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“Every option” open for royal commission into disability sector

Prime Minster Scott Morrison won’t say if he will back a call from the Senate to hold a royal commission into the disability sector

Prime Minister Scott Morrison will not disclose whether he will support the Senate’s call for a royal commission into the disability sector, but is open to “every option”.

The Senate on Thursday voted again for a royal commission into disability services and Labor said the motion could pass the lower house. Morrison said his government takes the abuse and neglect claims seriously and reforms are already underway.

Opposition Leader Bill Shorten said in Parliament: “Will the Prime Minister finally join with Labor to support a royal commission, which Australians with a disability and their loved ones have been calling for the last two years?”

Morrison said the Coalition government was moving ahead with the National Disability Insurance Scheme with new safeguards to prevent abuse in the sector.

“I will remain open to every single option there is to provide support to people with disabilities,” Morrison said. “I have already demonstrated my willingness to call a royal commission when it comes to the aged care sector.”

The Coalition voted against the Senate motion on Thursday, but could face a possible defeat in the lower house. Morrison said calling a royal commission was the prerogative of the government of the day.

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