Our staff add value to public sector effectiveness and the independent assurance of public sector administration and accountability, applying our professional and technical leadership to have a real impact on real issues.
The Social Services portfolio is responsible for achieving the Australian Government’s social policy outcomes and delivering social security priorities through policy advice, program administration and research.
Read an overview of the Social Services portfolio including details of key activities, expenses and staffing levels. The audit focus section outlines the influences on the ANAO’s allocation of financial audit resources and the selection of performance audit topics and other activities. Also included is a list of material and non-material entities within the portfolio with their corresponding risk profile and key risks. Any risks that are considered key audit matters (KAMs) by the ANAO are separately identified.
The audit would assess the effectiveness of controls being implemented and/or developed by the National Disability Insurance Agency (NDIA) to ensure that decisions about the ‘reasonable and necessary’ supports to include in a participant’s plan are consistent with legislative and other requirements.
When fully implemented, it is estimated that the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) will cover approximately 460,000 Australians with disability, at a total cost of around $22 billion in 2020–21. Financial sustainability is a key objective of the NDIS, and the scope and volume of supports available through NDIS participant plans is a major cost driver of the scheme.
The audit would examine the controls being implemented by the NDIA to ensure that supports provided in participant plans are ‘reasonable and necessary supports’ as defined in the National Disability Insurance Scheme Act 2013.
The audit would examine the Department of Social Services’ design and implementation of the Humanitarian Settlement Program (HSP).
The HSP replaced the Humanitarian Settlement Services and Complex Case Support programs in October 2017. The program provides on-arrival and early settlement support for refugees and special humanitarian visa holders. The department has commissioned five service providers to deliver these services at a total contract cost of $523.4 million. In addition to the Australian Government’s arrangements to support settlement, there are also programs delivered by state and territory governments.
An audit would examine the Australian Government’s arrangements established to support settlement and how these arrangements interact with state and territory programs.
This audit would examine the effectiveness of the Department of Social Services’ (DSS’s) management of contracts for Disability Employment Services (DES).
The DES program is designed to assist jobseekers with disability to find or retain employment, and is delivered by a network of organisations around Australia. Approximately 186,000 people participate in the program, and the department has contracted approximately 119 DES providers across more than 2000 sites. DSS receives approximately $800 million in funding each year for the administration of the program. The department has established a DES Charter of Contract Management, which establishes the minimum standards of performance and conduct that providers can expect from DSS.
An audit would provide assurance that the department has appropriate arrangements in place to manage the decentralised delivery of employment services.
The objective of this audit is to assess the effectiveness of the Department of Social Services’ role in implementing the National Plan to Reduce Violence Against Women and their Children 2010–2022 (the National Plan).