Disability Support Pension

Urgent review needed into Disability Support Pension (DSP)

We are concerned that changes to the Disability Support Pension (DSP) and the wider social security system over the past two decades has led to many people with disability being unable to access social security payments, most importantly the DSP.

Government has made it much harder for people with disability to access the DSP.  We now have more than 200,000 Australians with disability receiving the lower Newstart Allowance, and there are thousands of people who are not receiving any support at all.

We have been working with the disability community, other peak bodies, disability advocacy organisations and University researchers to collect information, personal stories, and data on the importance of the Disability Support Pension to Australians with disability.

At the bottom of this page, we have included links to further information, research reports, personal stories, and media releases on our campaign.

AFDO is calling on the Federal Government to:

  1. Hold an urgent review into the fairness of the Disabilty Support Pension.
  2. Implement a three-month assessment timeframe for the eligibility process.
  3. Ensure that the eligibility process is fair, reasonable, accessible, equitable and not unduly burdensome on people with disability and their support networks.
  4. Ensure the eligibility process for the DSP does not generate further financial hardship and economic insecurity.
  5. Remove the criteria for people to be fully treated and stabilised from the eligibility criteria, to acknowledge fluctuating conditions and/or illnesses, rapid onset of disease and accidents and injury.
  6. Stop the Program of Support; it is acting as a barrier to people with disability successfully claiming the DSP.
  7. Provide DSP information in a range of accessible formats, such as braille, Auslan, large print, plain language, Easy English, etc.
  8. Reinstate the initial threshold of work hours from 15 hours to 30 hours per week when transitioning from DSP to employment.  This will help people with disability to work, without losing access to necessary supports.

Links to campaign resources

Group photo of 10 people smiling at the camera, in the centre is Jordon Steele-John holding one of the DSP Reports.

Disability advocates and researchers at the launch of the three DSP Reports at Parliament House.