What a great week at NOVA!
We held our regular staff induction training program for about a dozen new staff - this mob looks like they'll do well and will be a great help to the rest of our team. There are additional workers for a number of outlets and, with our growth continuing, we are already looking for extra team members - if you want the low down cut and paste this into your browser: http://www.novaemployment.com.au/workingForNova.asp
This week also saw our television campaign kick off in Sydney and this has already generated some interest in our work.
it's a real shame, and somewhat strange, that people who receive the DSP can't be easily referred to us - there's a national 'cap' of about 50,000 places and essentially the program is full - but people who frequently have less obstacles to employment can come right on in.
Our government (bless 'em) have promised to sort this out early next year and should be congratulated for their initiative in opening up opportunity - now if the date for allowing acceptance could be moved forward.....
Which brings me to an idea that I have been pushing around for a bit.
Programs like NOVA get paid to take people on board, paid for assessment and paid regular sums for a period of time with extra payments for success.
In the present economy I don't think that's the most effective way and so I have a plan and here it is:
There are presently some 720,000 people in receipt of the DSP (Disability Support Pension).
Many would like to earn an income and the Rudd government re-introduction of a 2 year safety net for persons moving from DSP to employment provides an excellent framework within which such persons may test their employability.
The problem (presently) is that the capped program is full so DSP recipients can’t access a spot.
Here is a simple idea that will provide a safety net and enable the movement from DSP to worker for a much greater proportion of welfare recipients.
The following only applies to persons in receipt of DSP and is outside of the existing capped program provision (which I believe should remain in place as a safety net).
1. DSP recipients may sign up for service with any employment service provider and may sign with multiple providers.
2. Service providers receive no payment for signing such persons up, and no payment for screening, assessment, pre-vocational training, all of which are at the employment provider’s expense.
3. Upon receipt of first wage cheque following employment (regardless of value) service provider receives a payment.
4. At 4 week continuous employment the service provider receives either; A further payment, either fixed sum or a sum set by a combination of wages earned / reduction in benefit
5. At 13 weeks continuous employment (greater than 15 hours a week) the service provider receives a further payment and a further/final payment at 26 weeks of $X or a sum set by a combination of wages earned / reduction in benefit.
6. Initial eligibility and subsequent payment verified through Centrelink.
There would need to be some checks against related entity employment and possible some other measures to protect taxpayer’s investment. However, in this proposal the Commonwealth only pay for results, risk remains with the service provider and no one can complain that existing services have been reduced.
This proposal removes the present situation where programs that split jobs into many part time positions, receive better credit and recognition that those that do the right thing and provide a single full time job* (don't bother me with any claims of 'client choice', while some folk only want part-time, the majority of people want and need to earn full time wages)
No need to tender – all existing PAGES (that's providers of Australian Government Employment Services) could be invited to participate and make a commercial decision on that basis – if you make a quid, great. If you don’t it’s either telling you something about your offer or the local labour market.
All the numbers are nominal and NOVA Employment would be happy to pilot a program to see what happens.
There are gaps in the above (for instance issues related to episodic illness) but nothing that's unfixable and, in an economy where work is going to be harder to find and money for programs will be tighter it is a cost effective, simple way forward
Probably means we won't do it!
* At present (yes, you should take this up with your local Federal member) any employment above either 8 or 10 hours a week equals 'an outcome' for which the employment service provider earns a payment equal to an assessed level of disability.
If a person is offered a 40 hour a week job and takes it, that's '1'.
If a service provider divides that same job up and offers employment to 5 people in 8 hour shifts (say a day each) that's '5'.
I raised this dishonest inequity with the Federal government nearly 5 years ago and was told 1. Service providers wouldn't do that, and 2. We'll put steps in place to stop it.
Here's the truth: 1. Yes, they do and DEEWR staff encourage this practice (it makes them look good too) and, 2. No one has done anything. This is why services can receive statistical "Health" Checks that show higher wages and higher hours worked, but get a lower rating than their competitors.
Wake up! people who have a disability are getting short changed.
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