Media Release by The Hon Jane Prentice MP

Gympie endeavouring to improve the lives of people with disability

Today, the Hon Jane Prentice MP, Assistant Minister for Social Services and Disability Services, visited Gympie and Maryborough in Queensland to acknowledge and learn from the great work being done in the community to support people with disability.

Mrs Prentice visited Endeavour Foundation at Maryborough, the largest Australian Disability Enterprise (ADE) which supports 2,313 people with disability to be employed nationally.

“I was delighted to meet some of the 49 supported employees with disability, at Endeavour Foundation in Maryborough, and hear first-hand their experiences and understand how the ADE services and supports are working for them,” Mrs Prentice said.

“More than 13 per cent of people who are of working age have a disability. However, only 53 per cent are participating in work compared with 83 per cent of people without disability”.

“Endeavour Foundation and other ADEs around Australia are aiming to change this”.

“It is great to see organisations benefiting from the enormous contribution people with disability are bringing to their business by focusing on what people can do, their strengths and capabilities”.

“I appreciate having the opportunity to learn from businesses and organisations that have developed processes to employ people with disability. This helps to inform the Government as we work to develop and expand the disability employment sector”.

“One initiative underway is the $700,000 ADE Procurement Initiative. The Department of Social Services has contracted National Disability Services to provide a range of procurement opportunities for ADEs and give them greater visibility and viability in the marketplace as they transition to the NDIS,” Mrs Prentice said.

While in Gympie, Mrs Prentice also visited the Gympie Aquatic Centre which received National Stronger Regions Fund grants, to improve accessibility for people with disability.