How the NDIA is working with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people

DATE: 2 June 2017

How the NDIA is working with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people

As part of Yooralla's series of article to recognise National Reconciliation Week Yooralla, we have summarised what the National Disability Insurance Agency (NDIA) is doing to engage with the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders to roll out the NDIS in those communities.

As part of Yooralla's series of article to recognise National Reconciliation Week Yooralla, we have summarised what the National Disability Insurance Agency (NDIA) is doing to engage with the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders to roll out the NDIS in those communities.

The National Disability Insurance Agency (NDIA) states that it understands the importance of collaborating with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders to successfully engage the community as the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) rollouts across Australia.

In collaboration with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people with disability, their families, carers and their communities, the NDIA developed an Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Engagement Strategy,which includes the following areas.

  • Communication and sharing of information: disseminate information about the NDIS in the 'proper way' (a colloquial phrase used to describe a way of doing business in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities that is compatible with their values and customs). ​
  • Cultural competency: understand that the belief systems, experiences, cultures and histories of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people are diverse and that this diversity can affect their participation in, and experience of, the NDIS. ​
  • Local solutions: recognise that the NDIS cannot be successfully delivered through a one-size fits all approach – instead, the NDIS is adopting a listen, learn, build and deliver process to enable Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples to better access the NDIS and maximise employment, training and economic participation opportunities for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people during the rollout of the NDIS. ​​
  • Participant-centric design: capture the experience of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander participants, their carers, and communities to better inform the implementation of the NDIS. ​
  • Cultural leadership: demonstrate the values and expected behaviour of the 'proper way' engagement by:
    • demonstrating cultural competency
    • being accountable for effective Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander engagement
    • supporting others to work in a manner that best works for each community
  • Tracking progress: measure the success of engaging with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander participants and their communities to gain an understanding of how the NDIS is progressing and how it can be improved.
A full version of the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Engagement Strategy can be viewed on the National Disability Insurance Scheme Website.

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