Building a better, more equal health, social, disability and injury system for New Zealand
28 October 2018 for immediate release
New Zealanders have the opportunity to have their say on the development of a healthcare and social support system for
people with disabilities that does not discriminate on the basis of cause with the launch of a discussion paper today.
The idea has been discussed with the Government and they are interested but want to hear what people think about it.
Warren Forster, the Barrister and Researcher currently leading the research in this area explains “the idea is actually
very simple. We have a single person centric system for providing the assistance people need. Imagine having a single
system that helps people with disabilities where we can focus on meeting people’s needs rather than the administrative
needs of the various government agencies.”
“The Minister has said he’s open to the idea but wants to hear from New Zealanders, so we have developed a discussion
paper and survey so that people can share their thoughts” says Warren Forster.
The problems with the system we have now are well known says Mr Forster.
People receive different treatment, rehabilitation, social support and income support based on how they got their injury
or impairment. Families have to pick up what people in government have chosen not to provide.
The system we have is incomplete and it is causing harm. It is not how it was intended to work according to the architects of the original plan. Our system is like a city with
an unfinished transport network.
Too many people are dealing with a substandard, unkind, or even harmful system. This is simply because their impairment was present at birth, caused by cancer, or depression, or ACC declined their
We waste too much time and money on assessments and disputes about the cause of an impairment and who should pay for the support. People just want to be able to get on
with their lives and they don’t want to go through disputes about what caused their impairment.
Forster continues, “we’ve got a Government who has signalled that they are prepared to listen, and so now is the chance
for our people to tell them whether this is an idea that they want the Government to investigate.”