Which of the following statements best describes you?
- I’m a person with disability
- I’m a business owner
During the first stage of consultations we heard that the vision and the six outcome areas under the current Strategy are still the right ones. Do you have any comments on the vision and outcome areas being proposed for the new Strategy?
1.1 Each outcome area maybe able to interconnect with each other e.g. economic security outcome agreed but to achieve the other outcomes, in the spirit of by us for us, the other outcome area need to employ more people with disabilities (PWD) as they are developing ideas and services for PWD, as NDIA have 15% rate for employment of PWD.
So a target of 6% in 2 years and 10% in 5 years, as Vic Govt, or more gently stepped, could be set for any organisation working for or with PWD and funded by Gov’ts/Mainstream Govt depts eg Transport,Health, Infrastructure e.g. councils, disability service providers, disability housing developers, schools (main or special), disability employment agencies, Human Rights organisations with disability specific parts etc
1.2 Inclusion and accessible community outcome. NDIA/LAC’s are not driving ILC i.e. culture change for the 90% of PWDs without NDIS funding. So with NDS 21-30, and DSS managing ILC directly, can re establish fed’l,state and local gov’t roles and outcomes.
1.3 The 1.2 idea can the be used for all outcome areas. Funding,strategy and regulation is Federal responsibility;state and local government is implementation.
1.4 Local governments could be responsible for ensuring all shopping strips have accessible shops, ramps for steps.
What do you think about the guiding principles proposed here?
Principles are great, and like ways of ensuring adoption BUT key will be making them work, so mainly carrot type ideas but reserve right for stick type actions eg Covid mandatory mask wearing in Vic, with police enforcement it was almost fully adopted.
2.1. In tandem with universal design, highlight requirement for co-design concept, as that will require PWD involvement
2.2 As an enforcement mechanism, introduce audit checks of any government funded work, such that failure to follow requirements can mean financial penalty.
What is your view on the proposal for the new Strategy to have a stronger emphasis on improving community attitudes across all outcome areas?
Totally agree. ILC funding supported initiatives for community organisation capacity building. Some was done but “stronger emphasis” is key, as well as harnessing the influence and network of local councils.
In Vic, state government got rid of the metro/rural access officer progam, where they funded the officer employment costs. But their activities were still council costs, so only councils where disability was accepted as a priority , funded projects. Even though generally 20% of their voters/clients are PWD.
How do you think that clearly outlining what each government is responsible for could make it easier for people with disability to access the supports and services they need?
Great concept, good luck.
How do you think the Strategy should represent the role that the non-government sector plays in improving outcomes for people with disability?
I would use the economic outcome as a way of talking of what they can do. I’m sure you will get other ideas for outcome areas.
Disability employment tends to be resisted because its perceived and is a big step. So I would suggest a 4 year plan:
- Year 1 a NGO provides an employee to talk about work to a class at a local school, ideally where staff have kids, as part of a relationship building activity.
- Year 2 an NGO allows a small group, ideally including a student with disability (SWD), to visit their workplace for an afternoon.
- Year 3 an NGO provides one week of work experience FOR Y10 for SWD.
- Year 4 an NGO maybe offers employment for SWD
The reality will be stronger relations between NGO and school, parents with students and NGO. Disability awareness will happen naturally and slowly, for both school and NGO. From this employment may come. Suggest start with councils to become best practice for NGO, and then other companies. Getting NGO/other companies to realise how they can help in community building, for minimal effort/cost, is vital.
Another area is to consider re employing people who have acquired disability, e.g. ABI, MS, Parkinsons, Stroke etc i.e for people who have worked.
Another – NGO’s develop own employee groups for PWD to inform management on whats needed.
What kind of information on the Strategy’s progress should governments make available to the public and how often should this information be made available?
- Regularity – You should have an annual report of key KPI’s for NDS tracking – dashboard. Every two years would be deeper and allow the minister to make announcements from learning. You would need a 5 year very deep report on progress and potentially make system changes.
- KPI’S for annual feedback for NDS Tracking.
Employment is known issue, 2 parts
2.1 a particpation rate of PWD v non disabled, as historically 50% v 80%, ie availabi;ity for work has an easy aim to be the same
2.2 employment of the those PWD who say available for work, should be same as non-disabled. But also need figures by disability type group.
Other outcome areas KPIs more difficult, but standard outputs from standard quantitative survey of PWDs opinion.
What do you think of the proposal to have Targeted Action Plans that focus on making improvements in specific areas within a defined period of time (for example within one, two or three years)?
Good idea, definitely for employment.No progress on participation rates of PWD has been made in 20 years, still 50% v 80%. It is saying half of PWD of working age say they are not available for work. The productivity review of NDIS at the beginning, hoped the 50% would move to 60% if NDIS funded travel and personal supports. As financially, it was often not worth trying to work as costs were more than income.The second part is employment of those available for work, and has to be seen by disability type group, as very different, and need disability type initiative. Separately, need a project to look at people who acquire disability during working age, potentially 30% of unemployed (to be checked), and RTW approach for PWD on income insurance is non existent, incentives opposite to Comcare.
Also Vic has tested successful projects with evidence, which didn;t get further funding eg Ticket to work (Natl Disability Services), The Vic Career Curriculum Framework (CEAV), AFDO Diversity Field Officers helping disability employment in small companies in Geelong. Maybe a meta-analysis of all the projects funded over last 10 years with the aim of finding top 10 projects already tested but not funded for continuity.
Could do 2 around community org inclusion of PWD.
How could the proposed Engagement Plan ensure people with disability, and the disability community, are involved in the delivery and monitoring of the next Strategy?
Need PWD on boards, senior executive teams, as well as advisory teams.
Remember there are 3% of PWD borne with disability, 15% have disability by 15 years old, 40% by the end of working age. So 30% get their disability during working age, ABS data. The point is that there a fair few older working age people with late onset disability who were very senior , if not CEO’s of companies who could sit on boards and are disabled. They just may need to work only x hours per week. They have the experience. As we develop younger leaders with PWD. But equally there are many impressive young leaders with disabilities. Talk to the Disability Leadership Institute.
Is there anything else you would like to share about the ideas and proposals in the position paper?
Most ideas covered.
But very interested in being involved with more work on NDS 21-30, as it could be pivotal for PWD, who dont have plans and for those that do.