1 July 2002 to 30 June 2007 provided a new Commonwealth State Territory Disability Agreement is signed
The Government will allocate $547.5 million over five years (2002-03 to 2006-07) for the third Commonwealth State Territory Disability Agreement (CSTDA). The funds will continue the level of Commonwealth assistance to state and territory Governments provided for specialist disability services. Total funding to states and territories under the agreement will be $2.7 billion over the five years. The $2.7 billion represents a $743.3 million increase over payments to states and territories under the previous five year agreement.
The Government will also significantly increase employment services funding under the new CSTDA. The increased funds come from the Australians Working Together package announced in the 2001–02 Budget and the $258 million to be provided over four years for increased services for people with disabilities, including disability employment services, under the measure Recognising and Improving the Work Capacity of People with a Disability.
The additional $547.5 million funding depends on the states and territories making the same percentage increase themselves as the Commonwealth has made to all CSTDA services, including employment services. Better accountability for the money they spend under the CSTDA will also be required.
The new agreement will improve the planning and management of demand for disability services and improve service delivery and responsiveness to individual needs and circumstances. It will provide better information about how funding is spent. Five new policy priorities for the agreement will be:
- strengthening access to mainstream and generic services by people with disabilities;
- strengthening cross-Government linkages by improving collaboration and coordination across programs and Governments;
- strengthening individuals and families by focusing support on individual needs and outcomes and actively engaging service users, families and carers;
- improved accountability, quality, efficiency and effectiveness of specialist disability services; and
- improving long term strategies to respond to, and manage demand for, specialist services.
Under the agreement, the Commonwealth is responsible for employment support for people with disabilities. The states and territories are responsible for accommodation and other support services. Ministers responsible for disability services are currently negotiating a third agreement to commence by July 2002.