Press release from Ai-Media

Disability services innovator Ai-Media has welcomed the emphasis on individual empowerment contained in the national disability reform agenda announced by the Federal Government, and supported by the Federal Opposition.

Ai-Media CEO Tony Abrahams said: "Giving people with disability and their carers control and choice over the services they use will be an enormous improvement in people's lives, as part of wider disability reform."

"We congratulate the Federal Government on the initiatives it has announced to progress towards a new long term disability support system, and the Productivity Commission for its excellent report and vision for the future."

Ai-Media has been a long-time advocate for financially sustainable disability reform and a National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS).

Ai-Media is a social enterprise that specialises in services for the 1-in-6 Australians with deafness or hearing impairment.

"Funding through an NDIS that in turn gives individuals more choices about the services that suit them will inspire more businesses to invest and innovate to meet demand, especially using technology", Mr Abrahams said.

"This type of market-based approach will incentivise financially sustainable solutions that best meet the needs of people with disability to participate fully in Australian society, with as much independence as possible."

Although long-term funding for the NDIS remains unresolved, Mr Abrahams welcomed the Government's committment to the implementation of the NDIS as a landmark moment.

"While some may be disappointed that there is not more money sooner for the NDIS, a great deal of prepatory work must be done to ensure the new system is effective and sustainable over the long term, and transitions from existing supports are well managed," Mr Abrahams said. "Yesterday's announcement represented a critical first step in this historic transformation".

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