The Australian Greens said today that linking the NDIS to cruel budget cuts is a poor start for the new Social Services Minister Scott Morrison, and that the multi-party support for the NDIS should not be undermined.
"Scott Morrison isn't a full day into the job and he is already signalling the lows we can expect from the Government," Senator Rachel Siewert, Australian Greens spokesperson on family and community services said today.
"For the Minister to try to emotionally blackmail the Parliament by casting doubt over the NDIS unless harmful changes to our social safety net are made is deeply concerning and disrespectful.
"It is a myth that the NDIS would be unaffordable unless cuts are made to the social security system. A levy is already in place to help fund the NDIS and the balance should not come from harsh cuts that hurt our most vulnerable.
"The NDIS dramatically improves the lives, choices and support available to people with disability, their families, carers and supporters. The Productivity Commission has estimated that the NDIS has the potential to add close to 1% to Australia's GDP.
"If the Government wants to improve the system they should be ensuring payments are adequate and that meaningful steps are taken to help people into secure work. In reality, they're doing neither.
"People will rightly be disgusted with Scott Morrison for calling the future on the NDIS into doubt.
"The NDIS must be protected and nurtured by the Government to ensure it is as successful as possible. It should not be used as a pawn in the Government's attempts to pass terrible budget measures.
"If the Government wants to raise revenue they should look to reduce corporate welfare and make big business and big polluters pay their fair share," Senator Siewert concluded.