SAP 103 Introduction To Welfare Law

Case study A. Sabina is a 55-year-oldwomanrecently diagnosed withmotor neuron disease. The physical impairment that she experiences is getting worse. In Januaryshe was unable to walk without a cane. At the time, her long-term partner was caring her for full time. Sabina has no other family who live locally.In January,Sabina made a request under the National Disability Insurance Scheme Act 2013(Cth) (‘the Act’) to become a participant in the National Disability Scheme (the NDIS). An assessment officer employed by the NDIS agency decideswhether someone meets the criteria to access the scheme. There is an age criterion, a residency criterion, and a disability criterion. At 55 years of age Sabinameets the age criterion. She is an Australian Citizen who resides in Australia. The disability requirement is more complex, and requires a person’s disability to result in a permanent impairmentthat substantially reduces functional capacity. Based on Sabina’s application and accompanying medical documents confirming herrecent diagnosis ofMotor NeuronDisease, the decision was made by the assessment officer to deny Sabina access to the NDISat this early stage of her developing disability. This review process took 6 months to complete.In June, upon hearing that herapplication was unsuccessful,Sabina attended the NDIS agency office and spoke with the independent NDIS Review Officer. She asked toappeal the decision to deny heraccess to the NDIS. The review officerobserved that Sabina was unable to hold her head up and he speech was impaired. The review officeralso observed that Sabina attended his office in a wheel chair. Sabina was alone and told the review officer that she has separated from herformer partnerand carer. The NDIS Review Officer reviewed the file notes and documents provided by the original assessment officer and advised Sabinaof hisdecision as follows: “I am not satisfiedthat the disability requirement has been met as there is no probative documentary evidence before me on which I could be satisfied that the disability at present substantially reduces your functional capacity. Consequently, the criteria under the Act havenot been met and I affirm the original decision of the assessment officer of the NDIS agencyto deny you access to the NDIS”.
Q 1. Identifythe type of review undertaken by the NDIS Review Officer?Q 2. Describethe principle of administrative law that the NDIS Review Officer failed to applyin making his decision?)
Q 3. Where does Sabina go now to review the decision of the NDIS Review Officer
Q 4. What support and referral could a human services workerprovide to Sabina to help herprepare for a further review?
Case study B. John is 16 years old. Hisparents have recently separated and he has been having trouble at home where he lives with his father. John has recently been charged with shoplifting electronic equipment, whichhe usedfor gaming.The court has appointed a youth justice worker Sam to keep an eye on John and prevent him from re-offending.On Friday night Johnattended a soccer match organized by Sam. At the match, John tells Sam that hehas moved out of home because he can’t be around his father anymore, and that he is staying with his girlfriend who is 35years old. John gives Sam a piece of paper with his girlfriend’s name and home address written down. John does this so that Samcan drop by and check up on himover the next couple of days. John’s dad tracks down Sam in hisagency office on Saturday morning. John’sdad is becoming increasingly worried about his son’s welfare because he did not return home after the soccer match on Friday night. John’sdad threatens to speak withSam’s manager if Sam doesn’t tell him where Johnis.
Q 5. Identify the personal information about Johnthatis held by Sam?
Q 6. Explain whether or not Sam can disclose this personal information to John’sfather. Refer to the Commonwealth Privacy Act1988 in your answer
Q7. Given the circumstances, can Sam ask John whether he is using any contraception to prevent pregnancy? Provide reasons for your answer and refer tothe Commonwealth Privacy Act1988 in your answer?
Q 8. Sam isconcerned about John’s welfare. Under what circumstances can Samdisclose to the child protection authority where John is staying and whomJohn is staying with? In your answer refer to any legislationthat would allow (or prohibit) such a disclosure 4Case C. Timothyis a long-term client of a community mental health support service. The mental health support service is integrated. A community lawyer works on site at the service with the human service and the health workers to assist clients with complexissues.Timothyhas been diagnosed with schizophrenia. He has been seeing Claire, a human services support workerat the service,for 5years. The frequency and duration of ‘lockdowns’ overthe past 18 monthshas been very difficult for Timothy. He has not been taking his medication and the time away from his family and friends has left him feeling isolated and lonely. He is hearing voices and is unable to sleep. Timothy left the house he rents two nights ago and was found by police wondering around the central business district in his pyjamas. He was in an agitated state. The police took Timothyto the local public hospital, where he is now under 24 hour care in the acute psychiatric ward. The hospital notified the community mental health support service that Timothy was in hospital. Timothy had asked the hospital staff to call Claire and the service lawyer for him so that they can find him and provide him with support and advice. A Mental Health Tribunal hearing has been scheduled to determine whether Timothycan continue to receive compulsory mental health treatment in hospital.Timothy’streating psychiatrist has told Timothy and Claire that she will be recommending to the Tribunal that Timothyremain in hospital for treatment for 3 more weeks.Timothy has asked both Claire and the service lawyer to attend the tribunal hearing with him.Timothyhas fallen behind in paying his rent and his landlord had written to him seeking immediate payment of the rental arrears and threatened legal action to evict Timothy. Timothy has the money to cover his rent in a savingsaccount, but he has been toounwell to organise to transfer the rent to the landlord’s bank account. If Timothy remains in hospital for treatment for three weeks, he will no longer have a place to live when he is released
Q 9.Is Claire able to advise Timothy on mental health law and how it applies in Timothy’s circumstances? Givea reason for your answer?
Q 10.What are the priority legal issues that you think the service lawyer could assist Timothywith?
Q 11.What type of assistance could Claire provide at the upcoming Mental Health Tribunal hearing
?Q 12.Describethree ways in which Timothy couldbenefit from using anintegrated community mental health service?

 

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