A4 made a submission to the inquiry by the Joint Standing Committee on the NDIS into the provision of services under the NDIS for people with psychosocial disabilities related to a mental health condition.
The keys points in A4's submission are:
- generally, autism spectrum disorder (ASD) is regarded as a psychosocial disability ... except in Australia.
- a major concern is that "people with disability, especially cognitive impairment and psychosocial disability, are ‘routinely subjected to unregulated and underregulated behaviour modification or restrictive practices such as chemical, mechanical and physical restraint and seclusion’."
- while there was some interest (following the Burdekin Report in 1993) in services for people with both intellectual disability and mental illness, there has never been any discernible effort in Australia to recognise and address the needs of autistic people with mental illness.
- the NDIS may offer autistic people funding but it is pointless when there is no suitable service where they can "purchase" the services and supports that they need.
- Australian law and its associated legal system condone/promote the disability discrimination (Australian law calls it "lawful discrimination") that is denial (failure/refusal to plan and fund) of essential services and supports to autistic Australians with comorbid mental illness or are at risk of being subject to inappropriate "restrictive practices".