The following represents my own personal opinion and is not necessarily reflective of the opinion or policy of NOVA Employment and Training Program Inc.
I will not vote for either of the major political parties.
It has been my privilege to work in the field of disability employment under Prime Ministers, Hawke, Keating, Howard, Rudd and Gillard; 5 Labour administrations and 4 Liberal.
The following is simple truth and can be verified through documented fact.
The Hawke government introduced the Disability Services Act (1986) enabling legislation that allowed for the funding of program similar to NOVA.
By 1996 (Election of John Howard’s liberal government) 49,000 people were involved in such programs (referred to finally as the ‘capped’ program).
In 2006 this number had reduced to 39,000 and the level and type of disability serviced by providers had changed following ideologically driven adjustments to goals. This number increased substantially following the introduction of an ‘uncapped’ program (2006) targeting persons with different and frequently less barriers to employment.
In 2010 the Rudd (Labour) government merged the 2 programs and removed the ‘cap’ allowing as many persons that wished to participate to access disability employment services.
It has been my privilege to meet with each of the Prime Ministers listed above (except Mr Rudd) and many other senior politicians over the 20 years that NOVA has operated. Almost without exception our elected representatives have been intelligent, caring and interested in the development of programs that assist the most disadvantaged Australians.
It is my often quoted belief that it is the funding body administration of disability employment service programs that callously ignores the effect of government legislation, not politicians or party direction.
That said, over the past 20 years Labour has consistently improved (with a couple of bumps like the Disability Reform Package – who thought of that?) the opportunities for job seekers with disability and it is Liberal governments that have allowed Australia’s programs to languish or even reduce.
The big question for each party should be whether there is an intention for open tender (with the associated and horrifying prospect of destabilisation) in 2012 or not - yes/no, pass/fail.
As I said, I won’t vote for either of them and you might like to keep the above in mind for August.
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Whats wrong with Employment Services? There's rumours of a shake-up in the Job Active program - word is, the program isn't making a real difference and employers don't like it!
There's plenty of evidence to suggest that, despite the best intent of Government and funding body, the Disability Employment Service (DES) is similarly in the doldrums....
I need you! Comrades
NOVA needs you - we are very keen to enlist new members of our organisation.
Here's what you need: the patience of Job, the strength of the Hulk, the wisdom of Solomon and a selfless devotion caring for the needs of others worthy of Mother Teresa....
Tragic Loss People with Disability lost a true champion last Wednesday with the unexpected passing of a truly great man, the Chief Executive Officer of Inclusion Australia and a dear friend Mr Paul Cain....
I'm giving fair warning of my intention to expose examples of the current DES-ESS contract's exploitation.
I have written to the Commonwealth expressing my concerns about clear manipulation of the present contract....
The new contract for Disability Employment Services (DES) will not bring performance improvement.
Government will scratch it's head, blame the economy, blame people with disability, talk about educating employers and spend money on consultations before coming to the conclusion that people with disability must meet more stringent 'mutual obligations'....
Each year, around about the International Day of People with a Disability (IDPwD) NOVA Employment holds a formal graduation for students that have participated in our pre-employment programs....
Profiting from poverty
Profiting from Poverty
I am genuinely horrified by this disaster: https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2018/jul/02/the-demerit-system-is-ruthless-social-policy-designed-to-keep-the-poor-powerless
I believe that we presently represent the job hopes of around 1500 people, in various stages of their progression to independent employment....
New Contract but no change!
New Contract but no change!
Today marks the first day of a new Disability Employment Service (DES) contract.
There are new players and new rules....
'It's nice to be busy' and 'busy is better than idle' and all of my mum's other sayings about work being good for you, and all of them said; we're drowning!
The administrative burden of a new Disability Employment Service contract (starts July 1st) and the mountains of paperwork required for an NDIS dollar (approximately 10X that of the former TTW program) has seen us add 3 extra staff to the admin team and we are still receiving a large volume of enquiries that are causing us some time delay in getting back to folk....
Podcasts I've been learning all about Podcasts (I suspect that this may be a long road!)
However, getting paid to be inspired is not the worst way to spend a Monday afternoon and that is just how my day has gone....
I am truly fortunate to work with the very best people in this great nation and we are truly lucky to be part of the best short film festival this side of anywhere!
"Focusonability" voting starts today and there is an even larger number of films (287) than last year....
On the money Sometime over the next week a new Disability Employment Service contract will be announced.
We are moving into a new world of greater consumer choice and greater mobility of job seekers....
Making a tough job tougher!
Making a tough job tougher
It isnt easy to get a decent job and its harder to do so if you have a disability.
NOVA employs around 190 people, an effective and experienced team who are able to draw upon a staff of highly skilled trainers and a support program honed over almost 30 years and tens of thousands of participants....
Your Work There was never any doubt in my mind that I would work. My dad told me I would work and there wasn't ever a suggestion that my future held an alternative option....
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....