Ministerial Advisory Council on Disability - Independent adviser to the WA Minister for Disability Services - Keeping government informed

National Disability Insurance Scheme in Western Australia

Discussion Paper: Employment

Why is employment such an important part of the NDIS in Western Australia?

Employment support for people with disability is currently provided by the Commonwealth Government through Disability Employment Services (DES) for open employment and Australian Disability Enterprises (ADE) for supported employment. Strict eligibility requirements have meant support for employment has been limited to those considered more capable, with guidelines dictating the types of support available. The National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) provides an opportunity for all people with disability to seek and maintain employment of their choice with flexible support that recognises their individual circumstances.

How has employment support worked under the NDIS in Western Australia?

Over the past three years the NDIS has evolved through various trials around the country, and in Western Australia we have seen the approaches of both the National Disability Insurance Agency trial in the Perth Hills and the WA NDIS trial in the Lower South West and Cockburn/Kwinana. In all trial areas, employment related support has complimented the existing DES and ADE programs, whilst providing an option for support to those not eligible for these existing services. This support has aimed to:

  • Identify an individual’s interests to inform work-related goals or aspirations,
  • Provide on-the-job support and skills development,
  • Prepare individuals to enter the workforce, or employment service, and
  • Support individuals to successfully find or customise work of their choice, establish their own micro-enterprise, or be placed into an existing job opportunity.

What has been learnt about employment support during the trial?

We now have two years of feedback from individuals, families, planners and providers about employment support.
Feedback received from people involved in employment support includes:

  • Some people, including people with disability, school support staff, parents, planners and employment provider representatives, lack an understanding of the range of employment service options that are available and how they intersect with NDIS, making it difficult to provide advice or refer people to suitable options for their needs,
  • Many people with disability are not incorporating employment as a goal within their plan due to low aspiration, a lack of expectation or not understanding the opportunity for the provision of employment related support through NDIS,
  • There is a lack of knowledge about the ability to utilise paid supports whilst on-the-job,
  • Some DES and ADE services are limited in the employment goals they can support for people with disability due to the guidelines, funding structures and eligibility criteria, and
  • Some DES and ADE provider organisations have embraced the NDIS and the existing opportunities.

What do you think?

  1. Do you think employment support is working well with NDIS?
  2. Are there different options for support with employment under the NDIS?
  3. Who should be involved in supporting people with employment?
  4. What are some of the things that either prevent or assist people with disability to get work?
  5. Do you have any other comments or concerns about employment support?

You may provide feedback by completing a short survey here.

If you require the discussion paper in an alternative format or would like an alternative way to provide feedback please contact the Secretariat:

Telephone: 1800 857 354
Post: NDIS in WA
c/o PO Box 494
West Perth WA 6872

This discussion paper is available in Word, PDF and Easy Read version for download [DOCX 63 KB] [PDF 253 KB] [Easy Read DOCX 639 KB] [Easy Read PDF 316 KB].

Feedback on this discussion topic is due by Friday 16 September 2016.