Sherif Girgis

Carer/family of a person with disability


Thank you for taking the time to read my submission.

Before I start, this issue was not heavily advertised or known around these circles, it was by sheer coincidence that I found out about this, maybe this was on purpose or maybe not!.

Im currently the sole carer of a young man with a disability (I’m happy to supply further details) and have been since a majority of his life. His mother didn’t want anything to do with him since been diagnosed and as a result I have been looking after his day to day caring, education, and social skills awareness on my own. Yes, I am a father and not a common thing that you’ll see.

That was a very brief introduction, now my submission to this issue is fairly simplistic in its approach and requires very little. I have read Round 1 and 2 of the previous discussion papers and it appears that there are few things over looked.

Thus far there has been a lot of talk about changing employers attitude towards people with disabilities, I full support that and embrace the work being done towards this. The other talk is about cost savings to the tax payer in relation to handing out disability pensions etc. Once again I fully support this and commend the amount of work gone to identify this trend.

With recent headlines surrounding the issue of affordable housing around Australia and various State Governments discussing changes to development laws to allow a certain percentage of apartmnents and housing complexes to be dedicated to affordable housing.

The same analogy can be applied to the employment market. For example, there is nothing stopping Public Service positions within a Government department or a certain percentage of positions within a Government department be allocated to people with disabilities.

Recently I have learnt that both the Australian Tax Office (ATO) and The Office of State Revenue (OSR) are coming to the Central Coast of NSW. Can the powers to be along with Government officials allocate a certain percentage of the workforce within these two organisations for people with disabilities?

If changing the attitude of employers, especially in private enterprise is difficult due to pressure of making a profit, getting the right people to boost their profitability, then it is reasonable to say the people WITHOUT disabilities have a far greater opportunity, chance and success rate of attaining these jobs over a person with disabilities. In most Government departments, these constraints do not exist, so affording people the opportunities in Government departments would be a step in the right direction and it would certainly set an example for the rest of the employers in the private sector.

The focus on employers gaining the benefits of a person with disability who is more focused on their job, would take less sick leave, be more appreciative of gaining employment, who would turn up on time and less likely to be making personal phone calls during work hours, has to be not limited to private enterprise BUT also recognised in government organisations.

Im sure this is not an easy brief to work through and certainly no one quick fix, but lets start with the things that we (government) can deal with immediately.

Im more than happy to supply further details, and Im more than happy to represent to issue if required.I can be contacted during office hours if I can be more of an assistance.

Thank you in advance

Sherif Girgis