Taken from our funding body’s submission to the Senate inquiry into disability purchasing”
“The DES Star Rating system measures the relative performance of providers by comparing job seeker engagement and achievement of outcomes. The Star Ratings take into account the disability type, service requirements of participants, labour market conditions, job seeker characteristics and other factors to ensure a fair and consistent approach in comparing performance.
The DES Star Ratings are a relative not absolute measure. The lack of a competitive tender process to this point means that there can be no certainty or confidence that ‘relative average’ represents the best outcomes or services for people with disability.While the performance framework can compare existing services to each other, it does not substitute for a competitive tender by comparing an existing market to a potential future market. Optimal performance requires both mechanisms”.
You can read the whole thing here (no47): http://www.aph.gov.au/Senate/committee/eet_ctte/disability_employment/submissions.htm
Is it flawed?
“The Star Ratings take into account the disability type, service requirements of participants, labour market conditions, job seeker characteristics and other factors”
Where’s wages earned?
Where’s independence from welfare and individual independence?
Not here – and why not?
because the increased numbers that are the Department’s stated goal require service providers to cream off the most able job seekers and encourages services to find casual positions of little real worth.
The submission states that this system has been in operation since 1999 (like that’s a good thing) – has anyone questioned the coincidence of this system with the casualisation of our workforce and the concomitant lack of job security?
2 part time (8hr) positions don’t equal 1 38 hour a week integrating, independence promoting real job that empowers a person with a disability to fully integrate into the community of taxpayers.
This submission is riddled with inaccuracy and misleading nonsense such as: “Competitive tendering offers incentives for providers to better their performance, leading to more outcomes for jobseekers”.
No it doesn’t.
Experience here and overseas shows it leads to the creation of an industry to ‘beat’ the ratings. Providers are encouraged to seek which ‘outcomes’ gain the biggest reward and a race to the bottom begins. It brings about 'creaming' of the most able applicants and causes the creation of numerous part time and casual positions.
Another: “However, the existing ‘capped’ stream was not subject to tender. Nineteenof the current 207 DES-ESS providers entered the market as a result of this tender in 2006”.
Fallacious and designed to mislead (I accept the raw numbers are accurate). These 19 providers which included predominately overseas and local ‘for profits’, received approximately 50% of the available business and have been exporting Australian taxpayers money ever since. Despite assurances from DEEWR (then DEWR) and the then Minister, many programs were wound up and lots of skilled staff left the industry.
(Side Point: NOVA doubled in size)
Australians who have a disability are amongst our most vulnerable groups. Again, this submission demonstrates fundamental misunderstandings about the needs of such individuals and risks exposing the most exposed of these to a real reduction in services.
Maybe its telling you something when the only 'pro' voices are a foreign owned for profit and a funding body that will see a reduction in its own labour needs.
Do I have an alternative?
License disability employment services against the Disability Service Standards and a 'pass' against the annual Quality Assurance audit. Remove the ridiculous geographical boundaries and reward services for a reduction in welfare dependency. Measure the outcomes through cooperation with Human Services.
Watch that work for the improvement of people who have a disability
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Not so bad! Taken from: Today's Guardian at 4.09pm Tuesday 7th November 2017:
In a world full of discouragement there’s always a space for good news....
The NDIS mantra is 'choice and control'
To be valuable, choice needs to be informed.
Average Sydney Disability Employment Services placement rates are 34....
It's voting time at "Focusonability" - with a record number of films entered, a tremendous effort by more than 100 High Schools and 19 countries competing in the International section it was always going to be a hard job to pick a winner....
Choice & Control
The NDIS slogans around choice and control demonstrate the importance of consumer involvement in both the choice and control of supports they need.
However, in order to be valuable, choice needs to be informed by accurate data such is this: http://www....
Last week (14-16) it was my privilege to attend the 1st World Supported Employment Conference in Belfast, Northern Ireland.
"Employment for All - A Global Perspective" brought workers from around the globe (primarily Europe) to discuss best practice in supported employment....
Quality and the Stars Quality and the Stars
There have probably been few people more openly critical of the Disability Employment Service (DES) Star Ratings than me.
The Stars, ranging from 1 to 5 are supposed to give some insight into whether a service is a poor or high performing program....
Attended the Disability Employment Australia (DEA) forum in Canberra. THis is a regular get together that offers disability employment services tha chance to be kept up to date from our funding body and also listed to expert speakers on topics associated with the goal of seeing as many people as possible find and keep suitable employment....
NOVAs greatest asset is its staff. I suspect you would struggle to find the CEO of any organisation state their staff are not vital and at the core of business reputation and results....
A corner turned?
We are presently holding events to promote employment for people with disability - nor surprise there, that's our job.
What has been a surprise is the willingness of employers to come along and listen and more importantly, to consider adopting inclusive employment practices across their organisations....
Say No to Quotas!
The pernicious idea that 'quota's' might be the solution for disability employment continue:
Faced with the daunting task of improving the number of employment outcomes with out sacrificing the quality of service delivered to people with disability how have we fared (sort of Year in Review II)?
The number of placements made has seriously improved - up 31% in 2015 and a further 14% in 2016, NOVA operates at at rate of placement better than 150% over 2014!
Whats really exciting is that this has been achieved without compromising on the level of disability that can be supported by NOVA's teams (if anything this has risen)....
Famous last words!
O.K. - sorry that you need to cut and paste: http://www.smh.com.au/business/workplace-relations/100-million-payday-for-1anhour-staff-with-disabilities-20161216-gtcius....
Not sure if this will be my last blog post for 2016 but just in case, a quick look back at 2016:
Best ever year for total number of placements
Best ever year for long term employment outcomes
Best ever year for Apprenticeships and Traineeships
Best ever year for Transition to Work outcomes
Best ever year for media coverage
Best ever year for 'Focusonability'
Best ever year for Transition to Work (TTW)
How about 2017?
Looking good, so stay in touch and have a terrific holiday, be safe and hopefully Santa will bring you all that you wish for....
Choice is only of value when it's informed (written about this here previously)
I have the numbers for disability employment services (DES-ESS) up till 30th June this year and I am delighted to see that NOVA is responsible for almost 25% of all employment lasting 6 months or more (28 providers) and almost as many as next 2 providers combined....
The NDIS held out hope and promise to people with a disability, the opportunity to exercise choice and control and was heralded as the answer to the prayers of our most disadvantaged and vulnerable citizens....
Latest 'Stars' The effectiveness of Australian Disability Employment Services is recognised through a system called the 'Star Ratings'.
6 years ago NOVA was amongst the lower performing providers in Sydney, at least as measured through the Star's,
Regular readers will be aware of my unhappiness with things that I think are important to people with disability - stuff like, wages earned, hours worked etc....
Best Show on TV Morning All
Sorry you need to cut and paste: http://www.sbs.com.au/ondemand/video/802326595536/focus-on-ability-film-festival-2016
Best show on TV - bar none and, if you want to skip my bit I get off at 3:10 and you can get straight to some of the truly terrific films from this year's "Focusonability" short film festival....
Reform There is a review of Disability Employment Services and presently consideration is being given to what might best replace the current program.
NOVA needs you - come and join us
NOVA needs You!!
Wednesday 2nd November
Short notice (so really appreciate sharing) and we are holding an information session for potential new workers in a variety of roles within NOVA....
Yet again! Somewhere there is a definition of lunacy that runs along the lines of 'lunacy is when you do something the same way and expect a different result'
Today some of Australia's disability employment services will learn whether they will be allowed to continue to deliver their programs or whether they are to be replaced....