The NDIS Quality and Safeguards Commission has today released a 9-page Overview Report from the Boland Review, which identifies a series of failures and delays in the regulatory response against Irabina Autism Services for the use of prohibited restrictive practices on children.

Acting NDIS Quality and Safeguards Commissioner Michael Phelan thanked former judge, the Honourable Jennifer Boland, who was engaged late last year to conduct an independent review into how matters relating to Irabina Autism Services were handled by the NDIS Commission.

“The Boland report delivers some incredibly tough but important lessons for the NDIS Commission and attributes the inadequacy of the regulatory response – at least substantially – to inadequate resourcing, staffing levels, information technology and record keeping systems,” Mr Phelan said.

“While it is noted in the report at paragraph 40 that ‘many of the structural and other impediments which led to the delays and failures to act against Irabina no longer exist’, I still believe that we can do better.

“During my time as Acting Commissioner, you have my commitment that I will look closely at our systems and standard operating procedures and make changes where they are needed to ensure much better outcomes for NDIS participants in the future.

“I sincerely apologise to people with disability, their families and their carers who accessed Irabina’s behaviour support services during this period for the systemic factors that – despite the best efforts of individual NDIS Commission staff at the time – let people with disability down.”

Mr Phelan said that the NDIS Commission would immediately adopt all of the recommendations from the Boland Report.

Mr Phelan said the full Boland Report, which runs to more than 70 pages, would not be released publicly to avoid compromising the ongoing investigations, and out of respect for the privacy of the complainants, NDIS participants, carers and their families who were interviewed during the review. The full Report contains protected information, the disclosure of which is a criminal offence under provisions of the National Disability Insurance Scheme Act 2013.

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