for NDIS participants. More than 400,000 Australians with disability are now receiving NDIS supports, with $5 billion of supports delivered in the last quarter alone.

The Australian Government is also committed to making it easier for all Australians to do business online, whether it is transacting with the government or across the private sector.

Over 1.6 million Australians and 1.16 million businesses already have secure and quick access to more than 70 government services through Digital Identity.

The Australian Government has allocated $256.6 million as part of the Digital Business Plan to make Digital Identity – the digital equivalent of a 100 point ID check – available as a whole of economy solution. This will enable all Australians and businesses to have more secure and convenient engagement with government services and, in the future, the private sector.

With a consistent, aligned approach across the Federation, Digital Identity will make it easier and quicker for Australians to prove who they are and spend less time dealing with red tape and more focussed on the return to prosperity and growth.

Whether applying for a Tax File Number or registering a new business, managing a company or recovering from a natural disaster, managing apprenticeships or applying for an environment approval, Australians will be able to get things done in minutes, rather than weeks, and get on with the important things in their lives.

At the same time, the Government continues to focus on streamlining and modernising the systems that support the Australian welfare service delivery system to ensure they have the agility to support the needs of Australians going forward.

The Australian Government has allocated $539.6 million to complete the fourth stage of the seven-year build of the Welfare Payment Infrastructure Transformation (WPIT) program. Each business day, the welfare system delivers over $500 million in welfare payments and has almost 2.7 million interactions with customers.

The fourth phase will see the build of modern payments and decision-making platforms, including a new Entitlement Calculation Engine (ECE), which will enable faster claims processing for the Australian community, ensure accuracy of payments and, combined with Single Touch Payroll, reduce the reporting burden for individuals and businesses dealing with government.

‘The Prime Minister has made service delivery a core priority of his Government. This Budget demonstrates that commitment and the unrelenting focus on improving services and making it easier for Australian people and businesses to get back to the job of recovery, prosperity and growth,’ Minister Robert said.