May 2014 Newsletter



after the Human Rights decision and federal budget & what the future implications MIGHT be for industry players

The push by the old Miscellaneous Workers Union now called the United Voice is for supported wage employees wage raises from approximately $10 per hour to $16.80. This is great in theory and we would all support better wages for supported wage employees. However reality may also say that what are the ongoing benefits of wage rises if the employers are forced to close down due to prohibitive costs. The wage rises are a reasonable aim, but it should be backed by additional investment in disability employment services. At a minimum, the anticipated savings from the DSP measures should be directed at strengthening the services

that are critical to enabling people on DSP to gain and sustain employment. Federal Disability Minister Mitch Fifield says he is “deeply concerned and disappointed about the decision of the Human Rights Commission” and that the Government is considering options that will ensure the ongoing employment of supported employees and the viability of Australian Disability Enterprises.

How could other businesses could best adjust to the possible changes?

The pundits in the sector suggest the move from the BSWAT may be safely transitioned, at this stage, by utilising the Greenacres wage assessment tool Skillmaster. A question to be pondered ‘is the move to wage assessments based on able-bodied person’s benchmarks discriminatory?’ It will be interesting to see the potential collision between the broadening of the potential pool of people to be assisted by the NDIS with these current tightening of the DSP requirements. Is this a backdoor method of reducing the NDIS costs?

Work for the Dole

It is great to see the expansion of the Work for the Dole Program. However, how many people with a disability are forced into the trap of Newstart allowance payments and then get suspended from payments for noncompliance issues.

Human rights commissioners

My antennas go up with the announcement in the Budget of a reduction in the number of Human Rights Commissioners by one. This is expected to occur in July 2014, when the Disability Discrimination Commissioner, Graeme Innes AM, completes his term. To cover the responsibilities, an existing commissioner will take on a dual appointment.

The need for accredited training for 50% of an ADE’s workforce

The current contract for ADE’s has a requirement for 50% of supported wage employees to have attained a national recognised qualification. Enquiries with the funding bodies for clarification of this requirement have found that this requirement is aspirational only. It makes one wonder how the NDIS will be structured in regards to this current contract aspirational requirement.

Academy of Workplace Learning meeting the needs of ADE’s

Having experience working in researching, designing and implementing nationally recognised qualifications for supported wage employees. Gaining this experience by providing traineeships for over 200 supported wage employees to organisations such as New Horizons, The Spastic Centre, St George Disabilities, Ozanam Industries, Centacare, DSA and  Eurella Packaging, Castlereagh Industries, Civic Industries, Multitask, Catholic Care, Thorndale Industries. We at the Academy of Workplace Learning feel confident in meeting the needs of ADE’s both currently and into the future.

In our designing and development of our training material we knew that the guys working in ADE’s had a history of bad experiences within the school system. So we very deliberately set out to make their learning experiences fun and stress free. You are more than welcome to contact us and we can forward positive data from our student feedback surveys that confirm that we have achieved this objective.

Current funding availability

In our search to assist ADE’s we have sourced some very generous funding that covers the cost of the training for our client organisations. This rather generous funding has enabled us to roll out approximately 70 traineeships in Transport and Logistics to organisations such as St George IDF, DSA Seven Hills and Condell Park sites and House With No Steps, Minchinbury site.

This funding currently till 2015 allows us to train your staff in a nationally recognised Certificate II in Transport and Logistics/Warehouse Operations. The beauty of this funding is that it allows us to train and mentor your trainees to ensure a positive outcome for themselves and their employer.

We would particularly like to assist in removing any barriers to learning opportunities, that may exist, in order to assist participants develop and make meaningful contributions in open employment if they are interested.

The Future

Academy of Workplace Learning is striving to meet the future needs of ADE’s in their training requirements. We are meeting with a few industry representatives to try and take the pulse of the sector and develop our scope of training to anticipate ADE’s future requirements. Currently we are considering Certificate  III & IV in Disabilities to help organisations achieve the NDIS staffing requirements of disability staff having a nationally recognised qualification. We are also researching and developing Certificate’s III & IV in Employment Services in response to the Federal Governments push towards jobs, jobs, jobs. To further assist supported wage employees we are putting together a Certificate II in Community Services.

We have quite a few ADE’s who have Green Teams and to assist these ADE’s we are currently adding a Certificate II in Horticulture to our scope.

We are endeavouring to plan towards providing a menu of training in anticipation of the training requirements that will be necessary under the NDIS. If we can support you’re organisation in planning and broadening our scope of training material. Please do not hesitate to contact us.

For further information on any of the above please use the online contact form.

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