The recent Victorian Government Cabinet reshuffle following Denis Napthine taking over as Premier, saw the Honourable Mary Wooldridge, MLA, previously the Minister for Community Services, appointed as Victoria's first dedicated Minister for Disability Services and Reform.
This appointment sends a strong message to the Department of Human Services, Disability Services, that the new Premier recognises the absolute circus and crises within all corners of this government department which has been wasting dollars and providing questionable services for years.
We trust the new Minister will examine the future of the DHS as a direct provider of disability services. And, as a matter of urgency, move her department out of direct service provision and make regulatory reform to enable and ensure non-government service providers are better able to focus on the delivery of customer centred, quality of life, support services.
Direct care services should be provided by non-government, not for profit, community service organisations which, unlike government direct care services, can be made accountable for service level, quality and customer service, as service management is marketplace-proactive.
This is in total contrast to the department’s overall, captive-market, reactive, crises driven, in-denial, issue avoidance, intimidating, consumer avoidance, dollar burning, management.
Whereas, the Department of Human Services, Disability Services, has an extensive range of very comprehensive care policies, standards and values which, if fully and consistently implemented within their direction, intention and spirit, would ensure people with disabilities and their families were at the very centre of first class, quality of life, service provision.