Hunter NDIS information forum 

VOICE: Cayt Weir hopes young people have a say in the new disability scheme.  Picture: Brock Perks

DISABILITY services in the Hunter are a lottery and there is much angst among people with a disability about how they will improve under the National Disability Insurance Scheme.

More than 150 people  are expected at an information  forum about the scheme, to be held  at Panthers on Saturday.

Mind the Gap, one of the organisations behind the forum, said they hoped to start a Hunter-based peak body out of the conference.

The grassroots organisation would be responsible for educating people with a disability about managing their care under the scheme.

Newcastle, Lake Macquarie and Maitland will  launch  the national funding insurance program, which will see funds for a disability follow the people and not the providers.

Mind the Gap co-founder Catherine Mahony, who is blind, said that at present Hunter disability services ‘‘were a little bit of a lottery’’.

‘‘It should be a preferred way for everybody, not just people who are in the right place at the right time.’’ 

‘‘I think [the NDIS] will make it more consistent.’’

Co-founder Linda Hughes said there was  uncertainty and angst among people with a disability about what the scheme would mean for them.

They hoped to answer some questions at the forum and talk with people directly affected, that is, those with a disability.

Among the attendees will be Cayt Weir, of Redhead.

Ms Weir has cerebral palsy and is among the few who largely control their government funding.

At present she can ring her service provider when she needs a carer for a social function or help with medical needs.

She said she was looking forward to the launch of the scheme in July next year because it would give her more choices about her life.

She has been waiting more than a year for a new electric wheelchair.

‘‘I think young people need a say [in the NDIS],’’ she said.

To register: 4957 0846

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