Wednesday September 1st 2010 marks 20 years in my present job.
Twenty years now,
Where’d they go?
Twenty years now,
I don’t know,
I sit and I wonder sometimes,
Where they’ve gone
Wow! – Bob was right - where did they go?
There have been so many changes and so much has been achieved it’s difficult to remember how things were in 1990.
Here’s a few:
No Disability Support Pension – the applicable payment back then was referred to as the “Invalid Pension”. Just to help you understand the stigma this cast on recipients try highlighting ‘invalid’ and check the synonyms: worthless, null or void.
The CES (Commonwealth Employment Service) staff was not allowed to assist Invalid Pension recipients to get a job.
The present supported wage system in place today has replaced the 1990’s ‘Slow Workers Permit’ – a system that provided a minimum (I think it was $40) payment to be made instead of the independently monitored and administered system in place today.
No guidebooks, no training, no place to turn accept other equally inexperienced albeit well meaning beginners. We all looked to the United States as the Mecca of supported employment and gobbled up whatever crumbs we could find.
These days Australian programs are as good as or better than those found anywhere in the world.
No internet – thank heavens, no blasted ‘Seek’!
No (or at least very few) mobile phones.
NOVA’s initial inventory:
1 x 3 legged stool
1 x K-Mart typists chair
2 x broken desks (no drawers)
1 x home phone
1 x 3 draw filing cabinet
1 x Yellow Pages
I drove a Toyota Hiace van that regularly suffered from its equivalent of panic attacks (side of the road, trembling).
For myself I had a burning desire to ‘make a difference’ although for the life of me I was uncertain how that might best be accomplished. I read everything I could gather from teachers, libraries and through the embryonic network of other service providers. I was significantly assisted by their generosity and the help of the late Pamela Dennis (METS) was particularly valued.
Our single office has grown to 26 and many thousands of young men and women have subsequently trusted their career goals to me and to my staff (now close to 200 people). Along the way we’ve stuck to the knitting and only get involved in programs and projects that are directly related to the employment of people with a disability.
This has been a great journey and every year has helped me learn and grow.
To the thousands of job seekers and workers that have joined us and to the hundreds of colleagues that have encouraged and inspired me, to those who have helped me stay on the right track and helped me see where I could improve and how NOVA could develop:
Thank you all so very, very much.
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A late and inspirational entry: http://www.focusonability.com.au/FOA/films/aka_Shegena_571.html
Thank you for introducing me to Mr Shegena who is a privilege to know and an inspiration to listen to....
Culturally and Linguistically Diverse
Culturally and Linguistically Diverse (CALD), Disability and work
There’s some underlying racism running about that suggests that people from CALD backgrounds (those foreign chaps) are either lazy or almost criminal in their desire to exploit Australia’s generous welfare system, get on our DSP and put their feet up....
NOVA only works with people who have disability - we are elitist, no disability - can't come in.
The following numbers represent some of NOVA's recent achievements:
1410 positions show earnings from $18,201 to $37000 plus....
Over 200,000 Australians over 50 are now receiving unemployment benefits, with that number rising by 24,000 in 2013 alone.
The figures come after the Federal Government yesterday announced a new $5....
Worse than I thought!
The Federal Government says the unemployed should be out there looking for work every day as it prepares to make them search for 40 jobs a month and perform 25 hours of weekly community work....
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Sincere thanks to Mr Gilbert Robinson who has acted as our agent in Africa.
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Ability or Subsidy?
Dear oh dear!
The disaster of aiming low!
Just received a truly tragic indictment of the nonsense that permeates Australia’s disability employment services....
With entries from: China, Finland, Germany, New Zealand, Rwanda, South Africa, UK, USA (incl....
I can spot smart when I see it (well sometimes) and this just has to be genius:
St George and Sutherland Community College are previous winners of the 'focusonability' film comp (www....
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And I get paid! And I get paid!
There is no greater privilege that could be given me than to be part of the fabulous team that have chosen to give their wholehearted commitment to our work, other than the inspiration that comes from the strength, integrity and 'can-do' that comes from the people we are honoured to work with....
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Autralia's richest - who pays? I pinched this off ninemsn:
Australia's richest people have as much money as the bottom 60 per cent of the country's population, new data shows....
Policy Reform Please
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So much good news!
In a world filled with worry and fear it was a true privilege to take Saturday off and spend a day with a team of brave NOVA volunteers manning the BBQ at Football4All....
OK - Maybe the devil will be in the detail and....
Looks alright to me!
Plenty of opportunity for extra employment for people with disability and some sensible reform....
Pension no Picnic Ooo! I am (yet again) livid!
If you are a single person under 21 years of age and living independently on the Disability Support Pension you receive the princely sum of $266....
Budget? Must be time to bash the poor!
Taken from: http://news.ninemsn.com.au/national/2014/05/10/13/44/young-on-dsp-to-face-work-ability-scrutiny#gigyaComments
Easy access to welfare is over: Andrews
Up to 20,000 Australians who receive the disability support pension (DSP) will be assessed for the capacity to work, and if deemed able, will be expected to get a job
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