The original vision of the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) was to deliver a person-centred, rights-based approach to disability support. Through a scheme based on insurance principles, people with disability, their families and carers were promised a new funding approach that focused on supporting people’s independence and participation in social, economic and community life, and promoted choice and control.

This Issues Paper is specifically prompted by concerns that the NDIA’s proposed model of mandatory independent assessments will reinforce the growing inequalities in the Scheme. Instead of improving access and reducing out-of-pocket expenses, independent assessments will present another hurdle for people with disability. This hurdle will be higher and harder for people who experience multiple and intersecting forms of disadvantage, and will add another layer of stress, complexity and anguish for people with disability seeking support.