I am delighted to be able to join you for Australian Network on Disability’s ninth Annual National Conference, to talk about how we can support and maximise the potential of people with disability, so they can participate equally and fully in our society.
Opening address for the 2017 National Disability Services’ Annual Conference ‘Disability at work: Unleashing potential’
I am delighted to be at your 2017 National Disability Services annual conference. The theme of your conference – ‘Disability at Work: Unleashing Potential’ – highlights a key issue and an area of opportunity for people with disability. Disability employment, is as many of you are aware, one of my key focus areas.
Ladies and gentlemen, thank you for the opportunity to speak at your 2016 National Disability Services CEO Meeting.
As I have said many times, this is a transformational time for the disability sector. In July of this year the National Disability Insurance Scheme began the three year transition to full scheme.
Ladies and gentlemen, I am delighted to be here today to launch the National Disability and Carers Advisory Council.
Speech for the 2016 National Disability Awards
We are rating at the moment 21 out of 29 OECD countries for disability employment. That is frankly not good enough. If it was an Olympic sport there would probably be an outcry from the community. So this discussion paper will help us identify people who are doing it the right way, the successful way.
Employment is important for our economic security. But it is also more than that. A job gives us a sense of independence and self-worth. It contributes to our physical and mental health and helps to shape our sense of identity.
We have a shared vision for an inclusive Australian society that enables people with disability to fulfil their potential both within the wider community and within themselves. This means driving improvements across the mainstream services that all Australians take for granted – not just specialist disability services.
I am pleased to join with Minister Ajaka to launch the ‘SkillsLink2Work’ website. SkillsLink2Work is a free online toolkit that will help carers match their skills to employment opportunities.
Employment for people with disability is not just about a job and money to pay the bills. It is an opportunity for new social interaction and developing new levels of independence. Most importantly, it is opportunity for self-worth and creating perception changes across the wider workforce.