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Accessible and affordable housing and better support during national emergencies were not addressed in the NSW Budget.

Physical Disability Council of New South Wales (PDCN) CEO, Serena Ovens, said the 2023 Budget was disappointing with nothing of significance for the nine out of 10 people in the state with disability. About 1.35 million people in NSW have a disability.

“It seems that the NSW Government’s vision of ‘transformational reform and a better, brighter future’ does not include us.”

Ovens said a truly transformational budget would have addressed the lack of accessible and affordable housing options for people with disabilities and ensured the disability community was better supported across national emergencies such as pandemics, fire, and floods.

“While it was hoped that some of the targeted funding for women and First Nations peoples would be channelled towards supporting people with disabilities, the budget had missed out key groups experiencing disability, including men, LGBTIQA+ people, older persons, culturally and linguistically diverse people, and migrants and refugees with disability,” she said.

One priority of the disability community that the state government did commit to was $3.4 billion in cash support and $400,000 of in-kind backing for the NDIS.

While acknowledging the state’s commitment to the NDIS funding, People with Disability Australia president Samantha Connor said it only helped those with disability who were able to access it.

“It’s vital that New South Wales meets the needs of the 1.2 million people with disability in the state who can’t access the NDIS, by loosening its purse strings so people with disability can access mainstream and local disability support services in our community,” she said.

Ovens was also disappointed in the rollout of a timetable for accessible transport improvements.  “Failure to properly support transport accessibility upgrades means the government will miss its own target of making all train stations suitable for people with disability by next year.”