Dis­abil­ity plan is good busi­ness

Campaspe News - - LOCALCLASSIES -

BUSI­NESSES across the Rochester re­gion are urged to em­ploy peo­ple with a dis­abil­ity un­der a bold new Vic­to­rian Gov­ern­ment plan.

The State Dis­abil­ity Plan, which cov­ers the next three years, in­cludes a broad range of ac­tions aimed at break­ing down the bar­ri­ers faced by peo­ple with a dis­abil­ity.

But the cen­tral fo­cus is on boost­ing em­ploy­ment rates in Aus­tralia, where peo­ple with dis­abil­i­ties find it sig­nif­i­cantly more dif­fi­cult to find work com­pared to other de­vel­oped na­tions.

Mur­ray Hu­man Ser­vices, which sup­ports peo­ple with a dis­abil­ity in the Rochester dis­trict, has em­braced the plan.

Chief ex­ec­u­tive Scott Alexan­der said boost­ing em­ploy­ment op­por­tu­ni­ties for peo­ple with a dis­abil­ity would re­duce re­liance on gov­ern­ment ben­e­fits.

‘‘Em­ploy­ment for a per­son with a dis­abil­ity brings with it ben­e­fits which in­clude so­cial and work­place skill build­ing, be­ing a con­trib­u­tor to and part of a team and the broader com­mu­nity, im­proved self-es­teem and, of course, an in­come,’’ he said.

‘‘So many peo­ple with dis­abil­i­ties are ready and will­ing to work, and when given the op­por­tu­nity to do so they are in­vari­ably very mo­ti­vated and ded­i­cated em­ploy­ees.’’

Fig­ures show Aus­tralia ranks a dis­mal 21st out of 28 high in­come OECD coun­tries when it comes to em­ploy­ing peo­ple with a dis­abil­ity.

Worse still, peo­ple with a dis­abil­ity are al­most twice as likely to be unem­ployed com­pared to other Aus­tralians.

Hous­ing, Dis­abil­ity and Age­ing Min­is­ter Martin Fo­ley said Vic­to­ria needed to be more in­clu­sive.

‘‘Ev­ery Vic­to­rian de­serves equal­ity, but sadly, that’s not al­ways the case for more than one mil­lion Vic­to­ri­ans with a dis­abil­ity,’’ he said.

The NDIS is due to be­gin roll out in Echuca in May next year.

To view the new plan, visit www.state­dis­abli­ty­plan.vic.gov.au

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