New safeguards to protect the wellbeing of people living with disabilities
A new visiting service for people with disabilities starts today - providing safeguards to protect the wellbeing of vulnerable people in the community.
Premier and Treasurer Jay Weatherill says disability funding announced in Thursday's State Budget will increase services available for people with disabilities, offering clients more choice and flexibility in their care.
The 2013-14 State Budget sets out South Australia's full funding commitment of $3.6 billion over six years in preparation for the full commencement of DisabilityCare in 2018. This includes an additional $108 million in the budget period for disability services.
Mr Weatherill today visited Orana's Amaroo Accommodation Service at Clarence Park and announced the start of a $2.3 million expansion of the Community Visitor Scheme - to include people with disabilities. The Community Visitor Scheme was started for vulnerable people with a mental illness and includes home visiting, advocacy and residential inspections.
"Under the expansion of this scheme, community visitors will visit a range of places where people with disabilities live or are cared for and will make inquiries to ensure that they are being well cared for," Mr Weatherill said. "This scheme, along with the Disability Justice Plan announced by Attorney-General John Rau last month, is about helping to safeguard the rights of people with disabilities."
Mr Weatherill said the Budget also included an additional five highly trained police officers who will work with vulnerable victims, including people with intellectual disability.
Disabilities Minister Tony Piccolo said the Community Visitor Scheme is a welcome step towards protecting the wellbeing of people with disabilities in South Australia and also to let them know that help is close by should they need it.
"Community visitors provide an advocacy role in the management and resolution of complaints on behalf of residents, their guardian, medical agent, relative, carer, friend or other support person, with a service provider," Mr Piccolo said. "They will provide a greater level of scrutiny within the disability sector by providing an objective perspective to ensure an acceptable standard of care for those most vulnerable in our community."
From today, anyone living in disability accommodation services or a supported residential facility - or their family or carer - can request a visit from the Community Visitor Scheme.
Contact the office by telephone on +61 8 8226 0315 or 1800 606 302 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
For further information visit www.sa.gov.au/cvs