Disabled people and carers have been left out of the Government’s stimulus package and they need support to get through this crisis.
The Disability Support Pension and Carer Payment exist in recognition of the fact that disabled people and carers have higher everyday costs and face significant barriers to entering the workforce.
Like everyone else those costs and barriers have increased, not decreased, due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Disabled people and carers are also having to factor in higher costs for transport and medical supplies, extra carer supports and grocery delivery charges as well as unplanned costs for personal protective equipment to stay safe.
Everyone on the Disability Support Pension and the carer payment needs to be able to access the extra support to help them get through this crisis.
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Extra and unforeseen costs for disabled people and carers might include:
- Extra private transport costs to do grocery shopping, pick up medication and go to medical appointments.
- Woolworths charges $15 per home delivery. With limits of the number of individual grocery items people need to shop more often and face the home delivery cost multiple times a week.
- The price of many grocery items has also increased due to demand and price gouging.
- Some disabled parents are now homeschooling their children and need to cover additional costs associated with homeschooling such as internet.
- Access to PPE, particularly for people trying to purchase it online, has risen significantly. Disabled people are unable to protect themselves properly as affordability of these essential items is increasingly difficult.
- Disabled people who have to self-isolate during this crisis are concerned about the cost implications this will have on their utility bills.
- It's extremely expensive to replace the allied health and informal supports that have ceased due to coronavirus.