Media Release by The Hon Christian Porter MP

The future of supported employment – Have your say

Joint Media Release with:

  • The Hon Jane Prentice MP

The Turnbull Government is asking people with disability, their families and carers, and anyone in the disability and employment sectors, to have their say on supported employment with the release of a discussion paper titled Ensuring a strong future for supported employment.

The discussion paper poses questions to encourage discussion around three core policy areas:

Strategies to support employment participation for people with disability

Strategies to provide effective employment opportunities by employers and providers

Strategies to strengthen the role of the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) to enable employees to reach their employment goals.

“Supported employment plays a vital role in improving the social and economic participation of many people with disability in Australia,” Minister Porter said.

“The Turnbull Government is committed to ensuring Australian Disability Enterprises (ADEs) are strong and viable businesses, so they can continue to provide effective employment outcomes for Australia’s 20,000 workers currently in supported employment, as well as those who wish to join the workforce in the future.

“This commitment includes more than $220 million in annual funding for supported employees accessing employment supports and $180 million in additional funding for the ADEs to adjust to new wage arrangements for supported employees and transition to the NDIS,” Minister Porter said.

“The rollout of the NDIS to full scheme presents opportunities to expand, diversify and strengthen the supported employment sector”.

Assistant Minister for Social Services and Disability Services, Jane Prentice, said the Government wants to hear from people with disability and the sector more broadly to inform a future supported employment policy.

“It is critical we hear from those working in and running ADEs. We also want to hear from employees’ families and carers, and the disability sector to inform the policy development for supported employment. We want to ensure more people with disability achieve their employment goals.

“The Government has extended Disability Employment Assistance for eligible ADEs for up to two years to support ongoing service provision to ensure ADE businesses can thrive in the new environment with the NDIS,” Mrs Prentice said.

“A greater quality of life is enjoyed by people who have their own discretionary income from participating in supported employment. People have greater choice and control over the support options they access under the NDIS. The Government expects the number of NDIS participants with employment supports included in their NDIS plan will grow in the future. We look forward to consulting people with disability, their families and carers and employers and the broader sector to strengthen the future of supported employment,” Minister Porter said.

The consultation to be undertaken by the Department of Social Services includes holding workshops and interviews with stakeholders. To have your say on the discussion paper: Ensuring a strong future for supported employment, visit between 7 December 2017 and 9 March 2018.

The discussion paper is available here: