Adding value: Working at Aroundagain are Chris Dowdy, Matt Reyney, Owen Richardson and Luke Hudson. Picture: Louise DongesWITH the right support, people with disabilities can make a valuable contribution to the workforce, says the Christie Centre chief executive.
Florence Davidson wants employers to look past a person’s disability when considering hiring them.
She said they were often either “fearful” or “patronising” toward candidates with disabilities – and enough was enough.
Ms Davidson’s comments come as the Federal Government is considering an overhaul of Australia’s $150 billion welfare system.
An independent review has found the system was “out of step” with labour market and community expectations.
It found the system was “failing to identify groups at risk of long-term income support dependence” and needed to refocus on early intervention and supporting individuals through difficult transitions.
A recommendation being considered by the government is moving people on disability support payments back into the workforce.
It’s a move Ms Davidson supports, but she cautioned the government against a “quick fix”.
“There needs to be incentives for work, not a push towards work,” she said.
She said the government needed to recognise there were often medical or social barriers to full-time work for people with disabilities, and successful employment needed to suit individuals.
The Christie Centre is one of a number of Mildura organisations assisting people with disabilities to move into the workforce.
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