Let those with disabilities use National Disability Insurance Scheme cash for sex, says a South Australian politician.

Lisa Martin Source AAP

If the elderly can blow their pensions on pokies, then disabled people should be able to access sex worker services under the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS), a South Australian politician says.

Draft rules released this week on eligibility criteria and what constitutes reasonable and necessary support, are silent on whether sex worker services could potentially be covered.

The federal Department of Community Services says no decision has been made to include sex work in the scope of the NDIS but has declined to rule it out completely.

In a submission to the NDIS parliamentary inquiry, David Heckendorf, who has cerebral palsy, said that in jurisdictions where prostitution was legal, sex services should be considered a legitimate need for people with disabilities.

SA Dignity for Disability MP Kelly Vincent echoed his call.

"For the general population the idea of people with disabilities having sex is like imagining your parents getting it on," Vincent told reporters.

But sexual activity could help disabled people regain movement, had mental health benefits such as increased self-esteem and could reduce aggression or frustration, she said.

She supported the idea of disabled people having choice to put disability funding towards sex therapy, prostitutes or even basic sex education.

"There's going to be naysayers with opinions on what is right and wrong to spend this money on.

"I don't think it's right for an elderly lady to be blowing her pension at the pokies," Vincent said.

"But there's no legal boundary to stop her doing that, because the autonomy and free will of people is respected."

She said it was unfair people with disabilities faced "administrative oppression" just because their pool of money was labelled disability funding.

In Sweden, Denmark, the Netherlands and Germany, sexual assistants for people with disabilities had legal status.

Heckendorf told reporters some people in the disability sector were scared that the opposition's bipartisan support for the scheme could be jeopardised by bringing up such a controversial aspect of care.

He and his wife have cerebral palsy, which restricts their movement, muscle control and speech.

They rely on carers to feed, dress and shower them.

"Perhaps naively, however, I am more optimistic in my fellow Australians' ability and compassion, to understand that the health benefits associated with sex, as well as the enjoyment, are beyond the reach of people with profound disabilities ... without this help," he said.



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