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Thursday, 21 March 2013
Page: 2902

Mr ANDREWS (Menzies) (09:44): As I foreshadowed when this bill was last in this place, it was likely there would be further amendments made in the Senate as a result of the inquiry by the Senate into the bill—and those amendments have now come forward having been passed in the Senate.

I indicate to the House that the coalition supports the amendments, and therefore supports this final passage of the bill through this place—and, therefore, the introduction into law, once the formalities the Governor-General undertakes have been completed.

Since this is the last occasion to say something more broadly about the National Disability Insurance Scheme may I say that this is something which the coalition wholeheartedly endorses. In the spirit of bipartisanship we have supported the government in this measure. And can I say something that may be rarely heard from this side of the dispatch box—that is, I congratulate the government for having brought this forward. This is something which is important for all Australians, not just those who have disability but all those whose lives have been touched by people with disability. I suspect that many people in this place, and many people in the wider Australian community, are in that situation themselves. This is something which a humane country, a First World country such as Australia, should be able to put in place. We can all regret that it has taken so long, but it is coming to fruition with the final passage of this bill and it is something we all support.